Monday, March 29, 2010

My Drinking Part 2

Update/follow up to "My Drinking" part 1, click here.

I drink now. But I've reigned it in since my original foray into it and all my concerns. I probably have a drink now once every few months.

A lot of my drinking was related to my social choices. I was hanging out with FUN people who like to drink and drink a lot (and possibly unrelated, are not church/faith friends, but kids' sports friends - notoriously a big drinking crowd). they made drinking look fun and enticing. I was tired of being alone and not having fun. I wanted to be a "part of" (always on of my big issues). And I am not great at moderation in anything I like.

I stopped hanging out with that crowd (I believe God removed it from me or me from it). My kids stopped playing on their club sports teams. Mr. M came home. I stopped having endless hours to hang out. I wasn't going to leave him to go drink. he couldn't very well come along and watch the rest of us drink. So it just fizzled.

My kids don't/didn't like to see me drink. Mr. M obviously hated it. Mr. M and I are together a LOT and I wasn't going to drink around my alcoholic husband.

So on rare occasion, when I am with a couple girlfriends and no hubbies and no kids, I may have a margarita or a glass of wine. This is a rare occurrence.

So, while I am no longer sober and do not need to be, I also do not really drink.

Interesting. Interesting.

Midnight Fight 2

To read "Midnight Fight part 1" click here.

Mr. M and I seem to have a propensity for fighting in the wee hours. I am not sure if 6:30AM will qualify for most of you as "wee" hours or "midnight", but trust me, in Mr. M's world, it is kinda.

So Bub comes in to the room and asks me to email/contact his Chem teacher because she has misplaced an assignment of his and it is affecting his grade. He has tried to deal with it and has gotten no resolution. I am a BIG advocate of allowing kids to work through their own struggles, but I am also a realist and I have SEEN how crappily some adults can treat kids (this brings to mind the VP in Breakfast Club - which we just watched last night because Girlie has been DYING to see it and we wanted her to have adult supervision because it IS Rated R and we couldn't really remember which parts were bad!). Anyhow, I groggily told Bub that yes, I would connect with the teacher. (I was just waking up, because that's how I roll... my kid has to be in his desk by 6:55AM and I wake up to holler "good bye".)

Mr. M, sound asleep next to me - so I thought - grumbles to life (why does he always pick such inopportune moments to sleep lightly???). "NO! You need to handle this yourself!"
"I tried, Dad."
"Well, try again. Don't make your Mom do it. Don't be a PUSSY."
At this point, I intervene because I don't like my son to be called names and I think I might have a special distaste for the name "pussy" (but when I try to reflect on which names I WOULD be OK with my kids being called, none really come to mind).
I kind of tap him to 'shush' him.
But he keeps it up and so I do it again.
Now please keep in mind, he is NEVER awake until 9 or 9:30, so I am utterly unsure how to handle this surly, hardly awake parental intruder making a rare, fabled appearance.

So he turns his rage on me "STOP TAPPING AND SHUSHING ME!!!!!!" he bellows.
Bub leaves for school and Mr. M unleashes a torrent of anger in my direction. I am caught off guard because it is so early and he is out-of-control angry. So I muster an IMMENSE amount of self-control (in my humble opinion) and let him continue his tirade and I do not really engage him... believing he will peter out and go to sleep. (I am meanwhile processing: he is one of the parents, so I shouldn't probably "shush" him, but I don't like him calling our son a pussy, so how does one appropriately handle this, etc.). He eventually DOES peter out harumphs over onto his side, grabbing a fistful of covers and dragging them with him. I relax and let down my guard and celebrate that sometimes a fight not entered into is a fight won! *sigh*

However, I spoke too soon.
Mr. M rolled back over in full-throttle lecturing mode "AND ANOTHER THING..." he roared. And that is all he got out of his mouth before I snapped. I am not proud of it (in fact I am rather embarrassed) but I simply snapped. I smacked him in the face. There is no way to make this sound even remotely OK, because it wasn't. I will say, to add a TINY bit of clarification that I meant to smack his cheek and kind of pull up short (again I KNOW this is not OK and I am not justifying it, just clarifying my intentions). It so happens thought that he turned into my slap (obviously having NO CLUE that it was coming!) so I instead thwacked him over the bridge of his nose. He did not react well to this assault.

He LEAPT from the bed and went a little berserk (deservedly so). He flung books off the book case, he pulled shelves down, he may or may not have thrown a lamp. All the while a profusion of curse words hurtling from his spittle flecked lips.

Bub had left for school. Drummer is off at college. Hacker hasn't lived here for years. So poor Girlie alone was witness to the mayhem and through our closed bedroom door, so she HEARD it all and did not see it. I came out and said goodbye to her as she left for school and I was kind of turned away, hiding my face because I guess I did not want her to see me crying??? (Yeah, cuz the rest of it is all OK.)

Shortly thereafter, I apologized to Mr. M for hitting him. He apologized for freaking out and destroying the bedroom (which he promptly cleaned up). We made up and life was good.

Later in the afternoon, Girlie called to confirm "Mom? Can you still take me and my friends to the mall?"
"Yes Sweetie. I committed to you and I am still planning on it."
I took them to the mall, they shopped for their school costume day. Life goes on.

It was about a week later that my appointment with Dr. came (yes, I am STILL seeing him). I sat down and proceeded to tell him about our fight fight and though, while it was ugly, we resolved it pretty quickly and well. And then I realized (with no prompting from Dr., I am proud to say) that I had never debriefed with Girlie.

So although a week had passed, when she got home from school, I brought it up. "We never talked about how you felt about that fight... if you were scared or upset..."
Large tears began rolling down her face.
YES!, she was upset.
YES!, she was scared.
I don't know if kids who grew up in an alcoholic home hate it more than kids from non-alcoholic homes, but she hates it when we fight.
So we talk about her feelings and I listen to her and I feel badly that she has been carrying this around for a week... poor little thing.

Then I feel obligated to tell her that while yes, Dad freaked out and crashed the whole bedroom, it was not entirely his fault. I am not eager to share my ugliness (I am embarrassed), however neither do I think it is acceptable for Mr. M to always be the out-of-control bad guy (even though that is WAY better for my martyr self-image). I tell her that I smacked him across the face.

"YOU hit HIM???" She is flabbergasted "I thought HE hit YOU!"
So she had heard the smack and then him cursing and slamming around.
Then I came out to say goodbye and turned my face away... she thought it was to hide where he had hit me... which is why she had called that afternoon to confirm that I could actually still take them (truth be told, Mr. M actually DID have the teeniest black eye - ACK!). So I had to admit to my daughter that it had not been her Dad who had hit, but her MOM. No, Daddy has NEVER hit Mommy. Yes, he is an alcoholic and yes, we have a LOT of dysfunction (and obviously, anger issues), but no, dad has never hit mom.

She was SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO relieved. And I was SOOOOOOOOOOOOO glad I had remembered to talk about it with her even a full week later.

I am hoping there will not have to be another entry entitled "Midnight Fight 3", but my guess is there will be.