There are few things in life that you can count on for sure. You can’t really count on your family and friends. Just as addicts will always die, humans will always fail you. Everyone does. Plus they can’t read your mind and your inner most feelings and no matter how much you are connected with someone, if you are an addict you understand that no human can ever understand you the way a drink or a drug can. You can always count on drugs and alcohol to kill you. ALWAYS. Sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. Drugs and alcohol on their own are not bad. It’s when you mix them with volatile self destructive humans that they become deadly. And we can’t help ourselves. Because we are humans and we are weak.
We want the high and we want to forget about things and we want our reality to be different than it is. So we drink and we use and we dream of the day when everything is going to change. It’s all going to be better for us some day. That’s all delusion. It’s all in our heads. Then we use and do terrible awful things. We come to from the haze and we are upset with ourselves for failing yet again and we are depressed that we fell victim to chasing the high so that guilt causes us to pick up over and over. Around and around she goes, where she stops nobody knows. Until it kills us. It’s exhausting enough just to read about it, living it is fatal.
I know of what I speak as I’ve been there. I was on that ride long enough and came so close to dying or killing myself with the consequences, I don’t need to do any more research. I’m not talking about normal users here, the majority of humans can drink and even dabble in drugs and still live a happy and productive life. I’m talking about folks like me who when they have a tiny bit of a substance the lights go off and nothing else matters except chasing that high. Or low, as booze really is a depressant. So, you take someone who is depressed anyway and add massive amounts of booze to that, there are only 3 outcomes. Jails, institutions or death. I did two of the three. Death is still out there waiting for me if I pick up again. I will die some day, I just always hoped it would be before 35. Now I hope it’s not for a good long time.
The shocking thing is not when somebody dies from drugs and alcohol. The shocking thing is when they don’t. We need to change our entire way of thinking and believing and acting. Only then can we live.
When we start to believe that humans might be worthy of our connection and trust and we might be worthy of it in return can we start to heal. We have to change our entire belief system to get to a place of believing that we don’t have to be alone and that we can rely on other people to help us. We have to stop pushing people away and using the excuses that people suck and don’t understand us and yada yada yada yada. We have to begin to rely on ourselves to be strong enough to get through anything that comes our way without altering ourselves in any way. That is bravery right there.
“But she went to rehab, I thought she was better.” Sadly, rehab is usually nothing but a holding tank for a period of time. Sure, you learn about your disease and it’s a time when you are kept locked up and can’t use, but I went to 4 rehabs and 3 of those I drank the day I got released; the 4th, I drank while I was there. I don’t like the word or the idea of relapse as I believe rehabs enforce the idea that relapse in inevitable (which is FALSE) and then you have to go back to rehab. How convenient for rehab centers, when almost ALL ADDICTS USE OR DRINK AGAIN WHEN THEY QUIT. In my opinion, there are 3 states for an alcoholic. Sober, dry or drunk. Dry can be worse than drunk. Sober to me means a happy, free of substance life. You’ve replaced the hole in your soul with something positive, which helps you not drink anymore and you stop filling the hole with negativity.
I didn’t “relapse”, it’s not something that happened to me. I drank. I drank and got drunk. I did it. It didn’t happen TO me. Then when I stopped drinking, I did that too. It didn’t happen TO me. I do it every day. If I’m not responsible, I will drink. But make no mistake, it’s ON ME. Nobody and nothing else is responsible for my sobriety.
I didn’t die. Yet. I know I’m living on borrowed time and that has made me extremely grateful for every second of my life today. When you go through hell on earth, you know that anything better than that is a gift. When I see good people die every damn day from this fucking bullshit, I get angry and sad because it is such a powerful waste. So yes, it is a great day to be alive because I’ve come entirely too close to being dead. Addicts will always die. I hope somebody reading this surprises themselves, challenges statistics and chooses to live. When you are ready. I get it. But know today could be the last time you open your eyes. Please don’t waste it. You are worthy of real life. GRAB LIFE. It will grab you right back.
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