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Drinking Spirits

Here I go. I'm writing about this. Where I stand with this is undetermined, unfinished and not even fully understood. I don't know if it ever will be, so why not write about it now? I can't say that this will be poetic, beautiful or dark. I can't say whether it will help me by writing it or help you be reading it. But it wants out.

It’s just a blinking cursor in my outer life. Mimicking my pounding heart and inner fears.

This life. Oh how long it feels. Not in a bad way, but in a powerful way. Filled with so many layers of joys and pains... of mistakes and lessons... of stepping up and stepping down - depending on the size I allowed this world to make me feel. For oh so long I allowed myself to feel small. Growing up I felt different and alone. And although I knew deep down how strong and important I was, I gave into the temptation of being someone else. Someone that people liked better. Someone less than who I really was. A lie, a fraud, a silly little nothing who would rather get a laugh at her own expense than to possibly turn stomachs with the beautiful rawness of her truth.

But, the Soul. My Soul, how it hurt. How it longed to be revealed. But I still had so much to learn about life, about fear, about love, and about myself. So I drank. I drank a lot. I smoked, and I did drugs. I did anything that was offered to me for many years. Anything. Without any fear of death. Not because I understood the beauty of the afterlife - but because I didn’t care if the girl I had created lived or died. Drinking and doing drugs had become the mask that I wore to be Jessica. To be alive in my brokenness and connected to humanity. Now I'm not saying I didn’t have people in my life that cared for me - who would have stood beside me with or without this pain and deception. But that is not the point of this story. The point is healing. And just as falling into this pit of despair in my life was my own choice - it was also my choice to climb out. Step by glorious step.

Fast forward to 2010, married and pregnant. Healthy, so I thought. But not even close. After the boys were born I jumped onto the fast track train to healing and I have been on it ever since. Even as I type this, I can acknowledge how far I have come but I also understand that this is a never-ending ride. And sometimes holding on until the bumps pass is all you can do. I look forward to discovering more about myself and my place in the world. As a new Mother, my hidden Soul and the Universe of my child's eyes hit me hard enough for me to remember that I wasn’t who I was supposed to be. That I still had so much of myself covered up and so much more to discover. So I held their hand to guide them - as they guided me back to my inner child, where she was waiting for me with outstretched arms. I thankfully held her and placed her back into my heart. I didn’t have to drink liquor or do drugs to be happy. I was discovering what happiness really was. It oozed out from the inside as I found myself in the midst of motherhood. As I re-created my world from the inside out. I was healing! I was doing it!

Well. Sort of...

There were those times. Events. Adult outings. Social extravaganzas. The ones I couldn’t avoid I went to excitedly and I chugged viciously. I partied hard. I was a little bit of the old me for a while. I felt I had deserved it, that I was letting my wild side out of its cage for a night. I wasn’t hurting anyone - my children were safe and sound with Grandparents. Oh yes, fun - a different kind of fun was had. Twirling mad laughter and wild adventure until morning. Morning.... ugh. Morning, when I would feel like crap for exactly three days and nights. Not just from what I had ingested but from the guilt of swallowing spirits to cover up my own. But that’s the outcome of rewarding yourself with destructive behavior, isn’t it? I would tell myself that it wouldn’t happen again and I believed I was strong enough to contain it. Only to find out at the next event 4 months down the road that I wasn’t. I wasn’t strong enough to take a sip and not be transformed into "that girl" or reminded of "that time".

A few months ago I knew I could no longer ignore this part of my life. It was asking to be healed and I knew it was time. So, I looked deep within myself and asked for guidance. Ha! Sometimes we hear the exact thing we have known all along but it was just too hard or strange to commit to. That is when we need to be brave. I am at the point in my life where I listen to the guidance I ask for. Not only out of respect, but also with a deep knowing that it is always for my highest and greatest good. Hold on to faith and be BRAVE.

"You need to stop"

What? Stop all together? But Its not like I'm an alcoholic or anything. Its not like I have a problem. But I did have a problem. That’s why I asked for guidance to begin with, right?

"You need to stop"

I needed to stop. It’s not good for me. Me, in particular it’s not good for. Its not healthy, it’s not fun, it causes inflammation and depression. Even if its only 3 days every 4-6 months. Its no longer something I need. Its just one more crutch to throw to the wind and rise up a little taller, a little lighter. Free, to be me - ALL me, with no band-aids and no mask. I needed to stop. And so I did.

This past weekend was the first time in over 20 years that I was able to get through an event without drinking. I did it for me. To see if I could, how I would. To see if could hold tight to the promise I made to myself to heal, no matter where the process takes me. No matter what the fires burn down in order to build the new.

And it was beautiful. Magical…

I learned a little more about myself and other people. I was reminded that I am not the only one who is painfully shy at times. I am not the only one who can be awkward in conversation. I am not the only one who stumbles in embarrassment. Who laughs at the wrong thing or cries when they are happy. And most importantly I learned that I am not the only person who can love another when they strip down and bare their soul for all to see. The kindness of people can sometimes be covered up by their anxieties as well as our own. We are all in need of love and healing. With every step I take may it be forward, may it be with love, may it heal me and those around me and may all who come in contact with me see the beauty of my heart and their own. We can do this.

Find Your Way,


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