An Internal Conversation

Thanksgiving came and went, and I could hardly remember how long it’s been since this internal conversation began. It feels as though every day, new layers to this dialogue emerge, and I’ve sunk deeper and deeper into my pit of solitude. The event itself was beautiful, and on the surface, being in a room full of family that I don’t see nearly as much as I should was a refreshing change from previous years. With my daughter by my side, the responsibility of being a single parent continually washed over me like waves on the shore of my new life, making it difficult to find a space where I can mentally escape. My words were minimal, a stark contrast to the person I had usually been during these situations. But in prioritizing my sobriety, I consistently reminded myself to stay away from the bottles that remained scattered throughout the room. It was a rough few days, and the memories of my past plagued my mind at every turn, making it difficult to breathe. I wanted to be able to enjoy the simple pleasures of spirits and companionship, but my life seems too far away from that path I once walked. In the few minutes of solitude I’d experience in the bathroom, I’d look at myself in the mirror, and wonder how much time will I have to sacrifice in order for hindsight to give me clarity on how I’m feeling in this very moment. The battle within raged violently, and the voices in my head often mocked my aspirations, laughing at the idea that I believed I could achieve the impossible. Every second seemed as though it was a test, and the clock strapped to my wrist left an undeniable tick ringing inside of my head. Was what I was given a gift, or a curse? People with much simpler lives seemed to have it all figured out, and yet, the weight of “knowing too much” often keeps me in a state of paralysis, trying to run in different directions all at the same time. I know I need to stay sober; that is for certain. Everything else, every other opportunity presented, or dream manifested, must be tended to as an individual sheep within my flock of thought, balanced with the reality that I am, at my very core, alone in this world. I need to continue to conquer myself, and my thoughts, to be the man that I am destined to be, and the father my daughter needs. The shame that I’ve experienced in my life has made my skin thicker than most, but the mission at hand remains. When the day comes that I’ve reached my pinnacle, maybe then I’ll be able to look back, and understand why I feel the way I feel right now.

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