Monday, September 19, 2016

Anonymous Friends

Addiction is a jealous pimp that doesn't allow much time for friends. There are using buddies. There are cordial dealers, if you are lucky. There may even be a few "running partners". Friends, however, are in short supply.

I was always a sensitive kid, prone to tears of frustration or anger. I can't claim to have made many friends until I got involved in the punk rock/hardcore scene in my teens. In the lyrics of the music, I found a community. We were all running from something, it seemed. Unfortunately, many of us ended up in the same exact place- the bottom of a bag of dope. Of the friends I had back then, I would estimate 1/3 are dead, 1/3 are off drugs, and 1/3 are struggling with either drugs or mental health issues are both.

When I got into that police car February of 1998, I didn't know what was in store for me besides a bunch of sickness. I did know that "clean" or "recovery" could not be any fucking worse than the daily grind of a drug user. In other words, my hustle was tired. This made me open to new ideas. There is no way I could have been more desperate at that moment. I, personally, believe my "rock bottom" had come years before. This was something entirely different. This was a willingness to try something different. I am very fortunate it worked out for me. I had made a decision that if it didn't work, I was going to go on methadone for the rest of my life. I was 100% okay with that alternative. I knew that would be the only plan B that would work. Life had something else in store for me. I'm grateful. Trust me.

Now, at 18 years off drugs, I get an ENORMOUS amount of grief about why I stay connected to active drug users and people in early recovery. Why do I do it? First, "they" are "me". They need someone to show that the outside world does indeed give a fuck about their health and well being. Secondly, why not? It is not like I am shaking hands in shooting galleries. People generally contact me through social media and we connect anonymously. It is a different kind of friendship, yes, but not inauthentic. Sometimes, the most real a person can get is with a total stranger.

So know that someone out there cares on the other side of this keyboard.
XOXO Tracey.

6 comments:

  1. Been sitting up the last few nights reading the posts on your blog getting lost in the sensible madness of addiction if that makes sense to you? Not really good with words myself i do however connect with what you say i have my own opiate addiction and reading your posts makes me feel safe for some reason like i know i can beat this and come back on top. You're an amazing and beautiful human being thank so much for all you do.

    Aaron,
    Ireland

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  2. I get asked the same questions... the answer is simple. "THOSE" people are me. I'm just a head of the game. I do not judge them or look down upon their choices. Who am I to judge. Every day I wake up and I choose to stay clean or to use. Same as an active addict. My choice today is just different than theirs FOR TODAY! Tomorrow they could wake up and NOT use just as easily as I could wake up and go back on a run. We are the SAME! Remembering this fact keeps me clean, helping someone help themselves makes me feel good. And thank god I came to the realization that I was done and I hope others will too

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  3. You look very healthy Tracy. I'm sure you are an inspiration for so many.

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  4. "Sometimes, the most real a person can get is with a total stranger."

    Amen,sister.

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