Okay, I admit it--sometimes, I hate my routine, soccer-mom, boring motherfucking life.

Oh, how very contrary to my other, more optimistic posts, heavy as they are with gratitude and platitudes. But what can one really expect from a recovering alcoholic and former wild woman? Yes, it's all very well to be living this bucolic life of domesticity, but what of that other life, that dark, sweet life of desperation and danger and the thrill that precedes the plunge? What of that life?

I used to tumble backwards into ecstatic release, falling out of myself like a parachutist tumbling from a bi-plane. I used to swim in the acoustic rhythms of decadence, raising my glass again and again, loving everyone I could see. I used to feel so alive, so free that I could raise up off the sidewalk.

Yes, yes, it was all a chemical illusion; it was false. But it was also true.

Now I live in the stark blind hot sun of real life. Sometimes it's more beautiful than I ever would ever expected--but sometimes, sometimes it's parched and dry and it chokes me and I wish, I wish, I wish I could dive into intoxicants like the deep end of a pool and swim to the bottom where I could live among the enchanted.

But I can't. Because if I did, I would not rise again. Or, when I did, I would find that the life I mostly enjoy would have withered and gone to seed, neglected and empty--my husband, my children, my friends, my artistic life. I wish this were not so. But it is.

I knew when I first began the journey of recovery that it wouldn't end--but what I've learned is that it's not a journey to anywhere at all, but a slow walk around a circular path that leads, inevitably, right back to where I started. I may as well have poured my last beer down the sink yesterday. Every part of me that ever lived to get fucked up is very much alive and well, thank you, and absolutely ripshit to have been closed up in this tight little coffin, waiting for a death that will not come. This part of me, the alcoholic, the party girl, really does not give one shred of a crap about gardens or camping or even, God help her, the health and well-being of my children. The alcoholic has one agenda and it has nothing to do with living a quality life. To the contrary: it's a tractor beam straight into an interminable, semi-conscious death. I know this to be true.

Yet this weekend, among friends, all of them with a drink in hand, laughing and warm, I was an outcast. I was the only one left living life on life's terms, and it was lonely as hell. Those were the terms. For me.

This will never be over; that's what's disheartening. It gets better, sometimes. Sometimes I forget all about all of this. But the slow path always circles. And I always return to who I once was.

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