My counselor wants me to write. She wants me to write about my feelings. She doesn’t have a clear understanding of the fact that my family doesn’t do “feelings”. Well, my momma’s family that is. Daddy’s family is good at them. We say “I love you” even if we’ve only ever been around each other sporadically for decades. Because we do love each other. That is how Mashburns are. Mashburns love each other, and we say so.

That has been hard for me. Because I grew up with mom’s family. To borrow Harrison Scott Key’s phrasing; My mom’s family tends to have the emotional tenderness of a Soviet farm tractor. They are not “touchy-feely” folk, and would rather eat horse shit than see a psychiatrist. Which, from what I’ve seen of the majority of them, they would have benefitted much more from in lieu of all of those years in the pew.

But anyway, my counselor the LCSW (Google that) wants me to write about my feelings.

And I don’t want to. Because my feelings are hard on me right now. They are harder than they’ve ever been, in fact. And Lord knows, I have been through some shit. The majority of my own making, but some not.

I have crippling anxiety at times, and I want to suck the bottom out of the Jameson bottle I keep “for looks” on my liquor shelf. And chase it with the Crown Royal that sits beside it.

In the last six months, the anxiety has been like a bulldozer racing downhill, in an avalanche.

One crisis after another, most of which are not MY OWN PERSONAL crises, but are mine to bear. Or at least I take them on.

And therein lies the problem. So the LCSW says. I spend my time putting out, or at least throwing a little water on, fires that are not my damned fires. And figuratively speaking, all of this smoke inhalation and heat exposure is driving me a little crazy.

Some days, I don’t even want to get out of the bed. And often, I don’t. I just sleep. And dream. And those dreams are not good ones lately. They are horrible. The worst of the worst. I hate them.

I know this is all because of the anxiety, but medication is not an option for me, because former fall down drunk. Benzodiazepines will never be part of my medication therapy.

Which leaves me with various forms of “coping” mechanisms, none of which I have taken to. Well, aside from drinking. I took to that shit very well. In fact, I excelled at it. And now, it is not a part of the repertoire.

Nowadays, I don’t like to do anything but play golf, target shoot, cut my grass, and sleep. Two of these require a good deal of money, the other two, hardly a dime.

But, fate works in weird ways. This morning, on a group text, I found some damned hellajoy. I was enjoying a glass of chocolate almond milk and decided to inform my “crew” of this. And then it happened.

One of them brought up yoohoo!

As in the chocolate drink yoohoo! The drink of my childhood. I loved yoohoo chocolate drinks. I could drink a six pack on no time flat.

My grandfather used to drive me down to the little store about a quarter mile from my house on Saturdays and we would stock up on candy, RC cola, and yoohoo chocolate drinks. I think the owner’s name was Billy Scott and his wife was named Winnie. They had a huge, very cool saw hanging on the wall in the back. I don’t know what you call these saws, but they have handles at each end, require two men to operate, and they can cut down enormous trees. That saw is etched in my brain.

As are the chocolate drinks.

She wants me to write about my feelings. Today, I did. My feeling is okay. Because I remembered yoohoo.

And they are now on my grocery list.

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