For some mysterious reason the week of the Fourth of July has historically been hard for me, and I have no idea why. I know in the past that I drank heavily on this day, but I don’t think that’s why the day is hard. I drank to get through it because it was hard. The difficulty of it is still a mystery to me.
In the wake of a stressful two weeks at work I knew that the dreaded Fourth of July was in my sights, but I had to focus on getting through the work stuff. Then it hit me yesterday that the stupid holiday was upon me. And what makes it particularly hard is that my usual supports are gone. Friends have come and gone. I do have some friends, but I don’t push the closeness. These days I am largely on my own, truly starting over. Plus, this week both Doc and my therapist are on vacation.
I’ve written here about my struggles in AA, and being a consistent presence in The Rooms, as we call them. I knew that I needed to get to some meetings today if I was going to get through this day.
Meeting 1 occurred at noon, and it was a very large meeting. I amazed myself by raising my hand to share, but I was never called on, likely due to the very large group. I actually felt okay at the meeting, even in spite of the fact that it was a bit hot in there without air conditioning.
Meeting 2 occurred at 4:30, and it was a very small group of us, no more than 8 of us. I was grateful for the meeting as this really is one of the worst days for me. I shared in the meeting, and embarrassed myself by crying. There was one woman who recognized me from a meeting I used to attend, and she talked to me afterwards. The meeting was a source of comfort, so much so that I did not want to leave. Just an hour earlier I could barely get out of my car to go inside, and now I could hardly open my car door to leave.
Then there was a third meeting. Yes, this is a record for me in most meetings in a day. This meeting occurred in a place with some weird security. It was not easy to get into this meeting. I’ll leave it at that. I walked in, and I only saw men. I immediately looked at the group listing on my phone to make sure I was not at a men’s only meeting, but no, it was a general meeting. It was not necessarily a remarkable meeting, but I didn’t mind as I’m just glad it was there.
And that was my Fourth of July, meeting after meeting after meeting in order to stay kind of sane. I just heard a newscaster say, “It’s a bummer that the holiday is over.” I beg to differ. I want real life with all it’s monotony and routine to come back posthaste.