One of the reasons I gave up drinking was how emotionally numb I was feeling. Or was I? I couldn’t decide. If you have to keep asking yourself if you are feeling numb you probably are.
And I continued to feel numb for months after giving up (which I think in some ways made it easier – yeah, I’m not drinking, so what, who cares, whatever) but I feel like I might be emerging from that numbness now. The trouble is I’m not emerging, as I imagined, into a state of joy and zen-like calm but instead into a state of general worry and anxiety for the future. I’ve not sober teleported to an exotic south seas island but to an emotional Syria instead. It didn’t occur to me when I was worried about feeling nothing that the alternative was to experience a swathe of negative emotions. And anyway I SHOULD be afraid for the future. In my alcoholic numbness I sabotaged my secure, well-paid life and set myself on an unknown, scary new course. I think feeling worried is probably a good survival instinct.
At least I can say it feels like true emotion. And it might be a bit shit but at least I am not drinking. Actually the overwhelmingly positive emotion that that last statement produces in me every time I remind myself of the fact means that I can cope with the negative, scary feelings. Which is good because otherwise I feel like I could freak out entirely.
I am giving myself until the 180 day mark before I do something about it all. I don’t even know what ‘doing something about it’ even means but it’s nice to have a date on the horizon where I can both celebrate something (six months sober – that weird impossible unexpected miracle) and begin to take myself in hand.
Oh yeah, and completely off topic, day 180 is also when I intend to take a long, hard look at my sugar and caffeine dependence. But that’s a subject for another time.