Tuesday, August 12, 2014
Robin Williams died yesterday, and the world mourns. He was a comic, an award winning actor, a famed personality, a genius.
I am none of those, but I am what he was. I am an alcoholic.
He took his own life and the world is left to ask why. Why would a person with so much feel that there is so little to live for. I can answer that question, partially I think even though I never knew the man, I was not privy to his inner most secrets. But I know some of his demons, one in particular.
Robin Williams and I marched/march through this life in mourning, we have lost a great love of our life. Not lost it really, it’s right there in front of us, laughing and dancing and looking every bit as lovely as it always has. And we could have it, we could fall back into its waiting arms like a soldier returning to his lover after the war.
We, the recovered, the survivors, the valiant, are not supposed to say that we grieve what we have lost. I do. Grieve it. Miss it. Mourn it. I loved….love booze. And I am fiercely jealous of those who know how to treat it, that don’t disrespect it, that keep it in its rightful place.
I never could do that, no matter how hard I try. And I tried, just as Robin did, many times. You don’t go backwards in relationships though, you never really start over, off on the new foot so to say…you just put new shoes on the same ugly feet and they carry you right back where you left off.
There are two choices for people like me, we can fall back into the arms that are always at our back waiting to catch us when we fall. And for a moment we can find relief only to emerge from those arms disheartened and dishonored for having tarnished and shamed our always tenuous victory.
Or we can march on, but not alone, because we are not the only one’s grieving. We are not the only one’s standing at the door of the ballroom watching our love dance with everybody else but us. We are not the only ones that have to turn our back and walk away when it gets so close we can smell its perfume and hear its sweet song.
I, a recovered alcoholic, am not supposed to write love letters to my enemy. But booze is not the enemy, my addiction, my love, my damn predisposition, is the enemy. Don’t blame booze. My enemy is myself.
Robin Williams fought alcoholism for thirty years, some people will say he gave up. I will say here that I think he went down fighting.
Sometimes the enemy wins.
This blog is one more weapon in my own defense. My vow not to let the flag fall. An insurance policy against cashing in.
Because I trust you not to let me.