About a month ago I spontaneously got into making and learning all about cocktails. I barely drink, mainly due to indifference and price, but mixology always interested me. I totally dove in, staying up late getting lost in learning about the tools, recipes, science, history, combinations…that lovely flow state of forgetting that you exist, and just becoming what you’re doing. What a feeling, I’d almost forgotten.
But man, booze is expensive here. One recipe led me to another, with just one or two ingredients I didn’t have. I finally stopped myself after dropping nearly 250$ on different things. Halfway in I started thinking about what a waste of money this is; this isn’t a practical pursuit, and I knew before long I’d just get sick of it anyway. Hell, with no tolerance I can only have max two drinks per day when not having to go to work, and it’s not like this is even healthy.
But whatever, I was riding the high. Last week I didn’t tone down a recipe enough, and/or hadn’t eaten enough, and one creation got me very quickly wrecked. It reminded me of when I gave up alcohol four years ago after making my own plum liqueur – something very unpleasant about just getting noticeably intoxicated really fast. It doesn’t help that being in that state makes me lonely, something which I now feel almost all the fucking time. It’s an amplification. A few nights ago a housemate watched me make something, and that feeling of connecting heightened the experience so much; the following night, when a new recipe led to a disgusting failure, it was disproportionately crushing.
I really felt the total futility of the endeavour, thinking myself so stupid for having invested the time, money, and energy in it. Sure, it made existing feel almost enjoyable for some moments, but I’d even felt the distrust of that feeling in moments between – something would eventually interfere with this, and the fall sometimes almost feels worse than simply existing at the bottom. It’s the same with the social connection effort I keep making; this week alone I’ve had three plans with three different parties be cancelled on me. Not because of my shitty health of mind or body, but the other person. Three times. I don’t want to keep trying and getting nothing back.
The same day I had that over strong drink I was being visited by a friend not talked to in months or seen in nearly a year. I didn’t even want to meet up beforehand given how absent they’d been. Everybody’s been absent, even the ones who know I’m struggling. One who, despite semi-regularly signalling a desire to attempt to connect for the past several months which has not happened, is coming to town this weekend. I don’t want to meet up and bullshit about how I’ve been feeling and feel that fake enjoyment of life which will fade right after we part. I have a potential plans with yet another person but they’ll probably fall through, and if not, there probably won’t be a second. I’ve made effort there too and every time it’s gone the same way; someone (or both of us) just isn’t interested. Still a different person will be visiting the country in a couple of weeks, someone with whom I have a shared loss of someone to suicide, who’s definitely been aware that I haven’t been doing well but just will ask “are you okay?” every once in a while, even when I say I’m not.
I want something to either pull me from this wretched farce of living and get me back to enjoying it, push me over the precipice and make me decide to quit, or just take me out immediately. Sometimes it feels like purgatory, but it’s actually hell – only in such a place could one be tricked by whatever cosmic forces into believing that things could get better and the suffering could end, and sometimes to actually feel like that has come to pass, only to return back to the very place from which you started. Torment defined.