Saturday, December 12, 2009

Tunnel of love

Things have been a little tense lately. Nothing like the holidays to amplify and magnify emotions and, unfortunately, the shit we go through in our families. Maybe it has nothing to do with the holiday season. In fact, it probably doesn't.

Addiction sucks, and one of the things that sucks the most about it is that it tends to run in families. I'm not going to get into the reasons for that here. It is what it is, and here's what it is:

My brother is an alcoholic, and it's getting worse. Actually, that's a moronic statement. What's it going to do? Get better? Not until he decides to get help, which he isn't going to do. Not right now, anyway.

Anyone who reads this blog knows I'm a big, hairy, drug craving, full-blown addict. But aren't you sober? Yes, I'm sober. Have been for nearly three years. Then what the hell are you saying? I'm saying I'm a big, hairy, drug craving, full blown addict who has been sober for almost three years. Well, what the hell does that have to do with your brother? Christ! If you'll listen, I'll tell you.**

So having lived on both sides of the whole addiction gig, I'll say first hand: You can't help someone who doesn't want help. There's just nothing you can do. NOTHING. Do you hear me? NOTHING! You can be co-dependant, which means catering and coddling, and worrying and blaming yourself, and wondering why and trying to make things "all better" - in other words: you can get lost in someone else's shit. Or you can accept the fact that what's going on has nothing to do with you. You didn't cause the problem and you certainly can't fix it. There's nothing you can do, and that's an awful realization for someone who loves an addict. (As always, addict = addict/alcoholic)

It's the most helpless feeling, to have to sit by and watch someone you care deeply about as they destroy everything around them. It's hell on earth to watch someone die because they won't ask for help. And it's those drama-filled events that happen so often, the midnight crises, the tearful moments that give pseudo hope, the brief glimpses of sanity, that make it all so much worse.

I really don't know which is worse. Living as an addict, or living with one in your life.

It's like going through a tunnel where, with every move forward, what's behind you is erased. Your only option is to go through it. There's no way to avoid the tunnel. It's just there. You can get stuck there, in the dark with your addict, or move through it, leaving them to make their own way. The only thing you have any control over, is your own journey. And that sucks. And it's excruciating, because who doesn't want to double back for a friend?

Anyway, I've moving through my own tunnel, leaving my brother behind. I hope he gets off his ass and catches up, because I love him. And I hate him. And I miss him. But in the past couple of years, I've learned (well, I'm learning) to love myself. I've worked so hard to get where I am, and I'm not doubling back to help him anymore.

There's a woman in Hawaii (I think that's where she's from) who's daughter is an active meth addict, who e-mailed me the other day. She wanted to ask me a question, but wanted to make sure she had the right person at the right e-mail address. I e-mailed her back and verified that yes, I am me, but I haven't heard back from her. So if you're reading this - it's me, and I'm checking my e-mail, waiting for you. Please write to me again.

**I've learned to embrace my Inner Dialogue, and we're getting along much better these days.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Feeling guilty about holiday eating? DON'T!

Q: Doctor, I've heard that cardiovascular exercise can prolong life; is this true?

A: Your heart is only good for so many beats, and that's it... don't waste them on exercise. Everything wears out eventually. Speeding up your heart will not make you live longer; that's like saying you can extend the life of your car by driving it faster. Want to live longer? Take a nap.

Q: Should I cut down on meat and eat more fruits and vegetables?

A: You must grasp logistical efficiencies. What does a cow eat? Hay and corn. And what are these? Vegetables. So a steak is nothing more than an efficient mechanism of delivering vegetables to your system. Need grain? Eat chicken. Beef is also a good source of field grass (green leafy vegetable). And a pork chop can give you 100% of your recommended daily allowance of vegetable products.

Q: Should I reduce my alcohol intake?

A: No, not at all. Wine is made from fruit. Brandy is distilled wine, that means they take the water out of the fruity bit so you get even more of the goodness that way. Beer is also made out of grain. Bottoms up!

Q: How can I calculate my body/fat ratio?

A: Well, if you have a body and you have fat, your ratio is one to one. If you have two bodies, your ratio is two to one, etc.

Q: What are some of the advantages of participating in a regular exercise program?

A: Can't think of a single one, sorry. My philosophy is: No Pain...Good!

Q: Aren't fried foods bad for you?

A: YOU'RE NOT LISTENING!!! .... Foods are fried these days in vegetable oil. In fact, they're permeated in it. How could getting more vegetables be bad for you?

Q: Will sit-ups help prevent me from getting a little soft around the middle?

A: Definitely not! When you exercise a muscle, it gets bigger. You should only be doing sit-ups if you want a bigger stomach.

Q: Is chocolate bad for me?

A: Are you crazy? HELLO Cocoa beans! Another vegetable!!! It's the best feel-good food around!

Q: Is swimming good for your figure?

A: If swimming is good for your figure, explain whales to me.

Q: Is getting in-shape important for my lifestyle?

A: Hey! 'Round' is a shape!

Well, I hope this has cleared up any misconceptions you may have had about food and diets.
And remember:   'Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways - Chardonnay in one hand - chocolate in the other - body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming 'WOO HOO, What a Ride'


For those of you who watch what you eat, here's the final word on nutrition and health. It's a relief to know the truth after all those conflicting nutritional studies.

1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

3.  The Chinese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

4. The Italians drink a lot of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

5. The Germans drink a lot of beers and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.


Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

From the (broken) Heart

So many lives are affected by meth. I spent the morning reading some letters at the KCI meth website. They're both heartbreaking and eye opening. I encourage you to take a few minutes and read some of them. You can find them here. They speak for themselves.