I’ve decided to do one blog post per day for a year. 365 blog posts. That will end up being a lot of words about alcohol and why I am quitting it. But I realised today what the advantage of this project is: it allows me to focus on even the most infinitesimal aspect of my own relationship to alcohol. And I am not doing this for any other purpose than to keep me focused on the project and hopefully getting some insights about why the relationship between me and alcohol is such a dysfunctional one. At this stage it probably couldn’t even be saved by councelling.
So here is one infinitesimal issue that I have been thinking about: I associate alcohol with something wrong, something that ideally should not be happening. The image I have of an ideal adult is someone who doesn’t drink alcohol, who goes to bed so that he can get eight hours of sleep and gets up in the morning just in time to prepare a wonderful breakfast for the family while being perfectly relaxed from the earlier yoga session. But that was never me. I vividly remember standing outside some bar as the sun rose with a beer in my hand. Still working hard to keep the drunkenness going both in my own body and among the group of friends I was hanging out with. And I remember watching regular people leaving their regular homes after a long night’s sleep. They all looked so clean and awake. So available to the world because they were not caught up in their own inner chaos. As I was watching them walk down the street or mounting their bikes and driving away - probably heading for yet another predictable day in an office building that was nicely tempered where they worked in a company that would never go bankrupt – I really hated the fact that I was not them. I hated the rising sun and I hated the beer that I was holding in my hand and which I could no longer really taste. The whole situation was wrong. Whereas my friends enjoyed the fact that we had conquered the night and were heading towards yet another day, I wondered whether I would ever get back to the regularity of everydayness.
And at the same time, I also hated the regularity of everydayness. Because everydayness didn’t provide the intense feeling of self-forgetfulness that alcohol would. And it couldn’t generate the push over the edge towards a feeling that was genuine and honest. But it was safe. And it definitively wasn’t wrong.
I know that those two feelings don’t add up.