When we get sober, we do new things while discovering a whole new way of living. For me, it’s going to the movies.
Many moons ago, I had a massive panic attack in a movie theater. This literally made my mind crippled. That attack (which may of been drug induced as I went to this Austin Powers flick on methamphetamine after being up for several days) was the primary reason I stopped going to movies for over seven years.
Today, with beautiful sobriety under me, I can actually walk in a movie theater and not freak the fuck out. And, here’s the kicker. I go to the movies alone. Although I would love a partner to go with, I am completely comfortable going alone. Going to the movies again is one of the promises that sobriety gives me.
So, here are my top three flick picks. What’s yours?
1) Gone Girl. Nothing beats watching Neal Patrick Harris getting his head sliced off.
2) Lucy. This film makes you really think. Plus, Scarlett Johansson is easy on the eyes.
3) The Giver. Great book. Great film. Plus, Meryl Streep and Jeff Bridges (The Dude) are two of the best actors in the business.
I made a mistake today at the AA nooner by actually expressing my feelings. I guess I embarrassed myself and did quite a decent job at it. God forbid if I’m a 41 year old, divorced, insane single white male on the verge of a nervous breakdown. I thought AA was a place to feel safe and discuss how you feel?
A friend told me to read the big book and to come back and (if I decide to come back) discuss AA related topics. I guess feeling insecure, miserable, not safe, and totally delusional does not meet the standards of the good ole’ Big Book. To top that off, I get some smart ass sharing after me, pointing me out, saying “I had no idea I would be sitting next to a paranoid 41 year old.” F*$K YOU! I thought AA was suppose to be welcoming, warm, and non-judgmental? That man makes me want to drink myself to Space Mountain. But, I know better. I guess I drove into the wrong parking lot and walked into the wrong room this afternoon. I should of drove a bit further, pass the courthouse, take a right, and save how I feel for my therapist.
This was the first time (well, like ever) where I walked out of a meeting feeling worse than when walking in. Should it be this way? Maybe I was thinking too much of what to say to hopefully get a few laughs when I was called upon. I definitely failed at that and made an asshole of myself. Some times the fellowship and AA have a reverse effect. Oh well, I just have to say “f@#k it, and shake it off” like my baseball coach would tell me after throwing a wild pitch at some kids head. I’m struggling right now, but I’m going to give sobriety a chance and not let my fellow AAer’s bring me down. Move forward I guess. I think I need to meet a “drugstore cowgirl that is so afraid of getting bored.” Well, I leave myself open because I’m a beautiful disaster. Take it or leave it.
These lyrics are dedicated to the old gentlemen who does not care I am a human being with actual feelings. “The one with old wood creaking that would burn away right on cue, I try to be not like that but some people really suck….”
I wake up in a different city. The smells and noises are unfamiliar. The bed feels awkward. I did something completely out of the ordinary today. I just attended my first out-of-state AA meeting. I walk through the foreign land of folding metal chairs with steam rising from the freshly brewed coffee without fear. This was by no means a simple task for me. I am a new-comer with low self-esteem. This was a lot harder than stumbling on some Mexican booze cruise.
Since I missed the nooner due to lack of GPS, I made it to the happy hour meeting. Tell me I would be seeking out an AA meeting while on vacation a year ago and I would of told you to get your head examined. There was a flick of the switch inside of me. Some call it physic change or shift. It had to come from somewhere to get my ass in this AA seat. Being sober and waltzing into some scary room of loving strangers has spiritual cleansing qualities in itself.
For once, I walked into a meeting excited. I was actually not nervous. The thing about AA meetings is that you may not know a single soul in the room, yet you feel very at home. Even though I did not speak in the meeting, I hung around after and talked to some people. Talking to others is no longer a scary chore for me. I’m starting to embrace this mysterious program with an open mind. I can finally say “I am doing new things!” I think I like this feeling. As Christina Scabbia of Lacuna Coil points out “I like it, like it….”