Although destinations can be beautiful, most travel hungry instagram-snapers travel for two purposes, to take a selfie and to get away. You can wonder the streets of Paris and be like Arya Stark; bug eyed, anyone you want to be, and no one at all. You can walk in a bar and start a conversation with a stranger because you’re a traveler and for whatever reason this gives you courage to be viewed as an outsider. Some gorgeous European might view you as exotic and you might see them as part of your current adventure, but why is it so inconceivable to simply be the traveler where you live? How wonderful it would be to approach every day as not just a new day, but a new time and place for an adventure. Imagine if you could be at your neighborhood bar alone and when a stranger asks why you aren’t with your friends, you felt secure to say, “Because I’m having fun simply just being and wanted to come to this bar, so I came.”
Why is it, besides dating apps, that going to a bar is the next acceptable way to meet someone dateable? Think about it? Two people go into a bar, drink something that in actuality makes you less conscious and then expect to meet this awesome person, possibly a ‘soul mate’ or the mother of your children… Yet it’s perceived as awkward to approach someone good looking jogging on a street in the neighborhood you live in because that person appears to attain traits you seek. People don’t approach people anymore in general, not even at bars… So what’s the point? Where’s your courage? When’s the last time you were a real lion?
30 Days into my sober summer and first of all, I’ve learned that the word “sober,” automatically raises a red flag and a shameful slowly walk away stare. I’ve had to constantly explain to people that I was choosing to be sober, but I wasn’t sober sober… I feel stupid for even having to justify. I simply want to be my ultimate self and can’t be when I’m drinking every weekend… plus I say and text really weird regrettable not me kind of things when I drink.
In one month my chivalry is rebuilding what had fallen, crashed, and exploded in ways I never thought possible. I’ve never felt a baby’s ass, but my skin feels like what I assume one would feel like – glowy, buoyant, and buttery soft. I’ve also nixed the need to have a beverage. *Side note: Last week I invited a new friend to my house and offered him La Croix. He was so uncomfortable with not talking to a girl without a drink that he kept drinking all my La Croix out of habit. He owes me La Croix.
I am totally clear. I see my fuck ups and victories like a sunny day after a rare L.A. rainfall. Why I stopped drinking came down to control… And several blacked out drunk texts that I’m still cringing over.
How can you control and get what you want when you allow a substance to take control from you? I love a glass of exceptional grained whiskey, but I also love a 5am ten mile run where my brain can fully control my body, then an enlightening 7am talk with old men sitting outside of a coffee shop. I’ve never been a big drinker and most of my life I’ve drank maybe once a month, but it all happened so fast. Eight months ago I was at the top of my loving myself game… You know that saying, “You can’t love someone else until you love yourself.” Well I was ready to start loving. I started app dating and before you know it I’m drinking once a week, then twice a week, then three times a week and at first it was so fun. I felt wanted and it was a never-ending flow of men, drinks, and some stories to record in my future books. Every other night I would swipe, go out, tell my life story, then do it all over again. That self love thing I had consciously worked so rigorously on got buried into my unconscious because I stopped doing the things I LOVED.
I stopped running as much because well you know…
My mind wasn’t clear, so the creative force within me burnt out.
I couldn’t processes my personal life, including a friend’s death.
My body didn’t look good.
I love to run, I love to wake up early, I love to feel sexy, I love to fully give my attention to the people I connect with, I love intense wide eye contact, I love to be on a higher level of consciousness, and I love love being brave and doing crazy things that only me, my insane conscious brain decided to do… I don’t love drinking. I like it, but it took away from everything I loved.
It’s a double edge sword. Drinking gives you momentary courage to approach someone at a bar, but it hinders you from ever feeling comfortable to do it without. It’s fun to just let loose, and I’m sure I’ll drink again soon (in moderation), but a friend of mine recently commented that she didn’t think I had a drinking problem, rather the way we/I drink is just part of being a social adult living in a city like L.A. Maybe she’s right? The irony is that I just don’t think adults are any fun if that’s what comes with it and that’s fuckin’ sad.
I am a rare breed. I’ve traveled the world alone, I approach people, I live by “fuck it” far more than “fuck that,” I’m a total rebel moving to my own beat, and the only thing that scares me is missing out on wondering “what if.”
- What if I would have just said hello?
- What if I would have said yes?
- What if I don’t drive to that top secret coordinate location desert party? Will I had wondered what if fire started to dance?
I set out to be 30 days sober, and in fact, I had a count down. Tonight, a Friday night, on day 30 of my sober summer, I realized that I am back in LOVE with everything and wasn’t going to lose control of that feeling. I did however want to be brave and social, so I traveled. I went to a local super dive bar alone, sober, and drank a coke.
I listened to black guy wearing overalls and a Club Med shirt who chanted “Rudy! Rudy! Rudy!” to the bartender order a “petite glass of merlot” for himself. I listened to an LA bro ask for a gluten free cheeseburger. I met a local greaser named John that told me he had lived in Venice for 30 years and I felt more comfortable shooting the shit with him then any of my friends. I watched a band called the Brobots sing Blink 182’s All the Small Things (if you know this song, you are probably part of The Last Generation)… And I had a fun time just being. I rode my bike home and had a Bridget Jones romantically running in my underwear euphoric moment.
Now it’s 2am, I’m totally flowing and I’m writing this… all just high off myself… like Kanye.
The stupidest thing of all is, I’m talking about going to a bar alone and being sober as if it’s an act of bravery… Like I went into the wild unknown. This is petty bravery, but it’s telling of the time when it takes bravery just to be comfortable with yourself. We need more real bravery I the world…. And I also need to go into the actual wild and get lost for a bit.
What do you do that takes away from what you love?
When’s the last time you acted brave, just for you?