Sunday Morning

It is Sunday morning. I slept ok surprisingly, but am still feeling a bit shaky. I’ve read it takes about a month for the physical effects of alcohol to go away. That seems like an eternity, but I feel a lot better than yesterday. I’m at Starbucks as I didn’t feel like being alone. I really shouldn’t spent my weekends here where I don’t know anyone. I need to reconnect with friends in TO who see to be doing a much better job of sobriety than me. That influence can’t hurt.

I found a meeting for this evening. There’s a church on King St up towards Waterloo that seems to have a meeting every night. I have some work meetings in Mississauga tomorrow so maybe Ill check out a meeting in Toronto after.

Just got to do things a moment at a time. I only need to get through each day. I feel oddly numb right now. Things can only get better however. I need to remember that. I also need to call my sponsor, who is such a nice guy but I haven’t called him since coming here. I wish I wasn’t so afraid of people. Anyway, going to go see if I can find a barber shop open on a Sunday now.

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Starting Again, Again

I haven’t posted on here in about 9 months but I was just reading an article in The Fix about how blogging helps some people stay sober.  I since I have not been staying sober, I figured it can’t hurt.

So I slept all day and ate junk food.  Guess what I was doing last night?  Yes, drinking; I’ve been doing a lot of that lately.  I want to stop, or rather I want to want to stop but I just can’t muster the willingness, or fear, or whetever i am supposed to have.  Maybe accountability will help.

Of course I doesn’t help that the drinking often seems fun at the time.  I went to a local bar starting chatting with some people including a hot guy who I don’t think was gay but ended up coming to my apartment.  I don’t remember him leaving, not surprisingly though I don’t think anything happened.  It’s that chaos that I like; I don’t go crash cars when drunk, I just connect with people, or feel like I do.  They may be sketchy people but it’s something that i feel I lack in my sober self.  My sober self doesn’t even want to connect with people. It doesn’t seem to know what its own basic needs are.

But.  The drink is getting out of hand.  I missed a day of work this week, including an important meeting.  That can’t keep happening.  I need this job; I like it. Also my health isn’t great.  I feel tired and bloated all the time. I need pills to sleep.  I know sobriety does feel great, sometimes.  Truthfully better than being drunk.  Not always, but I’ve had glimpses of it.  It’s like the ultimate sense of being connected, equanimity: it’s a real thing!  So here I am at day 0.  I will go to meetings, not out of obligation but just to meet sober people here in KW. Maybe I’ll make a friend.  Maybe there are even some gay sober people here in town.

I plan to post daily even if it is just miscellaneous ramblings.  So if anyone does read this, please let me know.  Would like to meet some sober people in cyberspace!

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Losing Studio, Gaining Passion

Just finished a painting that I really quite like. Works the themes of infrastructure and nature. Check it out below and let me know what you think. I’m kinda bummed though that I’ll be losing my studio at the end of the month. Gotta do some financial consolidation and can’t really justify the rent as it is in addition to what I pay for a place to live. I intend to keep painting, will just need to be a bit more creative about finding space to do it. I feel like I didn’t make enough use of the studio while I had it. But I need to be nicer to myself than that – I got a lot of painting done, and more importantly, I have a much better sense of the subject matters I want to paint, and feel more confident of my style. I believe that I could now do a true series than I could maybe get shown somewhere.

I read recently a book about the Bauhaus, and really enjoyed the chapter about Paul Klee, whose art I love. Even though a lot of his art was highly abstracted, it dealt with themes of nature and even landscape, which it often tries to evoke through colour, shape and texture. I like the idea of juxtaposing nature with infrastructure – hard man-made shapes again softness and chaos of the natural world. Sycamore trees and overpasses (lol). As I figure out this theme, I’d like to try some abstractions too.

Looking for a job. I think I’m getting over my hang-ups here. It’s just work and money, almost everyone needs to do it. Assuming I can get a job in the field of infrastructure I have to remember that this is a subject I love, and if I can just get over resenting working full time, I might have something significant to contribute. Plus, I can’t deny that earning money is a bad thing; it can make the longer term goal of being an artist possible. For now, thankfully, I can paint, and I am off to do just that!

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Post deleted, oh well.

Well I just composed a nice long new post but when I tried to add a picture any then changed my mind the whole post was deleted. Amazed that WordPress on iOS does not automatically save drafts but apparently it does not, so no new post. Extremely annoying!!

Anyway, here are some new artworks I have done. Will type some more on recovery on my laptop as it seems too risky on an iPad. Grr.

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Stop Thinking Too Much

I feel like I just have a bad attitude in life. I have a really hard time seeing the good in much around me, and a tendency to take anything not going my way very personally. Yes, have we met? I’m definitely an alcoholic… So with these natural inclinations that I have, I am trying to keep myself away from my own thoughts because all this darkness wants to lead me back to my old ways of basically self medicating. The painting helps, though it is a solitary activity and I know that one of the best ways to get away from self is through other people, in particular through concerning yourself with their problems versus your own. But I’m a social anxiety ridden hermit so that isn’t easy for me. To be blunt people either terrify or annoy me, and since that is what I so obviously project, it seem people are rarely chomping at the bit to spend time with me.

I’ve resolved to speak to more people in the program and to get back and do more volunteering. Just to get me out of the house and engaged with people. I’ve heard it is self defeating to give of oneself and expect things in return but I do also think that volunteering is a way of filling time that “looks good on the resume.” Or rather confirms that stints unemployed were not entirely consumer with daytime television and eating proverbial bonbons.

The art is going well too. See below a painting I did from the cottage. Very Canadiana I think. Started working on another one, similar theme but evening shot with all those wonderful blues and violets. Will be interesting to see how it turns out.

Also did some writing yesterday. Read an amazing book a friend lent me called What It Is by Lynda Barry, a cartoonist, and creative muse. Through telling her story, she bring home the point that creativity is not about thinking at all, but occupies a different part of the brain centered on images. Story-telling is about describing things your mind’s eye sees, not figuring out some riddle. It’s made me rethink my writing totally and start from the basis of my own visual inspirations, and describing my experience of them. It’s consistent with the “not thinking” theme which is why it stood out for me. What will work for my recovery may also work for my creativity, a happy lining up of ducks!

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At the Library

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Hanging out at the library on a grey summer day trying to do some writing. In this case the writing is an article that I am writing on the subject of public infrastructure, an area that I have worked in for many years and that I would like to write about, in a published sort of way. But to do that I need something to send around to magazines, and of course writing is very hard. Striking the right tone is important – do I want to approach it from personal experience, or as a self-appointed “expert”? Is there a middle ground? Really society doesn’t seem to think about public infrastructure much, except when it doesn’t work, and this in a nutshell is the problem in my view, but it also makes it a tough subject to approach in flowing and captivating prose. At some point I have to stop revising it endlessly and give it to some friends to read for feedback. It’s that whole self confidence ball of wax again, and I know I don’t have much of it. I’m almost as afraid of success as I am of failure. I often feel the same way about my painting, though at least there I enjoy the process more.

I guess it’s worth asking myself why I want to do any of this stuff. It feels like a compulsion, or as Joni Mitchell so aptly put it in a song, “chicken scratching for my immortality.” Creativity is existential,and it gets to those fundamental questions of why we feel we’re put here. Oh, and for me, I need to find something to replace the booze that I filled that hole inside me with. Sitting at the library isn’t nearly as fun as a bottle of rye, but even if there is a slight sense of accomplishment, it’s worth it. Oh, and there’s no shame in it, or lost weekends – those are good things too.

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At the Cottage

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Just ending a couple of days up at the cottage. I was here mostly with my dad but I spent the last 24 hours here on my own. I was nervous about that as I used to drink up here a lot so there’s a lot of “remember whens” but it’s been really nice, really peaceful and grounding. I’ve been getting some writing work done including applying for a self-employment program from the government. Starting to oil the wheel that needs to turn for me to get on with my life. Feeling less anxious and the amazing nights sleep that I get up here only help that. Sort of thinking I should have a sobriety weekend up here with a bunch of my friends, maybe in September… Also gotta do some painting and bring my supplies! Will post any creations…take care blogosphere!

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