Love is God God is love love is God God is love
If it weren’t for the love and support of parents, many of us would be dead. After so many attempts to live free from insanity and so many failures, it is amazing how some parents can put up with their child’s fall into oblivion and all the pain, heartache, and suffering that comes along with loving an addict, an alcoholic, or someone with a mental disease that no one understands. Why do they parents enable their children by giving them money and shelter when they know it is all for nothing because their child is in the control of demons that use needles, spoons, crack pipes, lighters, and poisonous powders that slowly kill the son or daughter they used to know…
Why does anyone who has a loved one go to such drastic lengths that drain their pocket book, their sanity, their peaceful sleep? Because the fear of losing their loved one completely to the darkness is so great, and the fear of standing by and watching the person they love slowly commit suicide and doing nothing is too much, and to live with the regret that they didn’t try their best to help bring them home…they would rather die.
“Where is she? A hospital? How did she end up there?”
A million questions circled the 19 year old’s head as he held the phone talking to his mother who was on her way with dad to pick him up.
“She is in a psych ward Joey. I don’t know what is going on with her, she was fine a week ago! Apparently she was driving around without sleep for days and totally gone.”
John didn’t know how to respond to fact that his sister, his one and only sibling who was attending college in Maryland and about to graduate, was in an insane asylum. John didn’t know how to respond to anything, so it wasn’t a big deal, he shrugged it off like one who was used to brushing off bad decisions and life challenges as if they were pesky flies.
“So what’s gonna happen?”
His mother told him he had better be ready to go in an hour then hung up the phone.
John stood on the deck of a house that he shared with 14 other drug addicts, alcoholics, and other really great guys. It was called a sober house. Ever since he got arrested last year he has been forced to live in these places that were like boarding houses with rules. The rules were no using drugs or drinking. There was weekly piss tests, where a stranger would come in and collect each individuals urine by watching them pee in a cup. If you failed the urine screen you were kicked out. The money that was involved was sickening, the lives that were thrown out onto the street were precious, and the consequences of that was very real.
Something even more real was the habit that John had found to be very hard to break. It started in another sober house before this sober house. This one was not even close to sober. The first day after being dropped off by his parents, who drove 6 hours just to pick him up at a rehab and drop him off at strange house in the middle of no where, John met his roommate Carlos…and heroin.
With no self-esteem, no confidence in ever succeeding in life, and no care at all to the consequences of this drug to his life and body, John didn’t think twice and took the line of brown powder offered to him so kindly by this huge Puerto Rican guy, his new friend. John remembered the effects of euphoria and the rush that hit his mind body and soul like a tidal wave of pleasure. He laid down on his busted mattress in the dirty room of a broken down house, and John might as well have been in the Taj Mahal. It didn’t matter, the chemicals in the brain made John feel like a god.
John knew he had met his match. John knew he would have a problem with this drug. John knew…and accepted the fact that his life was now in the control of heroin and the fact that he would do anything to get this drug again.
Two weeks and many more lines of heroin later John moved to another city into another sober house. This one was even better than the last, because this sober house was different. Instead of having to go outside to get heroin, all you had to do was go downstairs and boom! Spanish speaking flaco who, in order to get a lesser sentence and get out of prison quicker, told the judge he was an addict and needed treatment. Basically, he had all of his customers living in the same house…much like a professional crack house. Judges and probation officers sent people there to get better and maybe stay out of trouble. They didn’t know that trouble lived and thrived in these places.
It had been a week of heavy inhaling of heroin and John had a screamer of a habit, but he didn’t even know it since John had never done heroin before and therefor never had to come off of it. He had heard stories of friends in high school who were hooked, he saw Basketball Diaries and saw how bad Leonardo DiCaprio detoxed from it, but to John he was invincible and it couldn’t happen to him.
He went up to his room on the third floor and packed a change of clothes into his back pack. He lived in a tiny room that he shared with another man. This man was huge, a body builder and a psycho. John knew him from a rehab in Connecticut they both went through. The man had gotten kicked out for having sex with a female in the laundry room. That was the rule: no fraternizing, and he broke it. Now John had the pleasure of sharing a small room with him in a run down city far away from home. They didn’t talk much.
John saw his parents coming down the street and ran out to meet them. He got in the car, and one look at this mother and father gave him the worst feeling of guilt and shame and fear…and the lies only made it worse.
It took four hours to get to the hospital which was in another state. The drive was mostly quiet with spurts of words from everyone trying to kill the silence that screamed like an unwanted child in an abandoned home, leaving everyone in the most delightful of moods.
John began to feel sick to his stomach and couldn’t stop itching. Slowly his temperature began to rise and he started to sweat. His father noticed this and asked John if he was alright, and if he was getting sick.
“I guess so, I feel like shit…this is horrible. I can’t believe she is in the hospital, I hope she is okay.”
What killed him was that he felt nothing, it was like he was a ghost and all alone and no one noticed him, like he was in another plane of existence and was doomed to spend eternity floating in this space of nothingness…with only the loneliness to keep him company. The sad truth was that John could care less about his sister, the one person on earth that was closest to him, and he just didn’t care. All he wanted was to shift attention away from him and onto her.
“Her coach said she had all sorts of random stuff packed into her car. Like she went crazy and snapped. I just don’t know what to think anymore John.” His father said, ” With all the stuff that has gone on with you, your mother and I haven’t even had time to worry about Kelsey. I am spent, all used up. Dealing with your addiction has nearly killed us. This is too much. Kelsey never had problems. I just pray everything is okay.”
John would have rather been taken by the collar and thrown out of the van going 80 MPH than hear what his father just said to him. What made it worse was the look on his father’s face in the rear view mirror. It was like he knew what was going on, but didn’t directly say it out loud.
Did he know that his son was hooked on heroin and his daughter locked in a psych ward for going manic?