I read this piece in Brevity. Like the writer, “I feel unsettled, fearful, and unmotivated. Rudderless.” But not just about writing–which has sailed so far off my horizon that I’m not sure I’ll ever catch it back. (sea metaphor?) I’m swimming–another activity which has drifted away from me–but barely treading the water, keeping my head above the waves.

Last night I dreamt that my lone mouse, a single rodent pet, had given birth. Somehow a mate had appeared and the two conjured up babies. I awoke to the chirping sound of the female mouse–was she hungry, thirsty? No, I thought. She’s telling me to relocate the male, so he–or she–would not eat the babies. I searched my room (apartment?) for a box or container to house the father mouse. I taped a torn cardboard box but awoke before I figured out how to pick the right mouse and how to lift him out.

I drink too much. The empty bottles lined up next to the hotpot that I tell myself every morning I will use tonight when I make myself a cup of tea at 8 pm rather than continuing to drink glass after glass of wine. Red, white, sparkling. It doesn’t matter. I chug them all. And every morning I chastise myself, vow to quit TODAY. I wrestle with the reasons I provide: you’ll just have one or two glasses tonight; you’re not as bad as some people; you simply can’t give up drinking because you’d have to give up all the associated things (dinners out, cocktails with friends, etc.); you need something to take the edge off–something to round the sharp bits that never quite leave after a walk, a yoga session, a massage, a romp in the sack, a conversation with someone who gets it. Lost my thread there…I simply can’t give up drinking, I tell myself, because you like it. Even when you count all of the calories and carbs, wake up dizzy and woozy, remember your behavior from the night before, realize that you really do need it to get through the day, the week, the month, the year, the rest of your life. And then I think perhaps…perhaps one day I won’t feel that need. Maybe it will float away, and I’ll swim again. And write again.

About BJ

living the dream in northern Utah
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