How is that even possible? How did we make it to today? Those first days. Those millions of relapses. I was sure I’d die in each one. I was positive I’d never make it out of “the game” alive. Not with any amount of my soul still intact. Not with any self esteem. Not worth anything.
During those long nights and miserable days I was sure I’d forever be addicted to methamphetamine. How would I escape? Every step forward was a step backward. Every 20 days clean results in 30 days high. It was a struggle. An awful, never ending struggle.
Some of those moments I remember vividly. Some barely at all. I remember the relapses. The phone calls. The offers. The feelings of defeat. Looking at the girl in the mirror, wondering why she gave up all those days to simply rejoin the living dead. It was painful. Devastating. I remember the withdrawal. The physical pain. Emotional pain. Wondering if death would have been a friendlier option. Those days were awful.
Sometimes I wish phones with cameras existed and were popular back then – I thought I looked amazing. Now I’d like to see what others saw. The last time I weighed myself I was 103 pounds. In my head this was amazing – What was I really? I can only imagine. I always thought I was discreet. Quiet. Secret. Nobody knew. How could they not of? Honestly? Why didn’t anyone ever confront me during that journey with addiction? My grandparents did once – They thought I was an alcoholic. I laughed. If only. My mom once heard a rumor I dealt meth and left it at that. The police once came over and he simply said – Someone’s trying to ruin your reputation. Be careful. How did they not know? Why didn’t they offer me help sooner?
These are my thoughts 15 years later. Were they in denial? Was small town Montana that isolated that they missed the signs as the meth moved in and took over? Nobody said a word. Nobody noticed. Nobody cared. I spent 4 years struggling with this. The last 2 years being heavy, hard, rough. But nobody commented. It’s something to think about. Now. Now there are slogans everywhere. Everyone notices. People comment. People talk. Then, then they truly had no idea what was coming.
I’m so glad I’ve escaped that life. I look at the people I was “friends” with then. I use that term loosely. Some were truly my friends. Some were truly convenient. The differences between us. The pain they face. The lives they have lived. Suicide. Death by accidents. Prison. Losing rights to their kids. More serious drugs. Homelessness. Treatment. It’s a never ending cycle. If they are still alive they are just repeating the prison and treatment cycle. Over and over. The addiction has won. Most of them have never escaped, except to death. That saddens me. We all struggled with the same addiction. Each of these people were someone’s son or daughter, brother or sister, mom or dad. They each deserved better. They each had someone that loved them so much and wanted so much more for them. It’s saddening. To know all they’ve missed out on. Because they couldn’t beat the awful drugs someone once introduced us to.
I’m thankful. I really am. I know I’m an exception to the rule. I know that my soul is willing to fight. That I won against something powerful. Something deadly. I thank God I was born with resiliency. That I’m me. That I was able to build myself into this. I can’t even imagine if I hadn’t. Honestly, I’d rather be dead than any other alternative if I was still high. I just wish more could do it. Could see the light. Could see what being clean could get you. How much better the world could be.
I’d be lying if I said I never craved it again. Oddly, I still do. I wish I could be skinny like that. I wish I could have energy. I wish (especially lately) that I could be sooooo numb I never felt a thing. Realistically, I know that isn’t possible. I would be skinny, but ugly. I’d have energy but hide in my house. I’d be numb to the pain and create so much new pain. It’s not worth it. Not even a little. I don’t want that life. In never want to be that person. I never want to give up the life I built. Not today. Not tomorrow. Not ever. I think I’ll always crave it. Especially when life hurts. It’s a matter of recognizing it won’t help me. At all.
When I was my highest. Trying so hard to stay clean. I’d go drive around. I’d drive through the nice neighborhoods. Slowly. (Like a creep.) I’d look at their houses, their yards, into their windows. Seeing happy families gathered inside. Beautiful decorations. And I’d cry. I’d pray I could have that life. I’d wish so badly I was in their warm house, with my own family. Watching movies, eating food, being happy. It’s all I wanted. That was my goal. So badly. I wanted the pain to stop and I wanted to live the happily ever after life.
Now – I live in a corner house, in the best neighborhood, which I probably drove by every night. It’s perfect. It screams family. It screams holidays. It screams happiness. This. This was my dream. I made it. 15 years later and I’m inside that house and it just driving by, wondering about the people inside. I have a great job. I have kids And a husband that make me crazy. Plus some amazing dogs.
I can’t tell you I’m amazingly happy every day as I pictured those people in those houses would be. I’m not. But when I stop to think about my life 15 years ago, I’m incredible grateful for the difference and I am incredibly happy not to be that girl ever again. I still drink. I still have things to fix. But I not high. I’m not on a fine line of being clean or dead or in jail.
I’m alive and I’m thankful. However, I do want to take a moment to pray for those who didn’t make it out alive, those still struggling, those fighting the fight. I pray they make it. I pray they find their inner strength and beat this demon.
It hasn’t been an easy road. It has been 150% worth it.
15 Years Clean! 5,475 Days! I made it past 100 Days! (15 years ago you’ll see a lot of posts just trying to get to 100. That was my ONLY goal back then.)