I need a new hobby…

Day 368: I’m sitting in my car waiting for the traffic to clear as I write this. I’ve been to the football today and sat in the freezing cold as my football team lost again. In recent matches I’ve been feeling anxious, irritated and then after the result normally in a mood for the rest of the evening. We were beaten today but I don’t really have any emotion towards it for once. That’s a good thing surely?! I’m a 35 year old Dad of two who has invested far too much time, energy and money into supporting my Sunderland AFC since I was about 12. The Club has repaid me with the odd happy memory but the general theme of our relationship has been that of disappointment and regret.

Pretty much like my relationship with alcohol then?!

I walked back into the Bar area after the full time whistle and witnessed a load of blokes scrapping. This was a load of blokes who support the same team! But naturally alcohol was no doubt involved and watching it sober I felt embarrassed for them. And also angry. The area of the stadium I sit in is lower level hospitality and aimed at families. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no angel and I’ve had many a confrontation over the years so I’ll not say too much on the incident because I don’t know what was said to start the scuffle but it was yet another reminder to myself that giving up alcohol and avoiding bars in general is best for me these days. An under the influence version of me might have even jumped in to try and split it up even though it has nothing to do with me. That’s what the security / stewards are for, right?!

The problem with the old me was that I used to let my frustrations and anxiety build up and up and up until I had a good drink. Throw in social drinking and it gave me an excuse to be confrontational and let out my ‘energy’. Pathetic I know, but that was me and I can’t change my past. I’ve been thrown out of pubs and clubs, spent a night in the cells, had a few ‘back of the police car’ lectures and on occasions had to leg it after finding myself outnumbered and facing a kicking. I never did get hospitalised off a fight though so every cloud.

Seeing this drink related bollocks in a sober light just makes me wince. A sober me is quiet, gentle and most certainly an introvert. A far cry from the ‘bring it on, I’ll fight anybody’ version of me that existed from the age of 17-34.

So anyways, the traffic has eased in the time I’ve written this and the sky is getting darker. Time to make the 30 min drive back home to my wife and little girls. I won’t let football ruin my evening. It is after all, meant to be one of my ‘hobbies’.

I think I need to try Golf…

Author: Happy Daddy

A married thirtysomething Dad of two young daughters navigating my way through life a day at a time

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