I was born with a gift. I can take any happy situation and form it into something ugly. I can suck the life from these bliss filled moments like an alcoholic suckling the last of his vodka out of an empty bottle, I feed off the drama. Taking what is considered to be a joyous occasion and turning it into my own crisis is my latent mutant ability. In short I self destruct…..the human being side of me wants to be happy for other’s happiness but the addict side wants their happiness for my own.
My sponsor has asked me to document the moment I realized I had a problem, the problem being drugs and alcohol. I pondered this question for many days; I was never good at being self aware in my younger days. There was always something or someone else demanding my attention. I never truly focused on me and my needs my wants. I healed by drinking or snorting away my pain. Even though my habit had directly caused me immense pain such as the lost of my job, friends, dignity, my rape, etc. I still didn’t really believe I had a problem. I was convinced I was going to fix it.
You would think after overdosing and being hospitalized and hearing trained professionals tell you in exclamation points!!!!!! YOU HAVE A PROBLEM!!!!!!
(One nurse truly wrote that on an assessment form)
I would realize, hey maybe I do have a problem. Not me though, I had it all under control. These kinds of self delusions only work when no one who loves you is around to witness the problem. Self imploding states away from family made it pretty easy to down play my “Situation”. My parents knew there was a problem and they knew I needed help. Moving me into their house in Ohio put my little “Situation” under a microscope. It wouldn’t take them long to figure out I had absolutely no grip on my problem. In fact my problem was covered cooking oil and my hands had been dipped in lube. I couldn’t even touch my fucking problem.
It was the night of my cousin’s wedding that the spotlight would bring into focus just how far into the deep end of the ocean I had plummeted. For the occasion my entire family had drove or flown into Ohio to help the happy couple celebrate, including my older brother Matt. To say I idolized Matt would be putting things lightly. He was the perfect big brother. He teased but never to the point of cruelty, he was supportive. When I came out and had gone missing on one of my drug benders my older brother and a friend volunteered to go looking for me. I remember coming home terrified of what he would say to his little gay brother when I had finally returned. A few light hearted gay jokes and full acceptance is all I have received from him.
Unfortunately due to no fault of his own seeing him during those times all but reminded me that I would never live up to him. He was athletic, charismatic, self sufficient, and well liked by almost everyone. I was the family mess up and being in his presence just made my shortcoming glisten with hues of never going to change brown, and always going to fuck up grey. The morning of the wedding we all put on our Sunday best, me, my father, and mother and Matt. We stood there the four of us a family ……butI didn’t feel like I belong. These people were strangers to me….and I was a stranger to them.
I learned that day just how long a Catholic wedding is. It was Game of Thrones long, Order of the Phoenix long, last day of school long, but beautiful none the less. I watched these two people who truly loved each other do the ultimate act to show their love for all to see. I was blinded to it though, all I could see were the things I would never have. I would never walk down the aisle with the person I loved more than life waiting to take my hand. My family would never be in attendance crying tears of joy. A horrible thought entered my head……. I would go to many more of these weddings. One day my brother would get married, my other cousins, but in that moment I knew it would never find me…..not with the way I was at least. Such a potent feeling of loneliness swept over me. Every part of me hurt.
At the reception I felt like I had a target placed on my back, eyes filled with pity found there way upon me. It was like everyone there knew what I had just discovered, that I would never have this. I found my way to the bar and decided to drown this feeling with as many drinks as it took to turn this frown upside down. But drink after drink it wasn’t working…..I didn’t feel any better. I was surrounded by smiling faces, by friends and family, and it was suffocating. I found my way to a photo booth with happy couples taking photos together making lasting memories. One of my cousins stepped out of the booth with her family; she quickly insisted we take a fun photo together. A few pink feathery boas’ latter and we had taken a very tasteful yet hilarious photo. The booth spit out our picture and I starred at it. I didn’t recognize the person standing next to my pink feathered cousin who was so filled with life. His face was swollen from all the alcohol. He had huge black bags under his eyes from all the partying. He looked……empty.
I fumbled drunk around the reception for the rest of the night. Being told more than once enough was enough, but I needed more alcohol I needed to escape to flee into its abyss. I blacked out at some point and found myself being awakened by my parents opening the back seat of the car telling me we were home. My pants were wet, probably from piss. I could tell the evening had soured by the tone in my parents voices. My mom demanded I shower and go to bed. My father and brother sat in the leaving room quiet. I made my way into the bathroom and shut and locked the door. I turned the water as hot as I could g and stood under the water as it lightly burned my skin until I was a bright pink color. Out of the coroner of my eye I saw it sitting on the edge of the tub. A razor someone had left in the shower…..I didn’t even hesitate. The blade found my skin in an instant.
I blacked out again……my father and brother had to break open the bathroom door. I sat in the shower, the water had gone cold. Naked my dad pulled me out and covered me with a towel my Mother just kept asking WHY! I had no answer. I awoke the next day down stairs on the pull out sofa. My older brother Matt had slept down stairs with me the entire night to make sure I was ok. There was no more hiding, no more saying I was fine. “I didn’t know it was this bad” he said. I held back tears and told him I didn’t know it had either. I was sick…..sick in the head and the body. Broken…..It was that morning that I realized nothing was going to get better not on its own. My brother sat with me for most of the morning and I realized that I wasn’t alone….and I had never been.