Ugh…

Ugh. That’s the expression a friend and I use when we are texting “the morning after” a night of heavy drinking, meaning we have bad hangovers. Yup, I did it again. I’m discouraged, to say the least. I’m at wit’s end in fact. Obviously, we’re not all made from a cookie cutter, not all the same. A few days ago when I completely accepted my powerlessness over alcohol, I really thought that something would change. In fact I felt invigorated and got a lot done at work. I was feeling great. But I guess I felt too great because I worked so hard that I really tired myself out, so by 5 o’clock I was really ready for a few beers. Of course, I can’t just have a few. I did the same thing yesterday.

So it was the fatigue, but perhaps even more pivotal, a co-worker, who, out of the blue said something very irritating and upsetting. In fact when that came up I was suspicious. Meaning, if there was anything that could get me to drink, it would be something like that. Has anyone else ever noticed that when you are bound and determined to not drink that something or someone comes out of nowhere to challenge your resolve? This has happened to me time and time again.

It’s almost as if there is an evil force out there that pops out and purposefully knocks us off our feet so that we end up drinking! In fact, I have a book, The War of the Gods in Addiction, written by a Jungian analyst, David Schoen, who is an expert in addictions. He makes a very strong case suggesting that there in fact is an evil force involved in addiction. Even Carl Jung, the famous Psychiatrist, stated in a letter to Bill Wilson, one of the founders of A.A. that “An ordinary man, not protected by an action from above and isolated in society, cannot resist the power of evil, which is called very aptly the Devil”.

That’s a pretty radical thing for an eminent psychiatrist to say. He said it only months before he died, at the end of a long career. Said earlier, it could have damaged his reputation. I have to agree with Jung and Schoen. I have experienced this phenomenon first hand. Jung and Schoen both think that A.A. is one of the few things that can counteract that power of evil. But I’m not saying all this to promote A.A. I’m saying it to simply point out that there really does seem to be an evil force strongly at work in alcoholism and every other true addiction. I’m curious to know if others here have experienced it as well.

Double ugh.

Nelson

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11 thoughts on “Ugh…

  1. Yes, I do believe there are forces in life that come against us at the most inappropriate times. But I also believe that we are stronger in the end. And by continuing to do what is right, however hard it is, eventually those forces get weaker until they finally leave ☺

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  2. It’s sort of like the little angel and the little devil sitting on your shoulders…each one of them whispering in your ear…just do it….don’t do it…and your head swiveling back and forth…which way will I go today? It is a good vs. evil conflict. It’s one we play out every day. And, like The Share said – it is 100% up to us which way we choose. Let’s all choose the best way today.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I’m back in the same place as you at the moment and it’s tiring and hard. I’ve got that book on my to-read list, it sounds very interesting. There seem to be so many ‘this vs that’ dynamics within addiction. One I have recently seen which is resonating with me is a Brene Brown quote about choosing between courage and comfort but not being able to have both. I’m wishing you as much courage and ‘good’ as possible for the coming days. Take care 🙂

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  4. I like your last comment Nelson – we are all in this together and I believe we’re stronger when we share our thoughts, feelings and experiences with each other. Addiction can feel like a battle between ‘good’ and ‘evil’ since sobriety promotes mental, physical and spiritual health whilst ‘using’ is all about self-destruction. It’s 100% up to us which ‘army’ we choose to march with. This ‘illness’ wants us to believe that we can’t succeed but it’s rubbish – we can, it just isn’t easy. .

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  5. I hiked a section of the Appalachian trail a almost a month ago, just a few days on the trail. A friend brought a bottle of alcohol, another friend seemed to fiend for it. At the end of the hike, we went to get burger and two friends had beers. I felt accomplished that I held off… 750 miles later, safely at home, I poured the remainder of some red wine that was left over from a party a few weeks prior. 5 months gone at the blink of an eye. For the next 3 days it was like I never stopped, same habit.

    It seems to me, it is our default behavior. If you have been a couch potato all your life and you get inspired to get in shape, you have great focus for three months when you realize you have lost a great deal of weight, or you accomplished a goal…. then you go back to your default behavior, you are sitting on the couch again! The only way to change that default behavior is by continuing focusing on changing it. I’m at day 21 now. I realized I screwed up and didn’t waste a second re-focusing my effort.

    Good Luck!

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Yes, I have experienced it, I call it the Universe which tests out my resolve, but when I set my mind to it, irritation like this firm my resolve according to ‘boundaries are there to keep the others out.’ I think it works as follows: because we focus on ‘not drinking, not drinking, not drinking’ all the time, the vibe we send out is drink related and we attrackt drink related people, issues and trouble. Therefor it is a better idea to think ‘I want to be clear, be clear, be clear’ that is when we send out ‘clarity’. That’s easier. I found I attracted people who share a wish for clarity. As it is easier to be happy that you quit than it is to moan about it.
    Then again, wether addiction comes from within, from without or is a combination of the two: you yourself need to make the decission to quit. And then put the effort in maintaining the decission. I would say, quitting an addiction is exactly not a quick fix. 😉
    xx, Feeling

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