If you know me or have read much I've posted, you'll know that sobriety matters to me.
A lot of people in my life have told me I just need to lighten up. I need to not go so hard. Just have fun.
I've been through this so many times in my young life already and I want to put it into words here.
*Potential Trigger Warning: I'm going to talk a bit about drug and alcohol abuse here. I won't use any specific drugs' names and won't go into too much detail.*
There is fun and then there is fulfillment.
Getting high or drunk or spun out can be a lot of fun, sure.
Those things never pan out to any kind of fulfillment for me. You might be different, and all power to you. That's just not how it plays out for me.
Relatively recently I was at a music festival. We had been partying all night and watched the sun rise. The uppers were starting to wear off and I started to get that "what's next" feeling that always comes afterwards. A deep sense of sobriety not being enough.
Then the psychedelics started to kick in pretty heavily.
I went off into the woods by myself and started journalling.
It was a bunch of nonsense about chasing dopamine fixes that will never get fixed.
Then I started reading some of the old stuff I had written. It blew me away.
There was this confidence in the voice of the writing that I haven't had in a long time. I kept reading and wondering "who was this guy?"
More importantly I started to ask, "why am I not still him?"
With some more reflection, I realized that I wrote those things during the longest streak of sobriety I had achieved in my 20's. About three years of almost complete sobriety.
During that time I learned to meditate, started taking cold showers, and got really into human optimization.
My mind was super clear.
My soul felt full.
I was fulfilled.
Some instability in my life led me back to drinking.
Then to substance use.
Then to substance abuse.
To me, the short lived fun isn't worth it anymore. The come down is too hard. The lack of mental clarity is too real in comparison to the intense clarity I've been able to achieve in a prolonged sober state.
I'll never know what it's like to just have one drink and have fun. That's never been the case for me.
I don't care to convince anyone else to be sober, I just wish people would respect that it's what is best for me.
I know that much.
It's not that I HAVE to stay sober.
It's that I WANT to be sober.
I want to be in state of clarity.