Thursday, February 27, 2014

Black Plus White Equals Gray

On my third morning without a drink, I bought two big coffees and a half moon at the minimart on Wanaque Avenue.  I leaned on the counter while I paid for my things, legs wobbly.
"What?  No wine today?" the guy at the register asked me.
"Nah.  Not yet."

I went and sat in the Blazer.  I drained both styrofoam cups and ate my cookie. Then, I went behind the building and threw up.  I wasn't hung over, but I felt really sick.  I couldn't sleep, and I hated being awake. All I did was think about drinking.

How am I gonna do this?
I don't want to.
I need to.
I can't.
I don't want to.
How am I gonna do this?
I don't want to.
Just Drink.
I can't.

I wish I knew more about what was going on inside my body at the time.  Like medically.  So I could have explained it to myself better.  But in all honesty, I wasn't really in the mood for doing much listening.  I was hanging on by my toenails.

My brain was soggy.
Weird physical discomfort.  Big sick.
Plus I was still doing my dope, so my mind was in pieces.

I went back to see Dr. Elrafei.  I told him I had stopped drinking.  I guess I thought he'd be pleased.  I was hoping he'd throw me a bone, like a reward for being so honest.  Something to mellow me out.  His reaction was not what I was expecting.  He was extremely irritated.

"How could you not say what you do?" he scolded.  "When I ask you last time, 'Do you take alcohol?' And you tell me 'no'.
"I was embarrassed," I said.
"Well, you are stupid because you could be dead.  That's worse than having shame."
"You're doing things," he pointed at me.  I wasn't sure if he was asking or telling.  I just sat there, waiting for him to stop talking.
"I still can't sleep," I reminded him.
He sighed.  "Do you want to hurt yourself, Mary?"
"No."  I promised.
"Well, I do not trust you.  And now, we have problems."

Dr. Elrafei took me off the Neurontin.  He increased the Paxil and Klonopin. He said it would help my cravings.  It didn't feel that way.  This shit was for pussies.

I went to a meeting.  I liked the basement of the First Reformed Church on Newark Pompton Turnpike.  It smelled like cigarettes and coffee and a mop bucket.  I recognized a few faces.  I listened to people talk about how fucked up their lives had been.  How they lost jobs.  Alienated family and pissed away marriages. Robbed people they loved and did jail time.  We held hands at the end and prayed. I wished I could have stayed with them when the hour was over.  I didn't want to be by myself or with myself.

I bought a soda at the Quick Chek.  I stopped at CVS and had my prescriptions filled.  I drove to Blockbuster and rented a movie I knew I couldn't sit still enough to watch.  Then I went home and got high.

I saw Dr. Korman later that afternoon.  I told him this was the busiest I'd been in a very long time.  While I was there, my nose started bleeding.  He handed me a tissue and asked me about the drugs.  We talked about them for a little bit.

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