Relapse, Part II

Relapse, Part II

Fictional story

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She pulled out of the parking lot not having the slightest clue where she was going. The wheel was slick with the sweat escaping from her palms; she blinked her eyes enough times to clear the tears that had accumulated beneath her eyelids.

As she was stopped at a red light, about to turn out of the lot, she picked up her phone, silently praying Matt had texted her. They hadn't spoken in six days and if he were to reach out to her, it would be a miracle. But that's what she needed. She needed some kind of sign to tell her she wasn't completely alone- a divine intervention of sorts.

The light turned green but Grace was too busy being locked in a staring contest with her blank home screen. No text. No calls. No notifications from any form of social media. The only thing that stared back at her was a picture of her and Matt that was taken many months ago. They were wrapped in a blanket sitting on the football field of their alma mater. Their faces were touching and their fingers were so intertwined that it would appear to be impossible for them to ever let go. That was back when they were happy. Back when the days were so blissful that they blurred together and when the nights seemed to house endless possibilities.

"Beeeeeeeeeep beeeeep!" A horn blared from behind Grace's car and she made an abrupt left turn, panicked by the sudden noise disrupting her daydream.

Where can I go? What can I do?

She had felt lost many times before in her life, but this was different. Besides the recent breakup with Matt, life had been treating her pretty well. She was up for a promotion at the advertising firm where she'd spent the last six years proving to herself, her colleagues and most importantly, the impossible-to-please boss that she had actual talent. Last week, Grace had given the pitch of her life to one of the most sought-after clients any ad agency would kill to work for. And they totally bought it. This should have rocked her world, but any time someone told her a friendly "congratulations", she found herself shying away from the compliment and silently cursing her ability to bullshit.

She was feeling the pressure, big time. Since she had gotten sober, all she wanted to do was prove to the world that she wasn't the person so many people had known her to be. She really had changed. She had changed so much that she often found herself struggling to be comfortable with the person she had evolved into. Grace liked to believe sobriety had changed her for good, but as her thoughts drifted back to the bottle of Merlot, she felt weaker and more confused than ever. If life was going okay, why was her urge to fuck it all up so unbelievably strong?

Before she knew it, Grace was halfway in between Akron and Pittsburgh. Signs for the Pennsylvania Turnpike started appearing outside her windows. On top of that, the rain was beginning to kick in and her adrift driving was still utterly aimless. As someone who used to be a professional at impulse decision-making, she figured why not take her hopelessness to Pittsburgh for the night. She would get a hotel, put on a warm robe, order room service and turn on the cooking network. She would turn off her phone, take a couple NyQuil and sleep off the impending urge to drink. She had this; everything was under control. Screw Matt, screw the pressure, screw the grey area that had become her existence.

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To The Girl Who Doesn't Party In College

They are rare, I know.
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I know what you all are thinking, she is just writing the article to brag on herself or to show the world the kind of person she is. No, I am writing this article to the girl out there who feels as if she is alone.

Not being a part of the party season is not the most popular thing to do on a college campus.

Most people spend their days thinking about what they will do at night. Life pretty much revolves around the next party. But for people like me, it isn't spent thinking about alcohol or the next party I'm going to attend. And that can get pretty lonely.

It is not like I sit and wallow in my sadness or ever feel like my friends leave me out because I don't drink. I have great friends that support every decision I make.

But, some are not that lucky.

Some girls don't have the support system like me and I am here to tell you to never compromise the person you want to be just because you don't fit in. If you don't want to party, don't give in just because your friends are pressuring you into. Not to sound cliche, but find new friends because they are not your real ones.

Choosing to stay true to you will pay off in the end, and you won't regret it. I promise.

I don't know why you choose to not attend the party scene, but I would be hindering my calling if I didn't tell you why I don't. I know this guy, and his name is Jesus. He is my best friend and the person I talk to about everything. It is because of Him that I decided to not party, to set an example for the people around me.

But, I am also not 21. So I don't think, by any means, that me having a margarita when I turn 21 is hurting my reputation or my testimony.

I firmly believe that alcohol isn't a sin when consumed in the right ways. I also don't ever see myself as a partier, 21 or not. Partying is a way of conforming and a way of becoming what this fallen world deems acceptable.

So to the girl who fails to be the typical college partier, I commend you. I look up to you. I respect you. I want you to know how rare you are. You choosing to not party and rise above the college standard is something you will never regret. I don't believe that my college years are boring because of the way I decide to live my life. I wish that I could befriend each and every girl relating to this article.

So, when those Friday nights get boring, remember that you are not alone. You are rising above the standard.

Sincerely,

The girl who doesn't party in college

Cover Image Credit: Krisztian Hadi / Flickr

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Red Wine Is More Than Just A Joie De Vivre, It's Also Heart-Healthy

Surprisingly, drinking moderate amounts of red wine can increase longevity and serve as an antidote to various cardiovascular diseases according to latest scientific research.

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If you are a wine enthusiast, then you must have tried the deluxe red wine. Red wine has an enriching cultural legacy associated with it and has been a delicacy for decades. Surprisingly, drinking moderate amounts of red wine can increase longevity and serve as an antidote to various cardiovascular diseases according to the latest scientific research. But, it has not been fully confirmed and is not encouraged that people should start drinking red wine if they have never consumed alcohol before.

Organically speaking, red wine contains a polyphenol named resveratrol which is found on the skin of grapes. It has been notoriously famous as being called the "heart damage control" elixir. In fact, resveratrol is a chemical substance that is able to reduce blood vessel damage and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol as well as prevent blood clots.

According to modern research, the "French Paradox" originating from the late '80s have brought to light how the French are less inclined to suffer from heart diseases. Stemming from this epidemiological paradox initiates the fact that red wine may play a contributing factor. In order to further analyze this phenomenon, researchers have focused immensely on the Mediterranean diet which is rich with protein and carbs with a tinge of red wine.

According to a 2017 research article, "More specifically, some postulate that red wine's bioactive constituents, polyphenols, impart cardioprotective effects. Others argue that there may be an equilibrium between alcohol and wine polyphenols, which in concert would be accountable for the cardioprotective benefits in the human body." This sheds light on the ongoing "heart-healthy" phenomena associated with drinking red wine.

Moreover, the article published by Circulation also pinpoints the contrasting difference between red and white wine. For instance, they mention, "Red wine is known to be 10-fold higher in polyphenolic content than white wine, and this variability arises because of red wine's grape must fermentation. This is why white wine is given much less importance than red wine in the literature." So from a biological perspective, red wine is ingrained with more vital supplements designed to minimize susceptibility towards diverse cardiac diseases and other health concerns as well.

However, one key evidence that shouldn't be ignored is that red wine should be moderately consumed in order for such a benefit to reap. Excessive drinking has a lot of detrimental consequences and could cost a life. Although red wine is deemed "heart-healthy," it should still be drunk in moderate amounts because too much of alcohol is considered disastrous to your health!

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