Friday, September 11

Remembering the college experience.

Want me to tell you a secret? This is the dirty little secret of college that nobody wants you to know. You ready? Are you sure? Okay...

College doesn’t change anything. Just because you’re in college doesn’t mean you’re automatically more mature or capable or confident or out going or over your problems. On the contrary. Being in college, in a new environment where you don’t really know anybody or have your usual support system makes your even more yourself which means, yes, you’re flaws and issues and shit stands out even more.

Let that idea sink it. Let it marinade for a while. Does it suck yet? No. Okay, give it a few more minutes.

By the end of my summer I couldn’t wait to get out and away. I was ready to run and not just from my small southern town, but from the person I was in it. I was fucking up left and right. I had burned too many bridges, made too many mistakes and was generally disgusted with myself. Since all of these issues were new things (or so I thought), I figured they weren’t ingrained habits yet and a change of scenery would fix everything.

I was wrong. While I’m not making all the same mistakes, the potential is there. I see it, lurking in the shadows, just waiting. And that breaks my little heart, it really does. I want nothing more than to not fuck up so much, but it appears that’s a long-term goal.

There is one way I could fix it, maybe all of it completely. Okay, not all of it, but certainly a lot of it. To do that I would have to, at the very least, get a handle on my drinking or maybe even quit all together. This is not my way of saying that I’m an alcoholic or even that I have a drinking problem. It’s not that I need to drink, but just that I don’t know my limits so I drink too much. I don’t hook-up with random guys. I don’t take my clothes off and run around campus screaming about political conspiracies (it’s happened, they got arrested). I black out. I black out a lot. Before, when I was surrounded by people I knew in an environment I trusted, blacking out was not a bad thing. I would act like an idiot and hear the stories the next morning. Everything has changed now, and blacking out has become scary since I don’t know my way around off-campus, I don’t know most people, and there’s P Safe and RAs who could get me kicked out. Things are getting serious, so I feel I should rise to the occasion and seriously buckle down. At least for a bit.

Frankly, the idea of being completely sober for a while sounds about as much fun as oral surgery (and commitment), but it may need to happen. It’s an idea that I’ve been rolling around in my head for a while. And if I don’t think I can handle being completely sober (which should concern me, but doesn’t), I need to at least set myself limits. And not like when I set myself a bedtime and laugh as that time comes and goes. I need develop some will power right here and now.

And yes, I realize that’s counterintuitive if I want to get the full college experience. But if I want to get even a little of the college experience, I need stay in college.

*Update*-I spent the entire weekend exercising moderation. My total for each night didn't exceed one hand. So what if I had a beer first thing this morning or left a bar when it was still light out yesterday. The moral of this story is I had a good weekend. I was able to fully enjoy myself (and the Minimalist) without being shitfaced. AND I remember it. Score one for moderation.

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