There are times when she breaks down. There are moments in which she falls apart. These are the moments in time where her smile becomes an expression of strength but you'll never know her battles because she goes to war in silence.
My family is full of addicts. I was so naive to think because of the influences I have had I would never become one. Boy was I wrong... I don't have a singular habit that I am addicted to. I have multiple bad habits to fill the need of my addiction. I'm addicted to a feeling. My name is Brittany and I am addicted to feeling happy. I have had a taste of true happiness. You know the kind where the sun is shining, there is a good song on the radio, and all you can do is smile. Everything is just right in the world, in that moment. All the bad that weighed you down before is a forgotten memory. However, that feeling is only temporary for me. I don't quite understand though, why the feeling is only temporary for me. The more I try to keep it the feeling around the more reckless I get with my behaviors.
One of my most recent developed reckless behaviors is drinking. Drinking to fit in and seem fun. Drinking to mask the pain. With the first sip of alcohol, the weight of the world flies off of my shoulders. I feel like dancing and singing. It started off drinking more frequently with friends, and then slowly I found myself drinking alone more often than not. When I would drink alone, it wasn't just to feel happy. It was also so I could sleep. So that meant instead of a glass of wine, I drank a large 1.5 liter bottle. Instead of 2-3 beers, I would drink a case. I didn't have a limit. I drank until it was gone.
That same trend continued when I would go out to the bar. I didn't know how to, or didn't want to, stop at one or two drinks. And more often than I am willing to admit... I drove home drunk. In this search of happiness at the bottom of a bottle, because for a brief moment it gave me a glimpse of what I was searching for, I have made many poor choices. I have made a complete ass of myself too many times to count, and I am mortified but my actions when intoxicated. I often make jokes about "drunk Brittany" but deep down inside I hate her and she isn't funny. Just like I hate fat Brittany. You know the big girl who eats whatever she wants when she wants, but has all the fake self confidence in the world.... I think any addiction persona I take on is a sad and pathetic version of me.
I never had a life altering experience from drinking that made me hit rock bottom. I didn't get arrested. I didn't lose my license. I didn't kill anyone. I am currently thanking God for that because I could have easily done all of the above.
I recently took inventory on my life and came to realize that I base a lot of my choices around drinking, hoping for that moment of happiness to come back. I make plans for the weekend based on how hungover I will be the next day. I budget money for booze and every time I go grocery shopping there is at least a bottle of wine in my cart. They truly meant it when you have bariatric surgery not to drink. Do not drink because you will substitute one addiction for another. That is exactly what I did. I used to eat to feel happiness. Honestly, I think everyone can relate to food giving them the feeling of pure joy. However, for me it was killing me. So I changed that. Or so I thought....
I'm getting fatter and my memory is turning to shit. In my early years of drinking I have never experienced black out moments. Now they happen frequently. It's like I know what is happening in the moment itself, but it doesn't convert to long term memory. There have been many times that my memory stops very early and I have no clue how I even got home. I keep wondering how I have gained so much weight when I have pretty much ate the same, and even when I diet. Then I put down a case a of beer or liter of wine.... there was part of the answer there.
I said before I drank to help with my insomnia as well. After awhile it got later and later I was staying up to drink. A few drinks later, or one too many, the "happy" feeling would stop and the pain would wash over me. Recent suicide attempts or self harming have all been when I was intoxicated.
All of these moments have added up in my head recently. The reason behind why I do things, and how they have effected my life. I decided that drinking hasn't given me that "happy" feeling I am looking for in a really long time. I don't believe it truly ever did. It is possible that it heightened whatever feelings I had. Whether they were good or bad. I have decided to live the sober life of a little while. Currently I am 8 days sober and riding the struggle bus all the way to funky town. Nights like tonight I would have a glass of wine and a bad chick flick on the TV. Instead, I have a diet coke and pouring my heart out to anyone willing to read this.
Happiness is a feeling I desperately want to remain in my life more consistently. I need to learn to develop more healthy habits in order to achieve that feeling. Working on feeling accomplished, and work on my self confidence. Moments, feelings and character building that will allow happiness to stay around longer than a brief moment. Slowly I will find my way back there. When I do, I don't ever want to let it go.