Tag Archives: January 2012

I Am Impossible

"First Day of My Life (Story)." 11/28/12. Colored pencil. 6x8½".
“I Am Impossible.” 11/28/12. Colored pencil. 6×8½”.

Jesse coined out and went on vacation with friends of her parents. She’ll be back, in two weeks, as an outpatient, and she’ll be living on property again. That makes me really, really happy. I don’t know what I would do if she left for good. She’s the source of all that’s good in my life. She’s what makes my life worth living. You know… since I had met her a couple weeks ago anyway.

We talk every day while she’s gone. I tell her about the note I got from Hal. She has something to tell me but won’t say what. I’ll get it out of her when I have her in person. I don’t think for a second that she’s relapsed. But she has. And that’s not fair.

Jesse got back two days ago and, yesterday, started to really push. She wants to get high. “That’s a terrible idea,” I tell her. But then something MONUMENTAL happens. This morning, she went off-property to go do something other than hang out with me. Naturally, I’m feeling rejected and depressed and  am in a really dark place again [unreasonable as that may be]. As she always does when I get this way, she’s distanced herself, which is – of course – making me feel even more rejected. But I know how I can feel better and win her back.

I call Stacy. She’s at the hospital because her sister is giving birth but – if I can meet her there – she’s got some thirtys on her that she’ll sell me. [Florida. It’s always pills with these kids.] Close enough. I set it up and look for Jesse. When I see her, I creep up with a grin that tells her everything she needs to know: “Go sign out and park your car at the strip mall. Soon as the coast is clear, I’ll sneak off property and meet you. We’ve got an errand to run.”


That was part two of the story I started to tell yesterday.

I’m pretty sure anyone reading this already knows but just in case… A “thirty” is a 30mg oxycodone pill. More commonly known as “blues,” but I’ve always hated that name. It’s too cute. If you had asked me about it back in the day, I’d probably have said something like… “I shoot heroin and – absent that – synthetic heroin. But never blues. There’s nothing colorful or fun about this.”

Really, I think I was just upset that my SUPER COOL DRUG HABIT had been co-opted by half the dorks in Florida and I didn’t wanna use the same terminology as them. I was dangerous; they were cuttin’ loose! … Fuck that.

[Check it out, guys! You can be a douchey elitist when it comes to just about anything!]

The drawing I chose for this entry was drawn on the day that I shared the first half of my life story in group at Tranquil Shores. It was also a day on which I was similarly upset because I felt similarly rejected by a girl that I was similarly in treatment with.

The tombstone behind me reads: “Sickle Cell: November 4, 1985 to Any Day Now.” The original drawing was damaged before I ever got a good picture or scan of it, so this image is the best I can do.


Pregnant Baby Kimono Dragon

"Pregnant Baby Kimono Dragon." 3/2/13. Acrylic paint. 12x16".
“Pregnant Baby Kimono Dragon.” 3/2/13. Acrylic paint. 12×16″.

In February, I successfully completed a program of inpatient treatment for the first time. It was a ninety day program that took me seven months to finish, but – hey – some are sicker than others. For the first time ever, I was able to make the transition to outpatient treatment. It was also around that time that – faced with the real world again – I knew I’d have to start earning some money to support myself. One of my counselors and one of my peers had been really encouraging when it came to my art. They said it was good. Good enough that people would want to buy it and I could maybe make a living doing what I loved. I decided to try and believe them. I chose optimism and faith (another first for me).

Living in the outside world, I was suddenly free to paint as much as I wanted, which meant I didn’t have time to store up ideas for paintings. I decided to experiment and create images for their own sake, without worrying about what was happening in my head or what I was feeling. In a sense, I still do that to a degree but… not like this.


I didn’t wanna not say anything about this piece but – seeing as that shit’s super boring – here’s the story of some wacky shit I did back in January 2012 (about one month into my first stint of inpatient care at my very first facility).

Sometime right around New Year’s Eve, Hal was kicked out for using. Before he left, he gave me five letters, each addressed to a different person in our treatment center. No one was in the courtyard. I sat down and opened the one with my name on it. “There are eighteen unused syringes stashed in the bathroom trashcan across from John’s office.” Interesting… There was also a phone number. “I met Stacy at an NA meeting. That’s how I got the dope.” Fuck. I didn’t know what to do with this information. I wanted to get better but… Fuck. I decided not to call, but I didn’t throw the number away. And I retrieved and re-hid the needles inside the couch in my unit. That night, I was alone in my unit. I took a syringe out, held it in my hand, and just stared. I took the cap off and stared some more. I grabbed a cup of water from the kitchen, went into the bathroom, and shut the door. My chest felt tight, my heart raced. What was I even doing? I put the needle in the water and pulled the plunger up, letting the barrel fill about halfway. I took my belt off, wrapped it around my arm, and stuck the needle in a vein at the crook of my elbow. I drew back and watched my blood swirl into the chamber. Fuck, I’ve missed this. I let out a little breath, almost a gasp, and I pushed the plunger forward, my body frozen, until the barrel was empty and I felt a quick swell then release. I shut my eyes and felt bliss. I know it was entirely in my head but – for about two seconds – I actually felt high. Two seconds. And then I felt crazy. And confused. I smirked at myself in the mirror. So… My smirk faded and my gaze fell. What the fuck was that for? I was disappointed that my “high” was already gone, sort of glad that I hadn’t actually used, wishing I had used, and wondering if this was what my future looked like… injecting water for… – I didn’t know what for. Really, I wasn’t sure what I felt. I filled the syringe again to see if I could get another two seconds of high. It didn’t work. God dammit. I cleaned up, put my belt back on, and put the needle back in the couch with the others. Okay, I thought, What now?



  • This story is actually an excerpt from the 134th page of a much longer story. If you like it, let me know and I’ll continue tomorrow where this left off.
  • My painting, “Pregnant Baby Kimono Dragon,” is for sale.