Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A Needle and the Damage Done

A lot of talk has been going on about heroin and death. I keep hearing the phrase, demons in his head. For the record, I have a Traumatic Brain Injury. I have learned a lot about the way the brain works. I have learned a lot about anatomy as well. And guess what.... there are no demons in people's heads.

So I'll give you my two cents. For what it's worth....
Life is hard because some times it is fucking hard. Some times terrible things happen and you are left with a life that is unrecognizable. Some times you face cruelty in places and in people you would least expect to find it and it will devastate you. In a life time you have to know these things because it isn't all butterflies and rainbows.

My heart has been broken so deeply that there have been times when I thought... I don't think I can do this anymore. Its just too hard. That too is a part of life. And guess what.... the biggest heartbreaks did not come from an ex-husband or anyone else.... they came from life itself.

If you need a little help getting through those times.... let some one, a real person, know what you are going through. They don't have to be perfect. They just need to give a shit about you.

Drugs will ruin your life. Period. Alcohol, excessive drinking will ruin your life. Not because they put demons in your head. Its because instead of choosing to grow, or grow up, or grow from within, or grow into some integrity people choose to do everything but grow. It doesn't matter what costume we wear or how old we are or what religion we believe in either. We whine and moan and make the same mistakes over and over again because we want what we want when we want it. We want all of life to orbit around our ego and satisfy every whim and every bullshit desire we have. That's being shallow. That's being inexperienced. That's being selfish. No demons. Just us.

Until we get to the point where we are willing to give ourselves an honest look in the mirror and face our bad decisions or bad motives or our ridiculous pursuit of delusional thinking.... we will be chasing the Tiger's tail.
We are all just people. That's it. We aren't angels and we aren't demons. We are just people. We aren't always going to get it right. But as long as we learn from our mistakes and we make sure to choose friends that are good people, then we will begin to understand that everybody makes mistakes and everybody gets it right some times. That is life.

So chill out. Take a walk. Call a friend and talk about something real. Turn off reality TV.

I have known and loved people who lost the battle of addiction. And guess what.... that pill, that bottle, that whatever.... it isn't your friend. If you don't have any friends.... volunteer your time and do something that matters to you. You'll meet like minded people and maybe you will wind up making a good friend. And stop all the whining..... life can be really hard. And it can also be wondrously fabulous. We've got one life... interpret that any way you want to. No matter what people believe we know we have this life right here and right now. Appreciate it and don't waste one minute. Unless you are resting with your feet up and relaxing is the way you choose to appreciate life.

I'll tell you the truth. The hard times I've survived were terrible. But the things I've learned in this lifetime have made it all truly interesting. Truly enriching. And kickin.

Heroin is for suckers. Doesn't matter how smart you are or how brave you are or even how successful you are... don't be a sucker to something that is not your friend and that will, given enough time and money, will kill you.

I have been addicted to hope, to signs and wonders, to idealized versions of purpose and love. Chemicals and the hold of depression and abuse walk with me even now. The difference now is that I decided to face life without pretense (one of the few benefits of survival). Life is what it is. Some times it's messy and some times we're a mess but some how, with all of that, I have chosen to love life with my eyes wide opened. It isn't easy but it's real. When the hopes and dreams and isms shattered into bits and pieces I stopped trying to put it all back together the way I thought it should be. And came to terms with it or with my unrealistic expectations of what I thought it should be or what I wanted it to be and that's when I began to stretch my arms out wide and embraced it all. Because it is what it is. 

I have loved people who struggled with these things too. I have been one of those people. I have been determined to march on, carrying the banner of ignorance so high that everyone could see it and the weight of it but me. I was blind and so sure I was right. 

I understand about love and mercy and that long suffering kind of love that keeps your holding on because of your faith and hope that the person you love and cherish so much will awaken and be present. I have mourned them and been there when they took their last breath. I have gone to meetings where people I respected, who were so wise, killed themselves in so many more ways than one. 

It is a heart breaking road to take. And the pain they can cause is nothing compared to the pain that propels them to do those things that hurt themselves and the people they love.

We can choose to love them anyway because we just love them.

I have read the obituaries of the brilliant and felt a sense of loss because their lives were cut short. And wondered.... would they say now, if they could, it was worth it? It is hard to imagine they would say it was, but in their lives and in their deaths they say it was. 

I have kept on putting one foot in front of the other in the midst of the deepest despair and some times I thought it would swallow me up. 

It takes a willingness to learn, to grow and to share and yes, make different decisions one day, one minute at a time, that keeps us going during those times in our lives. 

It is trudging through the sorrow that keeps us going. When we fall down and our ignorance muddies our path it is hard to walk forward. Our legs are heavy and our hearts are fragile but I will say this with all of the conviction and life experience I have to share... it is worth it. If all you can do to get through and keep your mind right, is to keep your butt at that table, to hear one more heart wrenching story, to remind you of the cost of your decisions, than that is what it takes. If it takes reading a book, making different choices that are thoughtful then that is what it takes. But what life gives you when you become determined to kick some ass through all of the loneliness and wondering and wandering.... is worth it. Worth all of it.

If I would have given up we wouldn't know each other and share in this unforeseeable moment. And how cool is this?

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