Avoiding Wednesday’s Haven

It’s been another one of those Wednesdays, I can’t put my finger on it, but as far as I can remember Wednesdays were the days I struggled with my drinking at home more than any other.  It was Wednesday evenings when I would end up pacing the house, rubbing my hands or scratching them and my arms, where I would become angry or agitated with those around me, mainly my family and where Victoria would come to call me FUN BOBBY!!!!  Obviously all the Friends fans amongst you will understand that reference, if not read this post: Meet Fun Bobby

But off all the nights this was the one where I also fought as hard as I could not to drink, where I knew I shouldn’t, but failed every single time, this was the night where I would hunt through the house for money, beg, borrow or steal it, this was the night where I was trying, but failing, if I was getting more and more irritable and cranky, then Victoria would just hand me money, these where the nights where it was better for me to drink, better for me to be drunk than sober or should I say better for those in the house for me to be drunk rather than sober.

Why Wednesdays?

I’m not sure to be honest, most other nights I had karate and with karate came the pub after with friends, when drinking was more sociable and by the time I got home, everyone was in bed or I was already well oiled and easier to be around, but regardless of how many I’d had at the pub, I still came home and drank.

But Mondays I didn’t have karate either, but they never seemed as bad, maybe as I tended to buy more alcohol over the weekend to drink at home, then I generally had some left over and could just drink, but Wednesday as I normally couldn’t go to the shop on Tuesday then I would struggle until I got to the shop around the corner.

The last two days at work have been absolutely manic, since I’ve been there I haven’t had two days quite like it, our Manager is away on holiday and yesterday whatever could go wrong went wrong, through no fault of ours, usually suppliers, but we were so busy with customers on the phones or in the shop that we just couldn’t sort things out quick enough.  Today I have been desperately trying to get things organised for a new contract we have that starts Monday, we’ve only just got the list of products we need to stock, which we must have in for Monday and of course most suppliers take up to a week to deliver, only once again, we are so busy it’s been almost impossible to sort out, to say it’s been a stressful couple of days is an understatement, I’ve left both days in a shell shocked state, last night I got home had tea and slept for almost two hours, I was worn out.

Don’t get me wrong here, this evening I had no intention of drinking, I had no urge to drink, I didn’t even contemplate drinking, I’m beyond that now, well and truly, after 503 days I come far enough to deal with that.  But after spending a few hours browsing through a number of blogs, many who are in recovery like me, some of which are in the early stages of their recovery and their thoughts and feelings I can fully comprehend.

But this evening when I got home I had my tea and then realised I didn’t have anything to drink, I ran out last night and turned to coffee, which then kept me awake, so I went to the Co-op to fetch a couple of bottles of Pepsi Max, I used to buy some of my alcohol from the Co-op, but not great amounts, their offers weren’t that good and I didn’t really like the wines they sold that much, so as I was drinking on a budget of sorts, if there is such as thing as drinking on a budget,  I would only tend to buy from there if they had a good offer or I fancied something a little different.  So shopping in the Co-op isn’t that big a problem, yes the alcohol is conveniently positioned where you queue for the tills, but now I can just smile, as the stuff they have there I didn’t care for anyway and actually now has no grip on me, I can just walk by smiling, because I have beaten it, it doesn’t have me any more, I am free of it’s chains.

But the shop around the corner, that’s a different beast altogether.  It’s one of them typical little corner shop type places, not particularly clean or tidy, but the contents within are cheap and there are plenty of offers to be had.  Plus they had a couple of bottles of wine that I loved.  This place was my haven, especially on a Wednesday, this was the place I would run to, this was the place I would go before going home, this was the place that brought me comfort, or should I say where I brought my comfort.

Yet the last time I stepped foot in that place was the night of Sunday 18th March 2012, that was a landmark day for so many reasons.  That was the day I put down the blade for the last time, day when more that all the other times that I fought the urge to commit suicide that I so desperately wanted to, the day I felt so angry at my weakness.

That evening I went on my last bender of sorts, five pints at the pub and then pick up two bottles of wine on the way home and drink all except a third of one of the bottles.

Then the next morning everything changed, I picked my mobile phone up and made a call that changed my life, the hardest call I have ever made and will probably ever make, but the most important phone call I have ever made, it started a process of change, it started the rumblings of realisation, realisation that I needed to change, that I just couldn’t continue the way I was heading, that I needed to let out so much that was hidden inside, that I needed to start talking and not hiding, I needed to break out from inside.

I had lost who I was, I needed help to find myself again, Gareth gave me that.

I remember that evening when I got home from work and spoke with Victoria, after confirming that Gareth was coming to see me, which she already knew as she’d gone to see Gareth to make sure I’d been in contact with him, she asked me a question she would always ask before she went out (which wasn’t very often, it was me that was always out), she asked if I needed to go to the shop before she left.

For the first time ever, I couldn’t believe what she was asking, how could she ask me that when she knew what was happening that evening.  How could she think that I was going to drink when her Pastor was coming to talk to me about my drinking and everything else, I had asked him for help, I was falling apart and needed putting back together, I hadn’t even contemplated drinking that evening, it had never crossed my mind.

I knew from that point the drinking was something I had to put aside, I had to be free and the start was to stop bringing it into the house.  So since that evening I have avoided the shop on the corner completely, I don’t even go in there in the daytime to get a sandwich or anything, I just don’t and more importantly won’t go in there.

It’s a no go zone, in there the worst of me found it’s haven, it’s where I ran when life was too hard, it held what I thought were the answers, but no longer, this new creation doesn’t belong there.

I have a new haven to run to when life becomes hard first and formost I have God, I pray and find strength in prayer and when I need somewhere else to turn to when I strong people to to talk with then I find that at Gareth’s Church, the Everyday Champions Church.  Since the day Gareth came into my house, my life has been turned upside down, but in a good way, all day before that meeting I had been trying to work out what I needed to do to sort myself out and that meeting with Gareth confirmed most of that and gave me so much more.

I’m thankful for nights like these, that even after a stressful day, even when I’m tired and worn, that the grace of God is stronger, that the strength I prayed for that first time, on a Wednesday night just like this one, is still being granted, that I can still walk my journey and count everyday I walk with God and everyday I am sober.

BY YOUR SIDE by TENTH AVENUE NORTH
Why are you striving these days
Why are you trying to earn grace
Why are you crying
Let me lift up your face
Just don’t turn away

Why are you looking for love
Why are you still searching as if I’m not enough
To where will you go child
Tell me where will you run
To where will you run

And I’ll be by your side
Wherever you fall
In the dead of night
Whenever you call
And please don’t fight
These hands that are holding you
My hands are holding you

Look at these hands and my side
They swallowed the grave on that night
When I drank the world’s sin
So I could carry you in
And give you life
I want to give you life

And I’ll be by your side
Wherever you fall
In the dead of night
Whenever you call
And please don’t fight
These hands that are holding you
My hands are holding you

Cause I, I love you
I want you to know
That I, I love you
I’ll never let you go

And I’ll be by your side
Wherever you fall
In the dead of night
Whenever you call
And please don’t fight
These hands that are holding you
My hands are holding you

2 thoughts on “Avoiding Wednesday’s Haven

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