Aug. 6th, 2017

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I asked both Pat and Jesse, the only two people in my life (at least in the last 20 years) having seen me in the drunken, rageful, hateful place I go into when drinking, a question. One that I can't ever recall asking before, even in the first rounds of recovery 20 years ago. Like, I'm seriously amazed it never came up before.

The set-up was this: I am not a violent person. Sometimes mean and with no small shortage of anger management issues, but verbally and physically, what went on that night does not happen at all. I want to think that the monster I become when I hit the bottle does not exist until that chemical is introduced into my body. I want to think that horrible person does not exist without a few too many shots (which in my case, equals, like, ONE shot).

But accountability holds a much greater weight than it ever did before, and I have to wonder...is she there all the time? Buried though she may be, chained to the walls she may be, is she just waiting for the time when I'm my weakest, alcohol being what weakens the chains enough for her to break loose?

I once heard someone say that whatever we are capable of when drunk, we are also capable of doing sober. Sobriety simply makes it easier to not repeat the actions we do when drunk.

Is this true? And if it is, am I the monster for what lies beneath, or am I victim of myself and a mix of bad chemicals? Do I really feel the awful things I said and did, or is it the lies of addiction that revealed themselves?

We already know the beast of addiction is carried in my veins. I learned that 20 years ago. But is what happens when in the throes of it something that I usually simply bury in the guise of peaceful human interaction? Am I that hateful a creature by nature and the only thing that keeps her at bay is abstinence?

I don't know. Jesse and Pat gave different answers, Pat saying that those traits have always been a part of me, and alcohol simply removes the barriers around the awful drunk. Jesse says it's more a a press of stress and addiction, things that are intrinsically part of me, but the actions are twisted things that I normally don't feel.

It leaves me confused, though the answer to either answer is the same - sobriety. I have simply become painfully aware of the intent of addiction and am not sure where to place those intentions.

And why did this never come up before, in my days of drinking an entire bottle of vodka a day and then putting needles in my arms? How in the world is this something that never crossed my mind when I was younger?

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