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It was such a battle to get me to try alcohol.  There were so many emotional, social, psychological barriers to overcome.  Someone I trusted felt that it was valuable, so I gave it a chance.  I hated it!  It was horrible!  It tasted bad, it smelled bad.  We tried Kahlua and I have similar issues about coffee, so I had a double block over that one.  But, I didn’t give up.  I fell in and out of love with Tequila, and then back again.  I found that my favorite wine is Cabernet Sauvignon.  I found my limit of intoxication (Horrible experience!  I thought sure I was done with alcohol forever!).  And I’ve been fortunate to experiment with lots of different flavors in the short time I’ve been drinking.  Thanks friends!!

Conclusions of the moment: I’m still open to experimenting and honing my level of comfort.  Which seems to be a glass of wine every other week or so on a relaxed Sunday evening with or after dinner, and drinks with friends.

So, finally to the point.

I get really anxious about drinking in public.  When the chance came to go to a party where there would be drinking, I did _not_ want to go because I knew there would be Mormons who knew I was post-Mormon there.  When I did attend a party with people I didn’t know very well where there was drinking going on (one or two folks who were more than tipsy), I was anxious.  I’ve had drinks among friends I know and trust, and it’s been fun.  But, I was in a comfortable environment.  Stepping into the realm of the unknown and allowing myself to give up some level of control by having a drink or two was pretty scary.  But, it turned out to be a great party, and I had a great time.  Not because of the drinking, or in spite of it.  It was just part of the party.  Watching people drink is always fascinating.  And, there’s always a range of drunkenness, from those who don’t partake, to those passed out on the couch.  Well, not always such a wide range, but some spectrum.

I definitely feel just a little bit silly because I tend to get enthusiastic about experimenting and trying things because it’s such a new experience for me.  Then I feel guilty because I wonder, “Does that make me look like a drunk?” with all the negative connotations of that word?  And, then at some point I let go of all the analysis and worrying about what people are thinking about me, and just enjoy the situation.  Learn to live life one moment to the next.

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