We’re blessed with excellent neighbors. This is not something to be taken for granted, nor overlooked. It’s also something you don’t realize until you’re older.
This past weekend we blocked off the street and all the immediate neighbors – and others – converged for a good little shindig. All the kids got to run around and take their bikes up and down the street. Good, down home American stuff. An opportunity to drink a few beers and chill out.
I ended up talking with one neighbor about drinking in college. Drinking happened for me. A lot. And I have a lot of great memories, some involve beer, some do not.
Anyway, we were talking about how some people could drink, have a blast, but stay in control and then there were others who always seemed to lose control – puke, black out, etc. I’ve always wondered if there’s a gene deep down in our wiring that controls this. Why do some people lose control and some don’t?
I’ve never taken alcohol lightly and this post isn’t about alcoholism or anything. It’s just about……control.
Me, I had a lot of drunken escapades and some of my college and maybe high school friends may very well fill in some blanks here (can’t wait to hear it), but I’ve never gotten to the point where I blacked out or can’t remember an entire evening or something. I’m not bragging, either. It just…..is.
Oh, there have been plenty of times where I woke up near sunrise on the floor of my college apartment living room, winter coat still on and a pair of headphones on my head. And there are three occasions from drinking when I did actually throw up.
Three is not a lot, though. Interestingly, the three times were NOT even at college. I simply never let myself get out of control. And I don’t know why. I probably had every reason to.
I ruminated to my neighbor that it could have been because I was allowed at a fairly young age to grab an occasional sip of beer from my dad’s bottle, even in my young teens. While my parents didn’t open the floodgates at home or anything, it just wasn’t a huge sticking point or something they were super harsh, overly threatening or militant about.
I remarked to my neighbor that maybe it was the kids who grew up in the super-militant, obnoxiously strict homes who couldn’t handle the sudden freedom and liberation and easy availability of drinking. They just let it loose. Just a guess, though. No data whatsoever to support any of it and no judgement.
Here it is, though. There was (and is) always some trigger inside me that knew when to stop and “enjoy the buzz,” as my neighbor so succinctly put it. My only guess is that for me, it’s fear. I have a lot of fear when it comes to some things.
Fear. It’s the only thing I can think of. I can’t think of a worse potential outcome, in fact, than being out of control with anything in my life. Always been that way.
What do you think? What’s the difference maker between the ones who could just enjoy the ride and the ones who always took it to the next level?
For the record, this is NOT in any way a criticism or judgement of the people who drank too much and blacked out or whatever. At all. And it’s not a discussion on alcoholism – that is a whole different side of alcohol.
It’s simply an observation and a question about why certain people rode it out and some always went the extra mile! I wonder.