So I have never really talked about my problems with substances and drugs with anyone in depth. I most certainly haven’t even talked about it with my husband. So this post may come as a shock to even him. Please remember that this is once again my experience and does not speak for all addicts.
So I can say that my troubles with substances started at a young age. I don’t even think that I was in middle school yet when I started to have problems. Which you would think that someone who had just gone through the D.A.R.E program would have been deterred from going down the path that I was about to take. My parents were good parents and they wanted to believe the best in their child. However, I did want I had to, to cover my own self and not to bring about the trouble that I figured would be given to me if I confessed. My parents kept their alcohol in a closet in our basement. My parents weren’t big drinkers, actually it think most of that alcohol ended going to my brother after he turned 21 and moved out. The most I ever remember my parents drinking was when I was little was when my grandmother would come to visit from Evergreen Park and they would have I believe a 7&7. Don’t quote me on that because I only remember the drink contained 7-Up and a brown liquor. Although I can still tell you how to make them for my mom and grandma. They would drink them out of these McDonald’s glasses that we had. There were three ice cubes in each, my mom had the brown liquor to the middle of the arches and my grandmother to the top and then fill with 7-Up. Why I remember this I don’t know. Especially since I can’t remember the last time I actually made one for either or them.
So my parents had an array of liquor in this closet. I honestly can’t tell you what most of it was. But I can tell you that my favorite one was in a square glass bottle that was dark in color. And it was mint flavored because it reminded me of mouthwash. I also fell in love with Peppermint Schnapps that was in the freezer in the basement. So I had my first taste of alcohol somewhere between 5th and 6th grade. Every once in a while I would sneak downstairs when no one was home and take a sip here and there. Then when I was in 6th grade was the first time I cut myself. I remember it like it was yesterday. I was on a three-way call at the time and I was in the basement. I picked up a pair of semi-dull scissors and started slowly sawing. I would continue this throughout high school.
Sometime in middle school, I discovered Mike’s Hard Lemonade. This would become my drink of choice for most of my life. However, I couldn’t always get a hold of it so I have a fondness for any hard liquor that is clear. I hate anything brown. I started smoking cigs my freshman year of high school. I wouldn’t give that up until my late 20s for good. I tried quitting many times over the years but didn’t quit for good until the last year or so. So now I have a second major event happen in my life on September 13, 2002. This leads me to meth. So for the next few months I am using it to just make it through school. I am sure a couple of my teachers suspected something was up but I was never confronted about it.
My parents had attempted to get me psychological help since the first major event in my life in 7th grade. However, I never truly trusted anyone they had me see and well I have been diagnosed with everything under the sun. I still have doctor’s trying to change my diagnosis because they want to shove some new pill down my throat. Well I used meth until I couldn’t afford it without raising suspicion. So I then went back to alcohol. Because of my experience when people tell me that weed is a gateway drug and will laugh and call them a liar. Sorry to burst your bubble but I refused to touch weed until I was older and only then did it because I wanted something to escape what I was feeling and didn’t know where to go to get what I wanted. So for the rest of high school, I drank to deal with my issues. I also supplied it to my friends if they wanted it.
After high school and during my first serious relationship is when I was first exposed to weed. Both him and I had a history with drug use but it didn’t phase either of us. We didn’t get high a lot because he was on probation. However, after I got pregnant and he got off probation things changed. He wanted to get high more often and I had just had the baby so I didn’t feel it was appropriate. Well things between him and I ended and well other things occurred and the demons inside me decided that it was time to come to the surface again. I couldn’t fight them and keep them down any longer. I had met my first husband who had his own issues with addiction. (If I gloss over parts about him, it is not because I am trying to hid anything. I just don’t feel right speaking ill of the dead). We were trouble for each other but we didn’t really care. We loved each other in a twisted and co-dependent way. So we got married and toxicity prevailed. We both drank and smoked weed. Things in my life spiraled out of hand and yes I had a kid and I should have put her first. I feel horrible guilt about it every day and I am trying to make it right every day. We lived with my parents so they helped with my daughter. I was there every morning with her, and there isn’t a moment I wasn’t with her. I just was not always in my right mind. I would like to add that I was never irresponsible and drove a vehicle while impaired with her in it.
Well my mom died on February 6, 2009 and it was horrible. I didn’t cope well at all. And of course my first husband, John, has lost his parents years ago and it reminded him of losing his mom. So John didn’t cope well either. So things with us was up and down. You never which version of us you were going to get each day. John and I tried to our acts together which worked for a few month until his best friend died. That’s when things became their darkest. Two weeks after his friend died, John died. I couldn’t handle anything anymore. Of course I didn’t have the greatest influences in my life and well at that point I just didn’t care any more. I traded for drugs or alcohol. I didn’t care I just didn’t want to feel any more. I wanted it all just to disappear. I headed for rock bottom and fast. This is when I met the person that would change my life for the better. I met my husband, Jason, on October 24, 2009. Things have not been easy for him. I was going to go to rehab when I met him. Which I was completely honest about on our first date. I nearly OD’ed on him within the first month of dating. I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease in the first six months of dating. Was in and out of the hospital for the next 6 months. He and I both had surgery with in the first two years of being together. I didn’t listen to him and got myself in a bad incident. This lead to the last time I used drugs. He had always told me that if I ever used again he would leave. He had hoped that it would help keep me sober. I was so afraid to tell him I had relapsed.
I have given him so many reasons to leave. And yet this wonderful man has stuck by my side through it all. He takes all my bitchiness when I can’t cope. He deals with it even when I refuse to talk about it and try to push him away. We have been together for 5 years (married for 3) and there are not enough words to express how grateful I am that he loves me and will spend the rest of his life with me. By no means is our life or marriage perfect. We are flawed and have issues. But no matter what we are in it for life. Ride or Die, it’s just the way we are. Without him, I wouldn’t be here right now writing this. I wouldn’t have another daughter, who in her own right is amazing. I would be here to see my mini me do all the amazing things she does and is learning and growing up to be such a wonderful replica of me. I wouldn’t have an awesome mother-in-law that helps deal with Jason, when I just can’t sometimes. I have my dad who is a great support and wonderful to his grandkid. I may not always get along with my sister-in-law or my father-in-law but I definitely know they have my back when I need them. Not to leave out my husband’s step-parents, Paul is a wonderful person, who makes me laugh a lot, even if he is a Bears fan. And Sylvia, has introduced me to some of my most favorite characters in books that I have been able to pass along to others.
I know that without having the experiences that I have had, I would not have the wonderful life I have now. And again, I don’t claim to be perfect, nor do I have it all together or figured out. But I wouldn’t trade my life for anyones.