Friday, May 27, 2016

Big Tests coming up

Memorial Day Weekend is a 3-day weekend where I'm normally loaded. Or get that way fast. I mean sun, pool, summer kickoff...and I'm not going to drink? This is gonna get weird fast.

And my Birthday is in another month...and I'll be forced to spend it with someone who normally drives me to drink. She's going to get real offended if I don't drink with her. "It's your BIRTHDAY" she'll scream. "I'm not toasting you by myself!" And she'll have a point I guess. There have been three times I've taken a polite sip of something, just so people don't go slapping labels on me. I might have to do that again.

If anyone has any advice, I'm all ears.

Happy Memorial Day everyone.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Four (4) Months Sober

On January 3rd, at the tag end of New Year's Day Weekend, I took my last drink. One of probably at least a dozen I'd had from that day. My goal was to give up drinking for a year. I'm 1/3 of the way there, with some really hard parts to come. 

I'd been mentally preparing for this day for weeks...months maybe. So when I walked out to the empty 1.75 ml Skyy Bottle sitting atop the kitchen counter the next day, I had mixed feelings. On the one hand I was excited to embark on this new lifestyle. On the other hand I knew I was going to miss my old friend, and have to suffer through the "what the hell do I do now" times of the day...usually 4:00 p.m. onward.

And sure enough, those times and hours did arrive. While I was cleaning up and getting  ready to recycle everything, I thoughtfully drained the last four (4) drops of vodka into my palette before formally chucking the bottle. After all, I had heard somewhere that quitting cold turkey was bad for you, so I'm sure those four drops gave me new kind of life.

So here it is - May 4th. Four long months without a drink. Some observations in no particular order:

1) I sleep better

2) I look healthier

3) I feel healthier

4) My clothes are looser

5) I wake up hangover-free every morning. In fact morning is usually my favourite time of the day.

6) I can drive anywhere I or night. Legally.

7) I socialize less

8) I go to bars less / not at all.

9) I don't get as euphoric as those magical 20-30 minutes after knocking back my first Skyy/Soda, but I also don't get as down the next day.

10) I'm saving tons of money at the ABC Store. As in, I don't go to that depressing store anymore. Not only is alcohol wayyyyy overpriced in this part of the country (sin taxes...God help me if I smoked too). But you just feel like a loser even being inside.

11) My problems are still there. Drinking or not drinking - I'm still looking for work. Nothing comes easily or quickly at  my current pay scale. Although I'm probably appearing healthier on Skype interviews. It sucks not being able to escape my problems the way I used to though. I do miss the tonic alcohol used to provide in that capacity.

12) I make better food decisions

13) I play a *lot* more Xbox. I have a very active / anxious mind and need to be mentally challenging myself a lot. Video games have become so sophisticated since the Atari days, that it now serves as my only competitive outlet.

14) I have less tolerance for toxic people. When we were both being toxic together, it was fun. Now she just gets annoying and abusive. In fact, I think we're broken up for good. While a part of me misses her, the sober, rational part knows it's for the best.

15) I'm less active on Twitter

16) It doesn't bother me to be around people who drink. Flying home for Easter presented all kinds of triggers and habits I could've easily fallen back to, but nursing on my Smart Water got me through it. 

17) I sweat a little less...except when on the treadmill.

18) I still get mad at people/events. However I say/text/email fewer regrettable things.

This is what I can think of now. I'm sure more will come to me. In case anyone read this blog...feel free to share yours.

Monday, May 2, 2016

In a horrible mood

Coincidentally, I haven't worked out since Friday. Today is Monday. Some people can do that and feel normal. Apparently I'm not one of them.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

The South is Beautiful

Just like to take a minute to acknowledge how beautiful it is here in the spring. Everything is so green and being on a different planet when compared with California. You really get a feel for it when watching shows like Rectify and The Walking Dead and other Georgia-shot productions. I didn't know what to expect when I moved here...I was told it would be hot and humid and full of racists. Well, yes it gets really uncomfortable in the summer...ain't gon' lie. But it's also spectacularly gorgeous. We have racists in California too.

And as far as beaches go, the gulf with its clear water, hot/humid winds and cumulonimbus clouds blowing across the sky like it's nothing, is unlike anything I've ever seen, including Hawaii. I hope one day I can buy a condo somewhere along the "Redneck Riviera."

Friday, April 29, 2016

"Have you lost weight?"

Finally. The key motivator for quitting alcohol in 2016 − vanity − *finally* kicked in this week at my monthly pain clinic visit. The nurse right away was like...have you lost weight? Since I did away with the zig-zag fruitlessness of daily weigh-ins a couple of years ago, I might as well use the ol' pain clinic as some kind of journal. Well I stepped on, and eight pounds lighter from March, and 15 lbs lighter for the year. 

Other factors that may be at play, I quit swimming, and swapped in walking briskly on a treadmill, at a 4 percent incline and "3.2" whatever that number entails.

Gotta be honest...that felt great. I really don't even want to talk about it too much for fear of jinxing my progress, so I'll shut up now.

Happy Friday.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

New Addiction: World of Tanks

I really, really suck at WOT, but it's great fun. And I think it's cool so many people are into a game about relatively ancient combat vehicles.

I held on - no drinking

Didn't have a drink last night, although I wanted one bad (I realize it's "badly" but this is how people talk in the south). I did take a Xanax and a Norco (both legally prescribed) but a drink would've much better hit the spot.

However now it's Saturday morning and I just stepped off the treadmill after 60 minutes of walking at a brisk pace and sweating to death.

I'm going to play fetch with my kitten (she chases and retrieves hair ties for real).

If anyone reads this, thanks for doing so. Can't wait for my first comment.


Friday, April 22, 2016

Powerful Urge to Drink

It's early evening on a Friday night. Everything I hoped this week would be, turned out not to be. Everyone and everything is pissing me the fuck off. The temptation to say fuck it and pour myself a Skyy & soda is palpable. I have the ingredients a room away. I'm going to try and fight through this, and it might require a Xanax. 

Bottom line - I still don't have anything to celebrate, and abandoning my resolve at a low point might feel good in the short run, but will ultimately make things worse, right?


Thursday, April 21, 2016

Why do recruiters just disappear?

At first they blow up my phone. Are all-too-accommodating as we schedule the first interview, the second interview, the Skype interview, the in-person interview. Then...*poof* they disappear. No more updates, no callbacks. I don't exist.

Look...recruiters. We get're busy. But if you know a candidate has given his or her all, studied the company, thrown on a tie or dress, jumped through all the hoops done all the interviews, they probably want to know what's next. If the client has decided to move on with other candidates, TELL THEM THAT. If it's been two weeks and you haven't heard from the client, same thing. Even if there is no update, THAT'S the update. 

This really isn't hard. Keep people informed. Provide feedback. If we did something wrong, say so. If you have constructive criticism, we'd love to hear it. We're all trying to learn.

When we check in two weeks later looking for an update, just provide one. Even if there isn't one. 

Off my soapbox.