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Junkoholic

 

I don’t know where it comes from, but it’s been with me all my life. 1 is too many, 1,000 are not enough. Doesn’t matter if it’s wine, or Doritos; cigarettes or coffee; TV Shows or books. Once I start, to paraphrase the Pringles commercial, I just can’t stop. My name is Mike and to save time it’s best to just say I’m a holic.

Over a year ago now, I quit drinking. I did really well for a person who only drank once a week – but would easily consume 5 bottles of wine during that one day a week. It was hard at first, but as time progressed it became much easier than I expected it would. What consumed me wasn’t the fact I wasn’t drinking, it was that I would never drink again. Ever. Ultimately that is what undid the work I’d put in to stopping my pathway to the bottom of the bottle.

Everything I open I consume. I remember as a child my mum used to give me a bowl of potato chips. Just a bowl, a handful or so of crispy chips that I could dip -only once – into some home made French Onion dip. Double dipping was frowned upon. It was dirty. So I’d dip just once, and eat my chips and drink my coke and watch whatever I was obsessed with on the television and I’d be happy.

When I moved away from home, I never bothered with the bowl, or making my own dip. I’d just open a bag and a tub from Coles and sit in front of the latest TV show or movie that I loved and  dip – just once – with each chip I consumed. By the time I was finished so was the bag and the tub.

Since I joined the masses of unemployed looking for a job in an economy that refuses to hire, and seems hell bent on creating a recession just to prove the Murdoch led media correct it doesn’t matter what I open, or what time of the day it is, I must finish what’s in front of me.

As my waistline continues to expand and I develop a belly resembling a pregnancy in it’s third trimester, I open wine or chips or cigarettes, ice cream or Season 3 of The Mentalist and I sit on my bed, and I eat and I watch. The strange part of it all is there is absolutely no joy in it. None. I don’t even taste the food or wine that flows down my throat anymore. I barely pay attention to the episodes of The Mentalist with Jane running amok and causing Lisborn nothing but pain and potential career suicide. I eat with my mouth and my eyes, and my belly gets fatter and my brain seems to develop holes in it.

I’m in constant pain with my back and my hips, to the point that I can now sit in a chair for 3 or so hours before having to return to my bed. I can’t even bend over to pick up my socks off the floor. As the weight piles on the pain in my back worsens. I know if I stopped this holic behaviour – or changed my latest addiction – I’d be able to lose the weight. The pain in my back and my hips, my neck and my head would start to behave itself. Instead, I blindly reach for the next cupcake or a handful of MSG soaked slivers of potato that have been deep fried and salted.

I’ve been told I live my life in fits and starts. It’s sort of true. It’s addictions or more accurately obsessions. I get obsessed by things. When the obsession lands it’s all I do, all I think about. When the obsession lifts I move onto something else. It’s one of the reasons my home is littered by so many half finished projects. Energy rush as the idea settles, leads to feverish work which in turn has my attention moving to something else and the project left to collect dust.

Lately my mind has been looped around being unemployed, being 40 and appearing to be washed up already. When I was first made redundant, I believed I would find a job in no time. That has been proven incorrect. Instead I am still not able to get an interview. Conversations with friends and family about resorting to opening my own business opened flood gates in my head that see idea after idea hit me. None of them are simple, or easy. Last nights brainwave revolved around opening up a series of Day Spa’s. I don’t know squat about Day Spa’s but the “voice” in the back of my head keeps pointing out “Entrepreneurs open businesses to work on, not in, that’s what staff is for” which is great, but I’m not Richard Branson.

I don’t know where I’m going and to be honest, I don’t know what the point to this post is, not could I even hazard a guess. I’m feeling very lost at the moment and whenever I’m lost I end up in one place, unable to move. Maybe tomorrow I’ll find something new to attract my attention, maybe tomorrow I’ll come up with a new idea that makes sense and that I can fulfil and create an income for myself. I’m out of work, and feel like I’m running out of time.

All in all it’s a bit of pain really.

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43 year old Australian writer currently working on the first of a planned three book Epic Fantasy series. When he's not writing policy discussions, or tales of swords, Gods, and magic, he can be found making a mess in the kitchen, and turning perfectly good ingredients into crimes against humanity.

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