My name is Adam. I am an alcoholic and a drug addict. I, like many it seems, worked my way up the food chain. As I grew up, so did the marijuana plants around me. Due to legal ramifications I wont go in to any detail as to how this came to be. It was always played down to me as “just flowers”, or even better, “trees”. “Stay away from that spot in the basement, there are spiders and snakes.” Easy enough when I was young; but, as I grew older, my curiosity grew stronger. By the time I was 10 or 11 years of age, it was not far-fetched to put two and two together and realize that the pipe, the green stuff, and the lighter in the bathroom drawer added up to something that I would learn to love. I remember days when I was young, sneaking behind the garage, out to the woods, or down to the lake. Camping trips were always a delight between me and my friends. The Boy Scouts was just simply more fun when I was high. I’m honestly not sure how else I could have tolerated the quasi-military state that the troop we belonged to was acting as, but I won’t go there. To clarify that, when/if I ever do have children of my own, and if I have a son, he will probably be in the Scouts, nonetheless. This has become quite the autobiography for a blog that I’m not yet sure anyone will read lol. To move things forward a little bit, it should be said that I was very active in sports as a child. This eventually led to me wrestling for the school, which further led to me breaking a bone during a practice. I was written a prescription for Hydrocodone/Vicodin. I was in a great deal of pain at the time and legitimately asked my mother who was holding the prescription for another pill one day. I would venture to guess that the pill before it overlapped and I got to feeling that lovely warm tingly opiate buzz for the very first f***ing time. Hope I didn’t offend or turn anyone off there as I really will try to keep any swearing/cussing at a very low minimum and will personally edit it out at least. Moving forward. I loved it. That feeling of pure and utter magic that you found something that maybe no one knows about that will make every day special no matter what else is going on. I cant speak for everyone, but I know from the testimony of very many people, that this is a shared feeling. A relative of mine had undergone a surgery and was stockpiling bottles and bottles of medications. Let me make myself clear that this is as I said above in the “About” of this blog a baffling and cunning disease; however, I didn’t take anything that was being used. When I say stockpiling, I mean that this person upon later busting me admitted what I already knew of which I will go in to hear shortly. I didn’t have the slightest clue what I was getting myself into when I likened the last names of Hydrocodone to Oxycodone, etc. It was a quick jump to Oxycontin from Oxycodone. You know. They sound the same. They must feel similar; or, if I was lucky, even better. I stumbled across the payday, the moneybags, the anthill. We are talking 60 count bottles of 40mg Oxycontin, 500 count bottles of Vicodin, things that make you say, for lack of better words, holy s***. As a freshman in high school I was taking about 80mg of Oxycontin a day. Somehow managing to wean myself off, by the sophomore year I was doing a little better. Somehow never knew what being sick was yet. And I’m sure some of you out there can relate to that one. Junior year was off and on, but by summer I was living homeless as a 17 year old playing in a heavy metal band. My parents, “free spirits” as they may have been, weren’t going to put up with my “stuff” anymore. Yea, you like that? “Stuff” haha. Keeping it interesting here folks. Not trying to keep it interesting, keeping it interesting. Long story short, which I really cant even say with a true conscience at this point, but long story short, I get arrested at a Walmart for stealing clothes and food for what would have been my 13th successful run at it. Should be duly noted that I was also stealing energy drinks, condoms, and beer, for accuracy’s sake. Speaking of which, when I called to try and have my parents bail me out they were pretty pissed when they found that I wasn’t just stealing “food and clothes”. Onward and downward, I got shipped off to rehab after the decided to bail me out, which it’s worth a mention that this wasn’t until after I had been in a 7 on 1 fight and was beat to hell and back. I’m at 3 different rehabs over the course of a year. I come back, move out to my girlfriend’s house, get a job, go to community college, move on. NOT. I slip back, she brings me to a party, I have a few drinks, I smoke a little pot. I start smoking pot again. No huge deal. I’m a strong proponent against pot being a gateway drug. I smoked pot and drank for a few months, THEN decided I was going to go back to doing pills because I was going to school full time, and working a very labor intensive job 50+ hours a week that was making my entire body hurt A LOT. These are not good excuses. There are no good excuses in the world of addiction, just excuses. Read that twice if you didn’t get the point and are still with me here which is surprising because, yes, I do ramble. Yet again, moving on. We move out and into a crappy apartment with these racing guys that were studying Nascar as a career choice. It sucked. So, we finally got our own place where we had a nice little townhouse, my best friend in the entire world lived with us as a roommate. What more could you ask for right? Except that me and him had been getting into trouble with drugs since back in the Boy Scout days lol. Let’s just say our parents were more than pleased at our choices right now. But, I’m in college full time, working full time, who can complain? Me and C as I will call him got bad into the pills again, and into coke as I liked to use it occasionally before work/school as a pick-me-up (and at this moment I just realized I really should use more hyphens and parenthesis). Never got bad into coke but I wasted a lot of money with C doing pills. he had a s*** job and made s*** money and barely paid s*** money towards our rent. I just kept him around because I loved him. My girlfriend, who we will call B, who I loved to death, was also fond of C in a strictly friend way. I never thought about it but we had A B and C. Adam, B and C. Anyway, I remember the day vividly that C an I were with one of my friends, P, who is a little bit older and somehow we made it to the park in our area. We had Oxycodone 30mg blues as they are called, or more infamously as Roxis. For whatever reason I don’t know, but we had purchased a pack of needles and were going to have P instruct us on how to do this for the very first time. Lucky us, right? well P, being the good guy he is, warned us before, and I have to give him credit for this because he did say it, that “if you do this, this way, it will never be the same again, and YOU will never be the same again.” A solid warning. It, for whatever reason, only served to make me want to do it more. You know the forbidden fruit, right? He hits me, then hits C. I’m not going to tease you with the details because those of you that have been there have been there, and those that haven’t, DON’T. And I really, really, really beg of you not to. But, that was the beginning of the end as they say. I’ll shorten this love story and tell you that I moved on to shooting every one of the drugs I could. Mostly opiates. But, like most, I eventually ran out. Ran dry. Couldn’t find anything. I then found out what it is to be sick. To not have pain pills when you have been doing them for a while. The withdrawals. Whatever you want to call it. A junkie’s worst nightmare. One of the worst things in the world. Just an overall bad, bad thing. It sucks. “Sucks a golf ball through a garden hose.” You shake, you shiver, you are hot, you sweat, then you are cold, you s***, you are miserable, your skin crawls, your legs are restless, your whole body is restless, your body aches, you want to scream out, you do scream out, but it doesn’t help. And then someone who isn’t even worth naming with a letter came along and said, “Hey, I’ve got some black tar, it’s the same stuff basically.” Which he isn’t far off. It is, in essence, the same stuff. It’s all bad. In my humble opinion, opiates, period, are the worst drug known to man other than possibly bath salts. But, I was out of pills, couldn’t find any, and was desperate. So, I figured literally to myself, “If I just wet this black tar down and snort it, at least I’m not shooting it, I won’t let myself be a junkie like that.” WRONG. It was only a matter of time before I realized that the dope man was more steady than my pill connects and I started down that long, treacherous road. Snorting it became shooting it. Black tar became china white. I was hopelessly addicted. I would wake up at 7 in the morning, do a shot, get back in bed with my beautiful girl who I truly did love more than anything, and then she would go to work. I had already graduated college. I had quit my job. I was hustling weed for a living and was damn good at it I might add. One bag of dope a day turned into two. That turned into two shots of two bags a day. Then two shots of three bags. Then 3 shots of 3 bags. 4 shots of 4 bags. Half a gram of china white 5 times a day. That’s 2.5 grams a day. I watched as friends dropped liked flies. Sad isn’t the word for it. Pathetic becomes the nature when you have people saying when you get back to the house with your dope, look at how much he is doing you’ll never believe it. They would “nod off” and I would sit there after half gram shots and be pissed about the way they would react to one bag of dope after I did 5 in one shot. 5 times a f***in day. I had a $500 a day habit and the worst part about the scenario was that I would tell myself every morning on the ride to the city that “it would last me the next couple days for sure” and I would f***ing believe it. I had a friend that describes it now as he could have passed a lie detector test the way he lied to himself and that is absolutely the way I behaved. I would 100% believe the bulls*** that I was telling myself every morning (and I do apologize for the language). I’d think that in my head but in reality I would do it all and save a shot for the next morning. Every single time. Finally my girlfriend would get tired of waking up in the morning banging on the bathroom door asking to come in to get ready for work and I would reply “hold on a minute”, “almost done”, etc. I would borrow hundred of dollars from her and because I was doing what I was hustling I would always pay her back but there came times when she eventually had to drive me to the city on her day off to score and park at the nearest Taco Bell to wait while I went in and “used the bathroom”. She left me after 6 years and that is a loss I will never forget, never get over, and never replace. I wanted to marry this girl, but I let a stupid habit get in the way. My addiction, in the end, was stronger than the ties that bound our relationship whether I liked it or not. Yes, I may have said, “I’ll go to a 30 day rehab and I swear I will quit,” or, “I’ll do anything,” but in the end it didn’t f***ing matter. She was gone. And so was I. For the next few months I tried to kill myself with that dope. Hoping God or something would take me away the easy way, but it never happened. I’ve tries Methadone. I’ve Tried Suboxone/Subutex. I’ve Tried Psychiatry/Psychology, Counseling, Rehab, NA, AA. Eventually, I started to look and listen to my surroundings and realized that even without the love of my life, my life was still worth living. To this day I still miss her. I still have regrets. Trust me when I say that. There are many things I couldn’t write in this entry for fear of legal reprisal and moral compromise. But know that I am just like you. I gave up everything for nothing in the end. And now I am giving up nothing for everything in the beginning. Thank you from the bottom of my heart if you took the time to read this. I will continue this blog in the hopes that if I can help just one person struggling like I am today to stay sober each and every day, that it will be a success. Every day is a struggle, but every day is also a victory.