A mother, a daughter, a sister, a girlfriend, an ex-wife...... rehabs, mental hospitals, psychologists, AA and a few beautiful years into my sobriety. This is my life, my daily life.....

Sunday, November 19, 2017

#11- Broken souls...

I came home from Hampton Behavioral with no boyfriend, no friends and no shoelaces. To be quite honest I probably wouldn’t have stuck around either. I could barely even stand myself and I rationalized it by thinking I would be better off alone. At least then I would only have to answer to myself.

I came home so doped up on anti-psychotic medications that I could barely remember my middle name. I managed to stay away from a drug or a drink for a few weeks. From what I can remember, this was probably the only time I was able to put together a few consecutive weeks of sobriety.

To pass the time and quiet my mind, I decided to get a second job. My master plan was to wear myself out, divert my thinking, earn extra money and then all of that would ultimately bring me happiness. I was hired as a waitress at the Cracker Barrel. I had enough sense to choose a restaurant that did not serve alcohol and I thought what kind of trouble could I get into serving corn bread and chicken fried chicken.

I was a terrible people-person. I would rather stub my toe on a metal bed-post than have a conversation with another human, let alone a stranger, so I am not exactly sure why I would think this would be the best job for me. This was also a family restaurant and I had the emotional warmth of an Arctic Hare.

I spent most of my time watching people. Not in a weirdo kind of way but I would always observe peoples behaviors, their mannerisms, their emotions. I would watch them and often wonder what my life would be like if I lived their lives. How happy they seemed to be laughing, smiling, giving and receiving affection. I would watch them live in that single moment. They probably went home and tucked their kids into bed, read them a story then watched movies and ate popcorn. They would wake every day to chirping birds, sunny skies and pancakes. I wanted all of that. I would just sit there with my bleeding heart just wishing to be someone else. I never felt that I would ever get that life. I always felt in my heart that my fate was in death and I would live this hell until the day I left this earth.

As an addict I can smell this illness a mile away. It is like we all have a connection. An unspoken dialect and we have this ability to seek each other out. I think it is in the eyes, I find truth in the saying that your eyes are a window to your soul.

So ultimately I found one, someone just like me, a wolf in sheeps clothing.

Her name was Brenda.

One night I ended up working a shift with her. I knew immediately what she had inside of her, just like she knew what was inside of me. If you met her you would have never thought that every time she went to the bathroom she became that wolf, in her sheeps clothing.

Naturally, we became friends. We would meet in the bathroom from time to time to grab a quick smoke in between tables. One morning in the midst of the morning rush she was fumbling through her cigarette pack for that butted out half smooke. As she pulled it out, a tiny folded up square fell out and onto the ground.

I knew exactly what it was before it even hit the floor. The wax paper square had a red stop sign stamped on it and a small amount of beige powder remained inside. I quickly picked it up off the floor and held it in my hand like as if it was a newborn puppy. Comforting it like it had a beating heart.

There you are I thought, I’ve been waiting for you.

Of course I would only snort it, like as if that made heroin use any classier. We all say that, almost every heroin addict I have ever met had said the same thing. We would never shoot it. We would never go to those lengths. Like as if we could be that small percentage to beat those odds. Just like every drug, over time it loses its power and you go on to pursue bigger and better things. Even if that meant sticking a needle into your hand, frantically poking around for that live pulsating vein.

From that day forward this would be the reason I would wake up every morning. The reason I would live, breathe and exist.  This would be my life partner, my lover, my best friend. This would be the essence of my life. I would be the hostage and it would be my captor and this monster made Alien look like Lamb Chop. My addiction had meet its match and this would be the beginning of the end.

Today, at times, I still think about her. I don’t know where she is or where her son is but I hope she is alive, that she has surrendered, that she has found the mortar to fill the cracks in her soul. I believe that day she was relieved of her secret, it was brought to life as it lie there on that cold bathroom floor. She was exposed, the jig was up and from my personal experience there is a sense of relief in disclosing your addiction. Giving it an existence outside of your head makes you feel less crazy internally.

Despite what that day has brought to my life I truly hope she has found her freedom.

I hope the real Brenda has been resurrected.


  1. HI Kim!
    I have a friend who was sober for a year.
    But he started drinking again.
    I see him on FB, his face flushed.
    I hope he is ok, as we so not meet anymore.

    I am so glad you found your way here, sober.

  2. We always want to help whenever we can. Just being there sometimes is enough.

  3. Funny how, when you meet a kindred spirit fighting similar battles, sometimes you don't even know how to verbalize how you feel.. But you both know.

  4. Exactly Nicole, it is a bittersweet comradery.