I am an addict. I’ve been sober for 7 days. That’s all it’s been. Some days it feels like weeks and other days I still feel high throughout the day like I normally would. These last 7 days I have felt more than I have in years. I’ve felt guilt, complete loneliness, pain, and, when I’m lucky, relief to be freeing myself of a co-dependent relationship. I decided to write this blog because of how lonely sobriety can feel when you are a functioning addict trying to get sober. Many people in my life have no idea what I’ve been doing for the past 13 years. It’s as if they are missing an entire part of me. Like I’ve been having this secret, intimate relationship that is now over and I can’t tell anyone how heart broken I am. All I can do is say, “I’m ok today” when they ask me how I am. Or to say, “I’m not feeling well” when they do notice I’m acting abnormal and ask me if I’m ok.
I decided to write this blog anonymously because it seems to be the only way I can be completely and utterly honest about what I’m really going through. It would be different if everyone new I was an addict and if it had destroyed my life in some way. Going into recovery would seem like the only and best option to get my life on track, but in a society where everyone seems to be medicated admitting you have a problem when it isn’t obvious can be the thing that destroys your life. While it may come to that one day, I’m just not ready for that now.
So here I am, at the end of my seventh day sober. I went into today feeling pretty confident in my ability to stay sober all day. I had plans for the entire day and I didn’t think any of them involved places that I would normally like to try to escape myself. That’s how I think of my addiction. An effort to escape, just for a little bit, the situation that I’m in or how I’m feeling at that moment. But then it snuck up on me and I freaked out. I was in the middle of a social event, people were looking for me, and I had to leave…immediately. It didn’t matter where I went as long as it wasn’t there. Like a tidal wave, my thoughts were consumed with how to find something, anything, that would allow me to escape for just a little while.
For a normal person, seven days seems like nothing, but, to an addict, it feels like a lifetime. Somewhere in these 7 days I went from thinking, “just for today” to “I’m probably fine” and then, out of nowhere, I’m sling-shotted back to “just for today”. I think I’m probably going to be here for a while.