Trick or Treat?

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I am not feeling Halloween, or perhaps I am the basis of a good Halloween Horror Story. My body has been hi-jacked. My room has become a house of horrors; the person in the mirror has red eyes and a puffy white face like that of the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man from Ghostbusters. I cannot breath. My voice is stifled. My bed is littered with white snot-filled tissues. Yes, a virus has taken over my body, the most likely culprit being the common cold. This is no treat. I have been looking forward to seeing a man I like, who I have not been able to talk to all week and have not seen for two. Realistically, based on how my body feels, I just don’t think this date is going to happen tonight. Feeling more tricked than treat.

Based upon past Halloweens when I’ve felt tricked, perhaps there will be a lesson learned. The first Halloween I distinctly felt tricked was in 1998. I took a pregnancy test that turned “positive”, as in with child. At the time I was shocked and had yet to see the positive in this turn of fate. I was on the pill, I really felt like it was some sort of trick.  Either the test was wrong or the Gods had an odd sense of humor. It ended being the latter, and now 16 years later I could not be happier with the outcome. What I thought had been a trick that Halloween really turned out to be the biggest treat of my life. My son is the most amazing twist of fate I have experienced.

Fast-forward to 2010. I had only been in Med City for a few months, and sober for six months. I just moved into a townhouse with a friend I met in recovery and she was out with her boyfriend. Something was wrong. There was a pain in my chest and soul. I deeply longed to see my son who was in North Carolina with his father. I had no idea what was wrong or what to do. So I called my sponsor. After speaking with her for 15 minutes she said “Violet, you are sad.” I asked her what I could do about this. See, as an active alcoholic I drowned all feelings, good or bad. I had no idea how to feel in sobriety. She assured me that this too shall pass. I rented a DVD which I watched while eating one of my favorite treats, popcorn and raisinettes. Something miraculous happened. The feeling passed! I thought it was a Halloween miracle. Another trick turned into a treat of a lesson learned. Feelings, you can feel them, observe them, and yes, they will pass!

Halloween of 2012 may have been my bleakest yet. After work I went out and boozed it up. All night long. It was a horrible night of debauchery, which left me feeling shameful, empty, guilty and extremely miserable. I had only fallen off the wagon the first week of October. The depths I had sunk in less than 30 days were horrifying. That Halloween was more evidence which proved I was an alcoholic. There were three more months of misery, until I found myself in a hospital February 1, 2013 with a day sober.

So although now my body aches and I cannot breathe, or even taste the deliciousness of Halloween candy, I am hopeful. When I look back at Halloween 2014 in the future, I will be able to see the positive treat of what now seems a trick.Today is a gift, even if my body has been jinxed.

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