Returning to the scene of the crime

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The last few days my husband and I have been looking for a new place to hang our hats.  We have not particularly enjoyed our time in Tennessee.  We are both east coast people, and are used to having the ocean and its bounty readily available and fresh. We want to be back near the ocean, but not near the snow.

We had gone to a few golf communities  in south Georgia two years ago to look around.  One particular place we were very interested in has on site suites that you can stay in while visiting.  They are beautiful.  They overlook the 18th hole and the beautiful marsh beyond.

On the ride down from New York, I began to feel uncomfortable.  Memories of the last time we were there were swarming around in my brain.  I remembered sitting outside on the patio, drinking many glasses of wine, driving the golf cart while my husband golfed, drinking many glasses of wine, going to dinner in the clubhouse dining room, drinking many glasses of wine, and crying.

I clearly recall being insulted by something my husband said, and went into the bathroom to cry.  I returned to the table, still a little weepy, and was insulted that my husband didn’t notice that I was crying.  I have absolutely NO IDEA why I was insulted, or crying, but being in the drunken state I was in, I am sure it was nothing that I made into something in my alcohol scrambled brain.

Prior to dinner, we sat on our patio with the new owner of the property and his lovely wife.  I do not recall any of the conversation, nor the name of his wife. They were staying in the suite next to us.

He was in the suite next to us this time also.  Internally, I felt shame and embarrassment, as I knew I had a lot to drink while we were getting to know them.  Much more to drink than anyone else at the table.  We bumped into him again this time, he remembered my husband, his name and profession.  I briefly said hello, and went on my way, as I am sure the impression I made the last time was not memorable at all and if it was, it wasn’t in a good way.

I remember as we were driving around the new area I was looking for the closest liquor store.

Only an alcoholic would base their relocation strategy on where the closest bottle of wine can be purchased, and hope that they are conveniently sold in the grocery store.

The morning we were leaving,  I awoke, totally hung over. Too many drinks on the patio, too much at dinner, and too many nightcaps back at the room.

It was early as we had an 8 hour ride ahead of us, and we wanted to get going.  I went into the closet, and took the spare blanket, the one for the guests to use on the pull out couch, and threw it in the car.  I knew I would need it for the nap I was going to take on the ride home.

I somehow made it through the drive without napping.  When we arrived home and were unpacking the car, my husband pulled the blanket out, and asked where it had come from.  I lied, and said I had accidentally grabbed it when I packed my pillows.

I still have the blanket in a closet at home.  Had I known we were going back to the scene of my crime on our way home from the north, I would have taken it back.  I can not stand to look at it.

When I was going through my fourth and fifth step work with my sponsor, she clearly asked me whom I had harmed with my drinking.  I came up blank except for my immediate family members.

As time goes on, and I am returning to different scenes of my drinking, and memories are resurfacing,  I am seeing with sober eyes and a sober brain,  that my drinking did a lot more harm than I was willing to acknowledge initially.

I just finished step 4, but it seems like I may need a do over to try to get it right.


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7 thoughts on “Returning to the scene of the crime

  1. You get all the do overs you need for your own peace of mind.
    It’s sad for me to think back to times like this, where the booze was so important to me and I missed out on opportunities and potential friendships. But times have changed! I have new opportunities to reach out to others and make a new future. So do you.
    Don’t let the past drag you down!

  2. Excellent post. The shame never really goes away does it? The acts get further behind us but… I’m still uncovering some episodes too. And cringing.

  3. step 4 is great….we write whatever we remember, to the best of our ability and give it away in 5. And if a new memory surfaces, which they do as we get clearer, we get to assess it with our sponsor in a mini 4th and let it go.
    Your 4th was perfect, just how you did it. No do-overs needed.
    Tell your sponsor and let it go.
    Keep moving forward, you got this

  4. I am not in AA but I am busy with memories like this. I find it painfull. And I also realised that I would not have done any of those things when I would not have been drinking, would not have been addicted. I guess that shows me how strong alcohol. And how good it is not to drink. I’m in there with Ainsobriety in saying; don’t let the past drag you down. 🙂

  5. In the rooms I see people smile with deep satisfaction when they talk about doing their second 4th step. Most people are just like you, covering the basics the first time around, then digging deeper the second time. Don’t let yourself get stuck here, keep moving forward. You’re on a solid path!

  6. You just described most of my early posts. I wrote a lot about those memories and how I felt about them. It was so cathartic.

    None of them made it into my initial step four either – but as long as I got them out, tried to make amends and dealt with it – I think I’m good.


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