I do not know what comes next.
I can now go days not just without drinking, but without giving it more than the odd passing thought.
I'll always have that in me.
The pathetic drunk.
Addiction, and it's lover Depression. They never truly leave once they're inside you. They're always there, lying dormant in the dark corners.
I handle the sun better than I have in years. There was a couple of years there, say, age 29-31, I very rarely stepped into the sunlight. A few hours a week, averaged out. There were in fact weeks and months I never stepped outside unless it was dark.
If I stepped into the sunlight, negative energies inside of me would churn violently. I would race to the corner store for something something to drink, alcohol needed to restore my buoyancy.
Fatalistic, I thought this was my life. That I had no choice. That I was doomed to that existence.
Two and a half years ago I weighed over 480 pounds, drank 2 liters of vodka or whiskey a day just for maintenance, smoked, listened to talk radio 24/7, watched more porn than is safe, reasonable, or healthy, and only slept every 3-4 days. When I did sleep, my dreams were a strange, frightening, horrible place. I ate a lot of opiates, smoked weed in spurts, and enjoyed coke when I could find a trustworthy supplier. I gorged myself on fast food, telling myself each time it was only one meal.
Have you ever cried like a baby while eating Taco Bell, because you just can't stop stuffing your fat face with it? Because, as much as you hate it, as much as you hate yourself, you know the only pleasures you deserve are the tiny synapses in your animal brain that come with each bite? Bawling like a baby, tears running down your face out of shame and hopelessness, gorging yourself to the point you finally fall asleep in an alcoholic stupor?
It's not a good place to be.
Imagine living like that.
As slow as my progress might be, I'm never going back there.
When you stare down the barrel of a .45, you can see the hollow point winking back up at you.
I spent a lot of time staring down that barrel.
That drinking myself into oblivion, and ingesting every harmful substance I came across
Was the same thing as staring down the barrel.
I know the only reason I'm alive today, is my dog, Murphy.
People talk a lot of shit about acceptance. Most of it is whiny, pseudo-intellectual psycho-babble that does nothing to really empower oneself. Accept that you are human, that you have frailty and weakness, and accept that you don't have to let these things break you. Only you have control of your life. You are not powerless. You do not have to be your own victim.
I cannot stand the weakness, the victimization so many insist on re-enforcing in those of us with these peculiar infirmities.
That is not to say I care for so called tough love. 99% of what people call tough love is nothing more than grandiose, macho, ego stroking bullshit, perpetuated by arrogant, tiny dicked, douchefuck cock knuckle motherfuckers, who should really probably contemplate suicide. This is what tough love is, when done in public. It is not a helping a hand, or a deliberate countermeasure, but a public self-affirmation of just how awesome the speaker is.
Tough love done in private, in a calm, steady, low tone, is real talk. Because there is a risk there. One might not be ready to hear it. Or, they might not be able to hear it from you, regardless.
In all speech, one must be mindful of tone, rhetoric, and audience.
You may be surprised, because of my rampant vulgarity, or sarcastic tones, that I try to keep these things in mind, but I do.
I don't know what's next for me. I don't know how much longer I'm going to keep up this writing schtick. At the least, I'm going to have to rethink my platform, and use of social media.
Those who do read my work seem to love it, and my base seems to grow steadily, if slowly. Still, I don't know if that is due to quality of writing, or force of personality. If it is force of personality, should I consider myself an entertainer, and see where I can go from there? Sounds about as appealing as a dick in the mouth, but, you do what you gotta do to pay the bills, you know?
I fear it has as much to do with sympathy as anything else.
I won't stop writing, I can't. But focus, intensity, and expectation are all things to be considered.
I don't know exactly what's next for me as a gun monkey. I have some articles to write. Whether that falls under gun monkey or writer or both, I do not know.
I love teaching people how to shoot. Giving them the tools they need in order to defend their lives. This is incredibly satisfying.
So, that's this year, and, I hope a big part of this summer. Taking some courses, getting some certs, putting in my packet to go to Austin for the CHL instructor's course, maybe forming an LLC. I'll go slowly though. The last thing I want to do is get in over my head. Not so much for fear of embarrassment, but because I firmly believe you have to hold the subject and the mission of self defense, to a higher standard.
I'll be the first to tell you, there's a great deal I don't know. I never would have thought of this a year ago. I'll also be the first to tell you I'm spoiled. I can call, to one degree or another, several of the top trainers in this industry friends. The guys I look to for advice, guidance, and leadership, are all way ahead of the game. I can't teach what they teach, on the level they teach it, and I don't have a problem admitting that. It took them years to get there.
However, after spending the past year in a gun range, and seeing just how broad the industry is in size and scope, and just how greatly the depth varies, I do think I see a place for me to do my thing. Real basic, meat and potatoes stuff. No Uber Ninja Tacticool Awesomeness. I'm not qualified to teach that shit, and I'm not sure I would want to if I was. Frankly, I think it's a lot more satisfying teaching frumpy soccer moms how to use and carry their defensive handgun then chest thumping and ego stroking.
Stop- if what I just said rubbed you the wrong way, you're probably the guy I'm talking about. Chill.
I do know
Writing and gun monkeying alone are not going to make for any kind of life.
I think about going back to school. I despise college. I despise the “Educational Industrial Complex”. I despise all the tenured professors that brainwash kids into believing their prattling idiocy.
I despise going into debt and jumping through hoops for a piece of paper to show unimaginative middle managers I went into debt for a piece of paper that says I can jump through hoops, kiss ass, and be brainwashed.
That is what college is to me.
Willingly making oneself a cog.
I could go to a trade school. Learn CAD, or get welding certs. I always enjoyed welding.
I'd have to drop more weight though, get in better shape in order to do that.
And if I were in good enough shape to be a welder, why the fuck wouldn't I just try to continue down the warrior's path?
That's where my interests and passions lie. The only things that hold my interest for any reasonable amount of time.
The military is out of the question, obviously. Even if it weren't, I'm not sure I could allow myself to go back after they way my first enlistment ended.
What about law enforcement, or the security industries?
I worry, somewhat, that some of the things I've said and done as a writer may hurt me.
Whether it be satire some are too fucking dumb to get, or the frank an open discussion of my drug use, or my mental health. My little break with sanity, if you will.
Will these things hurt me?
I don't know.
Sadly, I think if they do, it may just be because of my openness. They are fields often dedicated to, and, in all honesty, better suited to the stoic.
I try not to think about it, just clench my teeth and drive forward. Remind myself I've got to get to a place for it to hurt me, in order for it to matter.
The only thing that gives me pause, is whether to look at school as a way to further enable myself down the warrior's path, or to take a more pragmatic approach, and attain something to fall back on.
I don't know.
The old lady comes first. Her care, making sure she's comfortable and well fed and happy. After that, reclaiming fitness.
The past several months I've been plateaued. I let work, writing, and family worries build up, and sap my energy. Destroy my motivation.
And it's not that I've been that bad, not at all. If I had been that bad, I surely would've sled further back. I just haven't been doing what needed to be done to go forward.
I'm getting better about that.
I know, you've heard all this shit before.
I'm not trying to make excuses, so much as give an accurate account.
For those of you have watched my little soap opera play out the past couple of years, who have offered moral support, friendship, and guidance, I am deeply thankful. Please don't think I take these things for granted.