It was a beautiful sunny morning for most, with a cool breeze and the sweet smell of rain on the ground from the night before. For me, it was agony and torture, pain like an open wound. Hurt like the body should never have to go through. I was sick. Dope sick, about three days without heroin. The sickness had planted its roots deep within my body, like an ancient oak tree sucking all the moisture from the soil. Lying in bed, rolling around, playing sheet karate all night. Not a wink of sleep, nothing here calms the insanity.
The hallucinations are so real. I am trying to snap out of it. The feeling of a snake twisting and turning in my stomach, skin crawling and painful to the touch. My body, unable to regulate its own temperature, is burning up and freezing simultaneously, feeling like I need more and less blankets all at once. I want to scream as if that will somehow help. I haven't eaten in days, and it feels like my stomach is touching my back.
I start having crazy thoughts about how I could remedy my situation and alleviate the hurt. Much too weak to commit violence, but I can steal; not from a stranger, I'm too sick, and that's too risky. That's how I end up doing the unthinkable to the people I love most. The lies, deceit, and manipulation have become so deeply entrenched in me I fear there's no going back. I use my family for my own selfish gains. Why? Because I have a monkey on my back, a chip on my shoulder, a thorn in my side, and a devil in each ear.
Let's rewind the tape to a time before my life became the waking nightmare it has come to be. I remember when a stick in the front yard was better than any high. Where did my imagination go, and how did I lose something so precious only to replace it with this false happiness? Some people will say it's because of your upbringing or your environment. It's because you witnessed it. After all, both of your parents are alcoholic addicts. All of that could be true, but why isn't my brother a raging drug addict if that's the case?
Instead, my brother is doing everything he can to help me find a way out before I expire in this game. See, dope has become my everything; it has become my best friend, lover, and confidant. Dope holds my hand when I walk into the room, whispering to me what to say to sound confident. Dope is the reason I get up in the morning and the reason I go to bed. Dope makes me feel whole and warm when I'm cold. Dope makes me happy when I'm sad and strong when I am weak. Dope gives me the strength to get through the day. Dope helps me escape all emotional baggage left at the door even though all that baggage is waiting for me when I get back. Dope is the biggest lie I ever fell for.
I want a divorce. Jumping out of an airplane with a parachute is a rush but jumping out with no parachute is insanity. I'm falling faster than I can react. I need help. People say dope took everything from them. Not me; I happily gave it all away with a smile on my face. The material items are too much to count and honestly don't matter. It's the family and loved ones that I abandoned or lost trust and respect with that hurt the most. Losing respect for myself and became a shell of what I used to be—watching everyone go on with their lives buying cars and houses and having families. At the same time, I'm struggling to come up with 40 bucks, so I don't shit myself.
I don't know what happened or where things went wrong. I don't remember when I made that turn that set me on this path. There is no real answer to how I got here. But I do know this: I am ready for a change. Fast forward nine years, and things are different now. I am proud to say I found what works for me. I am finally clean and happy. I used to think my rock bottom had a trap door, and there was no fixing me. I used always to say, WHY ME.