Casual drinking is so laissez-faire, I’m not sure it’s really noticed.
Wine with dinner
A beer with your mates
A quick drink at the club
Bubbles for brunch
Rounds of shooters because it’s Friday, or any other day ending in ‘y’
It’s so acceptable that non-drinking creates ripples of discomfort. As though it’s somehow impossible to finish a 5km training run without a beer at the end of it.
It’s to relax
To wind down
To feel happier
To fall asleep
Any number of reasons.
It’s so easy to slide into the habit of drinking. You just…do. And soon, it’s not only at weekends, but every day, at home, with dinner, alone or not.
As I wrote TDOC, I realized how many events I’ve been to, where alcohol was the unofficial main feature. Always there. Always lurking. Lubricating social interaction.
The focus shifted from whatever it was we were meeting for, and onto the alcohol.
You’d barely even notice.
And if, like me, your family has a history of alcoholism, the path to your own destruction is gently lit with any number of illusions that you’re in control.
And sometimes, capital ‘A’ Alcoholism claims another captive, and no-one really notices.
When I set out to write TDOC, my intention wasn’t to write about alcoholism.
Actually, it was going to be about something very different. I’d read Destiny of Souls, which claimed to regress patients to access their past life knowledge (interesting and compelling reading). One of the chapters outlines how future love matches would be recognized by various ‘signs’ – the more, the merrier – to jog memory so that the lovers will recognize each other on the earth plane.
Each chapter of TDOC has the various ‘signs’ that were supposed to jog these two’s memories.
But as I wrote, the narrative shifted to something else, something darker. We brush up against bad choices every day that could change our life and slide us onto a different path. Even when they don’t seem like choices at all, but rather just ‘how things’ turned out.
I’ll share the original prologue at some stage (much lighter, much fluffier with a touch of paranormal).
You can get the first part here.