|Bradley Cooper and I may or may not have the same hangover expression.|
I feel as though one of the telltale signs of aging is the lack of stamina when it comes to enduring hangovers. I'm only 24, for goodness' sake, and already am deciding against partaking in events that accompany heavy drinking (well, most of the time). The hangover just isn't worth it anymore; the means no longer justify the end.
Through my own experiences and those of others, I've come to classify hangovers into 5 major categories: The Stupids, The PAD, The Fear, The Blahs, and The Sicks.
- The Stupids: this has been my most common hangover of late. The Stupids consist of the lack of ability to make any decision, speak properly, and/or process thoughts clearly. A day spent with The Stupids is full of walking into a room with a purpose only to arrive and forget what that purpose was. It's full of looking at someone when they're talking to you, but not hearing anything that they're saying. It's full of countless hours spent looking at, leaving, and coming back to a food menu without making any decision on what to eat whatsoever. It's full of a lot of blank stares and pointless movements. No matter how intelligent or how accomplished you are, when you have a case of The Stupids, you're just downright...stupid.
- The PAD: this is my least favorite type of hangover. The PAD refers to post-alcohol depression and, like any depression, just downright sucks. When you have The PAD, it likely hits you right when you wake up. God, you think to yourself, what did I do last night? And then you subsequently start hating yourself and go on doing so for the rest of the day. You have no drive to do anything to make you feel better, even though the only thing you want in the world is to feel better.
- The Fear: this is an anxiety-driven hangover. You actually start your day feeling fine but devote all of your energy to being fearful of when the hangover will hit. I'm fine now, you think, but what if I'm out driving when The Stupids hit and can't drive safely? Will The PAD sink in later, and therefore stay around later? Etcetera, etcetera. Sometimes, when you have The Fear, you might get a little sweaty or your heart might even beat a little fast. Mostly, though, The Fear is just a big waste of time.
- The Blahs: this hangover is similar to The PAD in its lack of drive to do anything, but there is no sadness associated. You don't hate yourself for the night before, you don't really care that you're spending the day functioning at way below 100%, and you don't, well, mind that you're not thinking like a normal human being. You know that you have to finish that project, but you'd rather do it tomorrow. You'd rather do everything tomorrow. A day with The Blahs usually consists of lying in bed or on a couch bouncing back and forth between Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. You might run an episode or 12 of The Kardashians, but nothing that requires any type of intellectual commitment.
- The Sicks: out of my 5, this hangover is the only one that is physically, opposed to mentally, decapacitating. If you drank hard liquor the night before, you may feel as though you have a brick in your head. If you had beer, you may feel like you've spent the day preparing for a colonoscopy. If you drank wine, the sickness may lie nestled in your chest, resting just below a painful head and right above an upset stomach. If you had all three the night before, well, then, you will probably have a combination of all three symptoms the day after. When you have The Sicks, it is usually unsafe to leave the house. You might have to eat a burrito, a cheeseburger, and a pizza all in one day to feel better, or you might have to not eat anything at all.
Those are the unglamorous truths to my hangovers. And though I was once hard-pressed to miss a night full of inebriated fun, I would now rather forgo FOMO in exchange of not wasting a day being stupid, depressed, anxious, unmotivated, or sick. Well, most of the time. Because I still am only 24, you know. This means that I still probably have a couple years of poor decision-making ahead of me. I guess that only time, or the hangover, will tell.