changing tides…1999

As I’ve said, these years are a bit of a blurr…and the order of them is a bit shit. But continuing with my drinking career and then trying to study at University in 1998, by the time 1999 rolled around, it was all starting to wear off…and I was getting tired of it.

I hadn’t thought I would…as in, I loved drinking. My diet consisted of pies, coffee and alcohol. Mainly beer and bourbon…but I wasn’t fussy. My Grandfather made a mean home-brew and I’d drink that with a handful of pills…it was always enough to send me on my way. When I was drunk I felt happy…and me and happy hadn’t really resided in the same place for any length of time. I understood that it was a ‘false’ happiness, but I didn’t really care…it was happiness and I wanted to soak it up for as long as possible.

And how I drank…was enjoyable…most of the time. It had its glitches…but there was a huge sense of community and belonging that I hadn’t felt anywhere else. Even with the critters. We’d sing and drink and sing some more…and dance. It’s a shame that we didn’t know how to do that any other way.

This part of it all…I don’t regret. It taught me something about the fabric of my humanity, my culture…that I wouldn’t have learnt any other place. I don’t mean the ‘Once Were Warriors’ steez, I mean…

In the Maori language its called whanaungatanga, or manaakitanga. It’s hospitality and welcoming, but more than that. It’s a feeling of family and love and warmth and belonging and being alright and comfort…that’s really hard to describe…you can feel it in your belly…your heart. And I hadn’t felt that anywhere else before. I loved it.

But the other thing with drinking that amount is you forget…lots of stuff. One day blurs into another…one month turns into a year and before you know it your turning 27..ish, I think 😉

And when I’m over something…I’m over it.

I started extracting myself from my ‘drinking friends’ and cutting down on the amount I went out…at first from 6 nights to 4. And it was bloody hard. Being sober is…well its boring. It’s noisy.

But I tried to keep up my normal things…turns there was too many of those. All my time had been taken up with drinking.

This was probably the first time I really recognized that I was anxious. I didn’t like people…well being around them. Being drunk was one thing…being sober…not cool.

To my surprise…NOT…my ‘friends’ started dropping away. They didn’t come round to hang out if they knew there was no piss involved. Drop kicks. But that was to be expected I guess. Those that I had a genuine connection with, they remained. When I say they… I mean 3 of them lol.

I had pissed quite of few peeps off over the last few years and I felt this nagging thing, to try to make amends, where I could anyway. Didn’t go so well…think I ended up with a few hidings…but oh well.

I was also doing part-time work for a government Child Services about this time. I’d do pick ups and drop offs…and babysitting duties…they called it escorting and minding. I watched this girl who was looking to top herself whenever she had the chance…well that’s what that file said. She was just angry. We had a good rapport 🙂

So anyways, as I was extracting myself from the life I’d come to know, something else started to happen. I noticed large chunks of my hair falling out.

Great.

(First published 27th July 2015 @1132 … holy shizz 😉 )

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