Addicted Part One
I’m a drug addict. As sure as the day I was born, that’s what I am. I never sucked on a glass pipe and inhaled freebase. I never stuck a needle in my arm. I never stole my great grandmother’s wedding ring and pawned it for cash. I never resorted to self-debauchery or acts of homosexuality. To this very day I’ll still swear I’d rather die a painful death than become the living definition of a ‘junkie’. It’s my way of denying how deep a hole I’ve dug a hole for myself, a little play on words and moral inventory that helps me keep my ego one step ahead of what’s real and what’s in my head.
None of the above matters though. Just because my rock bottom may differ from another victim of the disease of addiction (oh, and what an amazingly destructive disease it is) doesn’t separate me any further from the truth that I’ve destroyed my life with substance abuse. Even at this very moment, at 4 a.m. as I type away on my laptop in a pitch black room, the glow of the screen reflecting my features back to me in into a partial silhouette, I’m experiencing cravings. They come and go by the second, depending on how I view the world at that specific moment. It’s like a hunger, as if my life in recovery has become so slow and boring that I’m starving for a big Thanksgiving feast of cannabis and coke with a side order of painkillers and the most potent, snortable Afghan heroin to take me away into a netherworld of euphoria that sizzles throughout my receptors like bacon on fried grease and makes time go by so fast that the day after tomorrow is already here. If it were only that simple.
There are times when I can practically fistfight myself about whether I should pick up and use today. But I continue to fight. For what exactly? I don’t know. To live maybe? I guess. But that would mean actually quenching my thirst for life instead of just existing as a hunk of muscle glued to the living room couch. And how the hell am I supposed to do that?
All these questions with no answers have caused me to do some soul searching. I know that sounds typical and cliché, but for me it means coming to terms with my mental instability that without a doubt differs from the average human being. With me, my drug use has as much to do with mental health problems as it does with addiction. It’s has to do with my lack of awareness about how to cope with autism, depression and anxiety. It seems that every time I’m overcome with the slightest bit of dread or loneliness, which occurs quite often, the only place I can think to hide is that same murky netherworld I described earlier. Particular when it’s heroin that takes me there. (An observer of the crack epidemic during the 1980s might feel differently, but I can tell you from first-hand experience that there is nothing closer to Hell on Earth like having a hardcore dope habit.) Whatever poison I choose to shove up my nose and send me off into the valley of darkness is irrelevant in the big picture. It’s learning how to cope with my demons and maintain sobriety that’s important.
So…what do I do? It’s simple. I write. Writing, as they say, is thinking refined. Writing is what gives me an identity, a cause, a purpose, a reason. It’s what fills the void and saves me from complete self-destruction (versus partial self-destruction which I’ve already raised to an expert level). This piece I’ve just written here has stopped me from grabbing the car keys to go pick up a bundle of the Taliban from Angel in Jackson Heights and stop at Café Royal in West Babylon to cop an 8-ball from Sal the Bouncer. And that’s me being dead fucking serious. That’s how serious my addiction is. Overlapped with my mental health issues, it’s a fiery train wreck with two feet and a heartbeat. Anyway, that’s my blog for today. I thank myself for getting through this craving and I thank you especially for listening.