Monday, November 30, 2009


Please dear God, may 1983 be the worst year of my life. May I never again experience that kind of bone crushing self-involved, self-centered, self-destructive, self, self, self, self, self, self, self.... horrifying depression like this again.

I don't know what happened. I just hated everything. I was not only drinking beer, but whisky. I was not only drinking whisky at night, but in the morning. I didn't have any friends - I can't imagine why. My kids were beginning to be frightened of me, or maybe I was just beginning to notice that they were frightened of me.

My husband and I were in therapy. I would get drunk and call the therapist because he was the only person I felt I had to talk to. We would get monthly bills detailing the length of the phone calls, and billing by the minute.

I stopped running. I stopped doing everything. I sat at my dining room table and smoked cigarettes and drank. I gained weight. I looked like absolute hell.

My father's birthday was on December 26 and my brothers flew him to Denver for a birthday party at a grand hotel that year. I packed up the kids and drove to Denver for the party. There was a photograph of me taken at that party that I carried in my wallet for years after I got sober. I was with my family. They were all well dressed, all the men in suits, my sister in a beautiful New York dress, pearls, and high heels, etc. I had borrowed some kind of hippie dress from someone because I could find nothing that fit me. I no longer fit into any kind of normal size clothing. So I had this huge floral hippie gauzy thing... in the middle of winter... oh, with sandals. And my kids... my son had a sports jacket and a tie and looked OK. But my daughters had on weird home made (by me) corduroy prairie skirts and sorel boots. The other little girls wore pretty dresses and black patent leather shoes with little white tights, but not my girls. No, they had on winter boots! Oh dear Lord. I have a photograph of them playing pacman at this party, looking absolutely miserable.

I think by this time I had absolutely lost my mind. You can see in the photographs the reality of the progression of my alcoholism. My face was round, and flushed. My hair was limp and messy. My clothes were beyond eccentric. I looked like a mad woman - and very appropriately so.

Only 7 months and 24 more days of this....


Ed G. said...

I can believe this only because of my experience. God does good work. I second your prayer for both of us.

Blessings and aloha...

Pam said...

Yes, I believe too that I had absolutly lost my mind. Maybe we really did Mary. I hold firm to the belief that for a lot of us, alcohol kept us alive thru the madness until we could get to God.
I know this is your pain, but damn it always feels so good to hear another womans "inside stuff" when it matches our own "inside stuff".
The confusion and pain.
This post really rang true for me in my own experience. I remember screaming up to the sky:
"God, what is wrong with me?"
I love my Mary.

Mary LA said...

I can identify with that morning drinking and the drunken calls to the therapist. And paying for long calls I couldn't remember making.

Scott W said...

See, told you the fashions would drive anyone to drink!

Shannon said...

when we are in the throws of our disease we are mad people

Willa said...

Thank you for these horrible yet wonderful (for sharing) memories. I could crack open a bottle of wine at 7:00 a.m. on the weekend mornings, no problem.

Thank God I am sober this morning.

Thank you, Mary Christine.

Syd said...

I can't imagine you fat, limp, lifeless or mad. I'm glad that you only have 7 months more to go. I think that you are close to the end of living here.