My name is Amanda and I actively am working on an addiction to chaos.
& this is how I found out;
To be completely transparent, I have a lot of second hand experience witnessing substance abuse.
With that, addiction to me, in general, is initially a very external experience.
Someone relies on a substance or activity in hopes to manage a perceived negative situation that may be happening externally which most likely is caused by paralyzing, self-sabotaging thoughts that are happening internally.
Both of my parents suffered majorly with alcohol.
My mother was a binge drinker for a huge part of my life.
My father, a more consistent, mean drunk and highly hangover inadequate, for most of that same time period.
I also used to find white powder in the magazines at home but my mom of course doubted my memories of that, too.
One of my older brothers picked up those same coping mechanisms and he’s been battling a severe drug addiction for the last twenty years.
Addiction is terrible and it hurts a lot of people.
There has to be a solution and I will work my ass off to figure that out.
So, as you can start to see. This is a subject that comes with a lot of sensitivity and intensity for me.
I have never and will never do drugs in my life.
Although, I will admit I’ve battled with creating a healthy relationship with alcohol.
A lot of it was the shame I felt consuming it and not so much how often.
It continues to be a positive, self-permission dialogue with myself that I am still developing.
So when the idea of addiction comes around and in my space, I never once think,
’hey, that could be me.’ OR
‘Oh wait – this is something that I could work on.’
I just don’t fit that expected prototype for someone who suffers with it.
.. Well, until I finally fully separated from my mother, did I recognize how heavily I expected and almost needed chaos in my life.
I know what you may be thinking. Addiction to chaos, really? Is that a stretch?
Unfortunately, it wasn’t.
Honestly, even before then, I began to become aware of how much suffering and negativity played a major part for who I thought I was.
I just wasn’t prepared for how serious it was.
Specifically, it was when I started to work on self-care and mindfulness, that I started noticing how quickly and almost automatically my mind would go to the darkness. Always fear. Always the worst possible outcome.
I almost thrived in it.
Thrived in the confrontation.
In the chaos.
In the drama.
I always had something going on. Or so I thought.
And a lot of the times it wasn’t ever about me.
Because my mind and nervous system were so used to operating in an unstable, high stress environment,
I inevitably attracted people who were just as unstable.
People who lived for that exact drama.
Who were always apart of or caused a lot of problems.
Looking back, it was this behavior we all subconsciously chose as a method for survival.
It was where we were comfortable. Where we felt we belonged.
Peace was so far away from my home equation that I didn’t even know what it felt like.
Silence. Being still. Relaxing. All very foreign and very undesirable.
The angrier I was on the inside, the more I needed to match it on the outside.
I felt needed in the chaos.
I was always good with words and figuring out what the problem was.
The distraction with someone else’s drama, was my fuel. That’s where I would get my acknowledgement.
At home and with my friends.
I was unfortunately very good at it.
Always ready to talk shit.
Yell it out.
Ready to fight.
Ready to defend.
Ready to fire back at whatever is thrown at me.
Even as an adult, when the truth about who my mother really was.. started coming out.
The knowledge didn’t matter at a very specific time, each day.
I knew at that time; I would stop reading. Stop loving. Stop laughing.
Never knowing what to expect.
Never knowing if she was going to be on one or would ignore me entirely.
Either way, I had to be ready. I couldn’t give her an ounce of attention or love anymore because I knew she’d just take it all and nothing would change.
I had to be thorough. My well being depended on it.
I was living two lives.
For years this went on.
Until my mother was gone.
And 4pm stopped being a war zone.
The tension was gone.
The problems were gone.
The mess she’d leave in the mornings, was gone.
Her over-feeding the cats was gone.
Her passive aggressive way of trying to get my attention to start an argument … wasn’t there anymore.
Though the days after, I still got dressed.
Armor, shield, fierceness. I was ready.
The soft parts of me were tucked away.
My vulnerability I had in the morning wouldn’t see me until the day after.
After the years of fighting. The years of witnessing. I knew whatever was happening (later to find out it was just …quiet.) wouldn’t last.
It never did.
What was different now?
I felt paranoid for the expected upcoming threats, for over a week.
I had to keep it real and finally check in.
What was happening for me?
As much as I worked on forgiving myself for not trusting the silence, I knew there was a part of me that missed the drama.
And not in a conscious way but more of a biological way.
My estrogen levels were in complete shock.
My body was waiting and asking for it.
I felt myself wanting to reach out to old friendships with people who I know can’t elevate with me.
Old situations that after years of trying, have never gotten better.
Desiring to re-open chapters that stopped feeling good. Stopped feeling loving or flexible.
The co-dependent in me was on the borders of what I felt before and what I knew to be true now.
Wanting to believe there was something I could do or say to make these situations more appealing.
When really I just wanted to find something else to feel down about.
Wanted a way out of my next level.
I didn’t feel worthy of the peace. Of the quiet. Of my efforts. Of finally being drama-free.
I wanted to scream.
To be honest, it felt like I was shedding old skin.
I knew I had to take responsibility.
And I was already so tired.
But this was what I had been working towards for so long.
This is what I believed was holding me back.
Just being around my mom, I knew, was terribly damaging.
No matter how much I tried to avoid it.
No matter how much I could rationalize and intellectualize my way out of it.
PIN THIS ⇓
So now I had it.
What I’ve always believed to be the answer.
To be away.
To be free.
For the chance to start over.
To feel differently.
To stay open all day long.
To dance and not worry about if she can see me.
To leave a light on and not freak out about the electric bill.
To wash my clothes whenever the fuck I want.
I had it.
And I was still fucking irritated.
I was still waiting.
Unsure of what to expect.
Even though I had worked so hard to get to where I was, I was ready and waiting for her to stomp all over my boundaries and reactivate that same cycle all over again.
It was fear.
And that was the truth.
I was so used to .. the ‘easier’ days followed by the weeks of hell.
So used to believing someone else could dictate my reality.
The constant questioning and pushing of my boundaries and requests, where I felt I always had to be on guard and demanding, rather than certain and trust that I am in control.
The hamster wheel of narcissistic abuse.
I couldn’t believe I was still apart of it.
I was desperate to get off.
Even though she was away, the conditioned beliefs and behavioral patterns were still in affect.
It was at that point that I knew this was a bigger battle.
There truly is no quick fix.
I wasn’t suddenly going to become a meditation master and preach rainbows and butterflies.
I had to actively listen to my body and my mind and be patient with my process.
Patient with where my temptations were but sure and clear in my decisions to choose differently.
Because, the fight with her was over.
I didn’t have to see her everyday and suffocate my true feelings and emotions.
I didn’t have to be criticized for not getting over the past when the present looked just like it.
No more wondering where all my shampoo went.
No more waiting for a day before the rent is due to be told she doesn’t have it and that it’s my fault because I don’t help her more.
I no longer had to pick fights just to feel.
I remember sitting on my kitchen floor and just balling my eyes out. I couldn’t believe it.
It wasn’t even just my relationship with her that I didn’t need anymore. I was outgrowing patterns everywhere. I just had to let myself slowly reap the benefits of the work I put in.
I didn’t need old situations with people, who only saw value in me when I was listening to them, to remind me of what I offer.
I didn’t need unavailable women who can’t be bothered to explain or say they are sorry, to be my friend again.
I no longer stumbled upon men who think they know me and want to sneak around to see me but are only in emotionally negligent and dishonest relationships with other women.
My life is mine now and I now know that I am meant to feel joy, all the time.
I don’t have to stay present and commit to the everlasting rollercoaster of emotional abuse.
I can say what I want, when I want too. No apologies needed. No negativity required.
I realized you can be drama-free, positive, swear a lot – but still be very real.
I can be open about what feels good to me without waiting for that expected grace period to end and for the amnesia of those conversations to kick in.
I learned that pain is inevitable but suffering is a choice.
The silence has now become my friend.
The peace a trusted confidante.
I no longer resist good vibes, I invite them. I’m attracted to them.
I am just as excited for happy news and I am lovingly available to sad or tough conversations.
Negativity has started to drain me. Drama and complaining, even more so.
Looking back, it felt like a new pair of shoes that I just had to wear for awhile just to get comfortable. For my new reality to work its way through my grooves and edges.
But now, they are shoes, I rarely take off.
Blisters along the way, maybe. But with a little love and attention, they heal just fine.
And even when I do take them off, you know, when life happens and I get angry, …
I know I have my new safe environment to go home to.
And I trust that this new reality, will always be right there beside me.
– Ps .. if you need more support – don’t forget that you can book a free 30 minute call with me and we’ll this shit out together.
lets get committed and rewrite your stories.
i got your back.