Nov. 23, 2022 – Everything suppressed rises to the surface. Everything you’ve ever pushed down, ignored, batted away, held off facing, comes to party. It’s now your job to scrutinize these pain-phantoms as they present themselves. You are being given a chance to exorcise them for good. What remains in their wake is an entirely new understanding of the world. It’s like a yearlong gut-punch, but somehow, doubled over, you are beginning to smile.

I quit alcohol because I cannot control my alcohol use, and I no longer want to be defined by that fact. Over my 20 years as a drinker, I had cultivated quite a habit. Drinking is the only mode of socializing I’ve ever known how to do since I first cracked open a Smirnoff Ice as a teenager. I think a lot of natural introverts find this to be the case. Drinking gives you a new personality, it makes you louder, wilder, and more confident than you really are.

My idea of glamour has always been a rebellious woman. I grew up listening to The Slits, X-Ray Spex, and Bikini Kill and watching the tail end of the ’90s “Ladette” era play out on TV and in the tabloids. I loved booze, cigarettes, and narcotics as much as the next “geriatric millennial” whose peak party years played out in Anti-Social and Boombox from 2004 to 2007 to a soundtrack of “Up the Bracket.” Life revolved around my Old Street flatshare, and dinner was an ecstasy tablet served on a china plate with a knife and fork. There were no phones documenting our every move; people just turned up, at the club, at the afters, at the after-afters, climbing through windows at 8am the next morning in sunglasses with water guns and Red Stripes.


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