Saturday, March 17, 2012

David Arquette....

Somebody told me he was on Ellen yesterday talking about becoming sober, and that he'd been really lovely and funny and interesting on learning to live with emotions etc..

I'd missed the show (we get it a few days late here in NZ, they send the tape over on carrier pigeon ha ha) so after I'd finished watching American Idol I climbed into bed with the laptop to try and find Arquette and Ellen on YouTube.

(I should add here that my sober Friday night with Idol had also included almost an entire packet of mini mallow puffs.  Naughty, naughty.)

But back to my laptop.  There was only a truncated clip from Ellen, so I ended up surfing around YouTube looking for 'David Arquette sober', then 'Being sober' and 'help with alcohol'.  Found some interesting clips, and some tragic ones.  Then came across a whole bunch of Intervention clips.  I love that show!  I used to watch it when I was still drinking, when I was starting to educate myself about addiction and recovery, just as I used to watch Celebrity Rehab for the same reason (tragic but true).

I ended up watching this terribly sad episode about an alcoholic called Pam who was swigging vodka from a hip flask out of her fridge and trying her hardest to ruin all the relationships around her.  She was a sad, tragic figure, dead on the inside, so so wounded and just so so drunk all the time.  Mr D had by now come to bed and was sleeping beside me as I watched with the volume down low and tears dribbling down my cheeks.

Oh I just felt so sad for that Pam, so sad for people feeling powerless and worrying sick about alcoholics they know, and so sad for all the bloggers I read .. some craving, some relapsing, many struggling with learning how to live with the booze stripped away.

And then I started to feel really scared and insecure like 'Holy Cow that demon drink had its clutches hooked right into me how the hell did I get out?!"  I was thinking about how I was so used to being affected by alcohol it was almost like a comfort for me, to feel that way, warm on the inside, brain bent.  I liked that feeling (obviously I did because I drank all the time).  So how come it was impossible for me to live a drinkers life of denial?  I just ... well to be honest and use a well worn cliche .. I just felt so so thankful that I was free of it.  I almost don't know how I did it but thank the good lord in heaven I did.

And the other thing is, you know, I had NO IDEA what was to unfold when I gave up drink.  Despite all my self-teaching beforehand, I honestly didn't know that my heavy steady drinking was me choosing to live life without fully dealing with my emotions.  I didn't know that!  I thought I was battling a physical addiction, but now I see it as more of an emotional issue.  And when people ask me what's hard about being sober, I say 're-learning how to live with all my emotions stripped bare.  Feeling moods, acknowledging them, sitting with them and waiting for them to pass.'  It's like a whole different way to live.

And all I want to say to all the lovely addicted people trying to live sober is;  Keep on.  Keep on.  Keep on.  Hold on tight, you're in for a bumpy ride. But Keep On and things will start to smooth out.  We're all bigger than that bloody alcohol.  Just get rid of it.

Love, Mrs D xxx


  1. Amen.

    I used to watch Intervention a lot more often then I do now. Now I just find it so sad. Then I watched so I could say, "Well at least I'm not THAT bad." Equally as sad but I didn't know it then.

    I am just now beginning to get somewhat (note the use of wishy-washy language) used to living with my emotions out for all the world to see. It's definitely a different feeling and one that is well worth the effort it took to get here.

    Keep on keeping on Mrs. D. And definitely keep on about your blogging self.


  2. I agree! For me, getting sober was much more of an emotional issue than a physical one. I also used to watch Intervention when I was drinking. I knew I couldn't be an alcoholic because I wasn't as "bad" as those people. It's crazy how deep in denial I was when I look back now. Thanks for blogging!

  3. I saw the episode with David Arquette. I had also seen him the year prior, when he was still using. It was on Oprah I believe. When he explained to Ellen about what it feels like to be sober now I could relate and understand in ways that I never probably would even have heard or listened to while I was still actively drinking. What I heard was he most appreciates the clarity. Facing and dealing with life as it really is, regardless of the challenge, has such a greater pay off than hiding. I watched a wicked episode of Intervention last night with a man in his mid thirties. Carrying around a 26 of Vodka everywhere he went and using his daughter as a taxi driver and bank teller. Of course we weren't that bad. Its not about the extremes. Its about the blessings that we are given, the strength to change and the wisdom to know the things we can not. My version of serenity prayer lol- sorry. There is such an unspoken conversation between people in recovery. I felt like I knew David listening to him. I understood him and have never spent 5 minutes with the guy. Anyway, great message there as always Mrs. D. Have a great weekend :)

  4. It is so very very sad. I had an alcoholic Grandfather...and an aunty who both had to go down to Hanmer Springs rehab when I was a kid... they got clean and were always so very grateful that they had got free of the clutches of Alcohol!!

    Good for you ;)

  5. Lovely post. So thoughtful and inspiring. I, too, am coming to see more clearly how I used alcohol avoid my inner emotional turmoil and I'm terrified about experiencing it sober - I'm starting to tell myself that it's ok, it won't kill me. I'll live. And I realize that I need have more people to talk to, who can relate. I'm planning to go to an AA mtg tomorrow. I have been resistant, but now I just feel it will be good for me to have that support. I'm afraid I can't do this on my own. It's relatively easy to stop drinking, but obviously it's not just about that - it's about managing fear and insecurity and emotional turmoil.

  6. Great post. I so agree about not expecting sobriety to be so complicated, so much about emotions and so much more rewarding than I ever expected!

    And regarding David Arquette, I've been very intrigued by his recovery. He is a frequent caller into a NY-based radio show here and he would call in around 4 AM West Coast time and it was 7AM Eastern Time. He would be in the bag sometimes and talking about his separation from Courtney Cox and how she didn't want to be his "mother" anymore. Then he went into rehab and would call in post-rehab and he sounded like one of us. He had all that new sober sensibility. It was all very interesting stuff.

    Great topic!

    (By the way, thank you for your lovely comment Mrs. D! It would be nice to have a ginger beer together).


  7. We're all bigger than that Bloody Alcohol. Isn't that the truth! Lovely post. Thank- you.

  8. I also think this is a great post, Mrs. D. Alcoholism is a very sad disease. Glad to hear one more person, such as David, is finding sobriety and a new way to live.

  9. Great post, and exactly where I am right now. Dealing with difficult emotions isn't fun, but I feel like I am finally in the driver's seat. I might make mistakes (well, I will make mistakes), but they will be my mistakes and I know that I'll be better able to learn from them later on.

    And waiting for emotions to pass...I guess people do this every day! And it's normal! And they do pass!

    I love Intervention too, and it's funny how I used to watch it while getting drunk, thinking I was being ironic but really just being trapped and sad. I'm able to see myself reflected so much in those stories, and I feel a level of empathy with those people that I hadn't had before.

  10. I'm sitting here all weepy and can't figure out why. I was thinking about writing about it but once again you beat me to it.

  11. Like you, I watched those shows Celebrity Rehab and Intervention for yrs. I wanted to inspire myself to quit but for a long time I kept rationalizing that I wasn't as bad as that. But thank God I finally got it that I had to breakup with my wine habit. Completely. It is so sad to see the successes in these stories and then to hear of relapse and sometimes death in the headlines. Like Jeff Conaway from Taxi who was on CR multiple times. But seeing that is helping me to stay the course...I don't ever want to go back. And your blog is helping me! So don't ever stop writing! You are awesome.