It’s time to get serious.
I’ve been doodling. I’ve been practicing. I’ve been playing around and goofing off. I’m in class lazily taking notes.
Last night I got off of work and said to myself, “Just one beer.” I went outside for my habitual clock-out smoke. Justin, a co-worker of mine, passed me a blunt. I went in for one beer. Then I got a text from Lola: “Girl what ya doing?”
Thirty minutes later the stools beside me were preoccupied with friends. Lola, beautiful, boisterous, her blonde hair bouncing, excitedly filling me in on her past few days.
“So he pulled out 8 grams of mushrooms and some molly,” she tells me. Then starts the prolific tale of her first trip. But her energy is infectious and I am a leech. I feed off of her vibes. She pulls out her phone and plays a groovy EDM tune to which we wave our hands and dance.
Drew, besides us, laughs with a cheesy grin.
I should have been home. I should have been writing. I was going home, but I couldn’t resist a night on the town. Last week I went out for a drink every single damn night.
It’s easy, I get off work and walk a few blocks over. The service industry fuels the nightlife. I can’t help myself. I’m drawn to it. I walk through the gates of Social Club greeted like a friend. The bouncer stops my co-workers and lets me walk by.
Some nights I go for one drink by myself, which turns into two. I’ll stop it at two because I get depressed. If I go beyond two its because somebody has recognized me–who be it, and they’ll say, “Hey! What? You’re going home already?”
So I’ll get another.
Until I’m crawling into bed at 2am, my head spinning in circles. And when I close my eyes my head is whirling. I’m on a carousel. I’m on one of those nauseating rides at the county fair. I’m tumbling towards oblivion in space. Floating in blackness, behind my lids, behind my lips I feel the barf. Where’s the bag? Under my bed.
Ugh. Nothing by dry heave. I don’t eat enough to throw up. I have nothing in my stomach to cough out. Instead just dribble falls into the plastic and I say, “I think I’m going to be sick.”
Some nights I go in for one drink. I jot in my journal. Chain-smoke my cigarettes. And look around at all the people. I’ve got this spot on the patio. It’s up on a step, just above everyone. My back is against the wall. I go to sip on my Blue Moon and notice its empty and when the bartender asks if I’d like another one I nod my head.
Then I’ve had two and I drive home and sit in my car and stare blankly off at the garage wall.
I do not go in and write. Sometimes I’ll journal, but not as often as I’d like. I am avoiding it. I am pacing and waiting for something to happen. Like I’m still expecting for the Muse to grace my shoulder and whisper masterpieces into my ear for which I am to transcribe.
It’s this pacing, and it’s this knowing. My legs hurt, my head hurts. I’ve been flipping pages, reading books and interviews, saying, “Yes! Yes! Yes!”
I know! I know! I insist before the test.
As I perch on the barstool, I’ll admit sometimes my gaze strays to the front gate. I’ll look at the person coming in with a desire for it to be someone whom I recognize. I am content, I am fine being there alone, I am. But I am also not. I desire.
I am amazed at human’s ability to be two places at once. Here is one foot, there is another.
It is all a distraction. Alcohol, relationships, friends, all of it.
But it is also good. I have found good relationships that uplift and feed me. I have stumbled over negative ones.
It’s all in moderation.
It’s all about focus.
Last night my head was whirling and I pulled the blanket over my head and stared ahead of me. I inhaled deeply–I am a geyser–I exhaled deeply–I am a waterfall. My head was spinning, spinning. I inhaled deeply–center yourself–I exhaled deeply–center yourself.
Fall back and center yourself.
My head stopped spinning. I fell asleep. I didn’t write a damn thing.
Tonight I went out to Social Club by myself. I had one beer. I jotted in my journal, chain-smoked some cigarettes. Nobody came through the gate that I recognized. But tonight, I was calm. Tonight, I came up with ideas and I was going to go home and write. And I inhaled–the smoke rising in me–and I exhaled–I am a train–
Outside my room I hear the train whistle in the dead of night. I hear it like church bells sounding the hour.
My time is coming.
I am centering myself. I am finding balance. Tonight, I am happy.
baby steps, lindsey