The moral hangover is like an evil spin-off of a normal hangover, but much darker, much less forgiving, and overall much worse.
It’s noon on a Sunday and you wake up with a jolt of disorientation mixed with fear. Your mouth is the same texture as the dry, crusty carpet that lines the floor at your office. Someone is pounding on the door–wait–no, it’s just the sound of your heart working overtime to keep you alive. Deep breath, roll over. Deep breath, feel around for your phone. You peel apart your mascara-laden eyelashes (really just one mutated eyelash at this point) to squint blearily at the screen.
You Facetimed every person you’ve ever met in your entire life last night. Who would’ve thought you’d make your debut to the Guinness Book of World Records in such a way. You Facetimed your landlord, you Facetimed that girl you’re only kinda friends with, you Facetimed your coworkers, you even Facetimed your mom, you big fat idiot.
If you lock your phone again quickly enough, you can give yourself twenty more seconds to pretend like it didn’t happen.
…Twenty seconds fly by when the crushing reality of the night before is at the end of the countdown. You unlock your phone again and delete your Snapchat story without even watching it–it’s for the best. Burn the evidence.
Next step, look up the Wikihow on changing your identity. It’s too complicated, too expensive. You scrap that idea.
Are you still drunk or is your bed sloping? Turns out it’s both–your bed has somehow fallen off one of its risers and you’ve been sleeping at a very strange angle. Your cat is judging you; he has long since made himself a new bed on the chair, which is not on an incline thank you very much.
Water! I will die if I don’t taste the sweet, cool, life-giving freshness of water immediately!
You make it back to your bed shakily clutching the cup and you remember dancing to Sum 41 as if your life depended on it. Oh god, you saw a lot of people you knew last night. So many coworkers were at that bar. Ohgodohgodohgod.
The water that was just moments ago your most trusted friend and loyal ally has now turned against you and nausea overwhelms your senses.
“Please god!” you plead weakly, shaking your fist at the dark ceiling. “Let this hell end!”
But no, the hell has just begun. It’s time to send apology texts to a handful of poor souls you tortured with your sass and the indignant attitude that so often takes over when you’ve been over-served. The kind ones respond with “don’t sweat it” while the crueler ones respond with “hahahahaha do you remember kissing the DJ on the cheek?”
The next couple of hours pass in what could be intermittent naps or brief moments of death. Small bits of the night resurface in your waking moments, and if there was a single spare drop of moisture in your body, you would surely cry.
Suddenly, you are filled with the overwhelming desire to go home and have your mom tell you you’re okay, you’re not a stupid embarrassing fool of a girl. Law and Order SVU plays in the background and you’re grateful to USA Network for their unwavering dedication to Sunday SVU marathons.
You feel like you need to torture yourself by scrolling through Instagram to see how fabulously put together everyone else on the planet is as a form of self-inflicted punishment. You order new paint supplies off Amazon Prime and swear up and down that starting tomorrow, it’s a new you. You write a list of personal goals in the notes app in your phone.
“Siri, remind me to get my shit together tomorrow.” (She can’t understand your raspy voice, presumably hoarse from singing along to Good Charlotte.)
The next scene: You, a troll, sitting down in the shower, letting the water splash unceremoniously across your face, only moving your head slightly out of the stream to take a sip of your Pacific Cooler flavored Capri Sun. This is not good, you think.
It’s Monday evening and I’m still cringing, but when life gives you lemons (or an embarrassing drunken night of epic proportions), you must turn it into lemonade (or write a subpar blog post about it).
I hope you can all laugh at my pain and humiliation and if you, too, are suffering from a moral hangover–you’re not alone, my friend.
PS. Connor, I’m sorry for leaving you at Saufhaus. I do not remember this. Johnny and Bob, I’m sorry you slept on my snow-covered patio while I slept peacefully on my bed. Ali, I’m sorry I made you come to Decades where I then abandoned you for a horrific DFMO. Mom, I still haven’t brought myself to call you because I don’t even want to know what I said, but I’m going to hazard a guess that I owe you an apology as well.