790 Days sober: I don’t have to feel this way.

Bulter Raines & Taylor Hunt speaking in Napa Valley

I stared through the window into the bar connected to my hotel in San Francisco.
Everyone was having so much fun. I remembered a time when I could participate. Unfortunately I wasn't recalling all the pain and hurt my drinking caused.

I thought, "I don’t have to feel his way." I could just go in. It's the first time in two years I can remember having a thought like this.

My mind was betraying me. Which is an odd thing to think about since my mind and my body is “me”.

I was -- I am -- tired and frustrated. On the West Coast my East Coast meetings start at 6am, and my West Coast meetings end late. I used this as a reason not to practice.

I forgot my head medicine and refused to call my doctor for another script. A deep shame haunts me whenever I “mess up.”

I was weak from a cold I powered through the week before.

The trip was easy to blame, but this started a long time before this trip.

An overuse injury from obsessively working on a project and using my phone too much has caused me to modify my practice. I'm embarrassed my practice isn’t as strong as it once was.

It had become harder to wake up in the morning. Easier to just go to evening practice. And easier still to say I just needed to continue working in the afternoons.

Dangerous thoughts creep up. Nothing that would hurt or bother anyone else. Not yet.

The discipline and objectivity I usually enjoy had dissolved. I simply haven't been doing what I need to take care of myself. And now it seemed like a hill too steep to climb. Better to give up.

Driving to Napa to visit with Taylor and Kory, I spill coffee in my eye. Yes again. Damn cheap ass recycled paper cups. At this point I hate everything about myself and life. I’m a total fuckup.

I arrived and began to feel safe. I was in a space with people who understood me. Here I will start taking care of myself again.

Last night I spoke to a room of yogis about my sobriety. I cried. I am grateful I am sober. I do not want to lose what I have.

I don’t have to feel this way. But the answer is within me, in my daily actions, not outside of me.

The real question is what do I need to do to take care of myself, and why would I let anything get in the way.