Not at work

Life is different when I am not at work all the time. I didn’t ask for all these hours.

I took this job because I wanted to move closer to my family (yes, I know my friends warned me). Who knew that work would want to put me in charge. My whole life I’ve felt like a failure, unintelligent and untalented. Somehow this job brought out all the best in me. Even my harshest critics are now big supporters.

Back to my life.

I’ve been through a lot in sobriety. This last three years has been the hardest. My wife who has twenty years sober as well admitted to me the other day she was at one point concerned that I might go out and drink. It never occurred to me. But it was hard. Things are better now the same way things are better after having a valve replaced in your heart. Your heart feels better but having your chest split open takes a while to recover from. And so it is with my self imposed isolation.

I am the angry sober dude. I am angry at everyone and everything. But not so much anymore. I can’t stand feeling so far away from all the people I love, my wife, my children and friends I have driven away. There are a lot of people I miss.

So today was another success. I stopped in mid sentence yelling at my daughter for some minor infraction to give her a hug and swing her around the living room. I bit my tongue and put up the curtains for my wife instead of complaining about not messing with my day off. I went off to jam with a drummer having no expectations of the event, only being open to the possibilities it may bring.

I am critical, I am harsh and quick to anger and I love my family fiercely. It  is still clear to me today, that day almost thirty years ago when I decided that I needed no one. Life at home was violent and scary, I was so angry I hurt one of my friends and everyone was mad at me for it. They refused to be my friend anymore. It was then I decided I would not need anyone anymore. So here I am recovering from the choice of a ten year old boy who had his heart stomped.

It is the last hold out of my sobriety. Today I made a new friend.

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  1. I am new to your blog. How many years have your been sober and in AA?

    I remember the angry years for me in recovery. It is still surprizing to me that my husband didn’t choose to leave during that time. I have been blessed with a marriage of 37 years. I don’t know if I would have stayed through all of those years if I had been on the receiving end of my anger. My husband is not a saint. He is a loving, patient (very, very patint) man. I have been very blessed by having him at my side though all of these years. I think having a sense of humor worked for both of us.

    The laughter is one of the best things that I like about Al-Anon. Sure you see tears but you also hear laughter. They helped me to see how angry I was and told me not to take that anger out on my husband and kids. They helped me to see that I was angry at my abusers. I am also an incest survivor. I was most of all angry at myself. I had to learn to love myself. Like you, I have come to be grateful for my childhood years and the strength and compassion that I gained through my experiences. Without the incest and family disease of alcoholism, I would not be the person that I am today. I can honestly say that I like and love myself today.

    • angrysoberdude
    • November 7th, 2009

    Thanks Patricia. I’ve sober twenty years. I started going to meetings at the age of twenty. Its hard to do but I have been trying more and more to take out my anger on others less and less. I too am very fortunate to have a great spouse with an awesome sense of humor. I’m glad I found your blog.

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