Moderation has never come easily to me; I’m not sure if I ever had it at all. When I was only two and a half years old my mom introduced to the sweet, swirly goodness of cinnamon raisin bread. Knowing what I know now, I’m pretty sure this white flour carbohydrate was my first addiction.
Mama Anonymous has recounted my affinity for the bread hundreds of times; how after she doled out one piece, she’d turn around and my little baby butt would be sticking out from the cabinet, in a not-so-sneaky attempt to snag the whole loaf. Even then I felt that one piece was not enough. This would be the theme of my life.
The insatiable thirst for more has consumed me for as long as I can remember. In elementary school my obsession became watermelon flavored Jolly Ranchers—I would spend my piggy bank money and buy the biggest possible bag from CVS, sneak them past my mom, and stash the inevitable unborn cavities under my pillow so I could eat them in secret at night. Nothing about my covert Jolly reserve struck me as unusual, and maybe it wasn’t, maybe all kids hid candy under their pillows. Maybe…
Dependencies have torn me down in mental and physical forms over the years: weed, artificial sugar, advilPM, ibuprofen, coffee, cigarettes, self mutilation, excessive exercise to the point of injury, overeating, under-eating, frozen yogurt, ecstasy–If I can use it I’ll abuse it.
Fortunately my life has taken a turn for sobriety, but my two most dependable addictions are gone: drugs and alcohol.
Whiskey and cocaine went together like peas and carrots, and provided everything I needed to live with myself and cope with others. They fed me short-cuts to self-esteem and anesthetized the real world (and the real me) I was unable to face. Mind altering substances diverted me from looking in and finding out where the pain was coming from, and diversions were okay for a while. Albeit, as many alcoholics say, “it stopped working.”
The addiction I struggle with now is money. Just like drugs, if I can use it, I’ll abuse it…and I do. Although, my savings account is taking the brunt of the abuse. Where’s my piggy bank when I need it?