<editorsnote> Nerds, meet my buddy Kenny. We e-met through OKC and although we've never gone out on a date, he was inspired by my documentation of my online search for love, that he wanted to come on board and provide male insight into OKC. So here you go ... and now we're here ... HIT IT KENNY!!</editorsnote>
A month ago I started a mission to not drink in June and now we are almost to the end of that. It's been over 30 days since I last had an alcoholic drink and I can definitely tell the difference in a few areas:
In the wallet. In the gut. In the social world. And most importantly, in the brain.
I didn't necessarily ask for a mental change in myself when I started this mission. In fact, I didn't necessarily ask for anything but I expected a few changes. I expected to save money. I expected to come out healthier. I didn't know what to expect as far as changes go when Friday and Saturday nights became dry, but in return I've found some new favorites hobbies. As a group, we have taken to hiking around Los Angeles, something that we had never done in our previous three plus years in the city. Yes, I know, we are such terrible and lazy people, but better late than never. It took 30+ days of staying away from the sauce for me to realize how much I was missing out on by automatically turning to booze when the calender hits a certain day of the week.
I didn't know what to expect in the dating department, but I pretty much figured that it would be hard for me to meet someone if I didn't go out to bars during the weekends and by self-banishing myself from OkCupid and other online dating methods for a while. I had a few people contact me while I had turned my profile into a giant pile of shit, but honestly felt no motivation to meet anyone. This period of self-discovery would have been a terrible time to discovery another person’s self. Ain't nobody got time for that.
It's just crazy to me how deep that self-discovery went.
At first, I was only thinking about alcohol. About how badly I wanted a drink when my car broke down on the same day that a girl had cancelled our date for "personal issues." How much I was craving a cold beer on a hot day, which was basically every day in June. In fact, I actually woke up several times this month feeling guilty because I had a dream where I was drinking again. That's some real "ARE you an alcoholic??" shit right there. But all of that was to be expected and no, I am not an alcoholic.
What's been really messed up is all of the weird thoughts I've been having about the afterlife and such. I've been thinking a lot about my own mortality and the fact that I might be older than halfway dead, as I approach 30. That I've spent the last ten years of my life drinking, smoking, and having little to zero disregard for my own health. That I'm almost 30 and I've yet to leave a legacy behind. That I couldn't create a happy and healthy relationship by now. That I have failed in many areas up to this point. Without getting into religion, I also spent a lot of time thinking about death and whether or not any of this matters. These thoughts are hardly ones that you want to spend a whole lot of your time thinking about. It could almost drive me to start drinking heavily again.
And so I think about how I can make the most of it. How I can make life worthwhile without consideration to what happens after you die. Then if you really think about it, 99% of what you do in your daily life won't have any consequence as to whether or not there is an afterlife anyway, so why not do what feels good? Or what's funny? Or what could make a person smile? Confidence is basically doing what feels right with either total knowledge or total ignorance of the fact that very little of what you do actually matters.
You don't want to talk to that girl over there because you're shy? Or embarrassed? Or fear rejection? Guess what dude, no matter what she says, it won't really matter.
Afraid to ask for a raise or take a day off? It won't matter either way.
Don't want to go to a singles mixer because you're embarrassed? Hey buddy, none of how "embarrassed" you get or shy you are will have any consequence on anyone’s life. In the end, it probably won't matter anyway.
That's not meant to come off as "NOTHING MATTERS, CHAOS EVERYWHERE!" though I could see how it might. It's just meant to say that no matter what you do, your worst case scenario is hardly even close to anyone else's worst case scenario. Your worst case scenario of rejection would be only a short moment of time for that person that rejected you and they'll instantly forget it. Your worst case scenario for taking a day off, is basically a "what can I do? them's are the law" for most bosses. Everybody at that singles mixer is in the same boat. But overall, it's what happens in the end:
In the end, we all stop going on. We all die. Then what will it matter? If you didn't hurt anyone else, if you left behind a good legacy, what will any of it matter? That's freedom right there. That's confidence. That's happiness, to me. I think that this period of self-discovery, of not drinking, of trying something new, has given me so much more than I could have ever expected.
Sunday will be July 1st and I will have successfully gone an entire calender month without having a drink, something that I haven't done in a few years and something I probably haven't done as a single person in over five years. But July 1st will also be the next step towards hopefully living better and having far more than another 30 years left on this planet, with time to right the wrongs and make the best of everything I've been given.
In the end, it probably won't matter. But as of right now, what you do this second, everything matters. I'll drink to that.
and don't forget to check out his blog!! <----- good shit!