Step One: Despair and Isolation

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Despair and isolation is the sum of most of my life. I can’t remember a time when I felt connected to this nonsensical world around me. The ‘people’ in it continuously leave me in a staggering daze, endlessly pondering how humanity has come this far with such astounding stupidity weighing on the scale of triumph.

Growing up, I was an extremely angry loner. I was mean to all my short-lived friends and I was royally pissed at the world. I saw absolutely no hope in the future, and I didn’t give a flying rat’s ass what anybody thought of me.

Consequentially, my ‘give-no-fucks, I hate everybody’ attitude led me to a fifteen-year, wildly unstable, completely isolated relationship with a crack-dealer. After about five-years of complete pandemonium, I started studying Scriptures. While my newfound faith ultimately saved me from myself, it also threw me even further down the pit of isolation.

Not only could I never speak of my newfound faith with the morons that I was surrounded by, I also could not relate to the religious zealots whose delusional ideas about the Scriptures were so far off base that I could not fathom how people can be so blind.

And as I slowly descended further and further into the pit of isolation and despair, I caught many powerful delusions. Delusions so powerful that by the end of my fifteen-year descent into the bowels of hell, I couldn’t hold a coherent thought.

My brain was so exhausted after I fled from my bitch-slave cellar that all I wanted to do was sleep for seven months. I eventually scraped myself off the bed and embarked on a ten-month daily conquest of Alcoholics Anonymous principles.

I learned more from AA than in any of my future stints in rehab. However, looking back, I wasn’t doing it for myself. I was doing it to appease other people. So when I got to Step Four, my resentments erupted into a fight involving spit and broken windows, which led a summer of homelessness.

Homelessness was actually pretty fun. I thoroughly enjoyed it, which is probably this biggest reason I never apologized my way back into the house. When my homeless acquaintance turned roommate finally got an apartment, I was back in college and things were straight for a few months. Then he started doing heroin all the live long day while I remained isolated at my computer, drinking more and more every day.

After I racked up a ton of debt, went through rehab and IOP, and continued to blackout almost every day, I landed myself back in daddy’s basement. At that point, I was in a stupor of hopelessness and isolation. I just wanted to die.

So one day I was drinking on the steps outside daddy’s basement when a fight broke out involving midgets, a bag of dirt, some chairs, popcorn, a basketball, a trampoline, a bowl of chicken and some oranges. And… Yep… You guessed it… Back to rehab I go…

After I went to the hospital for two weeks, I was transferred to a sobering center to await my admittance into thirty-day inpatient rehab. During one of our daily check-ins, we read a passage from a Narcotics Anonymous book, I think it was ‘Just for Today.’ It spoke of something to the effect that if you break someone’s windows, you must make amends by not only paying for the windows but also reaching some type of spiritual awakening.

That was the beginning of my renewed faith in Alcoholics Anonymous. I slowly started to remember why I so fascinated with AA for those ten months. During those two years after I fell off the wagon, I let people get into my head. Those who say AA is a cult, it doesn’t work, blah blah blah. But I realized that every time I went to a meeting or read the literature it was as if God was speaking to me about my own personal life.

But of course, my addiction and isolation didn’t end with rehab. It got put on hold for a while. Until I was on my feet and truly living alone. I had a roommate, but we never saw each other. Although, this time, as my addiction crept its way back into my psyche, I knew what was happening. I knew the traps, the lies and most importantly I knew the way out. It took a little while. But I finally snapped out of it.

My ‘coming to’ didn’t happen overnight. Settling into my new independent life was a huge adjustment. I had a ton of errands to run in order to get situated seeing as I entered rehab with nothing but the clothes on my back. On top of that, I had to settle into an unpredictable work schedule.

Then there’s my ongoing detachment problem. I don’t know if it’s a problem or a defense mechanism or another subconscious means to run from my life, but the proverbial tumor in my brain seems to shrink as I detach from my family and old friends. Sometimes when I feel guilty about not reaching-out the tumor grows a notch.

Now that my brain feels somewhat settled and I have a recovery plan, I feel more motivated to go to meetings, workout, tend to my garden and write. Although I’m still trying to find a balance in my weekly schedule to do these things. I know that if I remain diligent I will eventually come to grips with my detachment problem, but today is all I’m focused on right now. And today I don’t feel like acknowledging my brain tumor.

The End

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