Tackle It Tuesday + Inner Champion Workbook Chapter 3: Staying on Track



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In Chapter 3 of her autobiography, Lauren reveals how her tendency to jump into situations both feet first without thinking led to a detrimental lifestyle of nonstop partying and drugs. One day she woke up and realized that if she kept on the same path, she was going to die. She successfully went through a rehabilitation program and has been sober ever since.

I am often surprised that I didn't end up either an addict or dead. I have an addictive personality and a self-destructive streak six miles wide. Which, to hear some people talk, is approximately the same width as my ass. These people are incorrect. My ass is, in fact, seven miles wide.

Butt-related jokes aside, I am an adrenaline junkie at heart, but my body won't allow me to indulge my addiction. I also have very low self-esteem. The ravenous hunger for acceptance combined with an addiction to excitement led me into some bad situations in my youth.

When I was younger I was infamous for trying any substance that didn't need to be snorted or injected. It's a good thing that I have a strong aversion to things in my nose. As I discovered when I was in the hospital 25 years ago after having an emergency Cesarean section, I really, really, really like opiates. Not the kind you swallow, those make me nauseous as all fuck. Codeine makes me projectile vomit. But morphine coming through an I.V.? That's the shit! I knew I would be addicted quick if I had a steady supply of that, and I was pretty sure that I would have been addicted to cocaine with the first sniff if I had ever tried it. 

Cocaine has similar effects to drugs like morphine. Fortunately, crack wasn't a thing in the area where I lived back in the day, and the crowd I ran with was too plebian to have access to coke. Also, there was the aversion to putting things in my nose. Much though I liked alcohol (and I liked it a lot), I never became addicted although I was a very heavy drinker and hard partier well into my thirties. I stopped drinking when I got pregnant but picked it back up once I was done nursing.

And now you know that part of my story.

Here are today's Inner Champion Workbook questions:

Wrong direction/action:
Equating excitement with happiness and lust with love. I partied hard and allowed guys who didn't care about me to take a piece of my heart in the hopes that if I was good to them they'd fall in love with me. It doesn't work that way.

How it didn’t match my values or goals:
I was destroying my body and going against my belief that a person should have to earn my trust in order to obtain intimacy, especially that degree of intimacy. I was disrespecting myself and it was destroying not only my body but my will to live.

How I got myself back on track:
It didn't happen until I was finally diagnosed with type 2 bipolar disorder at nearly 40 years old. I was at last able to see a pattern in my behaviors. I learned about hypomania and hypersexuality. I was able to start treating the physical component of my condition and understanding some of my psychological motivations. 

It took me a while to heal the most important relationship in my life, the relationship with my son. I am forever sorry about the chaos my untreated illness and my lack of self-respect introduced into his life until he was 14 years old. It took a while for him to forgive me. When I think back on how broken our relationship was, it fills me with sadness.

Wrong direction/action:
I equate my value as a person with money or lack thereof.

How it doesn’t match my values or goals:
I know that money doesn't make the person. Case in point: the rich but rank shitgibbon who holds the title President of the United States. Or, in my case, Mr. Not My President. However, my family always equated wealth with personal worth, and that is something that has stuck with me on a very deep level. 

I do not personally believe that a person's wealth has anything to do with their personal worth. If they don't do anything worthwhile with their wealth, if they squander and flaunt it, they're nothing but a giant walking rhinestone-encrusted asshole. Yet although I don't believe that wealth reveals anything about a person's true value, I believe on a deeply ingrained level that my lack of it defines mine.

How I’m going to get myself back on track:
I don't really know. I'm going to keep striving both to improve my position in life and my own self-respect. That's really all I can do.



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2 comments:

  1. My life is a constant work in progress as I suspect yours is. One step forward, two steps back, and a divergence (or six) off to the side.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Exactly!
      Another awful pattern in my life:
      I make plans and appointments when I'm on an upswing. Because my bipolar disorder rapid cycles, often by the time the date rolls around, I'm mired in depression and don't want to do anything. It's very stressful.
      I wish I could afford to have one of those concierge doctors who would come to me. Probably no-one would be willing to drive out to the middle of nowhere, though.

      Delete

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