Thursday, October 26, 2017

The Junkie Rockstar I've Been Striving to Be- Guest Post by Anee

How did i get here? How did this happen to ME? How did i end up walking down market street with all of my belongings in my high school varsity swim bag essentially homeless? well, i’m a junkie who couldn’t stay sober.
i kept getting high in my sober living and they kicked me out when all the spoons went missing. then i kept nodding out during the house meeting to discuss said missing spoons. apparently i don’t have a very good poker face.... i needed to find that residential hotel i had heard about. i think i saw it on craigslist. i knew this was coming for a while now so i’ve been prepared....it feels like everyone is looking at me. do they all know? i’m torn, a part of me is excited. i’m finally free. no one to answer to. i can do what i want when i want. i can use in the open. leave my shit out if i want. no more hiding and faking this sobriety bullshit. and let’s be clear, it IS bullshit. i am finally the junkie rockstar i’ve been striving to be. then the other part, the part that was on the varsity swim team. the part that asked her parents for help 5 weeks ago. the part that would never have believed this could happen to her. that part is scared. scared shitless and wants her fucking mom.
so i find the SRO. i pay the $140 for the week. i’m safe for now. free. the guy shows me to my room. we walk in and i set all my stuff on the bed. the blankets look gross. i don’t care. i’m not out walking up and down market street anymore. that’s all that matters. i’ve never done this and i don’t know how it works? is it ok to sleep on them? this is a hotel after all. he gives me a key to the women showers too. i’m not going there now. it’s late. i know enough to stay in my room and not fucking come out. there's a bed and a sink in this room. that's it. it smells like cigarettes and pee. the sink actually looks like it has pee in it. i guess they don’t call them piss in the sink hotels for nothing. jesus christ i’m so fucking scared.
Obviously the next step is to get high. i leave my stuff in my new room and call my connect. a short bart ride later and i’m well again. i’m desperate not to be so lonely and scared so i call one of my new friends that i had met in rehab who i know has relapsed. we meet up outside. he asks if they can puncture in my room. at first i don’t understand what he’s talking about. i’m a solo user. i’m so full of shame. i don’t know much but i know enough to be embarrassed and hide everything.... puncture? OOOOHHHH. i get it. no one has taught me the lingo. so after a quick hesitation i figure it out and we all go upstairs. they do their thing and i do mine. it’s weird. it’s like the quintessential junkie moment. the one you see in all the movies. me and my two junkie friends picking at our faces, fighting over stolen drugs, nodding out. everything you assume it looks like, it does. down to me secretly taking an extra OC and then helping them look for it and accusing them of stealing from me. classic junkie move. and to be honest, THEY’RE the junkies. not me. i’m not the one shooting up in some random hotel room. this is MY hotel room.... goddamn i’m fucking delusional. i’m not THAT bad off yet. i’ve still got this under control.
After a few hours of that they leave. i have to go to bed. i still have a job to go to in the morning and i can’t be too fucked. so they leave and it’s just me. i’m so lonely and so scared and so broke. there’s not much i can do. i walk to walgreens just to be around some other humans. i figure i will buy some candy or something. i see a tiny black and white TV for $10. i buy that so i’ll have some company. i go upstairs and look around. it’s getting a little loud and scary out in the halls. i’m pretty sure i hear some fighting. maybe it’s fucking. who knows. either way it doesn’t sound happy. how the fuck did i end up here?

i push the bed in front of the door. no one is getting in here. i turn on my sad tv. i wash my face in the pissy sink and climb into the bed with the blankets that have god knows what on them and cry. this is what my life has become. what the fuck? i lay there for hours scared and bored and lonely. just listening to the chaos outside. i put a pillow over my head and the blankets over that. do you think this room is haunted? it must be. GREAT. now i have to worry about that too. it's too late to walk the streets and I’m sick enough to have to leave. i made a mistake. this isn’t how my life is supposed to turn out. this isn’t supposed to be me. I’m supposed to be filming educational hair videos in fucking london right now. but instead i’m in a crack hotel cut off from everyone i love. thanks heroin. i can’t call my dad or stepmom. they made it quite clear they were done. my get out of jail free card was used 5 weeks ago. it's now 2am. i can’t take this anymore. my mom always said i could call her anytime no matter what. i know that she’ll let me come home. she always does. i do it. i call my mom at 2am. she answers immediately.
“hello?” she says in a sleepy voice.

i’m silent for a minute. i can’t believe i actually called her. “hi mom. it’s me.”
i can hear her wake up. this is the call she’s feared. “honey are you ok?”
“no. no mom. no i am not ok. i’m scared and i’m alone. can i come home?” i start sobbing. “please mommy just let me come home.”
silence. she sighs.
“i can’t let you come home honey. i can’t let you come into this house until you are sober. i love you so much and i’m so sorry but i can’t” i know this is breaking her heart to say to me. i know she wishes more than thousand wishes she could let me come home and fix me.
“WHY? MOM I AM SCARED AND I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO ANYMORE PLEASE”
silence
“i can’t. but i can stay on the phone with you. what are you doing?”
i’m crying so hard i can barely get the words out. it’s not working. she’s not going to let me. doesn’t she know what’s going on? doesn’t she fucking care? HOW IS THIS NOT WORKING THIS TIME WHAT THE FUCK? i’m crying so hard i have hiccups i choke out “i’m watching tv. will and grace”
“hold on. i’ll put that on too and it will be like we’re watching it together, ok?’
she puts it on. we stay on the phone for about an hour just watching the show together. we don’t really talk. it’s the first time she’s ever told me no. after i’ve calmed down we get off the phone. we say our i love yous and what not. i fall asleep. when i wake up in the morning i know that i’m on my own. it’s just me. no one is going to help me anymore. i’m the only one who can do this. i want to do this. but not today. probably not tomorrow either. but soon. i know what to do. i know there’s people out there that are happy. there’s people out there who don’t hate themselves. hate the way their skin feels on their body. shit, i just spent 5 weeks with some of them. they came into the program bringing meetings to spread the message. i’ve even got some of their numbers. i’m gonna call them. not today though. not yet.



Anee did get sober.
She is living out her rockstar dreams as a stay at home mother in the desert.
She looks stunning in a caftan.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

The Chill.

 I see my breath. I'm surrounded by the chill in air. The frost clings to the blades of grass like the memory of the last day I touched your hand. I was distracted by your dirty fingernails, bitten down to the beds. I wore your sweater yesterday. It smelled faintly of flowers. It reminds me of you. The wool irritates me, just like our petty arguments. The forty pounds you lost and gained and lost the last time you relapsed made just enough room.

 There is a gnawing inside my chest. My heart is pounding to get outside. The ribs spread to form a bony prison, keeping me from you. My lungs fill without my consent. I don't want to spend another day wondering where you are- this ache known our separation. I'll hate myself for another sleepless night.

There is a chill in the air. I am spending another night sweating. Sticking to the sheets like unwrapped  candy to the sidewalk on a hot summer day. I am sweet and easily discarded. Two users in love.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Fall

I have been traveling a lot, trying to use my personal story to help others. I'm typing this on my phone so forgive me in advance . 


It's fall now. My kids need me to be home. I need to catch up on carepackages, apply for funding, and just focus on keeping my mind right. I'm not going to lie to kick it, for whatever reason, the winter months give me a wave of depression. My mother really loved the holidays. She would do the whole house with decorations. She had decorative sweaters, decorative jewelry and pins. I have never embraced anything as much as she embraced the holiday season.  


Winter as a homeless junkie sucked beyond measure. The SF Bay Area in my specific corridor doesn't really get "seasons" per se. It's more 10 days of heat, dry, cold/foggy, and rain. The rain when you live outside is inescapable. There are only so many sheltered spots in my general area. Those are highly coveted and physically defended. The average person might stay awake on rocks or tweak to avoid laying in a puddle at night. Remember- it isn't JUST a puddle. It's a combo of the oil and piss runoff that has accumulated in the dry season. The shelters were whack- curfew by sevenish only to be kicked out in the early early morning. That's if they aren't full. 


I'm old now. I'm an old retired junkie. But I can clearly remember shivering in the cold rain, unable to accumulate enough money for a fix. No place to sit, no place to stay, no prospects. Those memories keep me sober but they also make me insane. I left that life and three people took my place. The water wheel of addiction flows like the dope on the streets. 


You are probably alone reading this. I'm alone too. Alone in my hotel at a conference. I'm trying to learn about new ways to help people that use drugs, people like us. We deserve help. We deserve to be safe. We deserve love. 


Be safe my friends. I'll get a story to you when I return. 



Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Walking with my Co Worker

I was walking through the Tenderloin today with one of my co-workers, another person who used to use drugs. I try to run my thoughts through the "is this appropriate filter" but that filter fails when I traverse certain blocks. Here is where I used to sleep outside. This is where the male hustlers used to pick up dates. This is the door well where I sat frozen for few hours after I shot up MDMA mixed with LSD. This is where my ex boyfriend carved A + T in a heart. That boyfriend died of AIDS. This is where I had someone overdose me on meth to try to rape me. I later pressed charges but the statute of limitations on sexual assault was two years at the time. Here is where I turned a trick for twenty dollars then lied to my boyfriend about it (so he wouldn't have to turn a trick). Here is where I used to sell drugs. This is were I used to beg for them when I was dope sick. These were the hotels that kicked me out when my boyfriend used to beat me up. This is the last place I used drugs.  Ok, I didn't actualy tell him all that. Some of it though, for sure.

The Tenderloin tour was nothing but tender. I am how ever strange, grateful it all happened. I appreciate every thing I have today. From clean sheets, to use of the limb they said I might need amputated, to people that love me. People ACTUALLY love me. Not because I have the bag but because I am a good person. I like to pet all the animals. Eat curry. Drink tea that is hot. I have THREE sets of sheets because I can. I like to wear whimsical socks because it makes me smile. I survived all that shit I mentioned. I am happy to have made it out alive.

I love you ppl. I was traveling, not ignoring you. I was eating way too many sea creatures in Boston.

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