The other side-effects of addiction

Lost fix

© RecoveryMaldives

Getting through addiction and climbing up the ladder of recovery is not an easy task. Personally, I find the stopping part (of drugs) easier, than the challenges in recovery. This is mostly due to the baggage of our past we have to carry. The problem is the moment we ditch the baggage, it comes back haunting us. If I’m not ready to face my past head-on, the task of staying away from drugs gets harder.

I carry a lot of baggage from my past. These include issues of trust, integrity, numerous relationship damages, to name a few. There are times, if I sit and start to ponder over my past, the feeling of guilt and shame overrides the feeling of self-worthiness. The trip is too bad for me to handle, I tend to shun it, at least for that moment. This in turn bottles it up and sometimes makes it worse too. However, what I’ve found is time helps. As they say, time is the best healer and I truly believe that from experience.

As the journey of life continues and recovery gets stronger, which I’ve yet to experience, my belief is it will make things much easier. Life is not easy. Addiction was not easy, but honestly, for me, life is much harder; and that’s the beauty of life, I guess. Recovery gets challenging for me in every aspect of my life. To mend the broken bones, is not quite an easy task in itself. Having a reality-check helps a lot. Assessing the present situation and doing a little mental comparison helps too.

As time goes by, the other side-effects of addiction — the mental and spiritual part — becomes a memory.

The Tsunami of life

The 2004 Tsunami, Courtesy: http://flickrhivemind.net/

The 2004 Tsunami,
Courtesy: http://flickrhivemind.net/

It was the happier days. The early days when you just found out what drugs were – not that you never heard of it, but never really experienced it! It was the time of my life. I was young, ambitious, full of energy, thought I could conquer the world. Dreaming about my future and planning ahead with great plans was the thing those days.

Just a couple of weeks (or months, I am not really sure) before the Tsunami that hit the Maldives back in 2004, the tsunami of the high life has already hit me – back then I did not realize it was to be the biggest tsunami I had to face throughout my life. As I narrated in my earlier post, I was already introduced to the two major drugs that were widely available in Male’ (the capital of Maldives) by this time; I did not realize I was hooked on from the start. Yeah sure, I was hooked on because it was already becoming a part of my lifestyle, but I cared less. I was in it to explore and quench my thirst for curiosity. It was adventurous, I was making new friends (in hindsight, I was moving away from my real friends), and I was having a blast.

So, with the Tsunami that took the lives of several Maldivians, my life hanged on a balance too. More like a ticking bomb – it could explode at any moment. With the new found love of hash oil (a derivative of cannabis), I was enjoying the coffee places near Male’ waterfront with a purpose. I found new meaning to the word chilling. My friends and I would frequent these small cafe’s quite often. Though being an outwardly conservative society,  smoking up in these coffee shops was an open secret those days. Almost everyone knew about it, but we played along being a bit careful and secretive – there was always the fear of cops busting you red-handed.

Time passed on. I got introduced to new people and before I knew it, most probably in the haze of pot high, I experimented with heroin again…

Getting into “High” school!

Image courtesy: nattu

My high-school days were pretty fun and awesome when I started. The idea of making new friends and belonging to the cool culture interested me. I scored pretty well in my O’levels – in fact, I got straight A’s. I already had a bunch of cool buddies I hangout with. School started and made a lot of friends, got involved with chicks. It was awesome!

I was always an avid thinker, some of my mates even used to call me a philosopher. Had one special friend Liam, who used to hang out with me a lot, we would ponder over all kind of stuff, specially scientific and philosophical rhetoric. One day we were talking and he was like, his friend has arrived from Malaysia and I should go meet him. He told me they had gotten high the other night and it was an awesome experience and made him think about philosophical stuff more easily and opened his eyes to a different world. At this point, I never had a bit of clue what getting high really was – the idea of getting high in my mind was you can’t even walk or talk properly afterwards and it was a dangerous thing; typical, no frikking-idea-about-drugs thinking!

This got me thinking real hard and made me super-curious, being the guy I was. So, the next day without an inkling of what was to follow I went with Liam to meet with this particular friend of his. No doubt the guy was interesting, very much like me, totally into scientific and philosophical thinking, or so I thought! They were getting ready to do something, getting in a circle and in a kind of a ritual, trying to smoke something. There were three guys, I got really curious.

Jumped in, asked them what it was, and was like I’m gonna give it a try too! They offered me happily, but they said hash oil would be better for me, and they don’t have that then, they were doing heroin. Well, I asked all kind of stupid questions like what was gonna happen to me if i smoke it and all shit which I don’t remember now. Finally, they agreed to offer me one shot, and I smoked it hesitantly over a foil. A new experience for me altogether! Nothing much really happened to me, except when I smoked a cigarette I felt different; because it was just a drag, a small minute shot, i din’t feel any kicks.

So, I told Liam’s friend about me not feeling it, and they told me to come tomorrow with a hundred bucks and should try hash oil – heroin is not good they said, or something like that. I could not wait for the next day. Managed to get a hundred bucks and called up Liam, went to his friend, Lan’s house. Lan got the stuff, we smoked the hash oil over foil.

What a feeling i had. It opened my eyes to a different world. Things I took for granted felt different. The music we were listening to I could hear all the beats separately. I could not stop giggling and laughing. It was awesome! I felt paranoid, funny, joyful, on heaven all at the same time. I was asking myself why had I not tried this magic earlier. It was not at all like they proclaimed. They lied! I could walk properly, man even I could think properly..This was pure heaven and they lied about it through anti-drug campaigns! I was loving it!