turning 60 in a week. I grew up as a happy hippie with hard drinking
middle class educated Social Drinker parents, they were far from sloppy
drunks but very consistent martini fans. I felt superior with my
Marlboro pack full of joints, and used to trot around the hippie
hangouts telling folks ‘don’t drink that nasty booze, here, have some
Mother Nature instead!’
My big brother liked beer and urged me to
try it, but I really did prefer pot, until my mid to late 20's. That’s
when I went full time as a ranch hand and horsetrainer, and discovered
that beer worked much better as a self reward, and kept me more relaxed
working with large nervous powerful animals than pot did. I happily went
on for the next 30 years developing a daily beer habit while gradually
losing my taste for weed. I married, divorced, raised a son as a single
mom with no child support, and pretty much got along fine. There was
almost always beer in the fridge (or in the icechest in the truck) but I
was very rarely a ‘sloppy drunk’.. and if I was it was almost always
deliberate. Either at home alone with LOUD tunes in order to release
emotions, or at a bar chasing cowboys and shooting pool with a reliable
designated driver for backup. I had a handle on that shit!
(I never thought I'd make it past 30, snort-guffaw)
went on. My son grew up, my big bro fell into high function alcoholism
to the point I quit speaking with him, my little sis struggled with her
own wine habits, and my little bro went cold turkey and into hardcore
Praise Jesus/Do AA/Become a Motivational Speaker after years of being
the World’s Greatest Bartender and a whisky drinker
Me, . I just
kept training horses, gardening, raising chickens and fell deeply in
love with the most compatible Mountain Man in the universe, we were very
happy for nearly 10 years. The fridge and icechest stayed full of beer,
we made enough money to survive surrounded by animals and gardens and
some really great friends. That was Good Shit!
Then he died.
Within a year so did both my parents. My son became a meth user, so did I
for awhile. My kid went to prison, I quit drugs, but my beer drinking
rate doubled, then tripled. I dropped the friends who hadn’t died off
since it was painful to hang out in public. I took my modest
inheiritence and bought my first computer, and dedicated myself to
learning about the Internet. I blogged, found Jezebel, and wrote a
couple books for NanoWriMo that will never get published. Mostly I
Hermitted, tho I still worked with some horses and horse people. I had a
handle on that shit.
Then 5 years ago I started noticing some
fine motor control and balance problems while riding and training. I was
getting exhausted doing the same work I’d been doing daily for many
years.. and I began to see the encrochment of the same Multiple
Sclerosis symptoms that my mom had had- intolerence to heat, inability
to walk stairs or uneven ground, and a tiredness all out of proportion
to the amount of energy expended. I started chasing doctors for a solid
diagnosis, mostly to up my SSI benefits to full Disability for the extra
$100 per month.. Now I’ve given up. (I am too raging claustrophobic to
handle just ONE wide awake MRI! I jus’t can’t) But I could handle the
rest of that shit, really, as long as the fridge is full of beer.
I really can’t anymore. The reason I’ve been able to fake it this long
is the beer, it keeps me mostly cheerful and accepting and willing to
tolerate the fact that I am stuck alone in a poverty loop that I’ll
never get out of. It seems on reflection that I made poor career choices
as they would pertain to retirement funding, still? No Regrets!
never had a legal problem with alcohol, maybe I was smart, probably I
was lucky. Between horse training jobs I drove semi trucks cross country
for a few years, believe me when I say I understand how viciously bad
it can be when you mix booze and drivers! I’ve never wrecked a car,
never been 86-ed from a bar, and the only bail I’ve ever made was for a
My son is now clean, healthy, strong, and making his way
in the world with awesome potential, 100's of miles away from me. We
love each other, I won’t ask him to risk his new success by dragging him
into a pity party for his mom. Most of my friends are dead, and I have
little energy left to make new ones outside the Internet.
isolated, mostly by choice. My rented home is rural in the desert, it’s a
pretty crappy mobile home but has room for my horse, dogs, and
chickens. I haven’t been socializing at the bar or gotten laid in years
now, but beer is still my buddy. My Praise-Jeebus li’l bro donated me
his old truck a few months ago, how awesome is that! I made a gofundme
account to come up with 2/3rds the price of new tires, and got them.
It’s the first vehicle I’ve had since my last one burnt up with minimum
insurance 4 years ago. I couldn’t afford to replace it. That’s nearly
impossible to explain to someone who takes their mobility for granted-
live 4 years RURAL with no wheels.
Believe me, you find out who
your friends are. I mostly use this old truck for 2 things: to get more
beer, and take my dogs even further out in the desert to just.. hang.
With my buddy, beer. I’m pretty sure I’d be Postal without it.
That said, I’m seeing the cumulative effects physically of beer.
(Although a lot of these symptoms parallel MS symptoms. Since I gave up
Doctors, I’ll really never know) I’ve gained weight, eat a lot of
aspirins, and have many assorted aches and pains, none bad enough to
send me to the local ER. I drink beer every single day I can afford it:
somedays I’m happy with 2 or 3, some days I can get behind nearly the
whole case. I like to start about 7;30 am when I’m done with coffee, and
I’m usually done by 4:30-5:00 pm when I have chores to do. Once in
awhile I do music, loud music and a firepit and stay up till 10:00,
mostly I’m in bed by 8:30-9:00.
And I really don’t care.
Truth? I’m a stone alcoholic, waiting to die, and kind of looking
forward to it. After years of trial and error, I’ve mostly learned not
to Drunk Dial, or Drunk Blog, or Drunk Facebook. I quit complaining,
mostly just because I don’t do drama as well as do so many others. Today
I’m all about the mellow and peaceful. I am a fairly careful editor
nowadays though I have occasionally read something I wrote and thought
‘Dang! That was smart!’ and realized I didn’t remember writing it.