ADDICTION: A SALUTE TO MY FELLOW RECOVERING ADDICTS

Addiction is a complicated subject for me. I have a moral juxtaposition of hating addiction for the awful cunt of an affliction it is, while simultaneously having a lack of respect for those who haven’t struggled with woes of dependency like I have.

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I am not alone in my opinions on the matter. One of my favorite comics of all time, Marc Maron said, “I don’t have respect for those who haven’t lost complete control of their lives at one time or another.”

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While this statement may sound preposterous to some, a lot of addicts truly self-identify with those words.

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Why? Addicts are a different breed. While some people go their entire lives addiction free, others, like me, were seemingly born to experiment, fall in love, and pledge our lives to a substance that provides a temporary escape from reality.

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Addicts choose their drug of choice for a variety of different reasons. For me, it was the insufferable boring-ness of life; the bland canvass that was my everyday. The constant torment of living a life on repeat, punching in day and day out just to feed the proverbial machine that ‘allows’ us to live, was too much for me to bare. The depressing sea of stupidity that made up my surroundings was more than enough motivation for me to seek for more.

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As a teenager, I often found myself at odds with almost everyone around me. Friends, family, and girlfriends just didn’t understand me. They didn’t think like me. They had different things on their mind and seemed completely complacent with the awful world we both lived in. I felt as though I was alone in a world full of people who believed, worshiped, and put their energies in things that I could not conceivably relate to or believe in. I needed to escape from them.

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I found my escape in drugs and alcohol. At first, I engaged in the typical phase of smoking weed and drinking at parties. However, I noticed I was drinking and smoking for different reasons than my peers. Smoking pot and drinking on the weekends was not enough to suffice my urges of escaping reality.

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Cut to my early twenty’s- I had long ago ceased my intake of adolescent pleasures like smoking weed and playing beer pong. As my increasing depression and anxiety to live in a world that was not meant for me grew, so did my means of erasing it all.  I knew that with every Roxy I smoked or shoved up my ass it was killing me. But I did not care. I was checking out.

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It wasn’t long after ingesting expensive pills became a financial issue that I ‘discovered’ heroin. Heroin was half the cost with double the power of forgetfulness that the pills had. It was a natural progression. Soon heroin was in complete control of my life because heroin killed the world to my mind’s eye.

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I loved heroin, but she was just another fling: After only a few weeks of abusing H did I find my true soulmate, methamphetamine. Meth was the answer to every insecure thought that ever plagued my weak mind. I no longer had to feel like a child lost in a crowd, incapable of finding my way back to safety. Meth nurtured and provided me with a locked cell I could encapsulate myself into, shutting myself away from the world.

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Meth was life-simplified. I didn’t need to plan my day. I didn’t need to keep plans I had with other people. I didn’t have to answer the questions the voices in my head would scream at me daily: WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE? WHY ARE YOU SUCH A PIECE OF SHIT?.ETC… All of it went away, and the only thinking that needed to be thought was schemes in which I could have more of my precious escape.

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But all too soon my life was in shambles. I was 125 pounds, (a far cry away from my healthy 190 lbs.) I was stuck in a constant terrifying state of psychosis and was on the verge of ending it all.

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To surmise a long and terrible journey that was my addiction to meth and heroin, I barely escaped with my life. After losing a very close friend at a crucial time in my life, I quit hard drugs altogether. However, my feelings of lonesomeness and sense of inadequacy were still there, now more than ever. Now the feelings were just unmasked, free to infect my psyche on a 24-hour basis.

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However, through my struggles and near death scrapes with addiction, I was able to realize one true and impactful truth: I was not alone.

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I found a plethora of people who shared the same ‘sunny disposition’ or outlook on life that I had. There were people like me who went against the grain, not because of flagrant disobedience, but because they lived on a completely different plane of existence than most people. These people weren’t losers, they weren’t depressed teenagers. They were a collective of very intelligent, capable human beings who were simply particularly sensitive to nonsensical dogma, and resentful towards those who dared classify them as less-than.  But all of these like-minded people who I now called my peers had one thing in common: They were addicts.

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So to go back to what the great Marc Maron said: ” I don’t have respect for people who haven’t lost complete control of their lives at one time or another.”

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You see, addicts like me aren’t less-than.. We are a group of people who see things differently than most, who felt lost and hopeless as we turned to the bottle or a needle. We are a consortium of individuals who chose to go to extreme lengths to silence the world we don’t fit in. And now? We are stronger and wiser for have lived through the awful path of addiction, which kills most people it encounters.

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I mean no disrespect to those who have never struggled with addiction. I Just have more respect for those who failed miserably at silencing the deafening noise of the world through life-threatening substance abuse and are still alive to say now they know better.

Published by Cristo Rogers

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