The Displacement of Self

Beside me, I recognize my self, a transparent figure pressing against my physical person. The sensation of my self, standing beside me, pressed against me, triggers a sense of tense irritability in my physical person. When I consider this as my self and ask why my self is standing beside me, against me but not within me, calm begins to permeate my physical person. It seems that the content of my person has displaced my self and when I engage with this external representation of self, as if it were myself, calm displaces irritability. What am I doing other than being myself? One thing I recently discovered, when I asked this question, of my self, is that my self would prefer that I drink less alcohol. This presents the question of whether to quit entirely or to moderate.

I have an extreme personality. I tend to be extreme in my behaviors. Perhaps moderation is the lesson the self has in mind for me. Quitting booze altogether would be very easy for me because it is an extreme behavior. The question comes down to value. What are the comparative values? Benefits and risks.

When I made the decision to begin drinking again it was to facilitate reconnecting with friends. I had been isolated from my friends for a few years while I managed more pressing concerns. The booze helped me, in my mind, to be more available, approachable to friends. It took me out of my funk and forced me to disengage from my problems. It has since become a way to alleviate chronic back pain and that is problematic. Booze is very effective in diminishing any concern about pain, physical or personal, but it is a poor choice. When pain management is the motive for drinking, excess is a constant problem. At least for me it is. I prefer to be sober than to be drunk, however, I have been known to drink more than I prefer. Is that enough of a reason to give it up altogether or are there underlying issues that exacerbate the tendency to drink excessively that I would be wise to address?

As I consider these questions, I consult my self, thus inviting my self in. No longer standing beside me, my self and I become, myself.  We are one. My person and my self sharing the same center as my temporal body of flesh, blood and bone. My self prefers that I would abstain from drink. My person must make this the way I am if I am to forge an agreement to share the same temple of flesh, blood and bone where person, self and form are in agreement and of the same bearing.

In the past fourteen years I have structured my life around alcohol, drinking daily with occasional retreats to reset my habit. I can take it or leave it, but having said that, I have a high tolerance for the stuff. I can drink a lot. I am not found of being sick or having a headache and I know how to avoid that. Never been cited for D.U.I. It has become a stress management tool. I have to stop processing what is on my mind after a couple of beers and it takes the sting out of my back. It is a commitment to switch off and relax, something I am otherwise not very good at. I tend to drink more than is good for me and that bothers me. I often have poor recollection of the events of the last evening, and frankly, I don’t care for that or the fuzziness in my head that so often greets me in the morning.

What are my other options to deal with personal irritability and physical discomfort other than daily drink and has drink simply become a way to perpetuate a cycle that involves itself? When considering whether or not, at this stage it helps, on balance, I think not.

Micheal, The Mystic Tourist, ©2013

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