Thursday, February 27, 2014

Sixteen Years Clean Today

I don't write about my recovery as often as a I should. Sometimes, I feel as if it is not that interesting. I have a fairly ordinary existence. I get up in the early morning. I try to juggle the insanity of getting three kids dressed an out the door. Generally one is throwing a fit while another doesn't like what they have to wear while another is upset because I won't let them bring a particular toy to school. I try to block off at least ten minutes to cuddle with the smallest one. He still wants to spend time with me in my lap.

 He will point forcefully " I want to cuddle with YOU!" I generally comply with his request.

It is difficult to explain how much my life has changed. A little over sixteen years ago I was paying to stay in a hell hole of a hotel in the Tenderloin. I paid almost $900 a month to live in a place that would put you out in the street by 11:00 if the rent was not paid. The manager had tried to bring tricks to my room to "help" me pay my rent but I had insisted on making my own money. The place was filled with large rats. This was not mice, but rats with shiny coats because they were well fed. In addition, there were other creatures, monsters, and rock stars that roamed the halls 24/7 knocking on your door asking for matches.

I was extremely emaciated. I was shooting speed heroin and cocaine into the soles of my feet. I had no more veins left. I had refused to use my neck after a friend killed someone injecting him there. The guy died a few days later of a blood clot to the brain. They were tweakers so I imagine he was digging in the guy's neck until something broke off. I was having heart palpatations from smoking crack. I could envision my death. I had no ID so it would take weeks to identify me.

When the police arrested me, I was not rescued per se. I had been to jail before. I had made a choice. I had made this choice to get clean. I was willing to try. If that fell throgh, I made a commitment to myself I would get on methadone for the rest of my life and be okay with it. That was sixteen year ago. I never went back.

I love this picture 


  1. Congratulations!! I've just found your blog, love your honesty. Happy 16th Birthday!

  2. You're amazing Tracey!

  3. I am so proud of you, Tracey. Thank you for sharing your journey. <3

  4. Wow! That was breath taking.
    Youre brave Tracey keep tjanls for sharing your experience

  5. There are not nearly enough comments or views that could put into words the amount of respect that I have for you. You are the truth Tracey and I truly believe that if there is a god, he has helped you make it this far to keep another person from having to stumble down that same dark alley of addiction that you emerged from. 16 years ago you woke up...opened your eyes...and really saw what life has to offer. Now you are the voice of reason, proof that IT IS POSSIBLE. You are able to take your readers deep within the moment of time you blog about, you draw them into the TL even if they have never set foot in San I read some of your stories, I can smell the piss covered streets, i feel the cold chill of the fog rolling through the city at dawn, catch a whiff of vinegar with hints of burning sulphur from the hear the lighter clicking over and over like a metronome in the background of the soundtrack of your past..with each word the odor of red hot choreboy fills the air... as you recant tales from the depths of what easily could be one persons take readers from around the world right into the moment in a way that many can not..Tracey. I salute you for your 16 years clean and give you my utmost respect. Thank you for your contributions to the world,your work to help spread harm reduction, and in turn, saving lives. Keep the stories have gone from BEING BEING ADDICTING...and I am hooked. thank you for all you do. "JF"