Drug Addiction is a Horrible Monster

When I was 21 I was addicted to methamphetamine. I had already been married and divorced. I was living with my parents because I was unable to take care of myself. Methamphetamine is a horrible drug. They all are I suppose. I did a lot of them but none of them took hold of me like meth did. I lived in a community where meth was rampant and so many people were addicted. The thing is, when I first started doing it, the people I knew who introduced me to it seemed pretty normal. They had jobs and houses and lives. Until they didn’t. I had a job when I first started too. I think we all crashed and burned at the same time. I worked third shift and meth helped me stay awake all night. My habit also cost me most of my paycheck. I sure wasn’t using my money to pay my bills or buy groceries. I would come home to my apartment after work and use all day. I rarely slept. I had a friend who came over and used with me a lot. On one particular day, he was there for hours, smoking meth, like usual.  That afternoon he left to sleep it off before work that night. I managed to fall asleep and woke up to tons of missed calls and a voicemail telling me that my friend had gone home, went to sleep and never woke up. The rest of the message said “I hope you aren’t using that shit.” I didn’t go to work that night and as best as I can remember, I stopped going altogether. I locked myself up in my apartment, stopped answering my phone, stopped answering my door and hid from the world. For days? Weeks? I really have no idea. Until my mother showed up with my ex husband. I can’t imagine what I must have looked like. I’m thinking death is a close description. There was no food in the apartment and there were no lights. I had used every single light bulb as a makeshift pipe to smoke meth. I was terrified of the dark. My TV was the only light I had. My mother talked me into going to a treatment center in Nashville, TN.  Not far from where we lived. I went. For 28 days. I began to feel human again. Eating and sleeping and learning all about addiction and recovery. I went to meetings and I think I thought I would be fine when I left. I was not fine when I left. I left on the weekend of July 4th. I moved in with my parents after I left the treatment center. Within two days of being out, I told them I was going to a meeting and instead of doing that, I went and bought meth. And just like that, it was on again. I used to stay out for days on end, not sleeping and not eating, until I was absolutely insane and extremely paranoid. I hung out with people I hated and did things I hated even more. That’s how it is when you are addicted. I had to be where the drugs were. I would come home and crash at my parents house. They were kind enough to keep their house available to me so I had a place to go when I needed it. I can’t even imagine how hard it must have been for them to witness this time in my life. The reality is that their memories of this time are probably more accurate and more horrifying than mine. I would roll in while I knew they would be at work, shower (maybe), eat (maybe), and sleep for days. This went on for a long time. My mother researched treatment centers. She would leave information around the house for me to look at. It wasn’t a secret that I was a drug addict. I had accepted that this was my life. When you reach that place of no longer denying, hiding, or lying about being a drug addict and you just accept that this is your life, it’s a special kind of Hell. I knew it was going to kill me and I had accepted that too. I assumed it would happen in my sleep. I remember coming home one day and trying to sleep. I had the worst headache and every time I got still, my body would go into convulsions.  I called my mom at work and asked her to come home to be with me. She did. I didn’t want her to take me to the hospital so she just laid down beside me and kept a cold washcloth on my head. Eventually I fell asleep. I’m sure when I woke up I went right back out and stayed as long as I could. And this was my life. I hated it so much but I also couldn’t see a way out. My drug using friends and I even had a nickname for meth. We called it “Hate/Kill” because it was that fucking awful. I remember my last big binge. After being awake, smoking meth for days and days, a “friend” showed up with some mushrooms. I decided it would be a perfcet time to try them. I was wrong. I was already halucinating from the amount of drugs in my system and it was intensified by not sleeping. The mushrooms pushed me over the edge. I ended up outside of someones house walking around lost in the driveway and sobbing. I begged my “friends’ to take me home. In my memory the door was locked that day and I climbed onto the roof over the porch and busted our a window to get into the house. It’s also possible that was a halucination, but it’s very clear to me either way.  I went in the house and went to bed. My parents were planning to go to South Carolina to visit family that weekend. Instead, they stayed home because my mother was certain this was the weekend I was going to die. They saved my life that weekend. They talked me into getting into my Dad’s truck and going to Oklahoma. They had found a treatment center far, far away from everyone and everything I knew. A long term treatment facility that could last anywhere from 4 to 6 months. It was a miserable trip for all of us. I was in the back seat eating, snorting and trying to figure out how to smoke the meth I brought with me. When we finally got there, I gave what was left of it to my dad, told him not to smoke it, and never touched that shit again. I was done. I went into their detox facility and slept for days, waking only to eat and then going right back to sleep.  I was terrified to come out of my room, but on my 23rd birthday, I surfaced because the people in charge wouldn’t let me hide any longer. They escorted me around the property and into the main cafeteria. I was physically ill and emotionally broken. I was angry, sad and miserable. I knew going there was a mistake and I wanted to leave. I sat in the cafeteria, alone and crying my eyes out. I couldn’t believe I had ever thought this place would be a good idea. At that moment, an angel walked into my life. He was carrying a small gift bag when he approached me. He said my parents had left a birthday gift for me. It was the cutest handmade ceramic frog. The frog had the most ridiculous smile with giant white teeth. I loved that frog. At that moment, I knew I would be ok. I had no idea how much my life was about to change.  On every level. That angel with the gift bag became my best friend.  I finished the treatment program and stayed in Oklahoma to work at the treatment center. My best friend was already working there.  He was one of the most beautiful people I’ve ever met in my life.  Sweet. Kind. Generous. Brilliant. I eventually married him.  I loved him with my whole heart.  I still love him. I will always love him.  “They” say that two addicts in a relationship is never a good idea.  I can understand that logic. He gave me two beautiful children and so much more.  It hurts to share about him, but the long and short of it is that he relapsed.  I didn’t. I knew my children needed a mother and I couldn’t be that if I picked up drugs. I survived and he didn’t.  Drug addiction is a horrible monster and there’s not always a happy ending.  I see him every day. He’s alive in my children. They inherited so many of the things I love about him.  I just wish he could be here to see it. 💔

5 thoughts on “Drug Addiction is a Horrible Monster

  1. Pingback: Sober Yogi
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