Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Super Brain

Still sober. Most of the time, this isn't even a big deal. Having made it through a year has shown me that I have everything I need to stay sober. I've survived the seasons, the holidays, the annual ups and downs, and managed everything without a drink. Now I just have to keep doing the stuff I've been doing, using what works and discarding what doesn't, and keep it up. It does take energy to live a sober life, but it takes MORE energy to live a drunk one, so I'm ahead of the game.

In general, though, there isn't much to say. I plan to keep this journal forever, because my life will always have moments where the difference between drinking and staying sober seems interesting to me, or moments where I'll need to let out a primal scream to the internets about frustration. One day I'll tell my mom something about my drinking, maybe, and I'll blog about that. Or when I visit my step mom who likes her wine very much, I'm sure that will inspire an entry or two. But in the meantime I don't have much to say.

Oh, except that I think being sober has given me a super-power: incredible intelligence. Not really, but I've been feeling somewhat smart lately. Part of it is that I had my final exam for a psychology course I took over the summer, and got a 95% on it (and I finished it in 25 minutes - 80 multiple choice questions, with time to review), but just in general I've been feeling more bright, a little more swift in my thinking. I like it.

I heard somewhere that it can take about 4 years for the brain to completely recover from prolonged alcohol abuse: it takes that long for the synapses and support cells and connections to get to a place where the brain works just about as well as it would have without killing all those brain cells. If so, I've had a full year of my brain rewiring itself, growing back where my drinking had pruned it. I've also been more physically active and eating more healthfully, which also have a positive impact on cognition. It's been a subtle change, but I like this new me. I'm better able to understand complex things like relationships, I can see other peoples' points of view better, I'm better equipped to handle anger and frustration and - especially - boredom.

Who knows how much this is just psychosomatic, a placebo effect where I feel smarter because I want to feel smarter, but I like feeling this way, and I intend to enjoy it.

1 comment:

  1. Oh yeahhhhhhhhh baby! Love it! Love that you're letting yourself feel good and proud and happy and strong and amazing, because you are! Big congrats on the test result, that is fantastic. And great to hear you're not going anywhere either. I know you post sporadically but I always always enjoy hearing about how you are going - being as you are very close to me in soberversary. And I totally agree with you that the boredom factor is the hardest to cope with. But I remember that guru Dr Drew on Celebrity Rehab once saying boredom is another word for depression. That got me a bit...so I've always tried to work on being happy and content in the stillness as that is the key to overall mental wellbeing. That and another million keys. Ok I"m rambling now. Must go do more thesis writing. Love to you clever man xxxx