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I'm stunned... 
15th-Sep-2007 11:42 pm
This is one of the saddest, most frighteningly real things I have ever seen.

16th-Sep-2007 02:20 pm (UTC)
Opposite because I'm almost 16 years removed from my own drugs experience, ending with heroin. While I am extremely lucky both in that I never got anywhere near the desperate, hopeless places the kids in this film have and lucky in that when I chose to get clean, I renounced everything I knew to do it - the town I lived in (Atlanta), everyone I knew and associated with, everything - and ran as fast as I could towards who I've made myself be now.

I'm never running from a past that has nothing to do with me now, I've just learned over the years how to compartmentalize it so that I can take it out of its box now and then, examine it all, understand why I made some of the choices I have made, and remember what they've brought me. Seeing this documentary was extremely visceral and I kept wondering "Was I anything like that, even at my worst?"

I don't talk much about it simply because it is difficult to remember what a lot of that felt like, and I have extracted from that time everything I could learn for myself, I no longer indulge in any substances nor feel any inclination to (except for caffeine - I am French Roast's complete whore). I have one picture of myself saved from when I just started getting clean where I'm hugging a friend and I look sickly and rail thin. I keep it and look at it now and then as a reminder of places I've been that I never want to see again. It's no longer shame I associate with it, just a drive to never think like that kid I was did. Ultimately that was what caused it all, I believe - my mindset.
16th-Sep-2007 07:39 pm (UTC)
When you were 20. I don't know why I didn't become an addict at that age because at the rate I was shovelling drugs into myself I should have found something that wouldn't let me go. Or I guess I was, but I steered clear of highly addictive drugs like speed or opiates and never put a needle in my arm so it was me driving the addiction, not any particular drug.

It frightens me no end that it wasn't until middle age (should I live to be 100) that I found myself dealing with something that I _could not_ control.

I look forward to it being 16 years from now....

16th-Sep-2007 08:17 pm (UTC)
I'd been doing loads of drugs before I found heroin, everything from pills to smoking weed and hash and in between before I even got out of high school.

I imagine that you're in a much better headspace though for the sort of thing you've gone through on the better end of middle age, you have SO much life experience under you and have gone through the list of things that you feel you have to prove, so you look on the long term of these things with much better sensibilities. Besides, all experiences - good ones and bad ones - offer something for the learning, some vital thing that you'd never get otherwise. You're the smart one when you learn to embrace it all and accept yourself in spite of it.

16 years from now is a long time and between now and then there are a lot of days that you should consider equally and individually, just like I have. At some point each day, I thank myself for getting through another one reasonable intact. I recommend doing that, and in the times when you're not quite so grateful to think of the thing that always gets me through:
There is never a right time.
There is never a perfect time.
There is ALWAYS a better time.

17th-Sep-2007 01:59 am (UTC)
You're right that I do have a much better perspective from which to deal with all this - while it's upsetting that I didn't see it coming (or did, but was in denial) I have so many tools available to help with it that I wouldn't have had when I was young.

I'm also amazed at CMA, the 12-step program. I'd never had any interaction with them before and while the whole GOD thing is annoying it's annoying for a lot of people who nonetheless make the program work for them.

To be in regular contact with people who are striving and struggling with the same thing I am and to have complete strangers put themselves there for me and to see how they work towards releasing judgements of themselves and others, it's so good for me.

In many ways this is the best thing that could happen to me right now because I have the opportunity to work through a lot of stuff during a downtime in terms of life and responsibility. I really feel that this could be the most important thing I've ever done.
17th-Sep-2007 03:55 pm (UTC)
19th-Sep-2007 10:30 am (UTC)
:) Thanks.
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