I’ve been sitting here. Trying. Trying to figure out how to start this thing. But I’m at a loss. Because every time I try to write something, I get stuck.
And then I have to stop. It’s like even though I’ve moved past all of this —because I really am over it, I have to admit that sometimes it still kind of hurts.
It’s a strange hurt. Because even moments that were really fucking funny, it’s like somewhere else inside, I don’t feel like laughing.
Because when I do start to write, everything —funny and not so funny, comes flooding back. As I shut the laptop. I can’t.
I’ll feel better when… I get it all out. After I take what’s rolling around in my head and put it somewhere on paper. Maybe then, I’ll feel a little lighter. Because on one hand, yes. I haven’t thought about this crap in a while. Years in fact. But when I see or hearing something that reminds me of it, I can’t deny that I feel it all over again. But then, on the other, it’s hard to explain what I’m even trying to give voice too. Because yeah, there’s (clearly) way too much; it’s just, I can’t seem to find the right words.
That’s when I ask myself, “What am I looking for? What am I trying to say?”
Truth is, I don’t know. So I stay stuck in this strange flush of nostalgic imagery and as a slight tear streams down my face, I picture the girl I used to be. I remember how it started and I remember how it ended. I wish I could say that I don’t know how things got so messed up. But I do. Because I just spent the last three years in and out of treatment. I had been home for less than a month and already, I was getting high again. I was hoping to find a way to stop before I got caught.
So yeah, there were a lot of things this girl was wishing for. Mostly, that Aiden wouldn’t be the bad influence everyone said he’d be. But I was wrong about that. I was wrong about a lot of things. Because two addicts in early recovery trying to make a relationship work can be a beautiful thing. It’s like, he knows what I’m going through, how I’m feeling, and why. But it can also be so fucking detrimental for everyone’s recovery. Because if one of you wants to get high, chances are, the other one will too.
That’s literally what happened to me.
Because I wanted to get high a little more than I wanted to stay clean. And Aiden. I also wanted him who definitely wanted to get high. And that right there is how shit got so twisted. Because someone needs to be the good guy. The strong one. The one who says, “No. We’re not doing that. And if you are, then I’m not doing you. Bye.”
But Misery Loves Company
And neither of us were strong enough in our recovery to be strong like that for each other. So yeah, we ended up bringing ourselves down together. And that right there is yet another reason why romantic relationships fail during early recovery. At this point, the two of us were getting high nearly every single day. I mean, we were high right now. And yet, outwardly, besides our small ass pupils, you’d have no fucking idea. Because his family and mine had no idea we weren’t recovered anymore.
Partly because we were really good at pretending.
That was my first official relapse. Nearly one year of sobriety down the drain in seconds. What a good friend (my thoughts exactly). She had her own shit going on though. Mainly, I think she was trying to get over the fact that her longtime on-again-off-again boyfriend had just broken up with her. Since our other friends weren’t home anymore, she focused her attention on me. But that wasn’t a good thing. I think in Fiona’s head, I was her next big project —someone she could manipulate.
Because this girl always had ulterior motives. And no good deed goes unpunished. Because this chick never did anything that wouldn’t benefit whatever scheme she was on to next. Unfortunately for her perfectly laid plans, I was a little preoccupied with the guy she had just set me up with. I think that plan of hers went better than she thought. And she was pissed. Because the times I was hanging with him, I was supposed to be with her —or so she thought. But from what you’re about to learn, Fiona wasn’t good at taking no for an answer.
Because she’d always find a way to do something about it.
In some twisted world, I envied her for that. Because she made shit happen. She was outspoken, a natural born leader (I’ll give her that), and had this excessive need to be the center of attention. Let me give you an example. My high school was extremely cliquey. And yeah, I was definitely apart of the problem. I won’t deny you that. But I was nice. I like to think that I was the girl who was friends with everybody —almost to a fault. Because back then, I was not the assertive badass I am today. I had zero life experience.
I was a product of my environment after, all. And besides overcoming my parent’s divorce and losing the only home I had ever known, I was your standard Jewish American Princess (JAP) living in a suburban town of Cherry Hill, New Jersey. But I always meant well. Fiona didn’t, however. Like if I wanted to hang out with someone else in our friend group without her, OMG. It was the biggest deal ever. We wouldn’t hear the end of it. But if she hung out with that same person and didn’t invite me, I was annoying for even bringing it up.
I did too. Maybe even more than them.
But no one —including myself would ever bring it up —at least not to her face. My point here is, somehow, I’d end up caught in the crossfire. It seemed like drama and conflict followed that bitch around. And when shit hit the fan, I hated every second of it. It gave me such anxiety. I can’t even tell you. My mom knew this. She knew all of this —a little too well. And that right there is why she didn’t want me hanging out with her anymore. Literally, one of the more important rules, according to my mom was no contact with Fiona.
If you guys remember from a few posts back, after arriving home from the Mission, I started babysitting for this woman, Amelia. She unknowingly was a neighbor of mine. So when we randomly met at this local NA meeting, the job essentially fell into my lap. And since we lived so close, me not having a car was no problem. Thus far, I had been working with her family for a few weeks. Right off the bat, I really liked, Abby, the little girl I was looking after. Everything was going great. I remember my first day.
I remember being nervous. Hey, when you have an anxiety disorder, everything makes you anxious. That said, I made sure to arrive at least an hour before I was supposed too. And when I got there, I was surprised. Why? Because the house was a disaster. Everything was everywhere. Not only was it extremely unorganized but it was dirty. Shit was broken —the flooring, doors, windows —especially the master bedroom, which was filled with food wrappers everywhere. Red flag, red flag, red flag (you’ll see what I mean a little later).
I decided to tidy up. Not too much though. I didn’t want her to think I was judging.
Because I wasn’t. That’s not me. I merely wanted to make a good first impression. Like I’m a self-starter and you can trust me with your shit. I only judge in the privacy of my own head. Plus, I wanted to be ready for Abby’s after school arrival. So I did my thing and about 45 minutes later, I decided it was time to walk across the street and wait for her at the bus stop. 15 minutes after that, I see Abby walk toward me with a few female classmates as I wave them over. We bonded almost instantly.
I think my Michael Kors handbag had a little something to do with it. Because she and her friends kept saying how much they loved my purse. And when I let Abby hold it —in front of her friends, I definitely scored some extra points. Because that’s when she tells me how happy she is to have me as her sitter. I said, “Right back at you, sweetheart. We’re going to have a lot of fun.” At this point, we were nearly in her driveway. So we say goodbye to her cute little friends and off we go.
Back in the day, I remember walking home from my bus stop, dashing inside and going directly into the kitchen. Because I was always hungry whenever I’d get home from school. I figured she was too. So I head straight to the pantry as she opens her bookbag and empties the contents onto their round wooden table. “Homework time,” she says. I was impressed I didn’t have to ask. She knew the routine. That’s when I asked if she needed any help and what her favorite subject was. She’s like, “Well, I hate math but I love English.”
“OMG. No way,” I say. “Sounds like me.” We both laughed.
The conversation continues with her telling me about her group of friends, a boy she has a crush on and what a typical day is like. I got the sense this little girl was rather independent. She was smart. Like an old soul. Turns out, it wasn’t because of her mother’s stellar parenting skills —more like lack thereof. I say that because Abby was usually home alone and if she wanted shit done, she’d have to do it herself. No wonder why the house was the way it was. And I’m not trying to be harsh. But it turns out Amelia was kind of crazy (more on that later).
I’m not even including the fact that she was rarely home and unquestionably aloof. Eventually, I learn this woman was more of an absentee parent than she first let on. Because she made it seem like she was this amazing single mom who did everything and anything for her daughter, which just wasn’t the whole story. I mean, yes. It was clear she loved her daughter. But I think she loved attention more (sounds like someone else I know). Because when Amelia wasn’t home, she wasn’t at work either —like she originally told me.
Instead, she was usually on a date.
Make it multiple first dates since it was apparent that it never went past that. Because she could never get a guy to go out with her a second time. And she wondered why. Turns out, she was, in fact, crazy. And not the good kind. So a few weeks later, I end up going to that same NA meeting I met Amelia when this other lady approaches me —asking if I took that woman up on her offer. I cautiously say yes. “Why do you ask?” She said she was trying to warn me. Evidently, I wasn’t aware of Amelia’s entire backstory —at least not yet.
She suggested that if Amelia “got loud with me” (I wasn’t sure what that meant at the time but now I do and you will too) —to walk away. After that, it was business as usual. For obvious reasons, I didn’t tell my new boss what I had heard. But I definitely kept that shit under my hat and close to the vest (just in case). A week later, I remember taking Abby to cheerleading practice one day after school. Amelia let me drive her car, which I wasn’t actually happy about. Because I hate driving. But I played the part.
Because Abby was really excited that she made the team. How could I say no? It wasn’t all bad though. Because I used to dance back in the day, which made it cool watching the girls practice and then perform. This is actually when I met that girl’s father —Amelia’s ex-husband, Blaine. And that’s when I learned a little more about Amelia than she probably would have wanted. But that’s usually how it goes. Because the truth comes out —one way or another. I also want to mention how awesome Abby’s dad was.
Brutally honest but sincere
I remember him making me and the other moms laugh. Because we all sat together. Because he was equally funny as he was nice. Turns out, he got re-married like seven years ago. And besides Abby, his first, he had two other daughters with his new wife. What’s ironic is that one of them was actually Abby’s best friend. I know for a fact that Amelia hated that. She also hated that the two of them were neighbors. Because he lived in a townhome up the block.
So over the course of the next few weeks, Blaine and I became pretty good friends.
I mean, we were sitting on the same set of bleachers for nearly four hours every day for three days. That’s around the time I began seeing Amelia through new eyes. It all made sense. Slowly, Amelia was having me stay later and later, yet, paying me less and less. That’s when I realized that random woman was right. Blaine too. Because a few of the cheerleading moms had some shi to say about my boss. They all said the same thing. That wasn’t a coincidence. Amelia would have wanted me to think that.
But I’m smarter than people give me credit for. Because I had a ledger that documented the hours I worked with how much I was supposed to receive. I worked hard. And this hard worker had about 25 hours that were left unpaid. That’s when I put my foot down. Because eventually, I realized, I was never going to get it. I just didn’t know that yet. Soon enough I would. Because a couple of days after that became my last unofficial day. I didn’t want it to be. But she made her bed. Now she had to lie in it.
So when Amelia got home one evening, I told her we had to talk.
I said I wouldn’t be able to babysit anymore until I got the $500 plus that I was owed. This bitch made it seem like she was going to give it to me. Instead, I got some sob story about why she was late. And yeah, I understood, but I was done playing nice. Because I needed to get paid. Because I wasn’t going to put in all this time and effort for free. Because the main reason (most people work in the first place) is to make money. I mean, duh. So after I stopped babysitting, Amelia and I played cat and mouse for a few weeks longer. I was really fucking annoyed.
But as the days went on, she stopped answering me completely. I think she was mad I bailed (her words). She had the audacity to tell me, “I let Abby down.” No bitch. That’s you. So yeah, from that, it was clear that the random woman at that meeting was right. She warned me for a reason. And a good one at that. This was obviously a pattern. And at that moment, I was mad at myself for not doing something about it sooner. But how was I supposed to know? That’s when I thought it was time to fill my mom in on the sitch.
The two of us had been walking on eggshells ever since I relapsed. It was mostly me who was doing that kind of walking —seeing that she had no idea I was back at it. But I did. That right there is why I didn’t want to rock the boat. I wanted to prove I could handle my shit. Plus, I thought my mom could talk some sense into Amelia. You know, mother to mother. Because that $500 was supposed to get me high for the next few weeks. Instead, I got nothing. At least at this point, Aiden was still “courting” me.
So most of the pills, I was doing were courtesy of my awesome new boyfriend.
For the most part, I think he was only doing that shit for me to make himself look better than he actually was. But in this case, the end justified the means. I didn’t have to question it —not yet anyway. So I tell my mom everything. I was relieved when she said she was on my side. Because she knew how hard I was working. She knew how much effort I had been putting in. The best part, however, and partly why I wanted to tell my mom in the first place was so she’d drive us over to Amelia’s house.
Maybe then we could work something out face-to-face. So we put on our coats and head for the door. It’s just, I almost wish we hadn’t because that woman went bonkers. From the moment we arrived, it was bad. Because we knew she saw us pull in. And when my mom and I get out of the car, she tried to run to the back of her house to avoid our impending confrontation. She just didn’t realize that her front door was wide open and that we could see everything. I remember my mom yelling out, “We can see you.”
And that’s when this bitch went crazy.
So I blurt out, “Oh. Please. One less thing I have to do. Because you owe me over $500 and I was already planning on taking you to court.” Because in a perfect world, I would have. I wanted too. But when I looked into it, it probably would have been more of a headache than a help. Because it would have cost more in legal fees without a guarantee I’d even win. That’s why my mom said it would be easier to just cut my loses, —unless Amelia did what she said, which is why we were here in the first place.
“Can we please talk about this like adults?” I ask. “Because I’d prefer not to sue you. And I’m sure you don’t want to be tied up in civil litigation all year.” I was being pretty reasonable with all things considering. But no. She couldn’t. And she wouldn’t. Instead, she starts opening and shutting the screen door like an actual two-year-old in the midsts of a temper tantrum. She wasn’t talking (use your words, bitch) rather yelling gibberish. Honestly, it was a scary sight. And really strange.
We couldn’t believe this was happening.
That’s when my mom says, “We came here to talk. Not watch you behave like a child. If you’re not going to pay mine, what example are you setting for YOUR daughter?” My mom was right. Because when I told Abby I couldn’t babysit her anymore, the poor girl cried. “This always happens. I don’t understand. Is it something I did?” she asked. “Not even close,” I affirm. “You did nothing wrong. It’s adult stuff. So don’t think for even a second that it’s something you did. Because you’re amazing. I’m really going to miss you.”
And that’s when a tear started streaming down my face. I was sincerely sad. So we had a nice moment and then I said goodbye for the very last time. For obvious reasons, we kept that part to ourselves. Amelia didn’t know about any of that. She wouldn’t have been able to handle it. Because she couldn’t handle anything outside the realm of her fantasy world that she seemed to permanently live in. Delusional. Because her response after my mom said her thing was even more childish than before —if at all possible.
Because she’s still opening and shutting the screen door, but now she’s screaming, “La la la. I can’t hear you.” And with each syllable, she got a little louder. Seriously lady. How old are you? This is around the time my mom and I look at one another —nodding in agreement that the point was moot. It’s time to go. We decided —anything to get us away from this woman was a win. Oh well. “On to the next. I’m over it.”
So we get in the car and drive home, which is how I ended up as a hostess at this Irish Pub down the street (the other way haha). I worked there and thoroughly enjoyed it for about six months. Eventually, though, I grew tired of standing all day merely looking pretty, which is when I decided I wanted something more. It’s just, I quickly learn the grass isn’t always greener. It only looks that way. Because when I found a more professional gig, I wished I was a hostess again.
For the most part though, I remember being excited.
It was a new chapter. My official title —Short Sale Negotiator. By definition, a short sale is when a house is sold for less than what the homeowner owes on it. The lender will not get all of its money back, but if approved, they decide it’s better to take something instead of nothing. And let me tell you, it’s a very complicated process. But it was fulfilling because you’re literally helping people not lose their home. Something I was all too familiar with. Plus, I happened to be really good at it. Eventually, though, that became irrelevant.
Because Aiden was more important. I remember calling in sick when I wasn’t and trying to leave early on the days I had to go. Because Aiden was out there getting high. And I’d always feel left out. I was a smoker at the time with a boss who just so happened to be super lax about cigarette breaks. I definitely took advantage of that. But hey, I think everyone did. For me, I’d use those breaks to call Aiden (while puffing on my menthols, of course) —wanting to know what he was up too. He’d tell me. But most of the time, he lied. Because yeah, he had a job. Except, it was part-time and he only got it because his family was best friends with the owner.
Because I was busting my ass working really hard, and he was basically doing whatever he wanted. Because eventually, him buying me pills turned into me buying him pills. And it was always a fight if I said something about it. I hated fighting; so I’d take it. And that’s around the time he started taking me for granted. Later on, when his car was taken away, he’d talk me into giving him mine for the day, which was absurd. Because he’d drop me off at work and then pick me up at the end of the day but when I’d ask what he did, he refused to tell me —the truth that is.
Because he’d always say, “Running errands and shit” —but I knew he was picking up.
Like picking up drugs. Because whenever he’d come back, his blue eyes were pins and he’d always be out of it —insisting he was fine. Other instances, like after his mom took away his cell phone, he’d make me give him mine. Because obviously, he had to arrange shit with his dealer. He said that wasn’t it. Regardless, I obliged —as if all of this was normal behavior. It was a freaking fantasy. Because I told myself that he loved me. And you make sacrifices for the one you love.
On the really bad days, like when I’d fight with him about it, he’d get really mean. That’s when I’d confide in my co-workers about my drug addict boyfriend. They didn’t understand why I couldn’t just cut him out. Because I made it seem like he was the one on drugs. They thought I was recovered. And I was but not anymore. So yeah. I’ll own the fact that I was just as bad as him. It was a little different though. Because I actually cared. And when it came down it, he didn’t. He was selfish.
And just like Fiona, if you questioned him, you were the bad guy.
But I was so infatuated with him that I let this shit go on for far too long. Eventually, though his mom finally decided to drug test him. And when he failed, he couldn’t sweet talk his way out. That’s when she put her foot down. He was no longer allowed inside his house. She said he had to stay outside like in their backyard. “Where do you expect me to sleep? In the grass?” She said, “I don’t really care. How about the freaking shed.” And that’s exactly what happened next.
End of Business
After that, he called me crying. I was still mad at him though. Because a few days ago, he made me give him like $400. He said he’d get me back by buying me more pills but that never happened. And when I brought it up the day before last, he pretended he never said that. It’s just, a majority of my paychecks went directly up his nose. This shit was definitely a pattern. But he didn’t care. And as time went on, he got more and more addicted. I did too. But I was also loosing more and more of myself.
But on the day, his mom kicked him out, I was supposed to go out of my way to help him. I don’t think so, buddy. Because he told me to come by. I did that much. It’s just, he wanted more. He always did. In this case, he wanted my pills. And he thought I’d give him some. I was still so mad. And since I finally had the power, I wasn’t about to give it up that easy. And that’s when he felt the impending consequence of his addict behavior.
I think his sister left him a dinner plate on the porch like a freaking animal. Honestly, he looked like one. That’s around the time I arrived. I remember getting out of the car and walking around back. I remember thinking that he looked like shit. He said he felt worse. And that’s when he tried to convince me to give him a pill or two. Truth is, I had a few on me but I needed them if I was going to make it to work the following day. Plus, my mom said she wanted me home early. So I legit only had a few minutes.
And when I said no, he flipped the fuck out.
That’s when I said, “If you’re going to be like this, fine. I’m out.” So I left. I didn’t give in. About 15 minutes later, I get home. My mom was pleased that I listened to her request. After we eat dinner, Aiden calls me crying. I remember trying to calm him down. I remember saying that everything would be okay. Because in the end, it always is. But he didn’t believe me. Honestly, I think every emotion he ever felt was rising to the surface. Because he hadn’t done a pill that entire day. And he was feeling it hard.
For those who don’t know, opioids, numb you out. They are central nervous system depressants. And when you take drugs like the ones we were on, they slow down the activity in your brain, which makes them useful for treating anxiety, panic attacks, acute stress, chronic pain, and sleep disorders. But when you go without, or you suddenly stop taking them, it’s like your entire body is in overdrive. Everything you were trying to not to feel is now felt everywhere.
Blah blah blah.
I did appreciate his words. But I was trying to play it cool. Because I needed more than an apology. I’d take what I could get though. The conversation continues for nearly an hour. Eventually, it ends with him asking if I could swing by on my way to work. I tell him, “You know it’s completely out of the way.” “Pretty please,” he insists. I couldn’t say no to that. So I decide to wake up a little earlier than usual and drive to his house just like he asked. I pull in. I see him walk from around back. If at all possible, he looked even worse than the day before.
But he was in a better mood. And I was about to find out why. Apparently, he found a few bucks. He said if I loved him even a little bit, I’d let him take my car for the day. “I’ll even buy you two pills but only if you agree.” His face was so pitiful, I felt a little bad. I had to say yes. And I did. So he gets in my car. I drive us to my office and when I get out, I hand him my keys. He gives me a kiss, hops in the driver’s seat and rides away. I was a little nervous. Because if he didn’t do what he said he would, I knew I had to end it.
There was a lot riding (pun intended) on how it all would play out.
As end of business approaches, I check the clock and realize it was almost closing time. That’s when I got a little nervous. What if he didn’t show up? That’s when I see him pull in. Thank GOD. A few minutes after that, I say bye to my co-workers and walk toward my car. As I’m opening the passenger side door, I see him holding a clear baggy filled with pills. He did what he said he’d do. I was pleasantly surprised. Because not only did he buy me more than two pills, he also filled up my gas tank, which was the first time he’d ever done something like that.
But it wasn’t all good. Because shit was about to get messy real quick. Remember Fiona? Well, she had been trying to chill with me for a few weeks now. As you guys know, my mom didn’t want me hanging with her. I had broken those rules before; so technically, I could have swung it. But I wanted to be with Aiden more. So that was that. Except, it wasn’t. Because Fiona was pissed that I was ignoring her calls. And this is when she does something about it. So Aiden and I are riding around and while we’re doing our thing, Fiona calls my fucking mother. She was about to rat me out.
Misery still loves company
She said Aiden and I were doing pills and getting high like every day. “Their relationship is all about drugs. He’s a really bad influence for Mace and I can’t stand by and watch her make stupid choices because of a boy.” This bitch knew exactly what to say. Because that right there was my moms biggest fear. And she definitely knew that. It’s just what my mom didn’t know was that Fiona was the one who introduced Aiden and I. She’s also the one who bought me pills on several occasions —promoting my fucking relapse.
Like this whole thing started after I had been home from The Mission for two weeks. That’s when Fiona tells me she has a present and to come outside. The present was pills —free pills. And what you need to know is earlier that day, I told her I couldn’t chill. I was adamant about that. Because my mom wanted me to apply for jobs. But no. Fiona didn’t listen. She didn’t care. She only cared about her own agenda. And she knew if she dangled my drug of choice in my face, I’d be down for anything she said.
That bitch was right.
So when you think about it, I wouldn’t have been in the situation I was in, to begin with, if it wasn’t for her. Now, I’m not blaming Fiona because she didn’t force anything up my nose. But that’s important for you to understand. My point, Fiona’s side of the street was anything but clean. But she made it seem like she was the perfect friend. When really, she was only calling my mom because I was getting high without her. Oh, what you also need to know is the fact that she was newly single. Because if her and the on again off again boyfriend were still together, you better believe none of this would be happening.
That’s when I get a phone call from my mom. “Macey, come home this instant. Come home and do not leave. You are to come home right now.” I was so confused. She wasn’t even making sense. I knew something was up. Truth is, my mom was only trying to help. I knew that then and I definitely know that now. And Fiona’s words may have been true, but her intent was not. Malicious through and through. She wanted me all to herself. She knew if I was still with Aiden none of that could happen.
So after that mysterious phone call, I drop him off and speed the fuck home.
I had to know what was happening. I remember waiting outside when I see my mom pull up in Fiona’s BMW. That’s when shit got bad. That’s when I got pissed. When they get out, I run over —even more confused as to why they’d be together. Because my mom hated the girl. But I quickly piece everything together as my mom grabs my cell phone from my hand and tells me, “You will never see or talk to Aiden again.” I try to play it cool. But I was furious.
Partly because my so-called friend was purposely getting my mom worked up —so much so that the two of them make me get in the car just so we could confront Aiden and his mom. What good would that do? But it was out of my hands. I had no control over what happened next. Because the trunk of my car had a bag of all his clothes. And when we arrive, Fiona takes that bag and throws it all over his lawn. I was mortified. That’s when Aiden walks outside. Luckily, his mom wasn’t home —so mine wouldn’t be able to confront his.
But it wasn’t good by any means. Because this is when he sees Fiona throwing all his shit across his front yard. “What the fuck,” he screams. That’s when my mom says, “Watch your language, young man.” I remember standing there —wanting to kiss him and run away. I mean, my “best friend” and own fucking mother were ripping the love of my life apart. I couldn’t believe this was happening. At this point, my mom thought Fiona was the freaking best. She literally said, “I don’t know why I never liked you. You get stuff done. You’re an amazing friend —whether Macey sees it or not.”
And that’s the thing. My mom wasn’t seeing it. Not the big picture at least. Because like I said, what Fiona was saying might have been true. But the end doesn’t always justify the means. Because Fiona’s reason for all this shit was not what constitutes a good friend. A few minutes later, they decide that their point was made. So we head for the car. I look at Aiden with a face that said, “I’m so sorry.”
He gives me one back, puts his hand on his heart and mouths, “I love you.”
After that, we get home and my mom switches the fucking script. Because now, I wasn’t allowed to hang out with anyone but Fiona. That’s exactly what that bitch wanted. She won. I was so upset. Because the last thing I wanted was to hang out with Fiona. Plus, I knew I wasn’t going to let this be the end of Macey and Aiden. At the same time, I knew I had to make it look like it was. So I play the broken-hearted girl as he and I find other ways to communicate. I had been pretending for so long, it came pretty easy.
Time Goes By So Slowly
A week passes. I go to work and come home just like I was told. Secretly though, I was seeing Aiden on my way to and from the office. He’d come by every day for lunch, and the two of us were able to text via email. I’d say the only good thing to come from this was that Fiona convinced my mom it was a good idea to let us go out. Like drinking at a bar out, which is so fucking ironic and rather hypocritical. Let me break it down for you.
Meetings every day, step work while maintaining my sobriety.
It’s just, the lies Fiona was feeding my mom were not program material. But I needed to let off some steam. So I was not about to complain about my impending night out. So the two of us arrive at this local bar. Fiona invited a few other girls to join. I was trying to have fun. I was trying not to think of Aiden. And I definitely wasn’t going to talk about him either. And I didn’t. It’s just, what seemed like every other minute, Fiona thought it would be funny to bring him up. That was apart of her plan.
She did all this shit on purpose. Because she knew eventually, I’d crack. She hoped I’d start crying, which would prompt her to call my mom. And that’s exactly what happens next. As I’m sipping my second drink that Fiona so generously bought, she calls my fucking mother. “You need to pick Macey up. She’s crying. She says she’s going to see Aiden.” I couldn’t believe it. What a bitch. Because that wasn’t true. But I was the boy who cried wolf.
And once again, I wasn’t in control.
It was official though. I hated this bitch. It was war. As my “friend” hangs up, I turn to her and basically freak the fuck out, which is exactly what she wanted. But I was at a point of no return. Long story short, I couldn’t take it anymore. So I leave. I walk outside. I needed some air. I needed to get away from this girl. But she wasn’t getting it. So what does she do? She follows me, of course. That’s when she tells me that I’m the worst person she’s ever known. Because all she wants is to help and I’m not seeing that.
I tell her, “You’re not helping. I know your intent. And I hope YOU know our friendship is over.” She affirms that I’ll regret doing that. “I don’t really care. Because I’m done. I’ve been done for a while. Please respect my boundaries and step off.” A few minutes after that, my mom pulls up. She sees us fighting. Without saying a word, she assumes it’s my fault, which is when she grabs me by the shoulder and throws me into the backseat of her car like a freaking animal.
“You’re not seeing the big picture here,” I plead. “You’re not hearing me.”
I tell her, “I know that I messed up. But I’m not the crazy person Fiona’s making me out to be.” Because I was smarter than these two let on. Because an hour or so ago, I had taken Fiona’s phone into the bathroom with me. I wasn’t stealing it, rather taking a screenshot of a text conversation I thought I saw between Fiona and this girl —who for whatever reason never liked me. Turns out, I was right. Because when I find out that the two of them planned this entire thing, I couldn’t believe it.
What a two-faced liar. I mean, they were bragging that it worked. That they were ruining me and my relationship on purpose. And how happy they were about it. Wow. What a bitch. I quickly text those screenshots to myself and delete all the same. I had the smoking gun. At this point, I’m in the backseat of my mom’s car when I see her hug Fiona goodbye. “Thanks for trying,” my mom says. As she gets in and shuts the door, I tell her what I saw.
“Better yet, let me show you.”
So that’s exactly what happens next. And after she reads what I read, she couldn’t believe it. I could. “Mom. That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you the entire time.” And that’s when she sees the fucking light. Better late than never. Around this time, she starts apologizing incessantly. “I should have trusted you. I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry” She said she
wanted no had to make it up to me because she felt so bad. That’s when she explains as long as I was honest with her, I could hang out with Aiden again.
I appreciated that more than I could say. I was relieved. But I was also really mad. I was mad at her for a very long time. And honestly, thinking about it right now makes me feel that shit all over again. Nevertheless, when we get home, she gives me my phone back. Aiden was my first call, of course. Apparently, though, things weren’t any better on his end. So the following morning, I leave for work a little earlier than usual. What was I doing? You know. Driving to Aiden’s. And at that, we were back.
At the time, I was happy.
But that doesn’t mean it was a good thing. Because our double life remains until it comes crashing down (quite literally). Because we pick up right where we left off (more on that later). Because nothing changed. I was still buying him pills, letting him use my car and me. Eventually, his mom kicks him out (officially). And that right there was the beginning of the end. Because that’s when he moves in with his aunt who was also an addict. Somehow though, I was jealous. I mean, he didn’t have to follow any rules. He could do whatever he wanted.
But when you’re left to your own devices, bad shit starts to go down, which is exactly what happens next. Because now, not only was he addicted to opioids, he starts dabbling with Xanex, which was readily available —seeing that his aunt had a prescrpition for every type of benzo you could think of. And that’s the thing. He couldn’t think. He couldn’t even function. He made me look normal. But just as misery loves company, you are who you hang out with.
So yeah, it got worse before it got better. But it did get better. It always does. Because in the end, everything will be okay. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end. It’s just, neither of us could see that back then. Because it seemed like shit was going to stay this way forever. So we both kind of gave up. Luckily, today, I get it. I see it all so clearly. I see that happiness isn’t trying or finding. It’s deciding. That’s why I finally decided to choose myself. To make a change and not just say I’m going too. Because I knew he loved me.
But when I realized he loved the high more, I decided it was time to give up. To let go. Not because I didn’t care, but because he didn’t. Because love doesn’t actually conquer all —at least not the type of love we had. Because that type made me forget that I was important. It made me forget a lot of important shit. So even though he and I did not end up together, today, I’m okay. Don’t stay stuck like I did. Don’t be afraid of change either.
Because you may lose something good but you just might gain something even better.
*names and some details have been changed to protect the privacy of the individuals involved.
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