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Entry date: 11-20-2022 - Counseling and stuff - Letters to My Friends

Dear Friends,

Yesterday I was talking about taking Lexapro and doing some counseling. It started me thinking about the role counseling has played in my life. For a while, I even wanted to be a counselor. Maybe I kind of still do.

My first memory of being on the receiving end of counseling help was when I was in high school. It was an effort to build communication, I think, between my dad, stepmom, and myself. The counselor was an interesting dude and had an office over by Metrocenter if I remember correctly. At the time, I don’t think I took it very seriously. I was used to being mad at pretty much every adult, so I didn’t see the value it could have had.

My only real memory of the counseling time was the therapist asking if he could touch the skin around my eyelids. One of the issues that we were having in my home with my dad was eyeliner. I liked wearing it and especially liked the attention it got me from the girls. During one counseling session it came up and I think I said I didn’t have any on. I don’t remember if I did or I didn’t, but he didn’t believe me and asked t touch my eyes.

In 1992, I went to about a year of AA and NA meetings. In a way, this was a form of counseling. I never got a sponsor in the program. I have always kind of done things my own way, I guess. It’s funny how you think of things. I hadn’t thought about that aspect of my “recovery” in the early 90s for a long time.

At the time, I think I felt like getting a sponsor would have made it all too real. Going to meetings did help me understand where I was at in those days with drugs and alcohol. It also helped me build empathy for addicts. I have known so many over the years and, back then, I thought I was one and, in all honesty, I was.

I met some very cool people in those rooms and saw a lot of struggling, too. My friend, Dave, who passed away several years ago was my companion for a lot of meetings. We were both going to Phoenix College and we went to a fair amount of shows together, too. I miss him. He was a supporter of Hillbilly in the early days and that helped me stay sober a bit longer.

Dave was a neighbor of my friend, Mark, who I have written about a lot recently. They knew each other for a long time, and it helped speed our friendship along. I think we were each other’s counselors during those days. We talked a lot about what being sober meant for us and the doors it was opening.

Two of the shows Dave and I went to were Jesus Lizard and Jon Spencer Blues Explosion at the Sun Club and then Beastie Boys down in Tucson at the convention center. Good times, both nights, for sure. I remember the drive back from Tucson particularly well. When we hit the Chandler city limits, I got pulled over because I was doing about 70 or so in a 55 mile per hour zone.

My license was suspended in Arizona. This was related to the time I had stolen my friend’s car. I believe I wrote about this months ago. It had been raining that night and I sort of slid through a red light at 32nd Street and Indian School, just before Emily’s parents had reported the car stolen. The police officer from Chandler was really cool about the whole thing, though, and didn’t give me as big of a ticket as he could have. I was given a month to get my license reinstated in Arizona. I also got checked for sobriety and that was fun.

Once I got to ASU, I went to some counseling to help with sorting out my feelings about meeting Ryan. They offered very reasonably priced counseling through the university, but I just couldn’t connect very well with my counselor, and I stopped going to see her.

This is a good lesson to learn with counseling. If you can’t open up to them or don’t like talking to them, you should probably look for someone else to talk to. There have been a few times where this was the case for me.

In the past 25 years, I have worked with some really great counselors, though, who have helped me navigate some tough times. I’ve recommended a few of them to folks over the years who were looking for someone to speak with, too. A few of them were recommendations from other friends, so it is good to share these types of resources when you can. You just never know where and how you will find help when you need it.


The show on Friday night was fun. The best part was the some of the kids showed up. Elise and Morgan came, as did Ryan and Bree and their roommate, Chris. That made me feel really good. It was great to see friends, too, including Michael C. who I hadn’t seen in a month or so. As for the show, we didn’t play very well. I definitely had a bit too much of a buzz to have any decent manual dexterity.

Note to self…avoid IPAs when playing bass.

The crowd seemed to really like it, though. They had been enthusiastic about a good No Volcano set, too. It was great to see my buddies play. Break Up Society was excellent, as well. Such a solid lineup for the band right now. I had a great chat with Ed and look forward to more of them.

After the show, Michael, Tracey, Tom and I went to 5 and Diner for a very late meal. We had a blast sitting there talking to the wee hours, even though we missed Rhondi a lot. She was home sick. I even had a few cups of coffee which I rarely do. The food was pretty good and the company was even better.

See you tomorrow.

Blurry No Volcano from Friday night. They were great.

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1 comentário

20 de nov. de 2022

Like I said previously, I wish I could have been there. Best!

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