ALICE AND THE VOLUME-PART II

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Okay. So I spent the weekend at this very ritzy hotel in Miami for my niece’s wedding. Two hundred people attended. Two HUNDRED! Now, in the past, I might have retreated so far into myself as to be completely unreachable by anyone, or not gone to begin with. Just the thought of being around that many different energies, the noise, the music and dancing, would have had me locked in my bedroom at home. And, interestingly, my family would have understood. In fact, they might have preferred that I not be there. But when you work hard at your recovery and learn how to manage your mental illness, people expect more of you and hiding is no longer an option. Scary stuff!

I’m not going to say there weren’t times during the weekend that I didn’t wish for home and security, ’cause there were. And after each event-the rehearsal dinner, the wedding itself, and then the reception- I felt I felt a wave of relief after feeling rushes of panic. I slept the sleep of one emotionally exhausted, meaning I slept like a toddler after temper tantrum. Best sleep ever. But even with all this nonsense going on in my head, I was able to enjoy myself, feel the loving warmth of those close to me , and even mingle a bit. And dance! Yes, I danced with the hyped-up throng of folk on the dance floor and had a good time. I talked with people, even spoke a bit about myself which I ordinarily don’t do, and, for me, I had fun. Staying in a hotel even made me reminisce about a life I left years ago-an actor’s life. But that’s for another post. Bottom line? I did just fine and came out of it unscathed and intact. And I made others happy by being there. That feels good.

Facing my fears and walking through them without falling apart makes me stronger every time I do it. Sometimes, before the fact, I have to remind myself of this so that I won’t balk and not take risks. I have to remind myself that I am always a happier, better person, after taking chances and doing things that scare me. This weekend was another exercise in facing demons. And I did it and am here now to talk about it. Living among humans is some scary shit, especially for someone with the volume turned way up. But working at becoming adaptable, has enabled me to have a life, and for that I am ever grateful.

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