I’d reach over to the desk next to my bed and pull out a rig.
Every morning. Before my eyes were all the way open, before my dreams began to fade, my body would start to crave.
If there wasn’t a rig, my mind would start to race.
Where can I get cash, what game systems haven’t I pawned, who can I pick up to help me score…
An endless stream of plotting and planning. Waiting and watching as the path to high presented itself.
All the while my body would tighten.
An all encompassing total eclipse of self-debilitating entropy…
Each second that passed the closer I got to heat death. Cold sweats and stomach aches as my body digested itself. That’s what it felt like. Like my entire cardiovascular system was gasping for breath. Kinda like drowning but the only thing you need is dope.
I’d put my clothes on from yesterday, usually a pair of jeans and sweatshirt. I couldn’t wear shirts. The track marks on my arm were too visible. It made me self conscious. Even when I was a junkie, I couldn’t own it. I hid everything. From the world and from myself. A constant urge of escapism and the moment was always right.
I was always happy or high and I always got what I wanted…
Until I didn’t.
I used to wonder why it happened to me. The circumstances that led to my addiction. To be a dope fiend, or a junkie, or an alcoholic or an addict. But it doesn’t matter anymore. I’ve stopped trying to understand cause the more I’ve learned, the more I’ve realized how little I know.
It’s like the hand of fate. It’s been cast. The die has rolled. And the only thing I can do, the only thing any of us can do, is just move on. Make better from wherever we came from.
There’s a quote I really like and it’s from kid Cudi, he says “it doesn’t matter where you’re from, it just matters where you’re going.”
It took awhile to learn how to live with my past.
It took a lot of listening and sharing. To finally embrace the belief the my brain is wired differently. That I’ve got a thing that makes me different. A thing that lies dormant, waiting for me to have a lapse in judgement, a lapse in reason.
Waiting for me to give up and give in. And when it’s not waiting, it’s working. It’s reframing my mind to believe things that aren’t real.
Its diabolical. It’s subversive. And it feels natural. I like to call it the shadow self cause it’s all about me and it never leaves.
The thing I’ve got wants me dead. Or worst…it wants me isolated and alone, separated from friend and family.
It wants me to sit around and dip tortillas in peanut butter and watch prison documentaries. It wants me to believe I’m different, that I’m special. It wants me to look out the window and judge everyone who’s not like me.
It convinces me that I’ve changed. That I’m cured.
It writes poems and podcasts and essays in an attempt to distinguish itself as something valuable.
It wants me to believe I need it to thrive. That without those things I am nothing. That my life has no meaning, my past no purpose. It attaches itself to ideas.
It forms identities. The rapper, the guru, the writer, the entrepreneur, the lover, and the prophet.
It wants me to believe in things like the law of attraction. It wants me to write instead of call. To art instead of Be sad.
It wants to use everything I experience for its own gain. And it’s always with me…
Because it’s me.
Last nite I went to an undiscovered artist showcase.
I sat in the crowd and watched people from all walks of life share their music. And each act was so different, so genuine. Yet they all said the same thing:
This is who i am.
From a starlit night on the highest mountain in Alabama, to the lowest depth of despair when a tinder date goes ghost…
they communicated feeling.
When it was our turn to perform I didn’t know how to add to the group, I wasn’t sure how we would show up.
The beat started to play and the music built up. Suade went into his verse and I watched, and listened, and moved.
I added lines to his, backed his energy until it was my turn.
And I looked out at the crowd and remembered…
It’s what I feel.
Bruce Lee is my mentor. And I say that in a totally gay way.
Like, I feel he’s always with me. Untapped and accessible if I can remember, or in a moment like last nite, when I forget.
Emotional content. Embody the moment. Don’t think, feeeeeeel.
Like a loop of Taoist propaganda running rampant in my mind, he sits back and waits for me to access his touch.
In a totally gay way.
Cause I honestly don’t know where I’d be without him