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  • Kim

Living in a state of blackout...

I used to write sticky notes to myself and leave them everywhere when I was drunk to remember the things I did. I would read these notes the next morning. Don't forget to change the laundry. Don't forget to mail Christmas cards. Call Allison for her bday.

I would jot down normal to-dos and things that I would think of while drinking wine at night on the couch, but I often had to write them down because I was in a state of blackout and I knew I would never remember. Eventually, once I began to utilize the smart phone, I started making dozens of calendar reminders. Random notices would pop up telling me to record a show next week. One time I told myself to - Check out the new season of the Kardashian's. I found that calendar reminder one random Tuesday morning and wondered when I had written that to myself, because I never even liked that show or watched it before.

Sometimes I would find the weirdest plans scheduled in my calendar that I created while out and about on a Saturday night. Once, I made plans with a couple that I had never met before until late one night. "Dinner with Bob and Lisa!" And then a month later I saw the notice pop up the day of and thought, who the fuck are Bob and Lisa? I clearly didn't remember meeting those people and obviously forgot all about the big plans we had made together.

On certain nights, I used to write things down that I said to Evan, so I didn't forget that I told him something. I did this because I knew it annoyed him when I repeated things I told him when I was drunk. I would write out full on recaps of conversations with him in email format, so I would remember if there was something important that he said to me. If I had a meaningful talk with a friend, I used to email myself summaries of it before passing out in bed. Rereading my words the next morning was always a puzzle, trying to decipher what it was I was trying to say or convey to myself.

It's funny how back then my subconscious was actually working pretty hard to keep my writing going, I guess. My love for expressing myself through the written word had never really left me, but I wasn't aware of what was going on. The alcohol was holding me back and suppressing so much, because I was always so blacked out. So numb. But I was hanging on by a thread, in one of the only ways I knew how. Through my words. Even then, in my darkest days, I knew that writing was one of the only ways to survive.

On the last night of our vacation this week, the waiter asked if we were celebrating anything special. I told him it was my two year soberversary. He was really happy and intrigued. Towards the end of our meal a couple of hours later, the waiter asked me how I knew when I needed to stop drinking. He wondered how I was even able to stop in the first place. He said to me, "I wonder a lot to myself if I have a problem with drinking? You know, I think I actually do but I don't know if I can ever do anything about it. I have one or two drinks with friends. Then suddenly I need to have three. And it's so hard to say no. I just don't know how to do life without alcohol."

I ended up having a nice conversation with him after that comment and left him my information. I am hopeful for this kind gentleman and his future, but there is no way to know what will become of him and his relationship with alcohol.

For me, I am so glad to no longer be trapped by those feelings that he described. I am overjoyed to be free to write today simply because it make me happy. Tonight, I write this blog post in the hopes of inspiring others, not because I need to be able to remember what it was I did this Sunday evening. That is joy. That is peace. That is freedom.

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Deborah Evans
Deborah Evans
01 de jan. de 2023

The very first sentence about sticky notes instantly grabbed me here. Wow. Yes. Same. My family has always thought it is "cute" that I have trails of post-its around my desk, bedside table, the in sobriety I see this "cute" thing in a completely opposite light. My most "brilliant" thoughts, tasks, ideas of course always came to me when I was drinking, but in order to remember them.....tiny colorful squares with my sloppy drunk handwritten words. Not so "cute" anymore to me....

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