I was never the type to chase a guy. Things with Aiden were going pretty well. So, I didn’t really have too.
But then, things took a turn. Not yet though. There was still some time in-between. But when it all came to a head —it’s like; how did I not see this coming?
Because we were getting high nearly every other day. But I was getting away with it, which made it all seem OK.
As if me not getting caught justified our addict behavior. It didn’t. I see that now. I was in over my head. But I couldn’t understand that back then.
Even if I did —because I’m pretty sure that’s the case, I simply wouldn’t let myself go there. I remember living with this awful feeling in the pit of my stomach. My anxiety hit like a permanent hot flash. The truth struck like a chain of explosives. Was today the day? The day my mom would decide to drug test me? That was yet to be determined. Because I wasn’t sure how long I could keep everything up. It’s just, I knew I couldn’t call it quits either. Like I said, in over my head.
Last we spoke, me wanting to get high had turned into a full-blown relapse. Because once I started, I quite literally couldn’t stop, which is around the time I lost control. Because that’s just it. I had the will to do good but not the power. I mean, how can you stay sober when the guy you’re seeing always wants to get high? Because relationships are hard enough. They carry enough shit on their own. But when you add in maintaining your sobriety while trying to maintain a healthy relationship —well, it’s nearly impossible for you to do both.
So that’s where I was at. I was failing. Failing hard.
If you remember from my last post, I decided to move back home after finishing the program at that long-term Christain rehab. I guess I did one thing right. So yeah, I was trying to start over. I was trying to stay clean. From what you just read though, I’m sure you can see I wasn’t doing a good job. When I reconnect with an old friend, she and I get high. From there, I meet Aiden who also got high. Like me, he had just returned home from his rehab equivalent —which meant, he was failing too.
Aiden and I both lived with our mothers who thought we finally got it together. As if we wanted this thing called recovery. Nope. All lies. We did and said what we had too. Because if our family knew what we were really up too, like what the two of us were doing —well, they would have forbidden us from seeing each other. Which is why I was so adamant about keeping everything up. Because I loved this kid. And it seemed like he loved me too. Because if you cut out the bullshit —like all the lies, we were pretty good together.
That’s when I saw a side of Aiden I never wanted to see again.
But let’s back up a second.
At this point, I’ve been home for a little over a month. Living under my mom’s roof meant there were certain rules I was supposed to follow —one of them being church. I end up finding a pretty cool one that she made me go to every Sunday. Since I spent nearly an entire year of my life at church (because we legit had five and a half hours of bible study every single day), it was kind of comforting. So yeah, that was one request I didn’t have to argue with it. Plus, I was the one who picked it. Because the whole point of me going was so I’d want to want to go back. And I did.
I remember thinking that my first time there. I remember walking into the room where services were held and looking at this over-sized stage with a hue of blue and purple lights everywhere. I was digging the whole vibe. On top of the stage sat a bunch of instruments. Because it wasn’t your standard Amazing Grace praise and worship. They played Christian contemporary shit. Because it was a contemporary type of place. Non-denominational to be exact —on the other side of town.
And then the band started.
Instantly, it felt like I was transported to some type of rock concert. I mean that in the best way. Because I’m Jewish. That’s how I was raised. So I’m not your typical churchie. But I’ve always been spiritual. And I’ve always loved music. There’s just something about it that sparked something in me. For once, I was happy my mom made me come. Then the actual service started. I remember having to take my glasses out of my purse. I needed a closer look. Because there was another guy on stage beside the pastor talking. It couldn’t be. Oh my GOD. It is.
Turns out, my freaking junior prom date and high school crush was one of the directors. He was the other guy. After seeing him, it felt like yeah. This is where I’m supposed to be. Not because I wanted to date him or anything like that. He’s happily married. And I liked someone else. It was more so that someone I knew was here. What are the odds? It felt like GOD was trying to tell me something. So the service ends and I decide to stay a bit longer. I was making my way to the front. I had to say hi. I think I was a little nervous. I mean, it’s so random. But then he sees me.
And I see him smile as he waves me over.
Apparently, he remembered me better than I thought he would. Because this is when he screams, “Macey!!!!” from across the way. He says, “I can’t believe it’s you,” as we meet up and hug. We small talk for a few when he invites me to this weekly adult group thing —something new the church just started. I end up going to a few. Unfortunately, though, it was short lived. Because I show up high and fall asleep in the freaking bathroom. The details of it aren’t important. I’m just trying to paint a picture.
Because the cards in place were set up for me to succeed.
I was supposed to succeed. But I wouldn’t. I couldn’t. Because eventually, I stop going. I stopped doing a lot of shit. Because drugs are like that.
According to my mom though, I was an active member. That was only because I’d tell her I was going to church or I have a church something —when really, I was getting high with Aiden. So yeah, that’s what it’s like living a double life. It’s just, the thrill of the chase —we’ve all been there, made it all seem worth it. He was intoxicating, infuriating, and more than anything —mine. Like when he’d kiss me; he’d make me feel like nothing else mattered. I was safe and somehow, everything would be okay.
Truth is, he wasn’t someone I could actually depend on.
And I was anything but alright. Let’s say another few weeks go by. And now, it’s a random Saturday afternoon. I just woke up and after making some coffee, I hop into the shower. A few minutes after that, I hear a sound coming from my nightstand —where my phone sat charging. I must have run from the bathroom to my bedroom naked. I figured it was Aiden. And I couldn’t miss his call. Plus, I was home alone. My mom was probably at the gym. She always was during this time on the weekends.
So I knew I could talk openly without pretending it wasn’t him. Because we had plans to chill. But not until later. And so, I needed to tell him where to pick me up. Because I didn’t want my mom knowing who I was hanging out with. She’d ask questions I wasn’t prepared to answer. Because I was allowed to have a life —just not the life I was currently living. Luckily, I had just gotten this super sweet babysitting gig that just so happened to be right down the street. Like I could walk there.
It was literally five minutes away.
We lived in the same freaking development. It was perfect. Because now, I’d have a permanent cover story for whenever I was doing something I shouldn’t have been doing. And also because I didn’t have a car anymore. The C280 Mercedes I used to drive got taken away after my first stint in rehab. I recently learned while I was there, it actually got repossessed (definitely saw that one coming). I guess my dad wasn’t staying up on the payments. Since no one was driving it, it seemed pointless to throw money at it. That was a sad day. I loved that thing.
When I could get myself there, I didn’t hate it. In fact, I enjoyed it. I loved listening to everyone speak. It was nice hearing that I wasn’t the only one obsessed. Because when you’re in the thick of it, like active addiction, drug cravings will consume you. If you’ve never been addicted before, it might be difficult to understand what a craving feels like. To get an idea, imagine you’ve gone a really long time without eating. You’re extremely hungry, faint and weak. It’s too much to handle and you can’t focus on anything else.
When you’re that hungry, all you can do is think about your favorite foods. You might even be able to smell and taste that succulent burger or juicy steak. And if you get hungry enough, nothing will stop you from eating the damn food —pending it’s available. Because as soon as you consume whatever piece of wonderful food you’d been thinking about so passionately, you feel satisfied. A drug craving is somewhat similar, however, it’s sharper, stronger and way more intense. Because you’re never satisfied.
One is too many and a thousand is never enough.
Someone in active addiction experiencing a drug craving will feel like life itself is dependent on getting and consuming whatever substance he or she is craving. As a result, you’ll feel justified in saying or doing whatever it takes to feel that satisfaction. To feel relief. Except, that relief is only temporary. Fleeting as the drug wears off. Because after a few hours, you will want more. It’s a vicious fucking cycle. And it makes no sense. I mean, addiction at its core is irrational. Because you’re powerless to your substance as the craving takes over. Like I said, all-confusing.
Now, do you see why it can feel embarrassing to share what you’re really thinking out loud? Because I can attest to all that. I can also attest that you don’t have to feel that way in the rooms. And that’s the point. Because at least one person (probably more) have felt that exact same thing. So yeah, that was another rule I didn’t have to break. However, since I didn’t have a car, my mom had to take me. I didn’t like that very much. Perhaps that was why I didn’t go as often as I should have. Or, maybe it was that I was pursuing narcotics instead of narcotics anonymous.
My point here is, my mom had to drive me everywhere.
In fact, that’s what made my new gig extra awesome. Because if I was going to a place of employment, she’d let me get there on my own. She said it would teach me to be a little more responsible. She said it would help with time management. She just didn’t realize there was a loophole. Because there always is. And this was mine. So she drops me off at this random church a few minutes down the road. Because these things are usually held in local community buildings or random churches.
I remember walking in and picking a random spot up front. I recall sitting down when the lady to my right turns to me and says hi. We had a few minutes before shit started. As a result, we small talk. That’s when she introduces herself. That’s when I learn her name is Amelia.
So she gives me her little spiel and then I recount a little bit about me. I decide to keep it vague —telling her just enough to get a sense of where I came from and how I ended up here. Remember though, we only just met. So I wasn’t about to get super deep or anything.
Most of what I was spewing wasn’t entirely accurate anyway. But I think she got the picture I was trying to paint. Because she said when the meeting was over she wanted to talk some more. I tell her that I’d love too. Because as you know, I was playing the role of a sober chick.
And at the time that meant I had to maintain certain relationships.
Like sober support. And thus far, I had none. Besides that, I had to make certain appearances at certain 12-step meetings. That’s why I was where I was, to begin with. I also had to act a certain way and say certain things in order to make it all seem true. I had gotten pretty good at this whole pretending thing. But I’d take all the help I could get. As a result, making a friend who was older (and shall I say wiser), would be the perfect thing to tell my mom. Because I knew I’d be getting high with Aiden a little later.
So I wanted to score some points in advance. I knew how to play it. Around this time, everyone gets quiet. I figured that meant the meeting was about to begin. At the start of these things, the person leading it (there’s usually one or two recovering addicts with a shit ton of clean time in charge), normally asks, “Do we have any newcomers?” Like people here for the first time. Well, when I impulsively decide to raise my hand, I surprise even myself. I guess I thought if I had to be there, I might as well share and make somewhat of an effort.
Plus, the more active I appeared to be, the better I thought I looked.
I was always on guard —as if my mom was permanently watching. And as much as people fear it, I’ve always had a knack for public speaking. So the room is still quiet when I politely blurt out, “Hi. I’m Macey. I’m an addict.” Then, I clear my throat (damn cigarettes) and confirm, “Yes. This is my first time at this meeting. Actually,” I add. “It’s my first time at a meeting in all of New Jersey.” That’s when the guy in charge welcomes me.”Hi, Macey. We’re glad you’re here.” That’s also when he suggests, “If you feel comfortable, please feel free to introduce yourself before we move on.”
I was comfortable. Comfortable enough. I think talking with Amelia was actually the best thing I had done all day. Partly because I had given her a quick spiel, which meant I knew what to quickly say. Because no one likes a lingerer. And I’m not that. So I disclose that I just moved home after finishing nearly two years in treatment. I explain that I’m originally from Cherry Hill (I went to Cherry Hill East). But that I haven’t lived home since high school. “It’s nice to be back,” I volunteer. “At the same time, I feel a little strange. It’s weird to be here and not be friends with my friends —if you know what I mean.”
Because a lot has changed, yet, it’s exactly the same.
So the meeting officially starts.
And once it was over, I decide to stay a bit longer. Any excuse to be out amongst the living. Plus, Amelia asked me too. Most everyone does —seeing that most everyone also smokes cigarettes. I mean, at your typical meeting, people usually head outside once it’s over to drink old coffee, lit one up and talk about random shit. You can practically expect that. On the other hand, though, I was not expecting to make any friends. But I was about too. Because this is when a bunch of people approach me.
People besides my new buddy, Amelia. I thought it was really nice that they (when I say they I mean mostly women) wanted to give me their contact information. If I ever needed to be talked off a ledge, someone to talk with or just a ride, I should call and they’d come running. That meant a lot to me for whatever reason. I say it like that because they were implying if or when I ever got a craving, as a way not to pick up, they’d pick me up instead. They just didn’t know that already happened.
They didn’t know that it kept happening.
Take that out for a second and just know that people in these 12-step things are really nice like that. And at the time, a part of me (a small part), thought I’d take them up on it and call. But I didn’t. I should have. I should have done a lot of shit I didn’t do. And I shouldn’t have done a lot of shit I did. Addiction is funny like that. Funny in a bad way because these people were throwing me a freaking life raft. But I decide to drown instead. It’s also funny (in a good way) because I remember what Amelia was wearing.
I mean, when you see another single white female, wearing the same navy blue Juicy jump-suit you have at home, you know you just made a friend. And even though she was closer to my mom’s age than mine, I sensed she had a young soul. I made sure to tell her that, which was around the time we head outside to light up that much-needed cigarette. A few others join. Apparently, they were all good friends. I suppose this is how you make them. So that was me trying. Because I knew staying a little longer was the right move.
And even though I loved Aiden, I knew he wasn’t right for me.
But I also wanted to get high. You are who you hang out with. So I thought if I surrounded myself with good people, maybe I’d take it a step further and stop getting high myself. Because I hadn’t yet gotten caught. Yet being the key word here. They say, quit while you’re ahead for a reason. Because it’s true. They’re right. And I was wrong. Because the addict brain in me seemed to overpower my ability for self-control.
My ability to know what’s right and what’s wrong. Well, the truth is, I’ve always known the difference between the two. I just chose to do the wrong thing. Cravings, people. Cravings. Because my fear for missing out took me to places I shouldn’t have been. Because all those numbers I just got end up in the back of my closet. I never looked at them again. Because I knew if I stayed sober, Aiden and I would be over, which would have been a good thing.
But there wasn’t anything good about me.
From the outside though, people were impressed. At least that’s what these other women kept saying. A few minutes after that, I see most everyone else walk to their cars and head home. Amelia said she’d wait for my mom to come get me. I thought that was sweet. Because she didn’t have too. But she did. So we’re standing there; probably smoking another cigarette when Amelia starts telling me about her dynamic duo of a family. I think this is when she takes out her cell-phone and shows me a picture of her ten-year-old daughter, Abigail.
Turns out, we have more in common than I originally thought. Because this is when I learn the three of us are neighbors. I thought that was SO cool. What are the odds? Accordingly, we gush about that for a second longer. At this point, we’re chilling in the parking lot along some sidewalk out front of that church, which was now closed. I think the people who run those meetings get a key or something. Because they were gone and there was no getting back in. It was dark, cold and I was kind of scared. I was thankful Amelia decided to stay.
And then, she asks if I was working.
“I remember putting it off for as long as possible when I first sober.” That’s what she said. And that’s when I knew this chick understood me. I tell her, “That’s literally where I’m at. Like I want a part-time something but I kind of don’t. Plus, I don’t have a car to get anywhere.” And then I admit, “I think, more so than anything else, I’m scared. Like what if working is too stressful. What if I have a bad day and want to get high?” She didn’t know I already was. Still, I was curious as to what she’d say back.
Ugh. Real life. That’s the one thing rehab has on this functioning member of society thing.
Because when you’re in treatment, it’s all about self-care. You’re working on yourself. Period. But then when you get out, it’s like being thrown to the wolves. So yeah, it was overwhelming, which is why I wanted to ease back in. Because one of those challenges is securing gainful employment that pays the bills and puts food on the table. Moreover though, having a job also provides a sense of purpose. The ladder was a big one for me. Because that alone (having purpose) can help you feel like you’re a contributing member of society.
Unfortunately, though, it’s not always as simple as updating your resume and submitting a bunch of applications. Those who have battled substance abuse face barriers to employment that extends far beyond the state of the job market, your level of education, or how qualified you are for whatever position you’re trying to get. For me, I had a huge gap. I mean, I just spent the last two years in treatment and before then, I was on the streets (figuratively and physically). So working well, while retaining a quality job wasn’t high on my list of priorities.
Finding ways to get and do more drugs was the only thing on my mind.
And regrettably, that priority was still true. But I was trying. I was also trying to pick this lady’s brain in hopes something she had to say would somehow help me. Because a part of me wanted to confess that I had a slip-up and the guy I was seeing was a big reason why. But I didn’t have it in me. Because there were a lot of times when I’d ask for help only to take it back. And sometimes, it’s too late. Because you can’t always take shit back. Because you can’t put toothpaste back in the tube. And my confession was like the same thing.
So I didn’t want to do or say anything I’d regret. Plus, I didn’t know know Amelia. Was she cool? Or the tattle-tale type? Basically, would she tell my mom? That’s what I was most afraid of. The thing I want you to know is that calling someone out or telling on them in the program isn’t considered snitching. It’s called being accountable —which is a good thing when you want to stay sober. It’s just, as much as I wanted that, I also didn’t. What I really wanted was a way to continue getting high.
I didn’t want to stop but I wanted everyone to think I never started.
So yeah, I kept my mouth shut.
I pretended to be this genuine sober chick looking for some insight. Because I genuinely wanted to know. I mean, I never succeeded at this whole recovery thing. I guess I thought hearing it from someone who lived it would somehow help me. Because problems in early recovery are rarely confined to one thing. Like your relationship status, for example. Because yes. You’ll need some time to work on that. But that’s not all. Because trials from addiction don’t just go away. They carry over into your recovery. Specifically, like what I’m getting at is your professional work life.
Because once you get sober, recovering addicts tend to have spotty work histories (yup) and a lack of credible, positive references. Because as you know, that was true for me too. And, there’s a stigma attached to all this; especially in the event, the addict has some type of accompanying criminal charges. Luckily, I didn’t. But a lot of people do. And if that’s you —well, applicants with a history of drug-related offenses are less likely to be offered interviews. As a result, less likely to be hired, which can be hard to handle. I know I got frustrated —frustrated enough I needed a way to cut the edge.
And in this case, I already slipped up. I had no chance because the damage was done.
You can’t take back a relapse.
Because I can’t pretend it didn’t happen. I can’t pretend it didn’t keep happening. So that point is kind of moot (at least for me at the time). But for the recovering addict who is actually recovered —well, this shit can lead to invalidating emotions; eventually provoking a relapse. Particularly, if you live in a small rural town (where everyone knows you), that stigma can grow even bigger.
Even if you’re a city chick or suburb princess, those in recovery are often only considered for jobs where background checks are not standard practice. And those gigs tend to be less than ideal for maintaining sobriety. In other words, the task of finding a job during recovery can be daunting. I mean, it’s a job itself to find a job. That I know for sure. Because I lived that. Because you don’t want to find just any job, you want to find the right job. It’s a catch 22. And Amelia agreed.
We both laugh out loud. More of a dry laugh. But we were having a moment. Then she tells me, “I may have a way to help.” Because she just so happened to need a babysitter for her daughter after-school. And remember, I just so happened to live literally a block away. The story is, Amelia worked in Philly. She did the 9-5 thing. And she loved her job (advertising) but hated the idea of her little girl being home alone —especially in the evenings. It was winter-ish —so you know it gets dark. Fast.
5 o’clock looks like midnight and that’s when Abby gets scared. I didn’t want to overstep or anything. But I didn’t have too. Because Amelia blurts out, “What would you think if I offered you a babysitting gig?” What do I think? “Seriously?” I challenge. Because I couldn’t believe it.”I’d absolutely love too,” I basically shout. She says she’d need me for a few hours a few days during the week. “And possibly a few random weekend evenings.” Heck yes. I still couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t believe this lady already trusted me.
And that I landed myself a freaking job. A job I could get too by myself no less.
My mom was gonna freak. Because Amelia was offering $15 an hour. And from what she just said, she needed me from 2:00 p.m. until 7:00-ish, five days a week. I was never good at math but that’s a hefty sum. Nearly $300 a week, which was 300 percent more than I was already making. Plus, it seemed like my cup of tea. Because I used to babysit all the time. And I loved it. I loved my kids. In fact, I literally worked as a classroom assistant at this Jewish daycare for practically all of my high school career.
I was in charge of over 20 kids. I’d have to change diapers (depending on the class I had that day and their age), feed them, discipline them and I always excelled at entertaining. All the while, I’d have to make sure their parents were happy. I was always good at that. And because of that, I got a lot of babysitting referrals —like for personal shit unrelated to school. Consequently, I knew I could handle picking up one little girl from the bus stop, which was directly across the street from their townhouse that was directly behind mine.
She said I could walk over. It was literally five-minutes by foot. And that she’d take me home every night. “If you felt like it, you can do some light cleaning but never any pressure. Your main priority would just be hanging with Abby.” I agreed. So we made a plan. And it sounded perfect. I was really excited. I remember exchanging numbers and then seeing my mom pull up. I remember hugging my new friend (apparently, she was now my boss) goodbye. “I’ll be in touch tomorrow afternoon to go over specifics.”
That’s when I tell her, I can’t wait. I’m freaking out.
“You just made my freaking week. I’ve been so down on myself but now I don’t have to be. Thank you, Amelia. I’m nearly speechless.” Because I couldn’t say thank you enough. But that was me trying. And then she says, “Girl, you’ve made mine as well. I have a feeling you’re a special one. It’s my pleasure. Have a wonderful night with your mom.” That’s when she officially walks over to her car and when I get into mine. Well, my mom’s but you get it. And that’s when reality reeled me back in.
Because it felt like I was back in high school. Because if I wanted to leave the house, she had to participate. As you know, I didn’t have a car. Eventually, I’d save enough to buy myself one. But not yet. Plus, I was still earning her trust back. So she had to know where I was, who I was with and there were always more questions. I knew why. She wanted to make sure I wasn’t sneaking off, getting high. Little did she know, that was coming. Little did she know, that already happened. I was high right now.
So yeah, even if I had a car, she wasn’t going away.
At this point though, shit was going well. At least this very moment was. Because we’re driving home when I start telling her about my new friend AND my new job. “You go, girlfriend,” my mom basically squeals. I totally scored all the points. Even more, than I anticipated. Needlesstosay, she was equally as excited. I guess even in my double life days, I was always a self-starter. Because my mom said she loved the initiative. But I was tired. Enough about that. Because by the time we got back, it was nearly midnight. Past my bedtime.
No Aiden tonight. He texts me sweet dreams and eventually, I doze off an hour or so later. The following morning rolls around and Amelia calls to go over the specifics —just like she said. She was early even. So we work out all of the details and everything checked out. I even ran the numbers by my mom and she agreed. I was officially employed. I did it. I still couldn’t believe it. And I knew Aiden wouldn’t either. I remember calling him.
“I was hoping it was you,” he answers.
I gush for a minute and then tell him about my new friend and my awesome new job. He was really happy for me. We talk a few minutes more when he asks, “What time can I pick you up?” I remember thinking about it for a second —when my mom interrupts. She tells me to tell Amelia hi and that she can’t wait to meet her sometime soon.”Have a great date night.” Hold up. My mom thinks Aiden is Amelia and that I’m working tonight? I could use that. And I did. I milked all of it. How could I not?
“Amelia, my mom sends her love and wants to meet you one of these days.” I pause for a moment, hoping Aiden was catching what I was throwing. He did. He usually did. So after a second or two of pretending I was listening to Amelia’s response, I tell my mom she can’t wait to meet you all the same. And then, I secretly text Aiden —telling him to meet me down the street in like 20 minutes. I was pretending I was about to walk to work for the very first time. Because Amelia had a date; it was Saturday, after all —so she could be out all night, which meant so could I.
I was excited. Like really excited.
I was also nervous. I mean, Aiden and I were about to spend the most time we’d ever spend together thus far in our relationship. Anything was possible. And in this case, that was a bad thing. Well, I guess it depends on how you look at it. So I’m nearly there. And a few minutes later, I literally am. I remember getting into Aiden’s silver Honda Accord —wearing this red and yellow crop top. He parked down the street —exactly where I said too. So far, so good, right? Wrong.
At this point though, I didn’t know that yet. I also didn’t know where the night would take us. I did, however, know where we were headed too. It’s how we started most of our time together. We were on our way to meet up with Schnapps. He was the one with the pills who was about to fuck shit up. For the record, I never hooked up with him. I never even looked at him. Nor did I want too. I let Aiden do most of the talking. But all he saw was red.
And that’s when things took that turn I mentioned earlier.
Because this is where that dude makes a move on me. Wrong place. Wrong time. Aiden nearly exploded. I don’t blame him. Because Schnapps had malicious intent.
Apparently, he was secretly holding onto some high school grudge. And I think he thought this was how he’d get back at him.
In Aiden’s defense, it did look pretty bad. But that was the point. The whole thing was a set-up.
Ultimately though, I redeem myself. Our story is far from over. Unfortunately, that’s not actually a good thing. Because things with Aiden and I get exponentially worse; before we eventually call it quits. Like an entire year goes by. And even when shit imploded, I didn’t want to leave. I had too —at least that’s what my mom said.
Because eventually, she figures everything out.
Like how I had been lying nearly the entire time, which is when she decides, “Enough is enough, Macey.” That’s when she kicks me out. And that’s how I ended up with a one-way plane ticket en route to Satan himself. Remember, Bruce? Yeah. That’s where he fits in. Because when everything comes crashing down, my mom finds a bunch of jewelry that just so happened to have gone missing a few weeks prior. And after I literally crash my car (more on that later), I needed someone to pick up some of my shit from the repair shop while I was at work.
Naively, I ask my mom for a favor. Because (at this point), Aiden was useless (painkillers and benzos). I didn’t know he had stolen my mom’s shit. I didn’t know he put it in the back of my car for safe keeping. And I certainly didn’t know my mom would find it. It’s just, she didn’t know that Aiden was the one who did it. She thought it was me. And at the time, it’s definitely something I was capable of. So how could I blame her? Well, I did. But that’s beside the point. Because I was the boy who cried wolf. And my boy was the damn wolf.
The truth is, I spent a large majority of my life thinking I had to have someone.
I rated myself based on how many people were around. Quantity over quality. More was always better. Luckily today, it’s the reverse. I know it’s about the depth of things and not how much you have. Like I’d rather have one good person in my corner than 10 fake ones. However, it took me a very long time to get to this place. And so, back then, I chose him and not me. Because relationships are one of those things that can be really good for you, or really bad for you —depending on who you’re in a relationship with.
Because for some, like me at the time, bad relationships seem better than being single. Perhaps, I didn’t feel like I was good enough to go at life alone. Because up until that point, I failed at pretty much everything. I spent far too many nights chasing all the wrong things. I was chasing highs, chasing guys and falling short everytime. And along the way, I lost sight of why I was here in the first place. But then, something inside shifted. I decided to let go. I decided it was, in fact, OK to be alone.
And that’s when I learned, if you want to fly, give up all the shit that weighs you down.
My next blog post will continue where I just left off. Thanks, guys.
*names and some details have been changed to protect the privacy of the individuals involved.
Click to access Avoiding%20Toxic%20Relationships%20in%20Recovery.pdf
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