I have, over time, had plenty of opportunities to ramp myself down, cool out, relax. Chances to get right-sized, long before I’d ever heard the words put together with a hyphen. Unfortunately, I am an extremely sensitive, over-reactionary, self-pitying secret genius superstar wizard.

These two images of myself often conflict. Drinking could Merge them, put them in harmony.

But that person isn’t really me. It’s a lesser version of myself; an easier one. Considering how much I wail and wish for something to finally go easy for me, I have to wonder why I have trouble letting it.

Step 10: Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

So, a situation arises. I become oversensitive at something my wife says. Nothing out of the ordinary; nothing that should cause me to falter or have any issues, but yet the delicate nature of what I can only assume is a very thin layer of static covering my brain became very agitated at the perceived poke.

No one in my life is a provoker. I’m not saddled with agitators. But if I go around like an overfilled balloon you get from the bank, then I shouldn’t be surprised by my constantly bursting.

Oh, this advice is so easy: deflate slowly. Which I actually did today – after five minutes of sulking and pulling out my aloof card, I begin picking, talking in terms of absolutes and pointlessness. But – and this is the growth part, I think – I left the house, got in the car, drove to Home Depot (your store may vary), texted this to my wife: I am going to take this time to calm down and get right-sized. I still want to have a good night. Did you want to run to Target when I get back? I’ll be home in 30 minutes no problem.

I came home and shook her hand like a business associate. Earnestly, with a right-sized apology. Because it’s serious business, my alcoholism. It’s like a cave person: it’s got no time for any tool beyond stick and stone.

We hug, we separate, and the night continues. She’s at Target. I’m writing this.

Oh, the three easy steps: 1. Excuse yourself with the 2. Explanation of right-sizing, followed by 3. Go away, get right sized, come back, apologize again, and wait for her to return from Target.

Your story may vary

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