But the loss of religion, shame and guilt left me without morals. Quite by chance, I found that I was amoral by choice.
Addiction might be called a curse, but that’s only one way to look at it. Alcohol addiction used to be a way of tapping into a power I didn’t have, a release of pain I had trapped inside me.
They say if you can’t imagine going to a party on a Friday night without alcohol to socially lubricate your interactions then you have a dependency on alcohol. But if I am to give myself any label at all nowadays, I would say I am a mild alcoholic. But ‘mild alcoholism’ is still alcoholism.
It’s not what I know I’ve done. But what I don’t know I’ve done. Yawning black holes of nothingness taunt me with their awful possibilities.
The guilt of who I am, what I have done and now what I continue to do is so shameful that I cannot face the pain. It is better to display no remorse. There is no point in holding an image together that is shattered and worthless.
I rarely travelled further then a 2 kilometre radius and more often than not, I brought the party back home (10 people partying in a 13 squared metres apartment, that’s no mean feat).
Why? Because I knew that the closer I was to my bed, the easier it would be to pass out safely.
But here it is from the horse’s mouth. Being an alcoholic is frequently exhilarating. Sometimes dangerous. And always an adventure. Sure, it is also a nightmare. You are spurned and adored in equal measure. People know that you can be counted on to create party, drama and a spectacle (albeit sometimes at the expense of yourself), whilst also providing the fodder for endless gossip. It can kill relationships and in the worst cases, damage innocent bystanders. Thus in no way do I advocate it. But my journey through alcoholism allowed me to uncover who I really was. And that has ironically saved my life.