The one thing that has always been there for me is Heroin. I started dabbling with it when I was 17, then pretty much quit for about 5yrs., after I move to the beach. Then I moved back to the D.C. area I got re-acquainted with it really quick, and have been in love ever since.
I’ve lost many friends, and had my heart broken over and over, but heroin(except when I’m broke or sick) has been there to help pull me through it all. That is what always makes it so hard to quit. It’s like breaking up with someone that you know you can always go back to.
I can’t even count the number of people that have tried to get me to quit, mostly through guilt. Knowing in my heart the whole time I had no intentions of quitting. Of coarse, I would try to get clean. I’ve been through so many different treatment, and no of them worked. I mean how could it? Sobriety is something you have to want, not something you are forced to do!!
I mean there were a couple of times that I put myself in treatment. Don’t get me wrong though, it wasn’t to get clean. For the most part it was because my habit was getting too expensive and I had to cut back, so I would go into treatment. I would get clean and start all over again. Sound crazy? Well, not to me!! I have never been able to picture a life without heroin. I have never wanted to be completely clean. It just makes my life totally worthless!!
In 2007, my life took a horrible turn. I lost my job, because my boss wanted to build a house for his sister. The whole job was a nightmare and we ended up losing our steady jobs. Of coarse after that happened, who is going to hire a person with an addiction. Even though getting high only effected my working abilities once, finding a job is almost impossible. I could of tried to keep it secret, but having to wear long sleeve shirts in the summer is a dead give away. Not to mention, I am horrible when it comes to finding work. Most of the jobs I have had have been given to me. Which explains why I have an Associates Degree in computer technology, but I am a really good Carpenter. Finding work for me is really hard, but I will say that once I start a job, I usually am one of the top workers, no matter what the job is. I have no problem picking up a broom and doing work most people would consider remedial. My philosophy is the work has to be done and someone has to do it, so instead of complaining, just get it done!!! I try to never say no when it comes to people asking me to work. No matter how difficult it is. I have always loved to learn, most people are stuck in their ways and think they know what is right. My attitude is, I can always learn something new, even if it is someone not as experienced, there is always something they might do differently. I would say it is one of my strongest qualities. That and loyalty
So after that happened I couldn’t afford to support my habit anymore. I had no choice but to start back on methadone, I haven’t worked since. There are the occasional days that I am able to get high. On these days, I can accomplish everything.
I have spent the last 4 months weening myself off of the methadone, I am now down to 5mg!!! I am coming off 1mg every week, and believe me, I feel every MG. To me it is worth it. I still find myself messing around though, even though it is not at all on a schedule or planned, I manage to indulge in heroin about once or twice a month, if that. I have just realized that America will never start a Heroin Assisted Treatment Program and the only way I can stay off of methadone, is to stay away from everything. I mean, the whole process of getting high, from waiting around, to getting bad stuff, to dealing with the police is just not worth the happiness I experience when I get high. I just have to except that I am never going to be able to achieve that happiness again. The only alternative, is to move to a country which has these programs. I have even had counselors tell me that I need to do this.
It took me a long time to realize that the majority of people have no understanding of drugs. Trying to explain that my life would be 100% better if I could be medical administered heroin, just sounds crazy to most people. The honest and most sobering realization that I have had, was the fact that people would rather see me miserable and completely useless, rather than happy and on heroin. I realize the whole concept is one that sounds to most people like an excuse, but in my case it is the truth.
The truth of the matter is(and I am not bragging), that I never was a bad person on heroin. I know the stereo-type about junkies is that they can’t be trusted and they have lost all their morals. This simply is the opposite with me, heroin actually let me be a better person. I worked hard for my habit!! I opened up more and even found a closer relationship with God. It made me realize that I didn’t need other drugs(especially Alcohol, which by the way is ten times worse and I despise) because I was content with life and finally normal for once in my life.
Since I have been weening off of methadone and not really getting high at all, I have noticed a big difference. I no longer go to church every Sunday, I no longer care as much about myself. I guess it is just something I have to get use to and except. Because, believe me, I want (for once in a very long time) to be free. If someone asks me to go somewhere, I want the option to go. I haven’t left the D.C. area in over a decade!! So I guess the bottom line is… this time, I am not only quitting so I can get high again, this time I am just plain quitting!!!
In Dec. of 2011, I was watching the new karate kid, I know, it sounds funny, but there is one part of the movie where Jackie Chan says “You’ve taught me that life can knock you down, but you can choose to get back up.” For some reason that line stuck with me. I decided right then and there to get off of methadone. I haven’t left the D.C. area(well except to go to Baltimore for dope) since 1999, I went to the beach with my girlfriend at the time.Believe me, I brought a lot of dope and was still sick on the way home. The only other time I left was to go to Western Maryland for my Aunts funeral, once again, I brought plenty of dope, even though I was only gone for a day. The day I was watching the new Karate Kid, it dawned on me, I want to be free!! I can’t even count the times someone has asked me to go to the beach or something and I didn’t even think about it. I had excepted my fate. Then one line in a movie changed everything. I went in an told my counselor, I wanted to get off of methadone. I knew from past experiences it would be a long process, but when I started back at the clinic I told her I want to get off of this quick, I want to be out of here in a couple of months…Here it is 4 1/2 years later and I’m still not off. In Dec. I started coming down 2mg a week. It’s been going pretty good.Now I’m down to 9mg, but I had to cut back to 1mg a week, and I’m fighting it the whole way. Now that I am down so low, I can feel each milligram, but I am going to push on. In Jan., the best thing that could have happened to me, did!! I got a new computer. I haven’t stopped since. I don’t even watch TV anymore, if I am awake, I am on this computer. It started out with my music, first I tried out Fl Studio, the demo version does everything but record(which I can export into a free program). Then I wanted to just practice playing my bass and guitar(Even though my arm is messed up and I can’t hold a pick, I still have my fingers and I always dropped picks back when I could hold one so I got use to playing without one.)so I started looking into getting an interface for my computer. I did some wheeling and dealing and got one(I found a place that took small payments-Thank you sweetwater).I haven’t stopped since. Next came my artwork, I was looking at all my sketchbook, and thought I need to get these uploaded. I went online and boom, wallmart had one for $25. I was so excited. So I started looking into photoshop, the best part about most programs is they’ll give you a free trial(I’ve gone through 4 different music programs) and a lot of them have have similar freeware, that is so awesome. Because, I haven’t worked in 4 1/2 yrs. Then one day, I was thinking, maybe I’ll just scan my poetry books, I have about 6 of them. Then it came to me, there has to be a site somewhere for poetry. Sure enough, all poetry.com was right there. A while back,in 2010, I started copying my poems onto a disk so I could have them. All I had to do was cut and paste. I uploaded 33 poems in one day. While I was doing that it dawned on me,I have 9 chapters of a book I was writing back in 2010(but it didn’t go very far) about addiction. I knew I was dying and thought if i write a book about why addiction is what it is and the things that can be done, maybe after I am gone, someone else will be helped and can avoid this pain. So here it is March, I started making new music, new writings(including this), and new artwork, I absolutely love photoshop. Oh yeah, I almost forgot about learning how to do videos on my computer screen with a hypercam. That made my new music not only audible, but visible too. Add in a couple photoshopped pictures and I’m going somewhere. This whole digital thing is absolutely awesome to me, I can’t get enough, I want to learn everything. I even started dabbling in moving logos and 3D animation, but that is a whole new project that will take a lot of time to learn. I even made my own website. It took about three days to get right(12hrs straight each day), I must of changed it a hundred times already. I just can’t believe it’s only been 2 1/2 months and I’ve accomplished more in that little time frame than I have in 15yrs.!! The sky is the limit and I plan on climbing to the top!!