I’ve been keeping it low-key lately. I haven’t been doing too much other than going to school, studying, and taking naps. I haven’t really been out on the town or let my hair down in a while. Well, last night, I decided to break that streak. I deserved it, right? All I’ve been doing is briefing cases and trying to learn the ins and outs of contract formation. One night of debauchery seemed well earned. What’s the worst that could happen?
This morning, I woke up with blurry eyes, a temporary case of Parkinson’s disease, and an irregularly rapid heartbeat.
Last night, it all started innocently enough. And by that, I mean it did not start innocently at all. My roommate and I were cleaning the house and decided to break into a bottle of rosé to make the task more enjoyable. The first bottle went down a little too easily, and the second one was gone faster than the first. I abandoned my Swiffer and we started plotting our plans for the evening. We were feeling like a girls night.
We had one last bottle of Pinot Grigio in the fridge, and ultimately decided a third bottle wouldn’t hurt. At 9:30 p.m., our Uber was pulling into the drive, and we quickly chugged what was left of the wine. I was now headed full speed to Blackout City.
We got to a bar near campus and I immediately ordered a Patron margarita. My roommate drank half of her drink, and within fifteen minutes, had decided that the three bottles of wine we had already ingested on empty stomachs was not sitting well. She then called herself another Uber, and abandoned me on the battlefield. I was a lone soldier, fighting the good drunk fight, alone, but courageous. I called for backup, and some law school classmates came to my rescue. One Red Bull-vodka and tequila shot later, I found myself sitting on the curb with my heels off, hanging out with a guitar-playing vagabond singing Crash by Dave Matthews. It was 2:30 in the morning.
I woke up today and felt like somebody had punched me in both eyes. I looked like a shell of my former self. My Snapchat story was an abomination, and my text messages looked like a war zone. The room was spinning. My heart raced and I broke into a cold sweat as I signed into my online bank account to check for damages. Upon seeing that I only spent $19 at the bar and $8 at Jimmy John’s, I tried to calm myself down.
I couldn’t bear the thought of eating food. I tried to choke down an orange Gatorade. I contemplated calling 9-1-1. I flipped back and forth between Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. There was no new content. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t go back to sleep. But I knew what I had to do.
I needed to shower. Wash off the shame, the regret, and the faint smell of tequila that had soaked itself right into my very soul. Showering when you’re hungover is the first step in the process of recovery. You’ve got to find a way to get back to neutral. Washing off the grime from the night before helps you make a fresh start. I needed a shower. But not just any shower: a sit-down shower.
Sit-down showers are reserved for those mornings when you just can’t bear to stand up for a mere ten minutes. They’re for the hangovers that bring you to your knees and text your friends, “I’m literally dead.” They’re for the battered and broken fools who knocked back one too many just a few hours before. Taking a sit-down shower is accepting that you’re a piece of garbage.
I brought my Gatorade into the bathroom with me. I threw a towel on the rack, and I turned the water on. Hot. I threw back the curtain and climbed into my saving grace. My safe space. My haven. As Come Clean by Hilary Duff played in the background, I imagined a world where hangovers don’t exist. Where trembling hands and vertigo are naught, and brushing your teeth doesn’t make you vomit. I got on my knees, doubled over, and laid my head in my hands. The hot water cascaded down my back, the sound drowning out my thoughts of hopelessness. I closed my eyes and lie there. I stayed there until the hot water ran out.
I got out, put on my robe, and left the shower behind. With it, I left behind the person I once was. As the water swirled down the drain, so did my memories of what happened last night. Nothing happened. Nobody threw up, took Snapchats in the bathroom, or sat in a bush. None of that existed anymore. I was a new person.
I closed the bathroom door behind me and left the hangover in the past. It was time to begin again.
I’m kidding. I’m still fucking hungover. Can somebody get me two Advil and a cheeseburger? Pretty sure I still shouldn’t operate a car. Thanks. .
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