Saturday, September 29, 2007


The morning started out innocently enough, but went downhill as the sun rose high in the sky. I found myself standing in the line of the convenience store with four green bottles of Thunderbird wine in hand and an uneasy feeling. I almost felt nauseous knowing what I was doing, but the urge to drink was just too strong. It is a compulsive urge that is hard to describe. You can't think farther than the moment at hand -- an acute lack of foresight and conscience.

"Did you get them?" Clara asked me anxiously as we walked back up to the shopping center. She had been waiting outside the store for me.

"Here," I replied as I handed a bottle of wine to her.

Impatiently, she unscrewed the cap and took a long drink after looking around for the police. I walked quietly drinking my wine, as well, feeling defeated. It was far too early in the morning to be drinking, but I always was a morning drunk.

"What are you doing today?" Clara then asked me.

"I am supposed to take my mother out to eat to a new restaurant tonight," I replied. "My father is in Florida for a football game."

"Doesn't look like you are going to be doing that!" Clara said with a laugh which only further deepened my surly and foul mood.

"Why do you drink?" I abruptly asked Clara in a moment of candidness.

"I just get bored and it passes the time. There is nothing to do when you are homeless," she said. "How 'bout you?"

"I drink to hide bad feelings and emotions. I drink to hide my pain," I said, finishing a bottle of wine -- that alcohol making my head swim.

I wanted to just go home and drink my Heineken and my last bottle of wine. I left Clara to trudge the thirty minutes home drinking wine as I walked. I didn't even care if someone saw me -- imbibing in broad daylight -- garnering many steely stares from passing motorists. I just no longer cared about anything. I was kind of hoping I would get arrested so I would have to stop drinking.

As I passed my mother's Catholic church, I said a prayer looking at the cross out front -- a prayer asking for healing and to cure me of this inescapable urge to drink. God didn't answer me back though. I was only consoled with an empty feeling. At least, the pain and the turbulent emotion I had been experiencing and feeling all morning were gone. I felt like a blank slate.

Sometimes I get winded by the truth. Suddenly, just out of the blue, every now and again, it hits me hard. It did just then, on my walk back home. This is normal for you, I thought. You're an alcoholic and alcoholics drink. Remember what they say in A.A. about being powerless over alcohol and you are. I never thought I would use a twelve step from A.A. as an excuse to drink. I chuckled to myself at the thought. I stepped into my bathroom upon arriving home to look long and hard at the man staring back at me. Sad eyes. Weak smile. So much history in the lines upon my face. It suddenly occurred to me what I was doing, how I was living -- how completely insane it is to be living like this, drinking my life away still, after all this time. And I almost just turned and ran in repulsion. I just couldn't bear it.


Anonymous Boxer said...

Oh, Dear Man, sometimes I think you know more than the rest of us.

I'm sorry.

Barb said...

Do what you know is right! Andrew you can do that, for today, this day~ I believe you can, you believe you can!!! I am glad you didnt turn and run, because you know what is right, for today, this day!!


KYRIE said...

Please don't be sad.
We all have our dark times.
It may seem impossible right now, but believe me when I say you will overcome this. I promise you this dark times will pass. Have faith.

simonsays said...


CJM-R said...

No judgements.. just support, empathy, and admiration.

You will get past this slip once again... you have more strength than you realize.

Eric said...

Andrew, while you are an alcoholic, that is not all you are, it is not even half of who you are. You are a wonderful man with great qualities, talents and gifts, but like all of us, you have negative qualities and weaknesses. It is up to you to choose which side to nurse, to feed, to focus on. We all fail, we all fall down. The important thing is to realize that falling down does not necessitate that we stay down. Each day, we are going to wind up doing something we wish we hadn't, the key to not let our failures define us. Yes, you have some huge weights on your shoulders, but who you really are is far stronger, far bigger and you must just get up, and try again. You succeed far more often than you fail. In the end, you are not just an alcoholic, live today with that realization.

Josie Two Shoes said...

Amen to what Eric said, and big (((Hugs)))to you Andrew, I know how hard it is, and even harder to look in that mirror. We can always start again, at this moment - that is the blessing of the life that we were given. What happened doesn't matter - what we do next does! Know that you are loved.

pai said...

i feel pain reading your blog today. so many things that it brings up. i don't even know what else to say.

Golden To Silver Val said...

I must admit that I started reading your blog in hopes that it would help me to understand my adult alcoholic son. He is so deep and compassionate but makes me so frustrated because of his drinking. Andrew, you have to be true to yourself above anything else. Being an alcoholic is NOT being true to yourself. You were not born an alcoholic; it is not your destiny to continue on this path. You must keep yourself volunteer work to help others less fortunate...but keep busy. My son told me he has less desire to drink if he's busy. I am praying for God to give you strength to be true to YOU so you can use your wonderful talents.

Leann said...

Eric hit the nail on the head Andrew. You may drink and be an alcoholic, but you are so much more than that. You put words together in a way that builds a story and a picture that can be seen without even being there. You are powerful. Don't let one fall keep you down. I know you can rise up from this one day and continue on the sober side. Have strength my friend and know there are those of us who would give anything to offer our strength to you.


Anonymous said...

you don't know me andrew, but i stumbled across your blog, and i really love your thoughts. i thought your comments on people in society being "mindless sheep", is very true. there are people that do have thoughts like you, and i think i'm one of them. i appreciate your blog alot.



I'm sorry you had to be alone today feeling like that.
THinking of you..

Sous Gal said...

From me in T.O. You will do what you can, when you can. It's a matter of knowing, believing, that you are better than this. You could be given the golden keys to heaven and unless you believe in yourself, it won't matter.

It's hard to read. I gotta tell you that.


Anonymous said...

Just keep coming back pal, I just completed 4 months of sobriety with the help of AA, just keep coming back, it works.