The topic last night was relapse.  The woman who spoke was pretty harsh and brutally honest:

 “This is a progressive and fatal disease…what is your story with relapse?  What are you doing to fight it?” 


Her lead was 100x more direct, powerful, and articulate than how I just paraphrased.    


We started going around the circle.  One newcomer with less than 6 months shared about the two funerals he’s already been to in a very, very short amount of time.


A kid younger than me shared his experience with relapse:  “I wanted to experiment one night…and wound up experimenting for 3 years.”


This past Monday a member of our home group died.  He was young, had a wife, and a 3-year-old son.  A member who went to the funeral gesticulated with his hands to describe the agonizing look in the wife’s eyes.  “I don’t want my family to have to bury me.”  He said.


The leader of the meeting told the group she had a sponsee who wanted to go out for “just one night,” and wound up killing two kids via vehicular manslaughter.   


I suppose this is what’s called “keeping it green,” which used to be an expression I linked to packing a bowl; now it’s what I need as a constant reminder for my sobriety.


Sometimes I still want to self-destruct.  Sometimes I want to see myself at the lowest point again, where I was in the basement of a stranger’s house with blood on my face and no idea how to get home.  Sometimes I even want it to get worse than that, and I have no idea why.  My thinking previous to AA was geared towards “party hard and die young.” Even after over a year, that death part still sounds appealing.


“I learned in rehab that the longest a craving can exist in your brain is 15 minutes, unless you continue to dwell on it.”  The leader said.  “So you pick up the phone, you go on a run, you watch TV, whatever it takes to move a muscle change a thought.”


I said, “I know all about those 15 minutes.” 


I’m sure we all do, because whether or not we work through the discomfort determines whether or not we’ll pick up. 


Sometimes I regret having not tried heroin, and I KNOW how moronic that sounds, but it’s the way my mind works; the self-destruct button is never far from reach.  

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6 thoughts on “3…2…1….Self-destruct.

  1. This is the most powerful post I have seen here…raw and honest. I loved it.

    I don’t see my recovery as battling relapse. To me that implies I am on the edge, ready to teeter off into the netherworld. I would hope that I am a little bit further than that, but I understand the sentiment. I guess for me it’s what am I doing today for my recovery? What lengths am I going to get there? To continue.

    I understand what you say about regretting trying heroin. I totally do, even though drugs isn’t my story. If can say I regret not trying alchool (pure alcohol), that’s the same thing. I regret not mixing pills with my drinking – that’s something that my alcoholism says. Not the authentic me. Authentic me is glad that I didn’t get there. But I would of, no doubt. I would have caught on in getting deeper into oblivion.

    Makes me sick just thinking about it…I really hate this illness.

    But this thinking is fleeting these days – a whisp of a thought. But if it’s something that is always there, then there needs to be further work. Then I might be fighting relapse. Let’s how neither of us goes there again.

    Thank you for this.


    • Thanks for your response, Paul..differentiating between my authentic-self and our disease is such a wake up call. I’m sort of blown away. I’ve never thought of them as different entities. Definitely going to be in a future post. Thank you.

  2. Thank you so much for this post!

  3. Amina C says:

    You know I was thinking the exact same thing about heroin the other day. Completely crazy that our minds do that to us. Thank you for your complete and utter honesty. I don;t think I would have admitted that otherwise.
    xo amina

  4. mike says:

    Good post
    When I was new, sitting with myself was a f;n drag. The most un comfortable. I too used to pine for the days in So Cal when I lived in an empty refrigerator box under the I-5 freeway overpass in Balboa Park. Life was easy. Panhandleing in downtown San Dog. Dumpster diving. Sitting in the park all day drinking and fantasizing, that if I could just pull myself together and get a dishwash job I’d be ok. I was 22 and had given up on myself. I didnt miss the overnights and the monthly bids in county. I didnt miss the street folks who would rob you, rape you, and kill you for fun. Nope not that.. But when I was new….I did sometimes miss or romance, the easier softer way.

    If you are romancing it….think it through. One is never enough.
    Dont give up on yourself. Tell on yourself. Dont sweat those other jabrony’s who are always trying to ‘sound good.’ People who sound good all the time are usually full of shit anyway.
    Every AA’er comes to the fork in the road multiple multiple times. Face the fear and recover or fuck everything and run.

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