It has been 90 days since I last took a drink or a drug (a new record). I thought I would feel different than I do today. I am closer to using now than I have been in the past three months. The thought of using terrifies me, it excites me, it gives me butterflies in my stomach. Things have been going well. I’ve taken my foot off the gas, cruise control. Eyes off the road, so I can say I didn’t see it coming. But I do.
The seed was planted one week ago. I began experiencing some uncomfortable feelings. Perhaps, that’s an understatement, as I have dealt with many uncomfortable feelings since January 20th, comes with the territory I suppose. This was stronger than uncomfortable. These feelings, I would describe, as an overwhelming, all-consuming hatred. My senses began to shut down, one by one, until all that was left was a burning fire inside my core. Rage. A volcano, ready to erupt.
My face turns red, hot. Small earthquakes course through my veins and my body tremors. Undying cigarettes pass between my lips and smoke begins to bellow out of my ears.
I express some of these feelings and get them out, but the majority I swallow, suppressing them deep inside of me for fear of an overreaction. I feel better, momentarily, but these feelings are simmering under the surface, they bubble away overnight and in the morning, begin to boil again, rising within me.
An hour passes. Two. I try the “just breathe” trick. Nada. The sensation grows and I begin to feel like I am losing control. Not that I had any control to begin with, but it was beginning to feel like I did. Back to reality Alex, this was just an illusion.
I consult my bag of tricks and decide it’s time to turn to a tried and tested favourite, distraction. I try to eat, not hungry. Couldn’t even get candy down. I think about exercising, this one sounds like a brilliant idea. My body is more than capable, but my mind refuses to give me the strength to get up and go, it wants me here, trapped. I so desperately want to talk to someone about this, ask for help and some sense of comfort, but shame prevents me. I am alone but surrounded by people. My last resort, sleep. Shutting down my mind, even if only a temporary solution I saw at this point as my only escape.
Sleep doesn’t come, clearly that was too good to be true. I toss, I turn, and in a few brief moments I surrender, unable to take a minute more of this existence. Where can I get the drugs I need to turn this off?
In previous attempts to get clean, I have always wanted to continue using. This sounds pretty basic, but during those times I felt I was trying to force myself to do something unnatural, that I did not want to do. This time around, I don’t want to use. Using feels somewhat foreign, strange, and unnatural, however, I sense a supernatural force driving me towards this oh-so-familiar unknown.
I think of the consequences and feel sick to my stomach. I think of rebuilding, again, and shudder.
The shame I don’t think I could take. I feel lonely today and I still have people around me I call friends. What is it going to feel like when they, like shallow rivers streaming down my volcanic peaks evaporate into steam as lava begins to ooze from the surface?
It’s probably going to feel worse than in this present moment. I will try to keep reminding myself of that.