Sunday, January 22, 2006

Trashing Candy Machines

Do you wait until you can make sense of something before you write about it or do you write about it so that you can make sense of it? I'm asking myself those questions this morning as I sit down to write.

Last night as I pulled up to a four way stop in town, I realized I was coming home to an empty house. Normally I crave solitude. Occasionally there are times like last night when I don't. Times when I want something, anything to numb the range of feelings within me so I don't have to deal with them. An empty house would mean enough quiet to listen. "Distract me please," was my cry. In that brief moment of stopping at the intersection I thought about buying some booze. That would deafen my inner voice for sure. You gotta know that except for my college days, I prided myself on never going into a liquor store. I sobered up in a town where I had never seen the inside of their liquor store. Someone else always did that for me. It was denial at its best. "Who me?" I don't go to the liquor store therefore I cannot be an alcoholic." Denial is a slippery word. God help you if you grasp it.

I came home without any booze - thank you God - yet promptly went through my mental cardex of distractions looking for a fix. And then I got pissed off because I knew none of them was ever going to be enough to shut out the Light. Fuck.

Eventually I turned off the lights, lit a single candle and turned on this CD. In my mind I saw those 25 cent candy machines that sit at the exit of many stores except these ones are labelled with my distractions. Put your quarter in, turn the crank and out comes stuff that will never satisfy your inner hunger. In my mind I eventually got really mad and started trashing them. In real life I can't carry two full grocery bags without it costing me spoons but in my head I was trashing over candy machines with ease. Anger and desperation can do that for a person. The music played on as I exhausted myself mentally.

Now what? I knew I could do any number of things. I could eat myself into a food coma. I could go see if there is a beer where my husband keeps them. I could turn on the tv and rent a porn flick. I could. That's the weird thing about God. He lets you choose. I trashed a few more candy machines in my head while I decided what to do next.

Eventually I took my prayer rug and knelt to pray along with the CD. There is something about the posture of prayer that signals a submission to God's will for me. I rarely kneel to pray at home. It inevitably leads to gulping tears and a snotty nose.

An hour later I went to bed thankful for another day of sobriety from all my addictions.

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