Welcome to the Neutral Ground
Most of us mean well. In the face of uncertainty, people want to offer solutions. This struggle is what it means to be human. There are sometimes no solutions.
My work life was going to change as a parent whether I liked it or not, and to weather it I was going to have to sacrifice a big ole chunk of my identity: my need to be the Hardest Working Person In The Room, and more importantly, my need to be seen as such.
This week, I answer a reader's letter about what was hard, amazing, impossible in early recovery. When I think back to those early months, I see myself as a raw nerve thrumming with the agony of exposure. By the time I'd made an actual decision to abstain, I'd been on the path toward sobriety for at least 5 years. I just didn't know it.
Sugar cravings have all but vanished, and I'm starting to find so many more things to do with my nights than stuff my face - write, take a bath, do a craft, listen to a record. All of these things alleviate the stress that I've been numbing with snacks, but in a way that's so much healthier for me mentally and physically.
I know that ever since you turned twenty-five, there have been questions. Well-meaning prods and probes about the current state and future plans of your uterus. More if you're married.
Today marks Day 8 of cutting out dairy, wheat, sugar, legumes, and preservatives in favor of fresh veggies, meat, fruit, nuts, and seeds. Here's how the first week of Whole 30 went for both of us:
Each week, Jamie and Nikki scour our laptops, phones, and bookshelves to share a few of our current favorite things. We'd love it if you did the same in the comments! This week is our Whole30, women's mixed martial arts, and Melissa Febos's ABANDON ME.
A golf-ball size chunk of soured milk plopped into my bowl, splashing milk all over me and the table. I would stink like rotted milk for the rest of the day as we sat in the ER, my sore throat actually strep. My mother looked at me, at the hunk of cheese in my cereal. She collapsed at the table and sobbed, a keening that made me feel complicit in the milk's souring and my strep throat.
By the time I came to terms privately with my own queerness and stopped trying to tell myself that I just really enjoyed the company of my female friends and didn't actually want to recite Sapphic poetry to them while entwined naked in silk sheets watching Gilmore Girls, I was 24 years old. I was also married to a dude.
For me, this year, it's all about excitement for change. Things that I've wanted to start for years suddenly feel doable. Things that don't serve me are getting easier to let go of. And since it's Mardi Gras season here, everywhere I look there's beautiful people in elaborate costumes celebrating life and community. I'm totally twitterpated on my world right now.