MY PERSONAL STRUGGLE WITH ADDICTION TO CRACK
HOW I BECAME AN ADDICT
Addiction takes on many forms and does not happen overnight. You do not wake up one morning and say, "I think I will become an addict today". Just as you do not become an addict overnight, you do not recover overnight either. Recovery is a long slow battle but one you do not have to fight alone. There is a lot of help available to you. The greatest help is God or as they say in the many 12 Step programs, a "Higher Power". I say that if god is on your side who can be against you.
My personal road to addiction took many years to culminate into an addiction. I was actually lulled into believing that it would never happen to me until one day...
I took my first hit of "crack cocaine" at the age of 39 and spent the next 4 years trying not to take another hit. Whenever I finally did go to sleep, I did so swearing that I would never do it again.
I woke up and went looking for a hit. and so the process went for the whole 4 years. I spent more nights sleeping on the street than I did in a bed.
Many people tried to blame my addiction on my boyfriend at the time. I knew better and was quick to accept my responsibility. It took more than that to bring me to reality.
My ex-boyfriend and a friend of ours
When I met him I thought he was awesome. I would have done anything for him. Before you even think it, he did not get me to smoke "crack". That was my decision not his. he did not want me to. I think it was because he did not want to share. I must thank him for my talent with balloons. I had always wanted to learn and by watching him I picked it up very quickly.
My favorite corner to work
Corner of Bourbon and St. Peter st.
This was the absolute best place to make money as a balloon artist. I needed a lot of money to supply my habit. I smoked 200-500 dollars worth of "crack" per day by myself. I did not like to share either. I have a lot of memories on this corner and many of them are good. When I got clean the very first thing I did was to change working corners which cut back my revenue. That was a good thing too. Money was a trigger for me. whenever I had money I thought that I should buy "crack" because that is what I had done with the money from my balloons up to that point.
Silly Balloon hats
So this is how I made my money for "crack". i made tourist laugh and look silly. They loved it and they gave me money. I gave it to the dealer. I made enough that I should never have been broke but I was always broke. Smoking "crack" came before eating, sleeping, shelter, everything. It was my life.
Tourists Were Just There To Have Fun
The tourist did not care what we did with the money. They were just there to have fun and escape their boring lives at home. They thought that we were what made New Orleans special. we were special alright.
Jackson Square Tarot Readers
Due to my addiction I abandoned everything else in life. My daughter was the first to leave me. she just could not stand to see what I was becoming. she turned to people she knew in Jackson Square. They were Tarot Readers and they taught her ho. She loved it. She never got involved with "crack" but she had her own demons. Alcohol and marijuana were her choices. These were as addictive for her as "crack" was for me. Looking back I can see that we never dealt properly with our past, either one of us. at the time I did not understand what was going on nor did I want to. "Crack" is a numbing agent and that is why I liked it. It numbed the pain by changing my focus form reality to drugs. I stopped calling my mother whom I dearly loved. I did not want her to know just how bad off I was. occasionally I would have a rational moment and give her a call to let her know I was alive. she was a very smart woman and did not confront me with my problem. I know she knew because my daughter had told her. I do not know exactly why she did that but she did. I praise God that when my mom passed She did not know that I was in a relapse. She died thinking I was clean. Her death was my final call.
ME BEHIND BARS
One day it finally happened. I was locked up for paraphernalia charges. That is where I began to truly understand the gift of life that the Lord Jesus Christ gave us through His death on the cross. That is when I realized I had a problem that I could not fix and that only through Him would I ever be right. Jail was my blessing. I had now hit "rock bottom" with no where to look but up. It has not been easy but God has seen me through. I suffered through a relapse shortly after Katrina but I now have 3 years clean and sober and am grateful for every second. My concentration is now focused on Christ and my family. Praise God for His mercy and grace.
FOR A MORE COMPLETE STORY OF MY TESTEMONY
- » My Testimony Gods Child
This is a detailed version of my story. I think you will like it.
WE ARE FINE NOW
SO HOW ARE WE NOW?
After many years of hard work we are doing great. I am now freelancing and she is in college. She is studying for a PHD in clinical pscycology. She has given up drinking and marajuana. She is currently holding a 3.8 GPA which I am very proud of. She lives with me again and although we have our moments i would not change a thing. The only downside to the whole thing is that she has not accepted Christ yet. I will let Him handle that and I will stick to my job.
Al-anonAlateen(for the family)
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This book will help you to see the problem and begin your own road to recovery.
An awesome movie about addiction and recovery. The primary setting is a recovery center and it is a fairly accurate depiction of most centers
Bill W. is one of the founders of AA who was himself an alcoholic. AA is what most 12 Step programs are based on. This is his story on the big screen.
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