As she sat back in the cafe, waited ever so patiently for the perfect brew of warmth to be served to her late at night just before bedtime, she looked around being mindful of the atmosphere and grateful for being away from the brutal outdoors where it was minus eleven fahrenheit; in the middle of what seemed to be a cruel overextended North American March winter. The entire evening had not gone well, even at that point. She felt irritated with him, as he was so quick to judge her actions even without trying to understand her point of view.
He eventually arrived with two cups of perfectly brewed aromatic coffee. She closed her eyes for a minute to inhale the java’s flavours, she could almost taste chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and a minor touch of dairy making it the perfect cup to savor when she realized he almost spilled the contents of her cup on her and apologized profusely for it. He gazed into her eyes with a look of concern as she felt taken aback with the confidence he naturally exerted.
“Look”, he said, while he affectionately took both her hands and cupped them. “I’ve seen the same patterns with others and I have yet to see it end well. First, you were having the drink once in awhile, which turned into once a week. Then you started purchasing a bottle here and there. Then the frequency of the purchase increased which then suddenly morphed into larger bottles and nearly every night?” he said so strongly. “Is there something wrong? Something you want to talk about?” he asked inquisitively. She paused, made eye contact for a minute and suddenly felt vulnerable. She had to be honest with herself while doing a quick self-diagnostic visible only to her. She felt some strange sense of comfort with the table between them and the beverages creating what appeared to be a minor block.
In a pensive state she recalled how this all started;
- A glass once a week, not bad – A traumatic event occurred! (It was incredibly painful – went through, and could still be trying to survive the grieving process)
- Started purchasing the alcoholic beverages by bottle on a regular basis. Someone else noticed, she didn’t think it was much of a great deal (refused to acknowledge the pattern) –
- She then started going to restaurants on her own, ordering a small meal with at least a couple or a few glasses to go with it. She particularly chose family oriented food and beverage establishments and more so places she associated with nostalgia (previous favourite places with family, friends and/or former colleagues. Why go to a pub on her own, sit at the bar?) That only make her feel like there’s an actual problem.
- – Then it became too expensive with all the costs added up (For someone who was able to budget well, that didn’t seem to be an intelligent move. It also made her feel like she had a “dirty little secret” digging inside of her, where it made her defensive and she resented being heavily or even lightly questioned about it.)
- – She started to feel that longing, aching and need for just “a little taste of comfort” (“Just a little bit more please?” her taste buds and heart begged…Pleaded with the logical mind. “Why on earth not?” she deserved it after all. Justifying …she worked so hard and felt like she got nothing in return. “Why did that traumatic event occur? Why? It hurt! It was too painful! Make it go away!”, she wept while having an intense monologue.
- – She then started going back to purchasing bottles, greater in size and more in cost, per unit (though less frequently) Hoping no-one would notice. “Why couldn’t others just mind their own business anyway?” He noticed.
The more he approached it aggressively, the more she withdrew from the situation. (Healthy space…mindful boundaries, depending on the situation, is sometimes exactly what’s needed).
Two weeks after contemplating on her own…(no drinks in between, even during some of the most tempting times) She realised she no longer needed the drinks to make her feel better. She had something or someone worth investing in. She had herself!