Diary of an Alcoholic: Part 2

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Photo by Steve Halama on Unsplash

I didn’t know I had a disease, but I was an addict. And there are ways to hold back your addictions if you cry out “I need help.”  

I went to the Dupont Circle Club tore up from the floor up. Same pissy clothes on for a week straight. Eyes bloodshot, no self-esteem, confidence none. When they asked if anyone had a burning desire to drink, I cried “Please, please rid my life of demon alcohol.”  

I met a man who asked me if I want to go to detox. I cried, “Yes.” He drove me to Howard University and we sat there for four hours, only to be told, “we don’t have a detox.” I was furious, but my new friend had patience and he took me to D.C. General. They didn’t want to admit me but I was determined not to drink. I told them I didn’t want to go back out on the streets, because I was scared for my life.  

[Read More: Diary of an Alcoholic: Part 1]

My stay in detox wasn’t pleasant. I am an addict and I do what addicts do. I had the shakes, so I asked for lots of pills, painkillers, anything to kill pain, plus I got detention for fraternizing with a female addict. My disease got me into a fight with a female for calling me stupid in which I threw grits at her head. That temper tantrum put me in the psych ward.  

The psychiatrist realized after evaluating me that I have bipolar disorder. I learned why I was so moody, depressed and erratic. I had concentration problems and anxiety, which were symptoms of bipolar disorder.  

They wanted to put me on Depakote but I tried it and I hated it. So they gave me Tegretol and Seroquel plus multivitamins. I started to not get anxious, and started taking showers and brushing my teeth and feeling relaxed without being hung over. I ate balanced meals, something I never had when drinking and getting high.  

Then on my release, on my birthday, May 7, they gave me a treatment plan. It was Cataada House, an aftercare program. I find them very useful. I also signed up with Alliance Insurance, which is good for people who are homeless and are in poverty.  

They gave me some of my medications upon my release, which only lasted a couple of days. They eventually ran out. I started getting agitated and jittery, and my hormones started raging. The next day I left an AA meeting lying to the guy who drove me home. I craved a beer but my disease wanted sex, so I ended up tricking on North Capitol Street. I finished my binge at a church, sleeping on Rhode Island Avenue, and lost a third of the money I saved.  

I felt bad but couldn’t stop drinking so the next day I went to Cleveland Park, got me some beer and blacked out on a bench. No one seemed to care if I was alive or dead. They walked over me like I was a dead animal, and that’s when I decided, “enough!” That pain really hurt me.  

So I went to an AA meeting and shared how I relapsed. But I also realized that after not taking my medications, my thoughts were racing and my focus and memory were lost. So the next day I went to Unity Health Care and told them the medications I was on. I hated it, the long lines and the paperwork. Just waiting there, my bipolar was really getting to me. What was worse was this lady wouldn’t let me pee because she wanted to mop the floors and there was only one bathroom. I wanted to really cuss her out but didn’t.  

The next day I walked four hours to the Walker-Jones clinic to get my medications, only to be told “you need insurance.” So I ended up paying for my Tegretol but I can’t afford Seroquel. But I am working on getting my medications – they are a must if I want to live off of alcohol and other substances.  

My next crisis was that Street Sense still kept me on suspension. But I stayed in meetings and met people and my brain started clearing up. I felt better. I started exercising and am hoping to go to a gym or a karate class. I haven’t drunk coffee since I went to detox, and I feel better. I also go to Cataada House and AA for meetings. I couldn’t be sober without them.  

If you want to quit any substances, will power isn’t enough. It’s a complete lifestyle change, so if any customer wants to know how to overcome addictions I will gladly tell you what I am learning, because fellowship is a weapon against addictions.  

Today I like myself. I burned that rope I wanted to hang myself with and I try to attend my meetings and keep my appointments, for I now realize I can be social and charming without a drink. 

Issues |Addiction|Health, Mental

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