I’d like to start off by saying that I’m certainly grateful to be an addict. I was the type that fully admitted and accepted that i was one from the very beginning. My life was not traumatic what so ever. Nothing crazy triggered me to use. I was simply curious and naive. Looking back now I’ve noticed addictive behaviors that I had early on before my drug use. The instant gratification, the “control freak” mentality… The list can go on forever. The story starts off with the usual dabbling with alcohol and pot at the age of 15. I never thought I could get addicted to anything. I didn’t even know the true sense of being addicted to anything was. I did notice I enjoyed getting obliterated much of my time. Being sober was boring.
Once my drug of choice first entered my body at the age of 17 I knew it was home. I knew with my more laid back personality that the feeling it gave me was just what I’ve been looking for to “cure” my crippling anxiety and severe ADHD – still thinking I wouldn’t get addicted. Once I realized it was physically addicting, that’s where it got very serious. My friends found out when I admitted to them what I was doing. I didn’t have much shame. I honestly thought it was cool because I did a scarier drug than other people. They eventually made me choose between the drug and them. I figured well, I’d rather have my friends in my life than a drug, right? Wrong. I quickly relapsed. I became very talented at hiding it.
My addiction got more serious when my family found out I was intravenously using. They figured I could just put it down and be okay. I tried and quickly failed. Again, very talented at hiding it began another run where my morals started going out the window. That’s when the thought first came to my head – “why can’t I stop? My family would hate me… But I just love to get high.” Several attempts at convincing my parents I was clean worked until the 57th (that number is much exaggerated) time I got caught got me sent to Florida for treatment. My first time in treatment was here at The Watershed. I was new to the whole program. I barely even knew what impatient and outpatient was.
I figured I’d listen and see what it was all about. Sure enough my defiance got the best of me. I hated authority especially at a place that I voluntarily admitted myself to. I AWOL’ed, had a horrible experience and came back. AWOL’ed again at PHP (Partial Hospitalization Program) and went on a run. “I couldn’t stand the rules and the techs telling me what to do” is what I would tell my best friend. After 2 weeks of getting high and had another “realization” I DO have a severe drug problem, I came back to Boynton and stayed for another few weeks. I had not yet obtained a sponsor or worked steps in any way. My ego kicked in and said that 2 months in Florida was good enough and that I needed to get back to my mother and dogs that financially need me. Very quickly I fooled myself and relapsed a day after I got back to Long Island.
I went on a month and a half run, stole and sold everything in my home of value. My mother had called law enforcement on me to hopefully knock some sense into me and did. Jail had scared the crap out of me to the point where I begged to come back to Florida and do it for real this time… And it was the best decision I’ve ever made. Today I’m okay. I’m not perfect and I’m not miserable. I have not spoken to my mother or little sister, who I need to make serious amends to, since I left Long Island 4 months ago but that’s okay. I have things to work on. I stay in contact with my sponsor, I work the steps, I attend meetings, I pray to my Higher Power and I stick with the right people.
That’s what I need to stay clean and sober. I need structure. I need to be held accountable or else Erika is going to do what Erika wants all the time and eventually get high and die. I know what I want and I want to live life without having that constant miserable feeling in the abyss of my old black heart. So when I say I’m grateful to be an addict, I mean that I’m grateful because us addicts look at life from a whole different perspective that I’m sure normies would like to perceive. And I’m most certainly grateful that my Higher Power has given me another chance at life.