Unexpected joy... December 9, 2020
Updated: Sep 2, 2021
One of the many books that I am reading right now has me thinking again about that addict's voice inside my head. It has been quieter this week, but that's not to say she won't pipe up and start rearing her ugly head again in a day, this weekend, a week, or in a month. The "The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober," by Catherine Gray, talks about AVRT, addictive voice recognition therapy, and being able to identify that voice openly and honestly. Personify the addiction, give it a name. Like The Big Bad Wolf from the story of Little Red Riding Hood. Or Voldemort from Harry Potter. Point it out, talk to it, and then by addressing it only then can you shut it down or force it to slowly start to shrink and fade away. The author chooses Voldemort, because to her it has many sides. I hate calling it a 'voice,' because that makes it sound like a psychological disorder, but for lack of a better term, that's the best word I can think of at the moment. I immediately pictured the evil 'voice' in my head as the character Ursula, in The Little Mermaid. Silly, I know, but it works. The perfect villain really: so conniving, so evil, such a temptress and such a liar.
This whole experience of confronting your inner addict makes you feel like a child. When I consider how I acted these last several months, it all seems so infantile. Like I needed to be put into timeout. The villain from a children's movie is the ideal character for this type of therapy. When feeling those temptations to drink, your mind starts to manipulate you as if you are a child. It is only fitting to then associate the negative voice with that of a fictional, childhood villain. So as I would start to feel the need to drink - it was Ursula wrapping her arms or legs around me in a tight hold, slowly suffocating me and I wasn't even realizing it.
So the goal in the future. Deny Ursula what she wants. Starve her. Ignore her and let her shrivel up into a tiny shell of herself.
I don't know if this voice will completely shrink away. I fear that it may always be there, deep down in my subconscious for the rest of my life. The goal is to find the tools to manage it, to suppress it and keep it at bay. Hopefully, I will be able to force Ursula to shrivel up into the tiny mollusk or whatever she deserves to be, and find the strength to keep her there.