I was under another drunken stupor, drinking alone in a parking lot, a big bottle of 99 Bananas and 1 liter of Sprite on my lap. I remember one of my friends were with me that time, lecturing me about focusing on school and not partying. “How did you end up like this?” I remember her telling me. How did I indeed? The thought sobered me up quick or opened the floodgates. I remember telling her the beginning.
“I remember the time when I had my first drink. I was surrounded by my cousins, who thought it was funny to see little underage my drink with them. While the mixed drink hit me hard and fast I was asked one simple question by one of my cousin’s, “How do you feel?” and I replied, “I want to go into the ocean.” I was met with laughs and “oh” and “so deep brah!” but I don’t think they realized what I really meant.”
My friend sat in the passenger seat and I was in the driver’s seat. By this time I silently packed away the alcohol and only started drinking the soda. I looked out the window and somehow I managed to drive us to Kahului Harbor. It was my favorite place to hang out. The harbor was calm and the sea breeze was perfectly cold. The opposite side of the harbor was the untamed pacific ocean. Swells were reaching up to five feet and cresting beautifully. I felt like this place right here was a reflection of me. I got out of the car and started walking through the dirt towards the concrete barriers that make up the mouth of Kahului Harbor. The wind was strong enough to blow salt water on my jacket and face, it made the red in my face settle a bit. She walked in front of me towards the concrete barriers where the great pacific bashed her fury against them. I started talking again as she stood in front of me with her back turned.
“I love the ocean and in this drunken upheaval, I realized that then only then I had the courage to jump into the ocean. When I was drunk with them and when that first drink hit, I realized something. Instead of the ocean just being the water I love and grew up in, at that time I meant it was an upheaval of emotions. An ocean of emotions I was willing to just dive into. An ocean I wasn’t afraid to get lost in or consumed by it. I wasn’t afraid of it. It was deeper for me, the ocean I had bottled up from my inability express how I truly felt. My first drink helped me. I didn’t want to feel scared, hurt, alone, defenseless, anything. I didn’t deserve to be happy or loving if I couldn’t even stand up for myself. In my first drink, I found freedom from the restraints I gave myself. From the depression I was so deeply buried under, it was lifted. That’s what I found, but now that’s what I keep trying to find. By now you probably think I’m pathetic. That ocean I’ve been running away from is consuming me. I just want to do what the Roman women did when they too lost all hope, just walk into the ocean and never come back.”
I couldn’t believe it, is that the reason why I am drinking? I felt something hot and warm run down my face, I guess it was awhile since I had cried. I fell to my knees and cried like I was just born. The very thing I didn’t want to become, I became. I looked up at her, she didn’t move an inch, her back was still turned to me. “What do I do now?” I wiped my runny nose and tears on my sleeves. When she turned around I felt like I was hit in the gut. Her face, her long black hair, her jacket, everything – it’s me. I had to blink twice. Her eyes were flushed red and partly open and her cheeks were red also. The wind blew from behind her and I could smell nothing but fruity alcohol. Her eyes were a little puffy like she just finished crying with me. She took a step back and I tried to reach for her but my legs had no strength to stand. As she fell backward into that wild pacific ocean she whispered upon the breeze…
PS: I saw a certified therapist until I aged out from receiving care for free from my parent’s medical. I learned a lot from him. I was bummed I couldn’t see him anymore, it’s sad that to seek mental stability is expensive. It should be forever covered on medical since your physical well-being depends heavily on your mental well-being. Although that is a different argument altogether. Since then to this date, it has been about 6 years since I drank heavily. Nowadays I am satisfied with barely a cup of wine every few months or so. I’ve done a lot of soul-searching and healing during these years. My dark places are still dark, but I know I can take a light into them and explore why they are dark. It took a lot of growing up and growing out – a lot of mental changes to my outlook on life and other various things. I haven’t taken medication, only for sleep, it is one of my weaknesses haha. It took me all of the high school and all of my college years to realize, the emotional baggage I carried needed to be set free. You need to always remember this too, no one will ever be able to help you if you never tell them you’re in distress.
Every day is a different day, a different you,
you can always make changes to better whatever predicament you’re in.