So here’s a thing. I read back the posts I wrote last year, and it seems pretty obvious to me that I had something of a crappy year. I got hit with thousands of dollars in fines, plus so much emotional stress that I ended up in therapy. My mother (who only has me) was badly injured. My marriage wobbled. I started a new business, which meant a huge step outside my comfort zone, and not a small amount of anxiety. When I posted here, I was always struggling, and you guys were so supportive, and thank you.
But here’s the thing. I didn’t realise at the time that I was having a bad year. Because in between the bad parts were the good parts, and the good parts are so much better these days.
2016 has not started off particularly well in the Things Going Right: Things Going Wrong ratio department either, honestly. Expensive things keep breaking. A promised shower of work has failed to fall, perhaps lurking in the dark clouds above instead. I lost a friendship.AND YET, people. Things are still so much better. It’s crazy.
I can’t believe I ever thought that if I gave up drinking, I’d be bored. Bored. Who…how…how can anyone be BORED with so many things in the world to do? I’m staid, and domestic, and tied to my home by small children, so I’m not saying that I’m going to hike the Andes any time soon (I’m not sure where the Andes are, if we’re being honest here). But over the last twelve months I’ve taught myself to sew, and to knit. I learned how to wield a drill and a hammer and I built a chicken coop and I got chickens. I dug out a vegetable patch, and my tomatoes are hanging green and plump.
I have been running regularly for the past two months, finally, and I’m about to start joining group runs. I spend my day looking forward to my evening, just as I used to when I drank. But not because I can slump on the couch with a glass of wine: because maybe I’ll finish that cowl and watch a documentary, or it’s a running night and then I have that new book to start, or I can’t wait to sketch out a design for a new quilt I have in mind. And I’m not getting to do enough of anything! I want to run more often, I want a weekend with just my sewing machine and some podcasts for company, I wonder if I can justify going down to the chicken coop and sitting with my knitting while I watch the girls scratch around just one more time this afternoon…
And I don’t write much here because there is so MUCH life to be devoured out there, and I don’t keep up with you guys as often as I should either.
I’m under no illusion that this life sounds like the ideal life to everyone. It’s domestic, and bounded, and probably dull. But it feels rich. It feels layered. It feels cerebral and physical and tangible and simple and complex and fresh.
And it is without question, a life I wouldn’t have if I had a life with alcohol.