papa bear & being alone

so…  for those of you not yet keen to this aspect of my life, I moved in on Feb 28 2009 to my dad’s house.  my dad’s office to be precise.  Jess got the room cause she’s kind of a guest.  family, but she gets the room. 

and, we weren’t going to stay for a long time, maybe a month or so, to garner up some savings and get a down payment for an apartment and the like. 

then, my dad got a job offer and decided to move away to kingman az, which is close to las vegas, so I will see  in the flesh sometime soon, when I go to visit my papa bear.

sidenote:  I have called my dad "papa bear" since I was in high school, or at least college.  he’s a good papa bear.  I don’t call my mom "momma bear," but sometimes I call myself the baby bear.  cause I like to pretend that I’m an only child.  end sidenote.

so…  my dad got a really good job offer as a speech path – 90K per year (WOW).  and he went down and interviewed, and decided he would take the job.  this is a really good move for him.  it’s been two years since the divorce, and as he told me last night, "anna, I haven’t said this to anybody…  but this move .. it’s finalizing that I will never get back together with your mom."  mom is bitter and angry, and it’s really sad, cause she’s got such a big heart.  but she married a gay man – he kept this secret from her their whole marriage – and would have taken it to his grave.  but she found out – via internet porn of all things – there was a suicide attempt (his) and then a divorce (theirs).

so…  as the move loomed closer, dad packed, we hung out a little more, cooked and ate dinner together, and played cards.  his friend robert came over sunday night and we played pinochle.  (any cards players in spokane?  come on over to my house!)

and yesterday the movers came (so sorry to have woken you up, mcfoo:  honest.  I kinda knew you had a long day but I’m really really sorry I woke you up.)  with the moving!drama, and I went to work, had a meeting with my boss (more on that later, perhaps) and goofed around, and went home.

I was really sad all day – just WOW.  here it is!  the day has arrived.  and I was kinda holding my own until my friend frankie called and said she was over at a friend’s house, and she found the issue of the sun, the magazine which published my brother’s expose about what happened, and…  I kinda lost it.  "why today, of all days?"  

frankie is a good person – her timing can be off – we didn’t get a chance to talk about what was going on in my life – we just talked about the article (see the "jackass brother" tag), and then hung up. 

I felt like a down puppy dog, who was being kicked.  mcfoo called a little bit later, and I was kinda weepy.  "I don’t advocate violence against puppies, even metaphorical puppies!"  I find myself saying the most ridiculous statements when emotionally overwrought. 

I skipped pool.  I might skip pool for the remainder of the season.  get onto a different team.  nother post.

ummm….  I tried to get the tv to work (it didn’t) I watched half of two truly dreadful movies – DragonLance and Sunshine.  and drank a little bit.  

I don’t want to be a drunk:  I really don’t.  I just didn’t know what to do.  I didn’t get bombed.  and I didn’t drink all of the alcohol in the house.  and I had about five drinks over the course of the night, I think.  I woke up a little parched this morning.  but not hugely hungover.

I’m just on emotional overload.  dad just called and said h’s going to get on the road here in a minute.  we gave each other lots of hugs this morning and the conversation kinda of ran like this, "you’re going to be fine, daddy.  this is a really good move for you."  dad: "you’re going to be fine too, honey.  just keep telling yourself that.  you’ve got a lot of good friends in twon, and they’ll help you with this.  you’re gonna be just fine."

yet somehow, it’s at those kinds of moments where it feels hard to be just fine.  but I think I will be. 

5 thoughts on “papa bear & being alone”

    1. thank you very much, K. I think I might be ready to see Star Trek with you this weekend!

      I just needed a *sad* post. “my daddy’s all grown up and moving out of the house!”

      yes. I’m very silly. I had a good night last night with a friend, and had the *very* long, *very* important chat about him and what is going on in our friendship and I think we ironed some things out.

      didn’t get enough sleep, but that’s okay. dinner with teh mom tonight. then house-sitting over at her place this weekend.

      thanks for the love – I appreciates it!


  1. There’s a huge difference between 1. drinking, even to “excess,” even regularly; 2. being a drunk; and 3. being an alcoholic.

    The difference is whether you choose to drink, or if you feel compelled; whether you take the opportunity to be an ass because you think you can blame the booze; and whether you can function in your daily life and deal with your emotional state without the alcohol and with it, regardless of whether you use the potentially calming side effects of the alcohol to help.

    The question is, are you able to take responsibility for your actions, and then do you? If you can, you are not an alcoholic. If you do, you are not a drunk.


    1. hi brenna.

      thanks for the concern and help. my father’s father was an alcoholic – drank 5-15 drinks a night from the time he was about 15 or so to the time he was about 70 or 80. I think he sobered up before he died. I think my dad said that about J/Senior (my dad’s father). all of the information is from my dad, possibly also remembered from what my dad’s mother told him… ten or twenty years ago. I think J/senior died in the late 80’s early 90’s. none of his children went to his funeral.

      J/Senior was also a child molester – and an alcoholic.

      my whole life I’ve heard things about J/Senior like “he was such a nice man when he wasn’t drinking, but when he drank, he got so violent, etc.” I have a really hard time separating those two out: the “monster” from the “really nice when occasionally sober guy.”

      so… there’s the gene: the alcoholic gene. my therapist thinks I might have triggered it somehow – I was drinking A LOT before I decided to stop for a while (April 18) and…

      for me, there is a difference between drinking with friends, (one or two or three drinks), and drinking because my emotional resources are at an end, and drinking and getting drunk every night, which is what I was doing. oh: I didn’t blame the booze for being an ass. oh god no. I do take responsibility for my actions. I had a huge fuck-up at the beginning of April, and I owned up to it, apologized, tried to make amends, etc. that isn’t how I want to behave: when I realized that, I turned a corner.

      there were times when I didn’t know how to be sober in that moment. it dulls the pain for a little bit. slows things down.

      I certainly did *choose* to drink the other night. (I have very much felt compelled in the past, I know what that is.) choosing might be an improvement, to be sure. I thought about it, wanted to have a few drinks but not so much that I would get drunk, and that’s what I did.

      I am still exploring this issue, internally and in therapy.

      I can say “I have an alcohol problem” but not “I am an alcoholic.” I think it hasn’t made me hit “the very rocky bottom” that others hit before they decide to get sober. but still: it’s a problem and I’m trying to deal with it and I’m just trying to be honest.


      1. Good.

        I don’t want to discourage you from being honest with yourself and pursuing a legitimate response to a substance abuse problem. I have this problem with discussing it on the internet lol. Unfortunately, alcohol –nor (most) other substances– doesn’t make people abusive or mean or negligent. Alcohol permits people to ignore the learned behavioral controls they are forced to institute under normal circumstances. These enable them to limit unacceptable situational responses that often result from psychological and emotional damage. The genetic components which may or may not increase the risk of alcohol dependance are not, as best I can tell, substantially different from any other genotypic neurotransmitter variation. In other words, the specific alleles may result in a phenotypical difference in how the body produces or utilizes neurotransmitters, but that difference neither mandates nor even clearly suggests an increased tendency to self-medicate a presumed lack of neurotransmitters.

        And, substance abuse is not–though it may be complicated by–substance addiction, which is due to either psychological or medical dependence. Most “alcoholism” is substance abuse with a dependence factor or either or both varieties.

        Anyways, I dislike the entire attitude we have as a society to substance abuse in general and alcoholism in particular. It gets me in trouble when I bother to mention it. But, my feelings can be summed up by the following:

        1. Failing to remember your behavior doesn’t mean you didn’t control it.
        2. Substances–aside from those with very powerful delusion-inducing properties–do not change your nature. Even those which can have profound psychological effects generally
        3. “Who” we “are” is, yes, entirely defined by our genetic and phenotypic construction. Since our mind is a series of chemicals and our consciousness the reactions from them, yes, it is possible–even likely–that other chemicals can have a profound effect on these processes. But, unless one is willing to submit to a diagnosis of a personality disorder, neither the drive, nor the response to substance consumption can be explained by any physical trait. Living things have specific positive stimulus responses. Animals with central nervous systems have positive responses to certain chemicals. Some individuals may have reduced ability
        4. At no point will I be willing to believe that a history of inappropriate behavior precludes individuals from appropriate behavior, barring a significant personality disorder. Those are, by the by, terrifyingly and thankfully rare, and I’m not sure that those are sufficient for such preclusion.

        Basically, if you have reached the point where you can say “I have a problem with this substance,” and you are thus willing to address that with therapy or abstention or whatever you find best, then I don’t think it should be necessary or even desirable to take the “next step” and say “I’m an alcoholic.” I just don’t see how it is productive, especially since it inherently holds that connotation that, even if you choose to abstain in the future, alcohol has power over you, and not that you feel compelled to use this substance destructively in some circumstances. *shrugs* Maybe you view it differently. I hope so.


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