What Really Matters Is….

I once blogged about the differences between addicts and the justifications we come up with for denial.  I have heard a lot of shares now as I approach six months clean.  I no longer feel like a newcomer in some ways which is good because it is now easier to hear the harsh stories without reservations, resentments, or judgments.  I think I always knew that I was an addict deep down, but of course would not let myself admit it to the true me; meaning that I just blamed my addictive behaviors on another alter.  I sure as hell was not about to admit it  to anyone else, least of all, my immortal beloved.  HE KNEW.  He also knew that I wasn’t ready to deal with it and was probably waiting for the time to come when I WOULD; little did either of us know that his death would be the turning point.  I ramped up my using so hard and so high and so fast that I can only recall images from his funeral and my mother’s.  The thirteen months that ensued his death were drug-filled days and nights; one just blurring into another, and saturated in tears.  I think that using all of those narcotics (onycontin, hydrocodone, morphine, fentanyl, demerol, and codeine), along with the Valium, not only made a zombie of me, but a depressed one.  I think I didn’t become suicidal until after they were both gone, the kids were gone (one away in college, the other off at GITMO in the military), plus everyone else in my family all moved away too.

So yeah.  A year after he died and a couple months after my mom died, I ran out of drugs. I panicked.  I couldn’t get anything anywhere (don’t remember why).  I went to the Dr. and told her.  She just stopped prescribing cold turkey and left me in withdrawal hell.  It was that day that I remember truly wanting and deciding to die; to take my own life. You see, nobody in my family every dealt with drug addiction.  I still had a full bottle of Valium so I took the whole bottle (120 pills), plus the Dr. finally capitulated and called in a script for me which my sister picked up for me and dropped off to me, so I added the whole bottle of those (Vicodin I think) to it.  They found me the next day and called an ambulance.  I remember hearing someone say “we’re losing her” and blacked out and woke up vomiting charcoal.  My dad said they told him I might not make it.  Yeah, he was pretty pissed at me, and even more so were my kids.  I got shipped to the psych ward of a local area hospital for ten days, then was released.  Scrounged desperately to find a rehab with NO help from the Dr.  Ended up in rehab in Billings, Montana (pretty far from home).  Refused to grieve, was STILL suicidal and went through the worst withdrawal possible that lasted ten days or so.  They said that the benzodiazepines stick to your fat cells and that’s what saved my life.  Did not deal with underlying causes.  Went back to drugs with new Dr. about six months after rehab.

For the next decade, I did every despicable thing imaginable to score my next fix.  I used even harder than I had before.  The tolerance in my body is insanely high to narcotics now.

What’s my point.  I have heard similar shares in the rooms and in group sessions from all kinds of people with all different kinds of backgrounds; rich, poor, fat, thin, attractive, successful, homeless, whatever.  What matters is not what we did…we all did ugly things in order to feed our addictions.  What matters is how we can connect over that fact alone, as well as other similarities we find through sharing with one another.  There is no such thing as a “perfect program” in recovery.  Perfection is unattainable in this life.  We are flawed humans by nature. What matters is how we survive.  How DID we survive? I know I have at least TWO ANGELS in MY corner.  I KNOW there is a REASON that I DID survive –everything.  It’s partly to tell my story, however long, sordid, and sad that may be.  It’s to help OTHERS.  It’s to GIVE BACK and to share about my beliefs and my strategies in recovery.  KNOWING THIS, I can stay clean one more day.

What do YOU think?

Peace, love and blessings….

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