Mental Health: Searching for Answers at the Bottom of A Bottle – By Patrick Bailey (Guest Post) #mentalhealth #addiction #alcoholism


Searching for Answers at the Bottom of A Bottle


Credit: Nicolas Pereyra via Unsplash


The Solution in a Bottle

A bottle can be the answer to a lot of problems. The issue for alcoholics, however, is whether or not their solution to life’s problems comes from good counsel. Among countless questions, they can ask themselves is if their next series of drinks makes them feel better now or long term?

Feeling better right now is a normal desire, especially when a person hurts; it’s instinctive. Physical pain, for example, signals our brain to ‘take our hand out of the fire!’ It is a form of deep desire where we react involuntarily, and don’t pause to consider our reaction. We simply do.


Sacrificing Well-Being and Health

Nevertheless, too much alcohol consumption can override our instinctive sense of self-protection.  If a person drinks compulsively, they can harm each realm of their well-being and health — emotional, mental, physical, social, and spiritual (etc.). One’s entire humanity can be damaged with enough bottles of liquor. Often, a person’s quest for ‘answers’ is the core reason alcoholics seek the bottom of a bottle. Sought after solutions become pressing issues — not just for answers, but wise ones.

It’s interesting that people soon don’t recognize what came first when they began chasing answers through overconsumption of alcohol. It’s the proverbial issue of the chicken or the egg, and drinking becomes a sequential cycle. Their need for a ‘remedy’ leads to alcoholism, and alcoholism leads to a need for remedy. Eventually, heavy drinkers spin in circles, and the exit ramps speeding down a deadly highway, disappear in a blur.


Credit: Sanjeevan SatheesKumar via Unsplash


Seeking Answers and Confronting Trauma

Moreover, it’s not only that the pursuit of a remedy that is hard-wired into people’s brains, but wanting a thoughtful answer too. People want to improve their minds, seek meaning, and to have assurance for their decisions. The ability to perceive information, analyze it, and problem-solve is key. But some people have their exquisite mental abilities hijacked and compromised due to alcohol addiction. Bottom line, people can’t access their best decision-making skills nor find a peaceful mental place in a bottle of booze.

Some people also come to ‘a bottom of a bottle solution’ compromised due to trauma in life. Trauma, particularly longstanding trauma that occurred when adults were young, effects how they learned to cope in the world. Many people who chase their solutions through heavy drinking have had traumatic childhoods. They arrive at a bottle having problem-solving abilities, which are stunted. It is vital to discover solutions for people’s mental and emotional difficulties—from managing bad feelings to making healthy behavioral choice. Nonetheless, this can result in a lifelong and desperate struggle for those who wrestle chronically in their heads and hearts with alcoholism.


Seeking Hope and Support Through Alcohol

Consulting oracles is a longstanding practice in human history, and by no means has disappeared. Everyone searches for hope when they’re afraid, confused, in pain, and worried. People seek answers that will relieve them of difficult feelings and will calm their agitated minds. They want their unknown questions to be answered, and a way to move forward despite life’s difficulties. Most alcoholics desire something or anything, to find serenity and relaxation in their days.

Sadly, alcohol is not often a reliable resource for short-term stress. Why else would we continue to ‘consult’ it? If a way of coping works for people initially, they will continue to turn to it; they will reach for it to work again and again. Every compulsive drinker once was supported by alcohol in a better way, no matter how short-lived that support lasted.

At one point, alcohol was a solid, accessible, and steady support system. It worked, improving life for a time — even for an evening. But often, alcohol is never a reliable support-system for people; still, they cling to it despite knowing better. Sometimes copious drinking is only helpful for a gulp before it’s magic fades, but alcoholics appreciate that brief moment if life feels terrible enough.


Credit: Ben Hershey via Unsplash


Finding Sobriety and Support Outside the Bottle

Former alcoholics, such as myself, can be loyal to liquor to a fault. I can hang on to it until I’m shaken loose, clinging, kicking, and screaming. Until I finally, chose a road to sobriety, which also provided me with satisfying answers and wisdom (from a variety of sources) about life’s larger questions. I let go of alcohol, my ‘trusted friend,’ who had betrayed me too many times to count. Prior to rehab, my release from alcoholism was a bone-shattering experience. It’s not a mandatory way to become sober, but that’s how I did it. I was frightened to see how huge the iceberg underneath me was. I wanted to stay on the tip, happy in my denial of what lay beneath the waves.

One of the aspects about AA I liked was that members were encouraged to visualize alcoholism as more than drinking — as an iceberg, where the bulk of their problems were hidden underwater. I found this difficulty in my over-drinking. No matter how much I drank; in the end, there was still horrendous pain I couldn’t drown with any amount of liquor. Drinking was my problem, but it was not my key problem. At the root of my alcoholism was my life and how I lived it. No matter how worrisome my emotional state or my behavior while drinking, alcohol seemed as if it were always a suitable solution for my personal issues. Even in my desperate days, when alcohol failed me more often than not, I still clung to it.


Solutions Beneath Alcohol Addiction

Moreover, peering beneath my drinking solution, peeling back the layers through detox and early recovery, I discovered I was a scared and vulnerable person. I was ill-equipped to handle everyday life, haunted by trauma, and filled with deep shame. In addition, I was angry and sad. My regular excursions to the bottom of a bottle had induced tremendous stress, but I came to the solution of ‘the bottle’ already weighted with pain. The first time I became drunk was the first time I can remember feeling at ease; I was a young adult, and my over drinking continued from there.

Nonetheless, I’ve learned the true solutions to life and life’s questions don’t live in the bottom of a bottle. My story is one of countless stories, all told from someone who felt worse than most other people imagine they would, as an intoxicated person. However, there is hope and recovery is a real possibility. No problem hiding beneath anyone’s stream of alcohol is too difficult to confront and solve. With the right help, recovery is a real possibility.


Credit: Syndey Ray via Unsplash.


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

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Tale Weavers/Photo Challenge: Poem – Free Verse – “Stardust Love” #amwritingpoetry #TaleWeavers #PhotoChallenge


Thanks to Michael from MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting Tale Weaver’s on the concept of night or the evening. Also, thanks to NEKNEERAJ of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting photo challenge.


Credit: WeHeartIt


Starry night, veil across smooth skin.

The evening tide arrives,

Darkness rides on velvet wings of charcoal-black.

A midnight hour lit with dreams,

Stars that glisten and glitter;

The star of all stars shines truest.

Jewel of golden light, snarled in a crown of thorns.

Hope of tomorrow, every child, & every person passed;

For ages awaiting an infant mild.

Mirth in the twilight, the evening passes,

With brushes and paint,

A muse of mystery and dancing light, crosses the canvas of your skin.

A rare and glorious place,

Where painted medium engraves each curve.

The dip of your back, shoulder blades relaxed.

Breath respired as the paint dries; the lense snaps your beauty.

A Vangoghesque masterpiece, and the light of a brilliant star.

Our Christmas miracle in a moment,

For now, left adrift by the pendulum of time.

A lover’s dusk for —

I with my brushes and cherished paints;

You humming centuries old melodies.

A Holy night, Angels crying glory, as Three Kings journey.

Miracle in a stable; thus, miracles for mere humans.

They’re what we breathe and live,

Blessed in evening tide,

With stardust love;

Gloria Excelsis Deo.


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

Notable Quotes: Part One, December 2018 #notablequotes #pinterest #quotes


Welcome, this is late, better late than never I suppose. This week is my last Steeped Tea Event for December, except maybe Boxing Day. My last 2018 charity event is Monday, called the ‘Snowflake Ball’ for a children’s hospital wing, in the University Hospital in my city. I’m excited, but I know it will be a long one by the end of the night. Enjoyable too. There are so many worthy causes out there and I love that I can be apart of them. Looking forward to the fashion at this one too.

I have a couple of stops left to Christmas shop before the 24th, & also Christmas baking, cards, and special foods, those kinds of things to prepare once work is done for awhile. This year has turned out to be so different than many other years. Both, in ways I’m glad about and also in taking giant leaps — I’m still in the process of figuring life out. I wish this involved writing more, but I’ve gained experience in other areas I hope will be useful in the future. Here and there I get to write a poem, and comment. These are the most relaxing times for me. Sometime I will have a lot more to say then, what I can say right now. But it’s been a good year — answered prayers, and time to catch up on some quotes.


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©️Mandibelle16.(2018) All Rights Reserved.

#OctPoWriMo Day 31/Sunday Writing Prompt: Poem — “Plain Sight” #amwritingpoetry #SundayWritingPrompt #MLMM


For OctPoWriMo Day 31 the Prompt is the word endless. I’m combining with MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie Sunday Writing Prompt based on the Sylvia Plath letter quote: “I talk to God, but the sky is empty.” so glad to be done OctPoWriMo two-months later. It took awhile, but I’m happy it’s done in time for Christmas. Lol.


Credit: Paulo Brandao via Unsplash


Words in the tumbled breeze,

Chatter of birds in early light;

Blinding my ears to fright.

Intense azure glows, I cover my eyes;

It burns, it burns,

What a fright, what a fright.

Restless, my ears ringing as if I’ve spent all night,

With giant speakers, there jarring blare.

And oh, my eyes how they sting,

Such terrible light blinds me in fear.

How can such gleaming light be wonderful?

For me, it’s a curse.

No afternoon delight, but hellish nightmare.

The hammer’s swift; I the rock pit —

It’s pulsing, the rhythmic pain seething.

Lips moaning pleas,

Make it stop, but its unceasing.

Not after strong coffee as my stomach lurches,

Nor over toast I spit-out disgusted.

My skin, elephant tusks envy such paler.

No wine or liquor could cause,

A tinge so blue as the veins in my wrist.

Such hopelessness,

A putrid cycle of faithlessness.

Once I believed, now I am lost;

Lamb to the slaughter, must I too sputter?

Have my heart carved,

Gurgling water, blood in the tide.

But the tawny bird near my ear,

He flew inside my broken pane.

He cocks his stubborn head,

Eyes rapid; he mutters, words pained.

His left wing slops,

Tossed from the nest, now he rests near me.

I’ve not the heart to twist his neck,

Though his wing be his death.

But oh, he chirps, eyes rapid,

He sings despite his tepid clawed-steps.

Tiny talons gripping my pillow.

He sings, peers outside,

Aware he can’t fly;

We both can’t.

So, we stare in confusion,

Peering at each other, eye to eye.

Both defenselessness,

We know will soon be cut down.

Yet, while I groan, bird tweets,

The funniest chirps, as if conversing.

He’s livid until I arise, bring him a saucer;

Sups his water, munches sunflower seeds.

He try’s to flutter, my heart leaps —

He flails to the floor.

His eyes see cerulean horizons,

Not wretched revolt.

I’m mad at God,

He made the bird disabled.

But as I curse — bird’s tawny head shakes, beak twerps.

It occurs to me,

He sees more than ‘something’ out there.

If he can chatter at me unperturbed by my size,

Then, fling himself towards the sky —

Only to fall,

Perhaps than, faith can also fly again?

If God can mend my wounded heart,

With nails, grit embedded deep,

Can my feathered mate,

Have his wing set straight?

Perhaps, yes?

Then we can both soar,

And peer to the azure, the Heavens.

Recognize that this ‘something,’

Isn’t intangible, isn’t hiding,

It’s in plain sight,

Crystalline truth sudden,

In opulent morning breeze.


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

OctPoWriMo Day 20/Saturday Mix: Poem – Lunes – “Preserve Hope” #amwritingpoetry #SaturdayMix


For OctPoWriMo Day 20 the prompt is time stands still. Also combining with Sarah from MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie Saturday Mix double-take Prompt. The word homophone sets this week are: groan – reaction to hearing a pun, and groan – has gotten larger, and guessed – past tense of guess, along with, guest – a visitor.


Credit: OctPoWriMo Day 20

“Someone once told me that time was a predator that stalked us all our lives. But I rather believe that time is a companion who goes with us on the journey, and reminds us to cherish every moment because they’ll never come again. What we leave behind is not as important as how we lived.” ~Captain Picard, Star Trek: Generations


Popcorn groans, flowering fluff unbeknownst,

Crackle, crunch; dust —

Evenings remembered butter-soft delight.

*****

Guessing if tonight, presents unpackaged;

Cheeseball, vegetable rolls,

Summer sausage, spinach dip, crackers.

*****

Time you don’t amble here,

You speed-walk,

Then, in terror groan — pause.

*****

Predator or prey, Grimm Reaper,

Perhaps you’re one?

Companion or foe, frequent guest.

*****

Our little moments add together,

Time pace beside;

Where’s the meaning? Preserve Hope.

*****


©️Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

Notable Quotes: October 2018 Part One #notablequotes #quotes #pinterest #poetry


Welcome to officially Autumn/Fall, maybe Winter or Spring? Here, in Alberta, we never know. Yesterday was November blizzardy, today is a warm fall day from say, in late-September. And next week, we are up in the double-digits (Celsius), which is more early September weather, not late-October.

So, in this weather battle we either freeze as yesterday, or are boiling hot. There’s no in-between and the thermostat’s confused. But, I’m told its an El Nino year so we should have a warm winter for the rest of season (burst out laughing).

nature red forest leaves
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Otherwise, I’m still doing a bit of freelance writing and proofreading. I’m looking to eventually have time to work on a final draft of my novel to submit it. I went to a writers conference for in August and had a successful pitch, and I would love to submit it to that agent/publisher. But currently, writing/editing time for my novel is a dream as I spend much time starting up my Steeped Tea business and getting into a routine. Also, I am looking for a great apartment in a certain of the city near to my friends and family.

Blue Tea Cup
Credit: Google

I never thought after my health problems that this could be a possibility. I need something small right now, and I’m hoping to pick up more freelance work that pays decent, even if its administration, and to support myself as securely as possible until I can work more hours, and buy a place with money from my disability settlement, last year. I’m shocked to be at this place in my life, to have some kind of independence. I know it will be harder than home and more expensive for sure, but I’m still excited. Almost, as if I’m 23-years old again.

So, that’s life lately, and I hope you guys enjoy my October quotes. The first set is a bit late in coming.


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©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

#OctPoWriMo Day 3/Music Challenge: Poem – Lunes – “ High Hopes” #amwritingpoetry #MusicChallenge


For OctPoWriMo Day 3 the Prompt is based on insecurity. Some words prompts for this writing prompt are: doubt, trust, overcome, embrace, and secure.

Also, combining with MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie Music Challenge and the song “High Hopes” by Panic at the Disco!


Credit: Gage Walker via Unsplash

Insecurity, your stomach dropping low;

Breathing deep so —

You’ll pull it together quicker.

*****

But, you gotta have High —

Hopes, big dreams;

Or life would be suffering.

*****

Shooting for stars glinting off —

Shards of brokenness;

Not enough for a killing.

*****

Barely a dime, but saving —

To live full,

Without burning souls — ego diluted.

*****

So, I’ve High Hopes, vision;

Promise and faith,

To support; still I shake.

*****

Heart sputters, aches without trust,

But it’s destroyed;

How’d you leap a chasm?

****

You can rewrite your history,

Be logical, sensible;

But, there’s hopelessness without dreams.

*****

High Hopes, God’s love, they —

Provide security; though —

Inside I scream and quiver.

*****


“High Hopes” by Panic at the Disco!

https://youtu.be/

IPXIgEAGe4U


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

Poem: Free Verse – “All of Eternity Lit” #amwritingpoetry


Credit: David Becker via Unsplash

All of the lights, those vast ships distant.

All of the lights, those mesmerizing jewels.

Shining orbs, dazzling stars,

Dust as gold left in a meteor shower.

All of the lights with infinite yearnings pulse;

With possibility, potential in a thousand galaxies.

Lying in grass sharp, sweet, succulent;

A cushion topped with flannel plush.

We lay entwined, watch the lights, the airplane’s beams;

The choppers blades swooping, pulsing red.

And a hawk’s eyes knife-like, caustic —

While cotton-mice speed ‘cross the field;

Scurrying — not to become a carnivore’s meal.

The sway of the grass lilting hums in evening breeze,

A tune of jabberwockies murmuring hushed.

Birds to long kept, so out of skyways they burst, rapid in flight.

So much light, so vast, yet around us —

The night swallows the bright.

Pitch-black skims past day with purple-charcoaled tar.

And ribbons of white dots, glistening glitter burst;

The serenity of celestial maps; the cosmology of stars, distant worlds.

Astrological divination; but yet here we are — and we stare in awe.

All of the lights, they gleam in your worn denim eyes,

Barely visible in shadows.

All of the lights, the fireworks live-wired in my chest;

They explode on my lips as we taste sparks together.

Our lips ignite — tornado-fires speed; they can’t be stopped.

But, eternal eulogies to the dim, it cannot conquer,

For true darkness never will defeat.

The light came first,

The light will outlast,

The light was and is,

Never can be not.

All of the lights, Heaven’s perennials,

Speeding cars on highways glisten.

The sheen of sweat, and the gleam of skin;

Eternity in moments forever lit.


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

Three Line Tales: Poem – Lunes – “Floating Hope” #amwritingpoetry #3LineTales


Thanks to Sonya of Only 100 Words for hosting #3LineTales.


Credit: Tyler Nix via Unsplash.


Sometimes the wind breathes,

Breathes life into —

Desperate lungs, verdant life respiring.

*****

She rolls slow; I’m humming,

Childhood rhymes as,

She breathes sunsets through me.

*****

We inhale, exhale; singing tunes,

Sunlight cools; dusk’s —

Cotton-candy clouds float hope.

*****


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

Notable Quotes: August Part Two #amwriting #pinterest #quotes #notablequotes


Almost the end of August. I’m sad, but excited! I think if Autumn as the beginning of the year in many ways. Unfortunately, our rather hot weather has turned cool quickly, and it’s not a good sign. But, either way, I think new beginnings are a good thing. Any plans for Fall?


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©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.