(*Mum and Dad, if you choose to read this, so be it, but it might be full of difficult revelations.)
I’ve spent all of my adult life as an addict, to one thing or another. But always something.
This is what’s on my mind today, and in the spirit of honesty, here’s all of my cards, all laid out before you. I will find your sympathy a terrible bore, because things are good for me, if only I could see it.
At various points I have given all of my time and energy to the following things:
People – more specifically relationships. There is no doubt in my mind that I have been totally and completely addicted to at least my last couple of relationships.
Enemies – I shudder at the amount of negative energy I have put into stalking people who have wronged me. One of the pitfalls of this over-connected world that we live in is that we can see everything everyone is up to. And way too much of my time has been spent trying to catch people out.
Alcohol – Ohhhh, my old friend. My constant companion. My blanket.
Cigarettes – Can’t tell you how glad I am that those little f***ers are no longer a controlling factor.
Pokies – see above.
Social media – that ridiculous habit of flicking from Facebook to Instagram, to Facebook, to Instagram etc has at times driven me spare. Might be time to delete the apps from my phone again, methinks.
Exercise – I got pretty big a couple of years ago, but on reflection, I was using doing weights as an excuse to justify a drink. “I can have a drink tonight, I spent 2 hours in the gym today”. Yeah, that’s healthy mindset.
Chocolate – My other old friend. I’d hide it. I’d devour it. It was not unusual for me to eat one of those big, square, 350 gram blocks of Dairy Milk to myself every day. My doctor has assured me that my blood sugar is fine, but that my cholesterol is pretty high.
Sex – but not promiscuously. The number of partners I have had in the last five years could be counted on one hand. It has to come with a connection, or it’s just not worth it.
I recently took a bunch of time out to stare at the night sky. I can highly recommend it.
The reason for writing all this out is to acknowledge my comforts. The things I turn to at times of hardship. So that I don’t.
But it’s also about selfishness. I’ve been listening to a lot (not ‘alot’ – there’s no such word) of Mel Robbins lately. She’s amazing. Her book, 5 Second Rule and her audio series, Kick Ass With Mel Robbins have opened my eyes to the human psyche and all its beautiful complexity. The underlying reasons for our self-sabotage can be so wonderfully simple, once those reasons are brought to our attention. But overcoming our excuses takes conscious effort and sometimes painful truths.
So yeah. I’m a little down. I’m nearly 40 and taking stock of what I have right now means I don’t compare to others of a similar age. The expectation is that by this stage I should have a house, a family and a career. I chose a different path. One that gave me a lot of distinctly beautiful connections and experiences.
What I do have though is a job that I truly enjoy (most of the time), a group of workmates and friends who get me, an almost perfect pet, a nice, clean apartment that I rent by myself, and a family that will stand by me through thick and thin, even if I’m not always 100% honest about my internal workings. I also have stories. Lots and lots of them. And I love telling them – even if I do have to drop a big name occasionally.
Lastly, I have fear. Fear of being selfish. Of the perversity of turning my attention inwards. Of becoming narcissistic. But that’s the path I have to take. Feel free to come at me if I go too far.
I’m a privileged white male. Life is peachy. That doesn’t mean it’s easy. But easy is boring. Why would you choose that?
Time to get to work…
Peace, love and mung beans.