Rubbing it in

Today has not been a success. I say that because at the end of it I feel worse than I did yesterday. I managed to get up really late again. On the plus side, I’ve done some reading and writing today, hobbies that I have always found fulfilling in some way. But nothing really substantial has happened. Tonight I went to the step 11 meeting, where they meditate for ten minutes, and for the first time, it made me feel worse, rather than better like it usually does. S was giving the chair, and I felt too awkward to speak to him, as I found that I was still mad about his behaviour yesterday. He really pissed me off last night with his wisecracking. I knew I would only feel better by talking to him about it, but I didn’t know what to say. I felt like I didn’t know him any more. There was an invisible barrier between us, for the first time in months. The resentment I had last year has come back, only this time it’s worse because I’m supposed to be his friend now. I know him now – well, I think I know him – so why did he feel like a stranger tonight?

We’re supposed to be going to the theatre tomorrow, and all through the meditation section I kept thinking of ways that I could get out of it. I’m sure it would be really easy not to turn up tomorrow. I could just tell S that I’m really ill and can’t get out of bed. There would be no reason for him not to believe me. It would be easy for me to do that because it’s a very old behaviour that has got me out of a lot of difficult situations in the past. It would allow me to avoid the issue, to get out of facing him and letting him know that I’m really angry with him.

Of course, me not turning up would inadvertently let him know how I feel; it would punish him because he’d have to sit through the play on his own. Do I want to punish him? Of course I do. It’s the only way I know how to get my point across, sometimes. Sitting down and talking maturely about an issue is still an alien concept to me. It wasn’t in my upbringing.

I nearly cried in the meeting tonight as I realised how dangerously insane my thinking had become. Could I actually lie through my teeth and let S down tomorrow, just because of a feeling? Could I be that childish? Well it wouldn’t be the first time. The play we’re going to see tomorrow, I’ve been looking forward to it for ages, and I’ve paid a lot of money for the ticket. It would be absolutely stupid for me to cancel like that. My sick head, unfortunately, is so tempted to do this. God, I’m so angry, and it hurts so much that I can’t tell anyone!

I knew I ought to share in the meeting tonight. But I let the opportunity go, because everyone else’s sharing was so positive, I didn’t want to be the one to bring the mood down. I hate sharing negatively when everyone else is clearly so happy. Clearly, I missed the only opportunity I might have had to feel better tonight. After the meeting I tagged along to coffee, and S was there along with other friends. Even then I couldn’t talk honestly. Everyone had the usual questions about how my job search is going. It was horrible. Every day about fifteen people ask me the same thing – “any luck on the job front?” – and I always have to say the same thing to them, i.e. “no.” What a depressing word. I’m fed up of saying the same thing over and over again, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever have anything different to say. The job market is terrible this summer. I may have the rest of the year to find a job, I just wish I knew what was going to happen. I’m sick of this waiting, it’s really frigging demoralising. It doesn’t do anything for my confidence. I feel about as unemployable as I did a few years ago.

So, what am I going to do about S? I may not feel so angry tomorrow, but I can’t say with any certainty that this resentment will disappear because it seems to come and go.  For the second half of my first year, it remained dormant; for some reason at the moment it is wildly active, and I simply can’t ignore it. On the way home tonight, I thought about drinking a lot. This is exactly the kind of thing that leads to a slip, I know it is. God, I need to tell someone. But I can’t! My sponsor is on the other side of the world, so he’s out of the question.

It all comes back to the fact that I feel alone. I was left out of the group holiday last week, and I was left out of P’s birthday meal earlier in the month, and it seems like there are many other ‘fellowship’ things which I’m just not considered for. This time last year I hated P and S and their friends because they resembled the schoolground clique so much, and now I hate them again, after all this time, for the same reason. I desperately want to be included in their world, and for a while last year I thought I was being included. When I was invited to S’s barbecue earlier in the summer, I was amazed and happy, perhaps for the first time. Things like that make me feel worthwhile, validated if you like. It shows that I am part of the group. But then they go and do things without me, even though I’m supposed to be their friend. I really don’t understand what I have to do to just be remembered sometimes. It’s not like the five people who went on that holiday last week are particularly close friends. A couple of them said they hardly knew each other before. I would have gone on the frigging holiday if they’d just asked. As it is, I have to jet off to France on my own next week, just to get away from this sodding city and all this unhappiness.

Am I too needy? Have I no right to be angry with so-called friends tonight? The thing is, I’ve felt this anger all my life. It’s a deep, deep wound and when I’m caught up in it I become so weak, so downhearted that I can’t see the point in things any more. I didn’t even take my jacket off in the meeting tonight, I was ready to leave at any point. When I look at S and others, I see a bunch of really strong, happy people who really get sobriety. Maybe it’s insulting of me to assume that they don’t experience any pain. I’m sure they have their ups and downs. But they can’t know what this pain is like. They’ve just been on the most amazing holiday ever, by all accounts. The photos are plastered all over facebook today. I detest them! Sometimes I wish I wasn’t in AA. It sickens me that I have to go through this. I can’t see any growth in what I’m going through. All I can see is self-pity, pride, dishonesty, self-centredness and arrogance. I’m still a frigging alcoholic and I hate myself.

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