Thoughts From the Bottom


No matter how much I like to say I can self-medicate effectively, I am still apparently human. With all the stuff I see humans doing these days, can you blame me for hoping I could somehow distance myself from the species? Anyway, when bad things happen, I tend to default to drinking. "Pound a few beers, and stop caring so much" seemed like solid advice at the time, but me being me, I go all in. Recently however, I surprised myself, and chose not to grab a beer after a particularly rough night. A night that saw me jumping out of the car at a light so I could show someone I was more than willing to throw a few fists. The conflict? Some guy thought that "playin" with me in traffic was a good idea. I'm grown, kids, I don't have patience for anyone who likes to "play". Not even a little. I recognize that I went too far this time, but thankfully I stopped before going farther.

I learned that night that I definitely had greater issues to deal with than just self-imposed deadlines, and fairweather friends. Nothing like a good jolt of potential violence to put things into perspective. I recognized my anger as a symptom of the greater issue, depression, and began working on solutions. Once I get in a funk, it takes a little time to get out, but I've always gotten out so far. This time around, I decided that I wanted to not just get through a depressive spell, but to empower myself with the tools I need to get past it consistently; perhaps even for good. Much like eveything else in life, this would require patience, persistence, and unwavering focus. Therefore, I had to sober up, and start reading. I'll talk about my problems with sobriety another time.

I love to read about every aspect of the human condition; physical, mental, emotional, metaphysical, and beyond. I do this for personal knowledge as much as general knowledge. It's also incredibly helpful to know your enemy. When your enemy is your own mind, you have to dig deep, and prepare for battle with your most formidable foe. So here I am in a handicap match against depression, and addiction, getting slammed into the concrete. Spitting blood as I stand once again, asking "Is that all you've got?!", but it never is, those two just don't get tired. I do, but I don't like to admit it. I don't know how I got convinced that I'm supposed to be perfect, but here I am living out my own version of that movie "Black Swan" without the ballet, and over-hyped lesbian love scene. I guess life really is sort of like an Aronofsky film though; everyone tends to die at the end.

I dove into every psychology-related site ending with "edu" or "org" that google would give me, and read all night. It was far from the first time I've had one of these "mental health cram sessions", but it was the first time since starting anti-anxiety medication. I really don't know if the pills work or if I'm already so dependent on them that I can't skip a day without side effects. They seemed helpful at first, but now I just don't know. I don't want to start something else, I take enough pills on any given day as it is; including supplements, and pain pills, I'm already up to 10 a day. They don't even have any fun side effects, they just taste bad. I'm not gonna act like I'm somehow broken just because I have trouble sometimes; I can beat this without a bunch of meds. Honestly, I may not have much other choice.

My research showed me that my substance abuse was merely another symptom of depression. It seems so obvious now, but when you're in the middle of it, it's hard to be objective. Looking back I can see that I was stretched thin for a while, and breaking was only a matter of time. Good thing about being broken, and at what you feel is rock bottom, is that you can get up. You can heal yourself, and try again as many times as you like. Simply put, I got down so low that there was no where else to go, but up. I put the booze, and everything else down for a little while. I told myself to be content with doing nothing, and that everything will work out exactly as it is supposed to; I can't, nor should I try to change that. I can change myself, but eveything else must be let go. Of course this is much easier said than done.

My life goal is enlightenment, it used to be something about being a respected musician, but I gave up on that pipe dream. All I want now is to be happy. I don't really know what that's like, so I figured I'd work towards that instead of trying to convince people to care about my art. That's a project I can get behind, and it doesn't matter if no one else appreciates it. I love being able to notice change within myself; it always inspires me to do more, to work harder. The greatest lesson I have learned from the addict portion of my personality is that I must learn to pace myself, in all parts of my life, and my thinking. I can't be as extreme in my decision-making; there's enough extremity out there as is, I should simply strive for peace of mind. My biggest mistake was stressing over every detail when I should've been just letting things happen. Life is so far beyond our control, but somehow we still feel like we can bend it towards our will. Maybe we can to a certain extent, but one thing I know for sure is that life comes at you hardest when you least expect it.

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