The Operation of Life

Posted On: 06.03.15


Life can be tough. Pain is inevitable. I think it is human nature to seek ways to numb existential pain in its many iterations. For many years, alcohol was my anesthetic of choice. It worked wonders in the immediate moment to take the edge off, to quell anxiety, to lessen pain. But then I learned something and this something is true for me, but not everyone. While alcohol cut the pain while I was drinking, it made it worse after. Far worse. I’m not just talking about hangovers. I’m talking about emotional aftermath, about feeling less than good a lot of the time (whether or not I had a lot to drink).

So removing alcohol for me (right now, at this particular point in my life) has been downright magical, but I’d be lying if I said there weren’t moments when I missed it, and its effects. The problem, I think, is that I haven’t found a replacement, something else to numb pain or uncertainty when it flares up. Writing and exercising and cupcakes and snuggles from my babes are good, but they aren’t quite as efficient as Pinot Grigio. And so, I’ve been feeling more, everything maybe, or most everything. Maybe this is good? Even if it’s hard sometimes?

What is your anesthetic of choice for the operation of life?

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4 Comments for: "The Operation of Life"
  1. Jen

    Reading. Always reading. Writing when the words come, but when they don’t, it doesn’t work. Exercise sometimes works, but sometimes my body doesn’t want to move through the pain. Often coloring in a mandala. But always reading. Losing myself in a book and allowing the pain and the uncertainty to just…BE, be in my body, while giving my mind a reprieve. And, knowing that my ultimate goal isn’t to numb, despite desperately wanting that sometimes. That my goal is to feel, in manageable chunks! <3

  2. Monica

    Caffeine!!! Rather it be coffee or energy drinks, they are my morning wake up call or afternoon pick me up, I haven’t found a replacement so until then these will have to do. Any advice you could give me would be appreciative, I know they are not the healthiest options. Thanks for sharing this, I’ve been feeling overwhelmed lately and grabbing caffeine seems to do the trick to calm but leaves me feeling anxious. :/

  3. Writing. Writing has saved my life. But I haven’t given up drinking entirely. I just drink less.

  4. Julia

    But sometimes it’s also a force that casts a soft glow onto the ebb and flow of life, allowing us to sit back for a moment and observe life’s beauty. Like all forces, you need to be aware of its power, and use it correctly, is all.

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