Song of the Day
I have not had a drink in well over a year. One of my favorite people here at the beach has been on a good run with his sobriety too. We were talking earlier today and some of his friends approached him who had spent a good part of the day imbibing. The girl asked him to help her get sober. I forgot how beautiful that moment was. Alcohol was not my first dance with the devil and from shortly after the millennium until 2010 I reached bedrock and kept on digging. The first months of sobriety are an avalanche of regret and are quite painful and hopeless. I was not sure what was next for me during those first bits of clarity. I had completely forgotten how to live. Then it started to happen. People I had used with for years were finding their way out of the darkness. I came to cherish the moments when people found the courage to ask for help. I learned a lot about this world in those following years. I learned that saying yes when someone asks for help almost never helps, but is always the right answer if they are willing to try. The question is a good sign but it rarely endures the next morning hangover much less the following months and years. It has been over 10 years and I have lost count of how many people have asked me for help. I have lost count of how many people succeeded in climbing sober mountain back into their families and communities. I have also lost count of how many people died. Some never even tasted sobriety, and some died their first relapse after years of clean living.
I refuse to lose hope. One day I will return to trench warfare in hopes of guiding fellow lost souls back from the darkness. Only ones who have been there know the way out. Until then it was a beautiful moment seeing a friend holding the lantern. I truly hope she finds peace. I hope we all do.
A screewriting group I have joined is using the idea of “identity” as this week’s prompt. This is a concept I have been thinking about a lot lately. Particularly today at the grocery store. Who is the little voice we argue with in our heads?
“but we don’t need raspberry coffee cake” it reminds me. Well, actually it reminds “us”.
It speaks as if a separate entity yet resides between my oversized ears. “We” it so obtusely continues “came here for orange juice and oatmeal and do not need raspberry coffee cake.” This lecture gets intense. “We” continues to remind “Us” that “We” are on a bicycle and need to be mindful of how much “We” are carrying. What a silly and ill-advised deviation from the grocery budget this coffee cake would be for “Us”.
“We are leaving with what we came here for correct?”
“Put the coffee cake down”
“It’s down! Sheesh!”
Why is there a person in my head that wants raspberry coffee cake and another standing guard against impulsive decisions? Why is this other voice so responsible at certain times and so haphazard and reckless at others? “We” are so bossy!
So, here I sit, typing a diary I have chosen to share with the world as both a tool of catharsis and active combat against my tendencies to procrastinate. Fueled by a giant cup of coffee consumed after watching a beautiful sunset. Coffee consumed this late in the day because I am an adult and can have coffee whenever I want. My only authority being this “We” character that chats my ears off who could not even prevent me from getting the raspberry coffee cake accompanying my cup of joe. “We” may be up late tonight exploring this idea of identity while writing a screenplay allowing these characters a voice. But “I” really enjoyed the coffee cake.
On the bike ride home with the aforementioned raspberry cheesecake I happened upon this. It was part of a larger mural but this particular part caught my eye.