Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Waiting is the hardest part

One thing that people have told me is that I am very patient, and it's true that from certain perspectives I am. I work in customer service, and patience is a required skill. I also have patience with little kids (in a visiting friend of the parents kind of way: I have no idea how my patience would hold up if I were a parent), and it would take a lot for me to lose my temper with a child.

But the people who have told me that I'm patient are very often people who don't know me very well, because in truth, I don't think I'm very patient at all, and I think a part of that is because of my alcohol abuse.

When I was drinking, I had no patience where booze was concerned. If it was a day that I'd decided to drink, the work day could not go fast enough. If it was the weekend, it would sometimes take an act of will to avoid drinking from the moment I woke up. If I was going out with friends, I'd make sure to attend the pre-drinking party, and I'd also make sure I had a glass poured even before I was leaving for that (A pre-drinking, pre-drinking party?). If it looked like we might run out of booze before I passed out, it would become very important to me that we make a liquor run. I would get tremendously frustrated with non-drinkers and their inability to remember what time the liquor store closed (I still know the closing and opening times of my local places: the wine store's the best because it's open late every day except Sunday). I've thrown temper tantrums because I've missed my chance to buy booze and would now have to wait an entire DAY to get more.

Part of patience is being able to delay gratification, but part of addiction is wanting your gratification RIGHT NOW.

I'm a week shy of 7 months sober now, and I'll say that one of the good things about being at this point is that my brain has stopped pestering me about the next time I'm going to get drunk. I still have moments, and it's surprising and horrifying how powerful those moments are, where I crave booze (I was going to write "a drink" but the problem, as I've said, isn't that I want a drink, it's that I want many, many drinks), but those moments seem to be less frequent, and for the most part I'm not as obsessed about the drinking as I was in, say, my first three months.

It's nice, not having that ticking clock in my head counting down to happy hour. And I think that in some ways it's helped me to be actually patient, instead of just appearing that way sometimes.

Which is nice, because if anything requires patience, it's job hunting. I don't have many stand-out prospects right now, and even though it's only been 3 weeks, it feels longer. I just want to have a new job RIGHT NOW. I wouldn't have ever described myself as someone who needed to work all the time, and when I'm drinking I certainly don't, but this new, sober me is going stir crazy.

And, the only thing I can do is just keep sending out resumes and waiting for those calls. I'm getting phone interviews, so it's only a matter of time before something clicks, but at the same time I'm getting a lot of practice with being patient.

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