the never ending story of alcohol and anxiety

When I was much younger I couldn’t figure out why I would wake up from a night out and absolutely HATE myself. It didn’t matter if it was a simple 3 drink night or a 15 drink night, I would wake up with the worst anxiety that would take days to calm down. I would have waves of remembering things I said or did, and I would start to tingle, my eyes would close, and I would think I was going to be sucked in to a black hole. Every single time I drank I would feel like this for days after. It took me ages to figure out that it was the alcohol mixed with the social interactions that would cause this. And even after that, and still to this day for that matter, I had/have these little moments of remembering something embarrassing or something that I find to be socially inappropriate or awkward and I get a literal “shock” through my body and my anxiety is set off.

If I know that these things are going to happen, I have to ask myself why on earth I continue to drink alcohol. Now I don’t drink NEARLY as much as I used to. I used to drink every single day. So the anxiety would pile on itself like the laundry piled in front of my washing machine. I didn’t rely on alcohol, but there have definitely been parts of my life where if I didn’t have a drink in 24 hours I felt like I was forgetting something. Now its more like I have a drink every month or so.

Cut to my second to last time drinking. It was about a month ago at an outdoor Ribfest in my home time. It was hotter than balls outside and the Coors light tasted ridiculously good. I had gone with my sister, who heavily resembles Ruby Rose in not only her style, but her body size and hair cut, where as I resemble Lea Delaria with a hint of Melissa McCarthy. My anxiety was already a little high that day in anticipation of going out that night. And as I drank my ice cold Coors Light in a wide mouth 16oz aluminum bottle instead of getting more and more confident, I got more and more anxious. So I drank more. I was about 15 beers in. From what I remember I was loud. I embarrassed my sister by talking to a guy about her. And I made comments about one of my best friends significant other not liking me (there is no merit behind this what-so-ever). These things haunted me for days after. I would get waves of remembering bits of a conversation and BOOM, it would feel like I was seconds away from not being able to breath. I would be doing simple things like the dishes or just walking though my house and a wave of anxiety would hit me and I would have to stop and take a few deep breaths. This lasted for days. And it doesn’t stop when I am work, so ya, that is convenient.

Fast forward to my first night of not posting a blog. I had a happy hour for work. I had in my head I was going to go and have a simple two drinks, be as fabulous as Carrie Bradshaw during the Alexander Petrovsky era, and go home early. Ha. That. did. not. happen. In true Mary Beth fashion, I was the last to leave. I have about 8 beers, ate a pizza, and was just generally annoying. And then spent the 3 or 4 days following replaying every conversation I had and analyzing whether or not I said anything inappropriate. So that was fun.

I think the point I am trying to make/the question I ask myself is: WHY DO YOU CONTINUE TO DRINK? Why? Why do I feel like I have to have a drink in my hand to feel accepted when i know how absolutely terrible I will feel for the days following. I say to myself in those days following that I am not going to drink anymore, or that the next time won’t be as bad. But guess what, it always is. I need to just stop. Ya, that’s the answer, just stop.

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