Monday, 24 November 2014


I watched a documentary last night called The Moment of Truth
I was about an Irish man called Alan
Who was a former heroin addict who had been homeless for many years
He grew up in Dublin with his Mother and her partner
When he was a teenager he became involved in the rave scene
He stared experimenting with drugs
First cannabis
Then ecstacy
And when he was 17 he tried heroin for the first time
He was instantly hooked
He described that first feeling her felt when he took he drug
Like feeling he was 'wrapped in cotton wool'
I think that is such an accurate way to describe it
Around this time he started seeing a girl called Orla
But as Alan's addiction escalated
The relationship dissolved
His Mum was interviewed also
She described he moment when she had to use tough love
And refused to let him stay in her house anymore
Alan was homeless for many years
Begging on the streets
A slave to the drug
Orla still kept in touch with him
She described how she used to search he streets for him
But she couldn't be with him while he was so deep in his addiction

It was while he was on the streets that Alan met a man who changed his life
This man was a christian and used to stop and talk to Alan
And told him that God could save him
At first Alan was sceptical
How could God save him?
But the man continued to visit Alan
He told him that he could help me get in to a treatment center in the UK
A christian rehabilitation center
Alan agreed to go
His Mother and Orla helped him gather the fare to Wales
He described how on he morning of his departure
His Mother gave him money to buy heroin
As she knew he wouldn't get on the plane if he didn't have drugs
This really hit a nerve with me
As there have been many time in my life when my Mother gave me money to buy drugs
And even drove me to get drugs
As she couldn't bear to see me in withdrawal

Alan stayed in the christian center in Wales for some time
While there he had a vision of Jesus Christ
And Jesus said three words to him




Alan said after that everything changed
He finished his time in the center
And hen began studying to become a pastor
He completely turned his life around
And now helps other struggling addicts
A really nice end to the story was that he got back together with Orla
They got married
And had two children
I was so delighted that the story had a happy ending
So many stories don't

My Mother and sister also watched he documentary
And it gave rise to a discussion about my drug use
My sister is quite sceptical about anything to do with religion
But my Mother said that his experience was real to him
And we should respect that
She is right
What ever works right?
I said that I thought it was great that Alan found God and recovered
That was his path
But what if you don't find God?
What if you don't have a God in your life?
What then?
Can I still recover if I don't have a God in my life?
My Mother pointed out that God could be anything
Something similar to what they tell you in AA
I think this is a good point
As I have things in my life that help me greatly
Like my dogs
My writing
My swimming
And I have great faith in those things

My Mum and I talked for a while about my using days
The time we went away for Christmas and I went in to severe withdrawal
And had to search for a doctor to get some meds
I can remember that time
I actually thought that I was going to die
I look at photos of that Christmas and I look like the living dead
Or the time I stayed in my Grandad's house
And again went in to withdrawal
Another nightmare
Or the time she locked herself in her bedroom because I had completely lost the plot and she was afraid of me
She was actually afraid of me
That in itself is so sad

My Mum commented that she probably doesn't know the half of what went on when I was using
And she is right
I myself can't bring myself to talk or even think about what went on during that time
I often say that there are times when  I can't remember if an even actually happened
Or if I dreamed it
There is one even that often pops in to my head
I can't remember how
But I met a guy on the street
We used together
And I went back to his flat with him
At some point I overdosed
And this guy stayed with me until I came to
I remember he put me in the shower to help wake me up
And made me tea and toast
He let me stay in his flat for a couple of days
And was nothing but kind to me
I went home a few days  later
But kept in touch by phone
I was so grateful to him
For taking care of me
And for not taking advantage of me
The next time I was back in Dublin
I went to the street where his flat was
I rang the bell
A girl answered
I asked for the guy
She said no one of that name lived there
And never had
I was so confused
And started to question my own sanity
I never heard from that guy again
I don't know if he ever existed in the first place

My Mum described to me how awful I used to look when I was using
She used the words 'down and out'
I was scarily skinny
Big dark circles under my eyes
Hunched over
Taking care of yourself just isn't a priority when you are strung out

I saw my doctor this morning
And was telling him that I am 15 weeks off cigarettes today
He said that was fantastic
And that I am doing well 'on all fronts'
My Mother and I continued our discussion as we walked the dogs
We talked about my old town
And how now it is flooded with drugs
And how we never thought we would end up in this town
My Mother told me how moving here was very hard on her
That was the first time I heard her say that
Because while my using was going on
She was separating from my Dad
At the time I had no concept of what she was going through
I was so blinkered my addiction

We also talked about methadone
How when I first went on it at  19
I was the only person in my town on it
I had to travel to Dublin every week to get my script
And how I hated going in to chemist
I actually had a go at the pharmacist one day
Because I thought she was looking down on me
Of course she wasn't
She was actually very good to me
My thinking was just so warped

This all seems like a life time ago
I am clean and sober a few years now
Some times I still get intense cravings
Sometimes I fear that I will use again
Sometimes that life looks attractive
But in reality it was a living hell
It was a race to not be sick
And I was always playing catch up

Alan said that even in his darkest days
He was never a hard man
The way some people are hardened and more equipped to handle themselves
I was never like that either
I was a young country girl
In the big city
I was so vulnerable
And people could and  often did take advantage of me
Even though I have been through a lot
I am at heart a big softie
And have an innocent face
So I was a prime target

I am so grateful to be clean and sober today
I am so relieved for myself
But also for my family
Who lived through it with me
Especially my Mother
Who saw it all
But we've come out the other side
And as my Mother always says
Given what this family has been through
We are not doing to badly


  1. I am glad you are turning a corner with all your health issues.

  2. I'm very happy you're here and doing better now. It's a strange thing..I've been around drugs and have had friends that use recreationally, but I was never really affected by it until my best friend was in jail for a bit. Then my cousin overdosed and passed. I feel like a dodged a bomb because I learned a guy I (shouldn't have) hooked up with, but definitely stopped all contact with him, he now thinks it's fine to use heroin.. experience with it has only landed people in death or bad situations. It's nice to know that someone can come to sobriety and get better and stay better. Though you're still in recovery and probably will be for a while, I think you're doing so well, I'm so proud of you. Love you dear, take care. I'd say have a great holiday, but they don't have thanksgiving in Ireland...well, enjoy time and thankfulness with you're family anyway :)

    1. Thanks a lot sweetheart
      That means a lot

      Love you too x

  3. your mum sounds lovely and no, your not doing too badly at all!so glad your free of all that now even though it can still be a struggle at times.things will get better and better now, lots to look forward to i think. jo xx

    1. There is Jo
      There i really is
      I am blessed and lucky to have such an amazing family x

  4. I can relate to a lot of this. For different substances, but a lot of the subjects you mention in this post hit me deep. It sounds like an interesting doco. I'm skeptical about a lot of religion too, but your mother's right, whatever works.

    That story you remember, about the guy who took care of you when you OD'd, is really lovely. Regardless of if it was true or not, I'd convince myself it did happen, and you just knocked on the wrong door. We need to believe there are innocently kind people out there.


    1. I hope I got the wrong door Bella
      That is entirely possible
      I was out of my head after all

      And yes
      I agree with that
      Whatever works
      And whatever gets you through the day x

  5. The thing that stuck out to me in this post was asking what if you don't find God. Can you still recover without God in your life? I often wonder that. My next door neighbor and I are extremely close. She is a lovely older lady and her son is in school to be a pastor. They are very religious people. It's hard to talk to her about my lack of faith because I feel guilty. But like your mom said, you have other things in your life that have saved you, and that's what matters.
    I know I've said this several times, but I have loved watching you on your journey to recovery. It's been long, it's been hard and sometimes there seems like there is no light at the end of the tunnel. But you always seem to find one. <3 you


Thank you for leaving some love x