Tanille Geib

Lover of Humans

Sobering Identity

Tomorrow morning I will celebrate my 60th day of pleasure practice. It has truly been a pleasure. A pleasure unexpected. A pleasure noticed. A pleasure welcomed. 

In this moment I am listening to my favourite band, Sigur Ros by a candle lit pleasure corner I created in my brand new space. Faces, colours, dreams, realities, all nourishing, all mine in this little corner of self. Deep inhales are present. Fresh ginger and vanilla tea steeped perfectly. A sense of inner love blossoming. 

On this pleasure practice journey it has been important for me to be sober, free of any substances that filter my experience. Now, most of you who know me, since I was young I have not been into drinking or drugs heavily or if any at all. And it is interesting how much of self is wrapped into this identity I have created around that notion for years. And while I have never had an addiction to any alcohol or drugs, I found that any use of these items have hindered my connection to myself and to others, especially in the beginning months of 2016. And that if I am on a journey of pleasure I want to come forward with my true self in every moment possible. So that I can be epically aware of how my body, mind, and heart feel in each moment and maybe even share that with others. But perhaps there is more to this, than just that rewarding observation. Being "sober" or having that identity close to my heart all these years has helped me in the past week figure out some clearer identities that link me closer to who "Tanille" believes who she is and acts as. 

I really really really like being sober! I always have liked just being me. And I usually have enough energy to last for days and hours and then more moments. My base level of happiness and energy is rather high. For example, last night I went out dancing to five different talented musicians in different locations all around Victoria. It was extremely pleasurable. My body moved vibrantly and vividly. I left nothing inside of me, I shared it with the sound waves, the moving humans, the bright smiles. At the last bar we went to I had a sobering thought, "I am so fucking happy!" While this is great and all, I looked around the crowded bar of my happiness and I realized that perhaps I was one of the only ones to be this happy and sober. Then crept in this little morsel of loneliness. And this is the rub. I continued to have my sober, happy adventure of course, but my heart felt a little solo and I yearned for others to connect with me in this way. As I was biking home with my friend, sweat, happiness, and droplets of rain, we had a conversation about these thoughts. How people in my life all use different things/substances to get to "Tanille's" level of energy. And all I felt and said is, "I just want the genuine version of themselves, I don't need everyone to be on my level of energy. I will honour them just as they are, just as my hope as they would honour me in where I am."

Still to this day on most occasions, I am everyone's "DD" or  "Mama Tanille" providing support at parties for drunkenness and emotions. I like being sober and helpful. There is this sense of connection I find from this role. I really like being responsible for myself and others. I also really like being in control of myself and situations. So, isn't this a little perfect party where I get to be happier in my sober state and still connect with people? Well, yes in some ways, but I think there is a limit to it and maybe an unhealthy response on my end. Maybe in my sober self I still am addicted to the "yay, I am fixing it" feeling. I also still feel a little lonely because I am not participating fully in their experience, and they rarely participate in mine. And then it begs another question, which over the years many of my friends have asked me, "Tanille, why don't you let loose or lose control once in a while?" And not to say that I haven't in the systematic way of substance use, because I have, but it just doesn't feel great. I feel stupid for the most part. I feel unsafe. I feel like it is harder to connect to people. Like there is this glossy film I can't seem to run my hands through. So why would I continue to explore those feelings of unsafe and disconnection? 

With this new awareness around my pleasure practice including many facets of why I choose to be sober I am thankful to learn about myself and all my identities that hinder and help me, be me. 

Intrinsically in love,

Tanille