Addiction

A Decade of Darkness: My Journey with Ambien

A Decade of Darkness: My Journey with Ambien

I was 28 when I got my first Ambien prescription. We’d just moved in together—the boy that would eventually become my husband—and I held half of the skinny peach-colored pill (I was too nervous to take the full one) in my palm before I swallowed it, both of us wondering what it would do. How long would it take to kick in? Would I remember falling asleep? Where would I go?

New Sobriety: Can I Get an Easy Button?

New Sobriety: Can I Get an Easy Button?

I mean, you know that commercial with the staples button that says "that was easy.” Getting sober is the hardest-best thing ever, but is there ever a time when you can hit cruise control and sit back and enjoy it? I know I'll never get to push that staples button, but can I at least get one that says, "It's getting easier?”

The Importance of Being Uncomfortable in Your Skin

The Importance of Being Uncomfortable in Your Skin

This is basically the reason I started to drink in the first place, and I’m pretty sure it’s the reason people have drank since the beginning of time: to feel more comfortable in their skin. Now, they probably didn’t quite use that language while sitting around the fire or dinner table or watering hole (I’m sorry, I have to pause here: imagine Jesus saying to Luke, I don’t know, I just feel so…uncomfortable in my own skin sometimes, man.) but that’s why. Alcohol lowers our inhibitions and smooths the chatter of our minds and some of our minds are really, really loud and mean.

On Forgiveness (Looking for Love in All The Wrong Places)

On Forgiveness (Looking for Love in All The Wrong Places)

To your grief: the losses are real. To tell you they’re not would be disingenuous and untrue. Addiction steals our time and our essence and our ability to receive love, among other things. Feel all the way into the pain of what you know you lost, and also the unknowable things. But. But. Hear this: you didn’t chase weed and people and cigarettes and shiny things because you’re just “that fucked up.” You did it because you’ve been looking for love, like Johnny Lee did, in all the wrong places

I'm Sorry, But What the Fuck is Going On?

I'm Sorry, But What the Fuck is Going On?

Can we pause for one second before we crack open the Rosé and think, Where am I going with this? Closer to life or further away? Why? Is this what it means to be alive? Is there some kind of connection to this—the wine, the food, the sex, the 500th Netflix show, whatever—and the disconnection we’re seeing in the world? Maybe?

The Truth About Lying

The Truth About Lying

Your goodness doesn’t cancel out your darkness nor the other way around. As Thomas Lloyd Qualls says, “Believing you are good is like believing in the half moon.” The unlit side of the moon is always there, whether we see a sliver or full, creamy sphere. 

The Pain of Too Much Tenderness

The Pain of Too Much Tenderness

This kaleidoscope of things. Sometimes all the pieces come into focus in a way that’s so beautiful it hurts—like the plastic bag at the end of American Beauty. The ordinariness of life. The bigness of it, too. When it comes into focus, everything is clear and felt at once.