My Mornings: Now and Then
I am sure you have heard the saying “did you wake up on the wrong side of the bed?”, a common phrase associated with a grumpy person. In my experience there is truth to the concept, the way a day starts off can often be a precursor to how the rest of that day will go. I still have these days, where things don’t go as planned in the morning or I get hit with a problem that causes stress, and it can easily lead to me feeling that way for a large percentage of my day. For the most part, however, my routine is consistent.
There is a window where I get tired at night and drift to sleep, and there is a time I have my alarm set every morning where I wake up and get ready for work. It is a peaceful existence, one which starts with my best friend (my dog Noley) and continues throughout the day as I get to see familiar faces. My closest friends today are also my co-workers, and my job is filled with fulfilling work. That word peaceful cannot be overstated, because it is something that I will never take for granted given how long it took for me to find it. When I wake up in the mornings with the life I have now, I do not feel regret or shame or panic. I feel good about myself, I feel rested, and I look forward to my day.
As an addict my mornings were a roller coaster of emotions, and largely depended on whether I still had any drugs leftover from the day before. If I did not, which was often the case, I woke up already in a state of panic, knowing the clock was ticking until the sickness began. I rarely had money, so there was an arduous process I had to go through to get my fix. I had to figure out how to get money, which was often stressful and consisted of things I hated doing like lying, stealing, and manipulating my parents. Then there was the waiting game, so much waiting. Waiting on my dealer to call me back, waiting on him at a meet spot, waiting on a middleman to return.
Add to all that the constant stress involved of frequently partaking in illegal activities in public places, and my mornings were, in a word, chaotic. It set the stage for a frantic chase throughout the day of holding off a sickness that haunted my every waking hour. My mornings were miserable, and my life was miserable. Fast forward to my life today, where I wake up each day from a peaceful sleep, unafraid to take on the day’s challenges, without feelings of regret from the day before or the prison of fear of being dope sick.
The mornings and days that terrorized me for years were lifted as soon as I made the commitment to leave that lifestyle behind for good and began the work to make it happen. In its place is something so wonderful it would have been impossible to imagine when my life was in turmoil. When I was an addict, I used to fantasize about what my life would be like if I left addiction behind. These fantasies involved things like wealth, girls, cars, vacations, etc. The types of things you feel robbed of while in the fog of drug abuse. What I did not fantasize about was something I had no comprehension of, a peaceful, simple, and happy life, a natural evolution that occurred when I started living in a way that makes me feel good about myself. If you or anyone you know is seeking help, please reach out.