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Discussion in 'General Substance Abuse Discussion' started by Joshstillclean, Jul 17, 2019.

  1. Joshstillclean

    Joshstillclean Stupidity Exists - Fact.

    Today I hit the 18 month mark. Over the last 18 months I have had and still continue to have many emotions. Both good and bad. Lots of ups and downs. But take a look around you. This I hope reaches a lot of really fresh addicts in recovery.

    I was told this by an old timer one time and it pis$ed me off so bad. I'm ashamed to say I didn't used to just keep quiet when severely perturbed as I try to do now. I'm pretty sure that that man is no longer alive but I owe him a very very huge apology.

    A quick background and ill move on. I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I do not call myself religious. I do not identify with Christians because so many have become so water down most are afraid to say something that is not politically correct. And I am going to say what I feel led to say no matter what. I was saved at the age of 8 and even though I left God He never left me. I believe that that is the only reason I am still alive.

    Moving on. What this old man told me was that I needed to stop being so selfish. (Told me this while I was homeless). He told me that if I were to focus on others that it would solve my problems.
    Hah! Yeah right! (I said a lot worse to this poor man)
    He was so right though. This was when I was living in Atlanta. Homeless actually in Atlanta. I had found a way to sneek up at night on top of one of the high rises and stay from 11pm until shift got there at 6 am. It was a climb too. It really was. But one night I was lying there and I had just shot up and I leaned against the wall sitting down and I could just see over the wall to the westin tower. The one with the elevator on the outside of the building. Some years before i was up there on my honeymoon. Wow had life turned bad for me.
    I fell asleep that night not caring about what that man said. Next day I scored big time. Lots of cocaine and a lot of heroin. I had enough to stay high for a while. (Like rest of my life in prison amounts). Anyway cocaine makes me stupid(i know) and I give stuff away. I gave away all of my dope by doing it with other people. And what cash I had "earned" people easily talked me out of before I came down.
    Well by the next night I was again back to nothing. I remember giving away some money to someone I didn't know for gas. To go I don't know where. Makes me really stupid.
    But had I not thought about others then I most likely would have overdosed and died on top of that building.
    I began to really think about this over the next few weeks. And I actually started to slack off on so much dope. I even remember changing a guys tire for him. He tried to give me money but I saw his wife in the seat and was too ashamed (prideful) to take it.
    I was kinda dope sick that day, not really bad but I was riding on the good feeling of helping that guy with the tire.
    Slowly but surely I have turned a 180. I used to be all about me and my next fix and my fake friends.
    Now I am clean and about my family and random people that need help and my son and coaching his soccer team.
    If you want to be sober you gotta let go of how you feel. Your not gonna feel good all the time. But I challenge anyone who wants to get sober to try and give their joy away, what little you have.
    I bet you can't. I bet it doubles and lands right back at your feet. So you can do it again.
    Junkies are selfish and we all know it. Stop all selfish behavior and I bet you will find you don't want to be a junkie anymore.
    If I were going to give my 18 month speech like they do at an NA group I spoke at not long ago I would say this. To get to 18 months of sobriety. The best thing you can do for yourself to make it easier is look around.
    Look at your fellow man. Look at your brother or sister. Are they in need? Do they have a family member with a terminal illness, do they have a terminal illness. Look around and stop feeling sorry for yourself. Because it sucks where your at right now, believe me I know. But like those terminal illnesses can't be cured, ours can't be either however ours can be arrested.
    Look around at the non addicts who are begging for legit money for food for their kids. Do we have dope money and are gonna pass them by?
    Its really simple. It really is. There are so many studies out there on addiction and how this Dr. made this discovery and all that. What it boils down to though is so so simple. Are we going to choose to live right or not?
    Look around. How are you going to choose to live.
    I have that sentence written on a sticky note on my steering wheel. So i have to ask myself that too.
    God bless.
  2. Dominica

    Dominica Recovery Advocate @ Moving Beyond Codependency Community Listener

    @Joshstillclean congrats on 18 months! that's truly incredible! thank you for sharing your story (and life journey) here with all of us. we value your presence here and celebrate your sobriety with you. you truly are an inspiration josh!

    have a beautiful day!
  3. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    "Look around." I love that, @Joshstillclean. Two simple words, but so much meaning behind them.

    Proud of you for all you've accomplished on your journey, my brother. Just keep going...
  4. cheffy

    cheffy Community Champion

    Nice. That is a pretty profound bit of writing. It's a 'why didn't I think of that?' kind of thing but not something I could ever think of. Or experience for that matter.

    18 months is just great, really, and I'm very happy for you!
  5. liliann

    liliann Senior Contributor

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! wow 18 months!...big stuff!
  6. Joshstillclean

    Joshstillclean Stupidity Exists - Fact.

    @cheffy I've been thinking about this for a couple of days and just cannot figure out what you mean when you say this. What is it that you think you can never experience?
    I often talk about myself because I tend to use examples to explain a point. I only talk about me because I don't want to use someone else as an example unless its only good stuff to say. (Most of the time).
    What has happened to me is nothing short of miraculous. But I really think that anyone who has experienced oxycontin...like you...and quit, is right there with me. Im nothing unique friend. I'm not at all. By the way I didn't think to Look around either. That was that old mans advice. And I scoffed at it for a good 5 6 heck 7 years im not really sure. (My high decade as I call it is kind of a blur. Events and timelines are all run together and screwed up but I get it as close as I can.)
    But I want to just up and say yes you can experience it! Then I thought that was rash. What are you referring to?
    Also if that was profound to you, and you got something from it don't give me credit. Thank this old man near the bank of America tower that stopped to try and help an obviously suffering young man. Instead of thanks he got asked for money. Then he got as many f bombs dropped on him as I could until around the other side of the block.
    Really im nothing special. So what do you mean?
    True concern and cheffy like this.
  7. cheffy

    cheffy Community Champion

    It really just means that you've gone through this experience - and added it to your lifetime experience - and it is yours. Your own unique experience. You have done a ton of things in your lifetime. It would just be too much for someone like me to handle, at least at this point in my life.
  8. Joshstillclean

    Joshstillclean Stupidity Exists - Fact.

    What! Let me admit a little secret. Being a mathematician is (believe it or not since I was little) my dream career.
    I'm actually a little envious of you. I wanted to go military to do exactly what you are doing. Air force turned me down because of past drug use. Same with navy. Army would have taken me if I had only used alcohol and pot. So my last stop was the marines. When I took my ASVAB I actually came close to acing the dang thing. Its just because I really do have a gifted memory. I always can read something and remember it so I test well.
    I have done very little in my 31 years to count for anything. Its sad that as good with math as I am I put it to use learning machine which led to gearing ratios and transmissions then electrical. I became a mechanic. Wow. Woopti doo! A mechanic. I'm a really good mechanic ill say that and I'm not being arrogant. Its just a fact. Like if your a mathematician you are good at math...fact.
    Don't sell yourself short my friend. If you were telling the truth about what you did and I do believe you then I promise you have had better experiences than me. They make movies about people who do stuff you have done. Its awsome. They did make one movie about a machinist. And he was crazy....
    Even the actor that played him became anorexic to lose weight to play the role. So he was crazy too...
    deanokat and cheffy like this.
  9. cheffy

    cheffy Community Champion

    Yeah, I appreciate what you're saying, I really do. I used to race motocross which, as it turns out, was great therapy for depression - just you and your bike, the bike truly being an extension of you, your arms and legs, your brain. We'd be out there riding for like 8 or 9 hours a day in the summer, just riding at a huge local gravel pit. They would try to keep us out, but they were just no match against a bike like that that could go just about anywhere. We used to take our engines completely apart and fix them or clean them or whatever about once a month. Transmission and all. At the time I didn't really know what a big deal that was to some of the other guys that weren't so mechanically minded. But I loved doing it and thought becoming a mechanic would be just the best possible thing on Earth. It's really an art, you know? It takes a lot of creativity to see and fix the problems and get it all put back together and make it work. I still feel that way although these days I wouldn't come close to being able to get it all back together correctly. Memory plays a huge part in something like that - memory which I don't have like I used to. So I can see you with your fine, fine memory doing these kinds of things and wish I could too. But those days are pretty much over for me, and I'm OK with that, and I am envious of YOU being able to do that. And I think it's great! So I think there's a deeper thing going on here which is at the root of our being. And that is to be able to do anything, be it fix a vacuum cleaner or fix a Maserati. It doesn't matter which, they both require that one thing from the root of our being. That drive to be able to do it and be passionate about it all. Even if we screw up - and God knows I have screwed up many times - it's still something deep to grab onto when we need to. So in that sense, we can both look at each other and think 'I wish I could do what he can do' and then realize that we can, both in our own private way and in our own public way, do these things and be proud. Both of us. Hey man, you're cool, you know?
  10. True concern

    True concern Moderator

    @cheffy @Joshstillclean your both master's of your own passion,cars,plain's,stealth vacuum cleaner's,etc....oh yeah I meant STEALTH VACUUM CLEANER'S LOL.We all have the capacity to do but will we?
    Joshstillclean and cheffy like this.
  11. True concern

    True concern Moderator

    Ok your "Talk to text" is more than my fingers can type lol, I now hand you the crown of longest messenger lol I held the crown long enough but..... Carpal tunnel and 2 broke hands just can't keep up with you lol.

    I say this in humor as I obviously understand, it's not the size of the message that count's but how you use it:confused:
  12. cheffy

    cheffy Community Champion

    Incidentally, @True concern, off topic a bit but I want to say your posts are really sounding different - better than usual these days. Your normal content is still great and I don't want to downplay it at all, but I've noticed your newer stuff just sounds more thought out and not as rushed if that makes sense. Ha ha, even with Carpal tunnel and 2 broke hands :):)
  13. True concern

    True concern Moderator

    I'm just TRYING not to take life so seriously anymore, well kinda of anyway some things still get me quite worked up but I'm down to one good limb so I need to slow down lol as if I have a choice at this time:). I'm trying @cheffy , still flawed, still fighting addiction but making progress I suppose.Thank you for the compliment my friend I appreciate that.
  14. Joshstillclean

    Joshstillclean Stupidity Exists - Fact.

    @cheffy , hey my friend I honestly just read this whole post for the first time. Really I don't know how I messed the last half. It really had me even more confused. But now that others have responded I scrolled down and see what I missed. Now that I read it in its entirety it makes sense.
    I like the way you look at things. You always give me a new perspective. Thanks. And I'm sorry I haven't replied yet. I honestly just missed the last half of this. My mistake.
    But I like what you said there at the end. And after that also thanks. Your pretty cool yourself.
    Good people to have on your team if I do say so.
    Onceaddicted77, deanokat and cheffy like this.
  15. Onceaddicted77

    Onceaddicted77 Spam fighting Moderator & Realist Community Listener

    I wish I was better at conversation I'm not a big social person. I can write down things that are on my mind but when it comes to just chatting. The words dont come. :(
    Joshstillclean and True concern like this.
  16. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    Same. You are not alone, my friend.
  17. True concern

    True concern Moderator

    Yes I unfortunately have this issue as well all though I acknowledge everyone I pass with eye contact and the "How's your day going" but beyond that I struggle
    deanokat and Dominica like this.
  18. Onceaddicted77

    Onceaddicted77 Spam fighting Moderator & Realist Community Listener

    Man it sucks huh. It's like so awkward sometimes.
    deanokat, Dominica and True concern like this.
  19. True concern

    True concern Moderator

    It is but I'm convinced that alot of it has to do with the fact we are probably more use to social interaction half lit.
  20. True concern

    True concern Moderator

    My phone is pissing me off,I'm trying to load a pic of myself but this phone won't show the photo I'm selecting just the time and date it was taken.I hate technology much of the time lol