from Hazeldon Betty Ford Foundation.
Saturday, June 8, 2019
Today’s Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:
Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. — Rachel Carson
Beauty is everywhere. It is in the daisies, in the lavender wildflowers, in the new green grass of spring. As we walk through life, noticing such beauty strengthens us. It reminds us of the spiritual creative force alive in this world. On better days, we can feel our own creativity gaining power from such beauty. On harder days, nature’s sunset can help us step out of our suffering for a moment to be comforted and inspired by its splendor.
Even storms, in their wild and angry way, show us a power greater than ourselves. Such awesome beauty is beyond our understanding, and yet it is part of the earth we live on.
What lessons will nature teach me today?
clean.dopefiend: I needed to be reminded that 1. I’m not alone and
2. continuing to try again and again is the making of success. I know I’ll get there, I wish I wasn’t making it so hard on myself. and 3. finding the beauty in life is a positive step toward healing.
Today I will take my daughter out to walk in the rain and appreciate the purity and beauty of the earth being washed anew. We will intentionally seek out three positive takeaways from the experience that we wouldn’t and likely couldn’t have learned if we’d stayed inside.
Forcing myself to spend time awake and involved in my day.
My body craving sleep and pulling me toward hibernation.
I fight it.
Day 2 I felt fine for most, worked an extra 3 hours and only fell out toward the end. Just my friendly coworker noticed and brought me back to focus without consequence. Thankful. Grateful. Stayed awake the rest of the day hit NA and fought with my internet. Finally giving in to the desperate hold of sleep when Alex pulled me in for a hug that I kept embracing until morning rung.
Day 3 only a 3 hour workday (they asked for extra, I couldn’t give) sick to my stomach, just an ache that wouldn’t amount to releasing anything but threatened insistently. My head burst intermittently when I moved just so, and just so was not consistent to any one movement it was just so. Boss bought breakfast thought I wouldn’t, then I did and so worth it. I hadn’t eaten in days probably a big cause of my haze. Thankful. Grateful. Full. Got home and gave in, let sleep win. Overcome with comfortable ease of nothing I didn’t make NA, skipped treatment too, called in and said I had the flu. Fever! don’t make us sick, yeah I’m not slick she knew I wasn’t. Got my ass up to go see my girl sing in her school choir performance. Spent the whole time searching the sea of young little faces and none belonged to me. Listened and waited and left with confusion, tried her dad’s phone to no resolution. Later she called and we figured it out – she’d been standing too low for my shortness to account. Moral being that I’m glad I’m kicking my own ass out of hibernation and not letting life just pass. Cause even though we didn’t see one another she was just overjoyed that I’d been there to support her. These moments we can’t get back and of which I’ve missed too many.
I’m interrupting this cycle and taking away my excuses, its taking real effort and not even about using. I only have a tiny smidge of craving that gets stamped out with thoughts I’m reframing. None of this is meant to be a complaint or a whine – just putting my experience out there so anyone in need can see it is hard as hell but we can be set free.
Today is the day
To make a change
To take a chance
To leap with faith
To keep my mind safe
To ask for help
To task my.self
Allay all doubt today
They said it works.
I read it works.
I tried my way.
They provide my way.
Nothing to lose
Unless I choose
Again to use
And induce self-abuse
I’m doing recovery for keeps NOW.
Will I stay clean?
According to them [N.A./A.A. people] so long as I’m working my program I will succeed
Almost finished with my step 1
So thankful for the welcoming fellowship in both of the programs [N.A./A.A.] and I am greatly enjoying meetings.
Attending NA & AA daily if work allows
Actively searching for a sponsor
[the woman I asked today has all the sponsees she can handle but said I can call anytime]
Working the steps and doing the work with N.A. Step Working Guides
Maybe not this time.
Hell with the roll I’ve been on probably nothing to be worried about, right.
Of course I’m the chosen one and that means I’m bullet proof.
Which is the belief of every person that goes back out.
Not gonna happen to me. I KNOW what I’m doing.
I’m safe – I don’t use heroin anymore, I smoke meth.
No one OD’s smoking meth, you fall asleep before being able to.
I’m not shooting it when I relapse, THAT would be scary.
“If it is on the internet then it must be true,” Abraham Lincoln.
I got my information from what I’d been told by other users and my internet “research” but when I took another look without trying to get the answer I wanted to hear I found a much darker reality:
In 2017 over 10,000 overdose deaths occurred from the use of Psychostimulants (most common being methamphetamine) and while, yes many of these OD deaths also included an Opioid involvement, over 5,000 of the 10,000+ were caused solely by Psychostimulants.
I don’t know how to produce my drug of choice or my drug of second choice.
Even if I did I wouldn’t be able to tell you exactly what was in what I’d be picking up to use.
I play Russian Roulette with my sanity and mental acuity every time I take a hit.
And say I were to get a batch that amps my system up higher and faster than the “usual,” which I’ve experienced, I could cause my heart to explode.
Methamphetamine overdoses cause heart attacks, strokes and comas and frequently psychosis with or without the physical ailments.
I know this and I still convince myself that it wouldn’t happen to me.
Especially because it has happened to me, and I barely made it back.
We convince ourselves that the people who OD and/or die from drug abuse fucked up, it was their own fault, and we know better. But we’re still using, so apparently we don’t.
OD on Me.
oops… my bad
So my scariest overdose, yes there is more than one to choose from, during my stint using heroin I didn’t even experience. When you use heroin the idea is to get high right? You’re pushing yourself to the brink of overdose every time you shoot the poison into your veins.
I don’t care how attune you are to your use, how well you know your amounts, your tolerance, any measurement you use regularly could be your last if the chemicals react wrong that time.
For me I simply used too much of something stronger than I was used to.
It was the first time I was shooting up without the guy that had introduced me to this devil dance setting up my amount but I had his best friend doing the honors and we went with less than what my usual dose was. I was so excited for oblivion, I didn’t think twice before fully expending the entirety of my rig into my bloodstream.
Immediately I felt the warm embrace of my dark mistress and the intensity continued to rise until I lost the ability to speak, or move, my eyes wouldn’t stay open. I was free floating in the blackest of black engulfing whatever was left of my being, I’d lost all connection to my body and while I desperately wanted to find where it had gone the soothing blackness was lulling me deeper into the abyss. I felt an aching fear that I was lost and not in control of me, of where I was or was going. I have been blown (incredibly, intensely high where you have to keep hold of something inside of you to bring you back to reality eventually) out of my mind numerous times when I thought I’d lost my grip but this time there had not been anything to hold on to.
For what felt like an eternity I floated in the nothingness that the enticing blackness had become. I knew I needed to find my something to hold onto to get back. Back to.. my girls a snippet of what felt like thought and then nothing. No tether. “My girls” meant less and less to whatever processing I was clinging to. I felt nothing at all.
Almost fully succumbed to whatever total enmeshment that felt less and less when everything turned white and spun so fast if I’d had a stomach still I would have been sick for sure. I feel something with my being, almost like something slipping through my fingers. The enormity of emotions I experienced realizing I’d found my connection, my hold onto to get back intangible way back.
While I felt so close to what I was yearning for by instinct my thoughts and feelings swirled in some mush that felt muddied and indistinct.
I desperately wanted to make sense of the murky swirls and an overwhelming sense of dread overtook all of my focus.
Noise! Just realizing that it had been more than silent during my experience the incomprehensible moaning got faster, frantic. I was feeling the sound more than hearing it and the cloudy froth was in all of my senses.
As though I’d been snapped into place, a searing burn erupted in my lungs and I physically felt all my extremities go from numb to pins and needles in a wave. It was as though my whole body was experiencing the sensation of “waking up” like if my foot had fallen asleep. It was the best worst sensation to be able to be reconnected with my body but the pins and needles phenomenon intensifying in all the wrong places.
My lung was still inflamed and I felt like I had the worst heartburn bubbling up and roiling making bile sear my throat as I painfully swallowed gulps of air that intensified the burning in my chest. It was excruciating and uncomfortable but my eyes opening and seeing shapes and fuzz and knowing that I was real and whole again dulled my pain as my senses were flooded with circuitry.
Slowly I began to comprehend what was going on around me. My head lolled half in, half out of the passenger window of my car as the wind whipped by. The pain in my body was again numbed but this time it was because I was so cold, shaking, shivering, and soaking wet with ice cold water.
The car jerked and whipped my head and neck to have a view of the driver’s side of the, apparently speeding, Honda Civic. We hit another jaunt in the road and I found out I was not seat-belted in as flew forward in my seat coming to rest sideways on the floor.
“Oh shit, Lyric, you’re back!” Josh whooped as he jerked the car around the cul-de-sac pulling into Colby’s driveway. I didn’t have any recollection of having left the bedroom.
Come to find out I immediately slumped over and stopped breathing after I stopped being able to speak. Instead of calling an ambulance Colby and Josh carried my unconscious, not breathing body out to the car and propped me up against it. Then they proceeded to drench me with the hose in 30 degree weather. I .. don’t know, why. I think the idea was to shock my system into forcing me to breathe. The explanation as to why no ambulance was called and why I was hurdled off property was also never articulated.
After the hose down Josh says he thought I was breathing but he couldn’t totally tell and he had to take me away from the house so he loaded me into the passenger seat and hoped the wind in my face would help me…possibly breathe or come to? I don’t think Josh had a clue what he was going for but panic set in for him when I started turning a bluish white in the face. I think he probably disagreed with his earlier assessment that the hose had gotten me breathing again.
So that is why he was whipping my car around the neighborhood all jerkily – to try to jolt me awake or breathing or … pretty much he was expecting me to die and had no clue what to do.
I was cold and couldn’t shake the cobwebs from my brain.
“That might’ve been too much for me,” I chuckled at a mortified looking Josh.
“It was way stronger than we expected and when I went to stop you from doing the whole thing I was too late and you stopped breathing.”
I knew to always test the waters before doing the entire shot. I knew that. I just didn’t that time. I always made sure. Except that time I didn’t.
Yeah I know I was warning of methamphetamine overdoses and this was a heroin OD but I got vivid flash backs and had to share, I remember the experience like it just happened, clearer now it seems.
This was my worst overdose and I’d love to say that I got scared, I took better precaution (wouldn’t make a difference anyway), I quit or at least slowed down, but it may as well have not occurred with the way I did nothing to prevent it happening again.
Broke my bRain, goed iNsaNe
yet I still dabbLe in that methamphetamine…
“Jesus was calling me, telling me to rid myself of all things but me.”
“Did he say no clothes though … or was that maybe a little of your own interpretation?”
“You’re such an asshole.”
“It really made all sorts of sense in the moment.”
“So you started dropping stuff all the way at the other end and at random all along the way?”
“I don’t like to make things easy, do I?”
….to be continued…