The third game of the playoffs found me with a friend at a local bar watching the Blazers among a room full of enthusiasts! The sounds quickly took over with cheering and delightful conversations coming from every part of the room so loudly it blocked out any thoughts that were not somehow affiliated to this crowd.
A commercial showing a couple shopping for alcohol as they filled their shopping cart with Smirnoff. It was so much alcohol that my friend asked “Was that alcohol?”
“Yes” I replied and added “it’s everywhere.” We looked around the room and pitchers of beer and glasses filled at different levels surrounded us. Another commercial came on with two beautiful ladies, slim in white suits with feather dusters promising to clean your room twice a day in “Las Vegas.”
My friend commented “At least it wasn’t about alcohol!” Haha I laugh “No it was about Las Vegas – Problem Gambling.” We chuckled but it wasn’t very funny. I mentioned how hard it must be for a Blazer fan who may just happen to be in recovery trying to enjoy the basketball game without being triggered. I asked him if he was okay with me always talking about alcohol and drugs. He reassured me that he was okay. My daughter Shallane would always say “Can you talk about anything else?
Next thing you know it we were caught up in conversation with other enthusiasts as the score continued to go further and further apart and not in our favor. A young man and woman sat across from us. The young man generously gave me permission to share his story and the picture above! Thank you Evan! You are a blessing my New Friend!!!
So the young lady and he were talking about black outs. I could not resist. I mentioned that I was an alcohol and drug counselor and she quickly recruited me to explain a black out.
Earlier I noticed that the young man asked for glasses but they were never brought any so he proceeded to drink directly out of the pitcher. This of course did not go unnoticed by me or the other pretty lady– I was dying to do an intervention but tried hard to bite my tongue however upon being asked what happens when a person gets a black out I could no longer resist and jumped at the chance to explain Dr. Olga Parker’s version of what happens when we drink. They sat and listened attentively!
The young man shared that he is very social and does not need alcohol to come out and have a good time. He simply enjoys it. Evan shared how he drank for the first time at age 16 – he drank so much that he did not drink again until age 19 if I recall correctly. Evan also shared “I function even when I drink” To which we responded that being a functional drinker comes with its own plusses and minuses. Evan reassured me he does not drink and drive. The pitcher was getting emptied as we continued to share.
I’ve seen videos of experiments where people start off drinking and they have a glow about them with their first drink or two then as the alcohol hits the glow and happiness is replaced by an intoxicated under the influence – the party is over kind of look.
Evan presented genuinely interested in hearing what happens when we drink at high levels. As I shared I witnessed his glow decreasing as his intoxicated under the influence look took over.
I felt like a buzz kill as I shared how our body’s blood constricts as the alcohol’s toxicity permeates every part of our body. The blood literally clumps up which makes it harder for oxygen to flow freely – this means – that because our cells need oxygen to survive every eight minutes we are intoxicated – under the influence of alcohol some of our cells are deprived of oxygen hence die. In the morning when we have to take a really long pee we pee out dead cells.
The pitcher was now down to about a fourth as I shared with Evan. Evan was such a blessing to let me share with him. I commended him for wanting to know – I added something I learned from a training I just went to on Emerging Drugs – One of the participant’s shares that she tells her kids – “every time you use a substance you are stealing from your future.” The way the presenter Jim Jensen, MAC, CADCII explained it is that whatever you are using the substance for you are destroying your body’s natural ability to provide that. Our bodies are equipped with the ability to learn how to be social. And we have a pharmacist in our body stocked with all of the natural medicines we need to heal ourselves and be the best me we can be!
So if I use a substance to be more social then I am not only killing my brain cells I am killing my ability to learn how to be social without substance.
Evan shared that he was totally okay with me using his picture on one of our slide presentations as an example of “What not to do!” Thank you from my heart Evan!
Evan. You are an amazing young man with a beautiful future. I thank you for allowing me to share a small part of your story and for me to share what I have learned from an alcohol and drug counselor perspective, from a person who cares perceptive, from a nurturing mom perspective – You will meet a lot of beautiful people along your journey because you are a beautiful person my new friend! Value that beauty by respecting all that you put into your body so you can have the most amazing healthy life! You totally deserve to have a sustained natural glow. My friend and I were truly blessed to have met you!!!
The Blazers may have lost but we at Grace On You, LLC My Grace Filled Life after Addiction were so blessed because the universe put us in the same place to be mutually blessed!
Calling In “The One” Certified Transformation Life Coach
President Chemical Dependency Training Consortium of the Northwest