How I Broke Myself

By samycostello 10/15/18

There are too many people in this world who know the feeling: the nonstop urge, a relentless craving of something to feel right; to feel whole. I know very well the suffering that accompanies a life of addiction. My whole life I have struggled with trying to fill an unexplained void at all desperation. It didn't start with Budweiser and 1800 Tequila, that much I can testify. It started with gasoline and cocaine as a matter of fact. Foil boils and a few broken televisions hidden in the woods behind my apartment complex was my home away from home. I was nothing more than an angry eleven year old looking for warmth. I grew up feeling alone and worthless as an effect of an emotionally unavailable mother with two jobs and an emotionally and physically abusive sister. In the home, there was always tension and dysfunction; outside the home, there was always tension and dysfunction. With my role models rolling up weed and chasing white lines in front of me, I never stood a chance. Such is the story of my addiction.

Nothing in the world makes me feel whole, except alcohol. I have it broken down into a recipe for happiness. Budweiser nonstop all day long from the minute I wake up, 13 shots of 1800 as needed, and smoke a bowl of cocaine mixed with a small amount of weed as needed. My reason for such a habit was always centered around finding happiness and staying numb. That's the only thing that matters. Problem is, that is no way to live. Life gets dark, drugs take their toll and you lose yourself. You make mistakes and cause harm. One day I woke up completely broken, realizing that I was finally at my rock bottom. "Today is the day." Those words were the signaling of my bottom. A bright star in the suicide grade book. I was ready; I reached the point of no return. "Samy Boy" had come a long way from his first substance induced therapy session.

I can remember my first high walking through the woods saying, "whoa, this is it, I am high." My very first gasoline high was spent in its entirety throughout a path from the "huff spot" to the street (as gasoline only lasts a few moments). I was absolutely hooked; this was it. This is what has been missing. Being high is cozy and warm. Being drunk though, is a whole other level. "I am me when I am drunk." That's my one and only excuse for my drinking (That and my brain and body are now wired to think alcohol is a necessity for survival). Such are tough times when a man can live his whole life without knowing who he even is. A terrible life it is that I never once rationalized my behavior or my emotions.

Fortunately at the moment, this piece is being written in a recovery phase of alcoholism. I am a little under six months being sober of drugs and alcohol. Meaning, I am no where near qualified to advise nor preach the various methods of recovery. However I am an addict; it wasn't hard to take to the Alcoholics Anonymous program like I took to meth. I am making great strides by working the steps of the program and allowing my higher power to guide me. Scripture and catholic reading material provided to me by my father is actually my go-to when confronted with temptation. Little does my father know, I would not be sober if not for him. Thankfully he doesn't; my arrogance was passed down from his side of the gene pool.

July of twenty seventeen was the first time I walked into an Alcoholics Anonymous group meeting a little more than a year ago. I got my first chip and left. My ability to stay sober lasted a whopping twenty-nine gut wrenching days before I was drunk again. I stood little chance being a homeless fellow, couch surfing with fellow addicts. Clearly I wanted to learn the hard way that recovery begins with creating a new life, including the "people, places and things" in it. It took me until just recently to rid my life of all the toxic people in it; the difference has been rewarding.

Twenty-nine days. Gross.

Pride came out of that experience however, it was the longest I had been sober since before high school. It honestly felt good. It wasn't long though before regret and resentment towards myself for not maintaining my sobriety started to set in. The regret bone is connected to the drinking bone, and so on. For the low price of fifteen dollars for 128 ounces of sweet Budweiser lovin', you could find me at the local wing joint. Point being, speeding up felt right for some reason until one day I woke up and realized how broken I had become. My emotions had finally become numb. I worked so hard to get there, it was a true achievement. The problem when someone lives in a state of mind of like that is pretty obvious. In my case, I was officially apathetic and selfish. The fact that at such at young age i'm weighing devastating my mothers entire life against living in constant misery, is a problem. Getting sober was do or die. My only option was to give myself to a community with a bigger purpose than myself; Alcoholics Anonymous.

In the year 2013, I drove away the love of my love with my alcoholic antics (and my anger, if i'm being completely honest). Ever since then, great strides have been made with my anger and self-control regarding such. So this "recovery" and positive, productive motivational speech "crap" is nothing new to me. Except it isn't crap! The AA program just clicks for me because I already know the language and the principles. I have had a little book for years that is filled with my personal life lessons regarding issues such as pride and gratitude. The one thing that was missing however, was action. It is one thing to say and it is another thing to do. Getting sober through the program with my home group is especially hard for me because i'm lazy and proud. I like to overthink and under perform when it comes down to brass tacks. Sobriety however, does not come without work, very hard work. I do no expect any person to understand my constant and intense itch for a drink of alcohol but it is sobriety or die for me, so I am working very hard despite of myself. Myself being a lazy asshole who wants to throw everything away and burn it all to the ground.

Life is weird in recovery, all my Gatorade bottles are still just Gatorade bottles, my car no longer has an alarming stash of straws in the seat pockets, and everything I eat tastes like complete shit. I also have so much more time on my hands now that time isn't flying by on a high. It took me about 6 days to recover from my physical dependency on alcohol. I was in a constant cold sweat, my hands were too sweaty to touch things, and I cried every chance my pride allowed me to. Currently, the itch in my bones is so intense to the point I can not focus my mind which then stresses me out to the point I scream, "gaaaaaaaahh!" It truly is some grade A bullshit; absolute garbage. At the moment it doesn't matter how far down the road I get, I am still the same distance from the ditch. It is and will be for the rest of my life, one day at a time.


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