Saturday, 24 January 2015

Addiction

I went  out for dinner last night
With my sister and her friend
We decided to go to a local pub
As it has great food
We arrived there around 7pm
Believe it or not
That is late for me to be out
Usually I am in my pyjamas by the time it gets dark
The food was lovely
I had beef and Guinness casserole
It was delicious
But I couldn't finish it
As time passed
More and more people came in to the pub
It was a Friday night
So people were relaxing after a hard weeks work
And letting their hair down

Two girls came in at one point
I heard them saying that one of the girls was 18 that day
And everyone was wishing her Happy Birthday
And buying her drinks
As I watched all the different groups of people
Chatting
Laughing
Having the 'craic' as we say in this country
I began to feel a little uncomfortable
I couldn't identify the feeling at first
Somewhere between resentment and longing
Resentful that I couldn't have a drink
And longing to be able to be part of that world
As you know
I don't drink
I had to stop
As when I drank
I drank far too much
And got in to so much trouble
I could never have just one drink
And marvelled at people who could have just one
And leave it at that
When I started drinking
I couldn't stop
Not for love nor money

Every now and then
I get really annoyed that I can't drink like a normal person
I see my brother have a pint
Or someone having a glass of wine with dinner
A civilized drink
I miss being able to have a drink
But then I never drank for the taste
I drank to get drunk
To get trashed
Out of my head
I drank to help my confidence
To talk to people
To be sociable
I drank for all the wrong reasons

So I was sitting in the pub last night
And I now know that what I was feeling was jealous
Jealous of that girl
Who had just become an adult
And had her whole life ahead of her
Jealous of the people who could have a drink
And leave it at that
Jealous of the fun I was missing out on
The laughter
The banter
The fun
I miss that

I keep having to remind myself
That I am not like everyone else
I am not like those people who can have a social drink
I am an addict
One is too many
And a thousand never enough
I remember the first time I went to treatment
I was told that I could never drink again
If I wanted to be clean and sober
I couldn't drink at all
I couldn't get my head around this
And didn't really believe that I had to stop drinking
When I left treatment I did drink
And of course that lead me back to drugs
It was only years later that I finally realized that my drinking was out of control
And I had to stop
If I wanted to lead any semblance of a normal life

When I start feeling nostalgic about using or drinking
When I start to think it's a good idea
When I am craving
When I want out of my own head
I don't have to look very far
To remind myself of the damage that addiction does
I don;t have to look further than my next door neighbours

I don't think I have written about them before
As I don't tend to talk about other people here on my blog
I won't go in to too ,much detail
But I will just give you a general idea of what their life is like
They are an elderly couple
In their 70's
And they are both alcoholics
The lead an incredibly limited and sad life
They are not in touch with their families
They never have any visitors
Their life is a very lonely one
There  has been trouble in that house over the years
When they're drunk
They fight
And I have been over their numerous times trying to keep the peace
The cops have also been called on occasion

A couple of years ago
The woman drank so much that she got a 'wet brain'
A wet brain happens when you drink so much
That you become a vegetable
She was in hospital for months
Didn't know her own name
And didn't know us when we went in to visit her
Thankfully she made a remarkable recovery
Although I am not sure if she drinks now

Last Monday night
We saw an ambulance leave their house
My Mum rang to see what had happened
The man had been taken to hospital
After an alleged stroke
We called in the next day
The woman told us that her husband had been sick since Friday
He speech was slurred
But the woman thought it was from drink
So she didn't become worried until the Monday
When he deteriorated a lot
She rang the doctor Monday lunch time
And even though she said it was an emergency
The doctor didn't arrive until late evening
When he immediately called the ambulance

I have been calling over every day
To do some jobs for her
Let her dog out
Collect her shopping
And pay her bills
Her husband is in a very bad state in hospital
And it is likely that he won't pull through
Even though he is at deaths door
He still managed to get alcohol in to the hospital
I asked the woman today of drink contributed to his condition
She said it definitely had
And that if she had rang  the ambulance sooner
He might not have deteriorated so much

This situation with my neighbours breaks my heart
And is a stark reminder of the damage and destruction that addiction does
Yes I am not like everyone else
I can't drink
Because if I do
I could  end up like these people
Alone
Sick
Isolated
Completely f**ked up
Not drinking is a small price to pay
For my sanity
My peace of mind
My families peace of mind
And my heath
In my opinion
Alcohol is the worst drug there is
Especially in this country
We are a nation of drinkers
And the damage is untold
So many families torn apart by drink
So I will thank my lucky stars that I have got out of y addiction relatively unscathed
I look at my neighbours
And I think
There but for the grace of God go I
I am out of that game
I managed to get off that merry-go-round
I am one of the lucky ones

8 comments:

  1. yes, you are. you are a lucky one.
    you are a strong one.
    you are absolutely brilliant.
    you are amazing.
    you are kind.
    you are not cruel.
    you are lovely.
    you are more than a number.
    you are more than an addict.
    you are Ruby.
    you are a gem.
    you are a person.
    you have thoughts and feelings.
    I am proud that you didn't drink tonight.
    I am proud of you in general.
    you are the one that came back from the ashes.
    reclaim your life, Ruby.
    there's nothing there in drink, and smoke, and the ED that tells you to be thin - you've been there. you've had it. it's NOT worth it. it never has been.
    and you know that.
    I hope that dinner was lovely.
    you are lovely.

    -Sam Lupin

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    1. Oh Sam
      You are so lovely
      You say the most kind and thoughtful things
      And you make me smile with every one of your words

      Love ya x

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  2. And we are Lucky.
    For the chance to know you...
    To learn from you..

    (L)

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    Replies
    1. I am the lucky one A
      To be surrounded with such strong and beautiful ladies x

      Delete
  3. Ruby... You know I've had my own addictions too... I was like you is sometimes wishing I could handle it but I can't... it handles me... so, we are both lucky that we are no longer there... we may still be dealing with the aftermath but we are no longer in the fire. ;-)

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  4. heroin addiction and a severe eating disorder are hardly a "habit" that one can "overcome". Instead its a contiuous incredibly hard struggle. I do not think many people can really relate, although they claim to in order to get a chance to talk about themselves and/or gain followers and comments (i do NOT mean the sweet girls suffereing from an ED here who suffer an awfull lot themsleves). I can only fathom what you are going through and have mastered so far hun. you know i am crazy busy and i just wanted to tell you, i ll get in touch with you soon, and even if you do not see it that way, you have come sososososo far! Your fabulous and I'll send you a big big hug my dearest! never give up!
    <3

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  5. I don't drink any more either. I haven't had a drink in 4 years. It's personal choice. Sometime I think a glass of wine would be so lovely, civilized. But alcohol and me, we can't get along. He's an old buddy I've had to cut out of my life. He isn't good to me even though in the short term he pays me compliments, he isn't a well wisher and he tricks me. X

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Thank you for leaving some love x