The Door to Nowhere - My Response to a Picture Prompt Writing Challenge

The Door to Nowhere
The Door to Nowhere | Source

Billybuc's challenge


A Writing Challenge: The Door to Nowhere


Come one, come all, a new test of your writing abilities awaits you.

Was it really only yesterday?

I can’t remember. My days don’t end. The sun comes up and it goes down again, but my eyes don’t close.

I don’t sleep, therefore there is no yesterday.

As I sit here playing endless games of backgammon with myself, I have no hopes of tomorrow, for it never comes if you don’t go to sleep, right?

I don’t mind being by myself in this tiny two room space I call home. Oh, wait. I have a bathroom. Three room space – excuse me.

I’ve been sitting on this floor so long I don’t even bother to pull out the couch. It’s extremely uncomfortable, but I don’t sleep anyway, so why bother? I’m too wired to have sex, so there’s another reason not to pull it out.

Ha ha. Did I just make a funny?

Here, let me show you around. This room is where I live. Here against the wall is my pull-out couch. I can’t remember the last time I pulled it out; it’s uncomfortable and takes up too much room in my 300 square foot efficiency. Over there, against the opposite wall is my little TV sitting on top of an empty spool of electrical wire. You’d never know it's an empty spool. I’m quite the decorator and have it disguised by a turquoise-colored tablecloth. Next to it are my speakers and a primitive stereo system. Gotta have music, doncha know?

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Follow me. Over here, a few steps to the left is my kitchen. Yep, I’ve got a fridge, a tiny stove and a sink. If’n ya gotta pee, just turn to the right and walk right in. What do you mean that’s gross? I find it pretty convenient.

Yeah, I have a couple of windows to let the light in, even though it hurts my eyes, but curtains take care of that.

I’ve got six cats. They’re my buddies. I take good care of them. I give them love and make sure they’re fed. And they love me in return. They are free to come and go through the front door, cuz I leave it open for them. The only time I venture out is to go to work. I can’t even tell you what I do for a living right now; it’s a blur, but I must have put whatever I do on automatic pilot. I’m good at that. Automatic pilot lets me fly.

Oh, sorry, I got off track. Walk over here with me and take a look in my fridge. Let’s see… there’s Vodka in the freezer (saves on ice), juice, and iced tea. There’s a ton of hot dogs. That’s what I feed my cats when I run out of cat food.

Fridge holds liquid refreshments and hot dogs
Fridge holds liquid refreshments and hot dogs | Source

As for me, well I’m a helluva cook, but that’s a lot of effort for one person who has no appetite anyway. When was the last time I ate?

Was it really only yesterday? Shit, I don’t know. Yesterday hasn’t happened yet; I’m still on the eternal “today”.

You might think I’m lonely, but I’m really not. I have people come over all the time. We play backgammon and once I even let someone write a poem in my journal of poetry. I write poetry all the time. It makes me feel alive. But I have to admit, to this day, I can’t put the face to the man whom I allowed to pen in my very private journal. Maybe one day I’ll show it to you, but he’s gone from my memory.

Anyway, back to what I was saying: I have people come over all the time. They bring me snow in a state that doesn’t get snow from the heavens. How cool is that?

Snow makes me really thirsty. Maybe because it makes me talk a lot and my throat gets dry. Anyway, I find vodka mixed with juice or iced tea – or water, if it comes down to that – keeps my snow-filled mind on an even keel.

I can go for days like that and never get hungry. Good thing – that means I only need to worry about feeding my cats. Besides, I think I look pretty good at 95 pounds.

I've gotten really good at playing backgammon. I beat everyone I challenge. Hell, I even beat myself when I play all by my lonesome. How do you play a two-person game with yourself? Well, you imagine someone is sitting on the other side of the board and you don’t cheat.

You’ve had snow days, I’m sure. They keep you inside and force you to entertain yourself. It’s no different when the snow comes in a form that doesn’t melt. At least as long as you don’t put water to it. I don’t do that. No. That would mean I have a problem. And I don’t have a problem. I just like the way I feel when it snows in Florida.

I can do anything. I’m extremely poetic and philosophical when it snows. I’m at my best. And I’m skinny. Whoo hoo, down to a size zero!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Shit! I’m not only poetic and philosophical, but I’m intuitive. My boyfriend’s cheating on me – I can feel it. I go through that door – the Door to Nowhere. This time it leads me somewhere and I know exactly what I’ll do when I get there.

Fueled with Florida-provided snow and a steady dose of Vodka, I hop in my Toyota and head for a destination I know by heart. There’s no answer at the door, yet I hear voices, one of which belongs to the homeowner and the holder of my heart.

Italian, Irish, English, Scottish, German, and Cherokee – don’t mess with me!

I round the corner and make my way to the back yard. I’m coming in, dammit! I find a clay pot and throw it against the window. It bounces back to me like a rubber ball.

Now I’m really pissed!

I ball my right hand up into a fist and – voila! – contact! I break through the double-tempered window and climb through, dripping blood all over the place.


After putting my fist through the window
After putting my fist through the window | Source

I must look a fright. The woman my boyfriend picked up in a bar - complete with black eye and obviously someone else’s problem - high-tails it out of there right quick. (To this day, I have a scar on my finger where I’d busted through the glass. If I hadn't been so fucked up, I probably would have ended up in the hospital.)

I don’t remember the ensuing conversation, but let’s just say that that night it stopped raining Vodka, but the snow continued to sprinkle my being.

I’ve made my point. I go home to heal my wounds and my broken heart.

Thank God for snow! However, I never touch Vodka again after that incident.

No worries, I’ll just substitute Rum for Vodka and carry on.

Was it really only yesterday? I can’t tell. I haven’t slept. How many days, weeks, months have gone by?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Man, my nose burns. I’m right handed, so I do everything with the right side of my body. No problem, I have a left nose! It takes a bit of effort, but I train my left nose (nostril) to do the job of its stronger – and now depleted – counterpart.

Then it happens. I no longer like the way I feel when it snows, yet I can’t stop making my proverbial snow angels.

Snow does not angels make.

What do people do when they can no longer tolerate the weather? If they’re bold enough and strong enough, they move to a different environment, a different climate where they can breathe, where the doors open to vast expanses of knowledge and happiness.

I look at that Door to Nowhere and realize I've kept it shut. I can open it if I want to and get myself out of the hellhole that I've called home for far too long.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This door leads to somewhere
This door leads to somewhere | Source

I took a look at that door, bade it adieu, and never looked back.

I moved to a chillier climate, but one that would never be as chilly as the one that held the Door to Nowhere, for that door eventually leads to somewhere: Death.

I don’t regret not trying to open that door. I am happy I found a new one that is always open. Open to opportunity. Open to Love. Open to Life. Open to me!

Was it really only yesterday? No. I woke up. It was a lifetime ago.

Peace,

Bravewarrior



Shauna L Bowling

Refining, Defining, or Rhyming

All Rights Reserved

© 2015 Shauna L Bowling

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Comments 105 comments

MDavisatTIERS profile image

MDavisatTIERS 22 months ago from Georgia

Good afternoon, Shauna; excellent. I also took the challenge, however, I can relate to this one equally. As a person in long-term recovery for 26 years, many of the thoughts, feelings and rationalizations in your Hub ring true. Thanks for this. ~Marilyn


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Marilyn, I'll go over to Bill's challenge and check out all who have responded so far.

I appreciate your comment and congrats on being clean for 26 years! I'm at year 28 right now and proud of it.


billybuc profile image

billybuc 22 months ago from Olympia, WA

Beautifully written my friend. You captured the life of an addict perfectly...the rationalizations...the fantasies...the belief that all is well, but slowly the realization that all is really shit...very nice job. Thank you for taking the challenge. You done good!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 22 months ago from USA

What a fine job you did with the details, from the feeding the (poor) cats hot dogs for days to the size zero and how the character feels about herself. You really draw the reader in.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you, Bill. I couldn't help myself. I don't think I've not taken you up on your challenges. Well, maybe a couple....


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you, Flourish. At first I wasn't going to let this out, but this story is based on experience.


annart profile image

annart 22 months ago from SW England

What an amazing story! Well written and keeps you intrigued from start to finish. Great response to the challenge!

Ann


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you, Ann. I love Bill's challenges. He knows how to get writers fired up. I didn't think I'd have time to respond, but apparently, it wasn't up to me!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 22 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Well, that was a magical mystery tour. The writing was like dropping a cannon ball into a bowl of milk, it made quite a splash.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 22 months ago from Nashville Tn.

Wow, Sha, you met this prompt writing challenge brilliantly! Held captive, I eagerly pranced from one paragraph to the next. Thanks and will share!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Mike, your comment makes me smile and chuckle. That's quite a compliment! Thank you, my friend!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Audrey, I'm glad this piece made you prance. You and Mike have left such colorful comments, you put me to shame. And I love it!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 22 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Sha......You made a very real torment, read like sci-fi fantasy. My heart raced as your character spoke from her weary, deadened mind. ...the whole time, wanting to reach out to her.

But as always within these tales, it is the one who has lost herself behind the door to nowhere, to "wake up" and find that door to somewhere.

Superbly done, Sha. BRAVO!...UP++++


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Paula, I'm glad you enjoyed the ride. Trust me, the narrator of this story has awakened and has doors that only lead to Somewhere.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 22 months ago from Southern Illinois

Shauna, this is brilliant! You took this to a new high. ( Excuse the pun. ) you are such a gifted writer. Thank you. Hugs.


AudreyHowitt profile image

AudreyHowitt 22 months ago from California

Bill is right I think---you have captured the life of an addict here--just an excellent write!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Ruby, I appreciate your pun; it's very befitting. Thank you for reading and leaving such a wonderful comment.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Audrey, I have to admit: there's not a bit of fiction in this story. I lived it. Everything I described was true life for me once upon a very long time ago.


RachaelOhalloran profile image

RachaelOhalloran 22 months ago from United States

Shauna, this is a very good response to the challenge. The fact that it is based on true life makes it more poignant. Well done, my friend.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Rache, it's great to see you! Thank you for your comment, my friend.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 22 months ago from Queensland Australia

Wow what an amazing story Shauna. I started to read this late last night in bed but was just too tired, I had to come back this morning and so glad I did. Love how you referred to cocain as Florida snow and you captured the life of an addict to perfection (not that I'd know from personal experience). Great respones to Bill's challenge. Voted up.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

John, coke has several slang names. At least it did back in the day. I don't know what they call it now because I walked away from the Door to Nowhere. One name was snow. Another was blow. I guess "blow" came to be because you blow your savings and you blow the capillaries in your nose, not to mention blow out the ability to breathe properly after prolonged snorting. And you blow your chances at any type of success or freedom if you you don't kick the habit.


DJ Anderson 22 months ago

Good job, Sha.

You made it sound depressingly realistic.

OMG, I just read where you said this is based on experience!!

Sha, you are a strong woman to change your life for the better.

God Bless You, Girl!!

DJ.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

DJ, at the time I thought I was on top of the world. After a few years of living like that, I realized I was not only kidding myself, but killing myself. Just another hurdle I've overcome in my life. Thank God I did!


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 22 months ago from Jeffersonville PA

Powerful and deep from in your gut, Sha.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 22 months ago from southern USA

Thank you for sharing your powerful story here in this challenge. You are brave and a warrior, dear Sha. I knew this was about your life due to you answering my question the other day. You brought the reality home here and painted the life of an addict with your words so vividly before our eyes.

Up ++++ tweeting pinning, G+ and sharing

Love your new open door that leads to love, happiness and peace.

(((Hugs)))


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 22 months ago from Orlando, FL

Hey Sha, Wow! Quite a descriptive journey and one that was overcome. Make me think of all the people who live this way daily. Sad, but realistic.


Lady Guinevere profile image

Lady Guinevere 22 months ago from West Virginia

Wow, I am glad that you finally got to wake up and enjoy life.


Rhonda Lytle profile image

Rhonda Lytle 22 months ago from Deep in the heart of Dixie

I loved the ending here though it was a most dark road to get there. This should be posted in every high school in America. Kids really need to know the real road drugs leads one down not just the litany of don't don't don't that somehow seems to inspire more to do than not. Kudos!


ladyguitarpicker profile image

ladyguitarpicker 22 months ago from 3460NW 50 St Bell, Fl32619

Hi, You held my attention right to the end and did a great job. We all have to open that door or die. This was power that carried you through.


Iris Draak profile image

Iris Draak 22 months ago from Boise, Idaho

Wow. That was awesome. The first-person perspective is very powerful. I too am glad that you woke up.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

More like deep from my memory bank, Mar!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Faith, I knew you would have figured it out right off the bat. It's ironic that this challenge came up right after your question. Perhaps I was meant to tell this story. Bottom line is, there's always hope. You just have to want it badly enough.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Linda, you're so right. Many, many people live this hell daily and don't know how to get out. Or maybe they don't want to get out. It's certainly no way to live. Or shall I say exist.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Me too, Debra!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Rhonda, you bring up a good point. Being told not to do something is almost like a dare to young kids and young adults, too. Even when given reasons not to do something, many kids have the that-won't-happen-to-me attitude. The fact of the matter is, this is a very highly addictive drug. It grabs hold of you before you know it.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Ladyguitarpicker, the power is within all of us. We just have to tap into it and do whatever it takes to let strength override weakness.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Iris, call it one of my Bobs. You know what I mean!


pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 22 months ago from sunny Florida

Wonderfully shared. You have told the story of some that I know...caught in the web of that snow and other drugs that hold them in their grasp. Well done..

Angels are on the way to you today ps


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Paula, I hope those who know who got caught in the web found their way out. Thanx for the angels, my friend!


ocfireflies profile image

ocfireflies 22 months ago from North Carolina

very powerful and an awesome response to Bill's challenge

Kim


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 22 months ago from South Africa

I enjoyed this story, bravewarrior. You have not only entertained your reader, but also gave them something to ponder. Voted up and captivating :)


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Kim, I'm glad this response to Bill's challenge packed a punch. It was meant to and I hope you've passed it on to anyone who may benefit from a brief look into the life of an addict. There is life on the other side, as long as they open the door.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Martie, now you may have an idea why I don't understand that MaryJane (marijuana) doesn't work to ease your pain. Of course, snow eases many pains and creates others. But snow kills. Weed doesn't. I'm proud that I chose life over death.


ocfireflies profile image

ocfireflies 22 months ago from North Carolina

absolutely - passed on

others need to know there is hope

Kim


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Yep, there certainly is, Kim. And if the addict is strong enough to listen to him or her self, the habit can be kicked without leaning on others. I don't mean to negate the support of friends; they're probably the biggest help. I had no help from my family; they shunned me when I was addicted. However, I called up the strength my family instilled in me and the help that came my way via friends who saw what I was doing to myself. I rejected all of it until I was fed up with myself and the life I'd made.

Together we are strong. No matter how it comes.


tobusiness profile image

tobusiness 22 months ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

Brave warrior indeed, it takes a warrior to go through the hell of addiction, smashed down that door, take back your life and write something as brilliant as this. Inspirational and powerful.


mary615 profile image

mary615 22 months ago from Florida

I am just speechless after reading your Hub! I've had friends and family who have gone through all this, and only when they hit rock bottom did they open the door to recovery.

You are indeed a brave warrior!!

Voted UP, etc. and shared.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Jo, about all I can respond to your comment is, "wow!". Thank you for not judging me in a bad way.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Mary, I did hit rock bottom. But perhaps my bottom was shallower than others'. I was still able to see that I needed to get the hell out of there. And I did - 28 years ago.


Sparklea profile image

Sparklea 22 months ago from Upstate New York

Bravewarrior: WOW, what a profound account! I truly believe the best writers are those who pour their guts out with their true experiences. My granddaughter is engaged to an addict...it has been a nightmare.

Thank you for sharing this and I agree with Rhonda that every school should have a copy of this. Please consider sending this to newspapers and even magazines. Your story needs to be spread far and wide. You may save lives by doing this. And I thank Billy Buc for this challenge as he has done a great service to his Hub family because it has taken some of us out of our comfort zones and releasing our hearts. Voted up and awesome. God bless, Sparklea :)


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Sparklea, I hope your granddaughter's fiancé gets some help if he's not strong enough to kick the habit himself. If he doesn't he'll end up losing everything. I'd hate to see your granddaughter go through that.

I'll give your and Rhonda's suggestion some serious thought. At the very least, perhaps you can show this to your granddaughter and her fiancé. Thank you for reading and leaving such a thought-provoking comment.


Venkatachari M profile image

Venkatachari M 22 months ago from Hyderabad, India

It is a great response to the challenge. So interesting and exciting twists throughout the story. Beautifully done.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Venkatachari, life is full of twists, is it not? Thank you for reading and leaving such a warm comment.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 22 months ago from The Caribbean

A confusing mix of emotions in response to the opening question. An interesting read!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Dora, the mind of an addict doesn't think logically. Thoughts are all over the place. I tried to portray that in this piece. I guess it's good you were confused.


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 22 months ago from New York

Well written and scary as hell. I felt the roller coaster life and wondered how it was going to end. Then reading the comments and finding it was written from experience truly tore at my heart, not tugged but tore. Then I stopped to think of the woman you are today and my admiration (the admiration I've always had) now soared.

Not just an excellent answer to Bill's challenge but an excellent and chilling account.

Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting. Shared too.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Mary, I love your reaction to this story. It could be fiction. It could be a testimonial or both. I tried to not divulge that the story is a first-hand account, but I couldn't help myself.

Thank you for your awesome comment.


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 22 months ago from Scotland

Full credit to you for changing a destructive path and even more so for using your natural talent to let others see how things can change and there is always hope.

The account was shocking and sad in its simplicity of thought and you relayed it brilliantly. It is good to see that there are some real life happy endings left.

Your writing talent is too good to be shrouded by chemicals so we all benefit from your strength and courage in finding that new winning road.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Anna, what's ironic about my past is when I got really heavy into snow, I was a copywriter. No, the industry didn't introduce me to the habit, but everyone from fellow writers to sales reps at the TV stations to business owners were indulging. I was on cloud nine. I got to do what I loved while I was doing what I loved. The reason I have a 25-year break in earning a living by writing is because I had to get away from all the influences. Once I did, I married and had a son, so I fell back on my accounting skills to earn a living and provide a secure home for my only child.

Now I'm clean (28 years, thank God), my son is a young adult, and I'm free to recapture my creative soul. Hopefully, my mortgage company understands that. Ha ha!


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 22 months ago from Scotland

Well if they have a read of Faith's tale I feel they may have patience. Or at least they should! Your creative soul if definitely flying free and thriving now. :)


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you, Anna. It feels good to be free.


DDE profile image

DDE 22 months ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

An overwhelming response to this great challenge.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

You're right, DDE. Many writers have taken on this challenge.


liesl5858 profile image

liesl5858 22 months ago from United Kingdom

Hi! you have written a very good story and I admire you for it. Sometimes The Door to Nowhere can lead us to a better room and good opportunities but we need to open it and explore it first. Well done.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Right on, Liesl5858! There really is no such thing as a Door to Nowhere. We are in control.


Elsie Hagley profile image

Elsie Hagley 22 months ago from New Zealand

Beautiful story, you held my attention right to the end.

Stories like this can bring back many memories to the reader and sometimes for the good of their future. Thanks.


Joy56 profile image

Joy56 22 months ago

I so enjoyed this........... It is amazing how the details of that time were brought to the fore by this challenge. Amazing piece of literature.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Elsie, hopefully memories like these help maintain a focus to move forward and not regress into destructive behavior. In that way, the memories certainly are for the good of the future.

I'm glad you enjoyed the read. Thank you!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Joy56, what a compliment! Thank you so much for reading and putting a smile on my face.


Joy56 profile image

Joy56 22 months ago

You deserve it


cam8510 profile image

cam8510 22 months ago from Columbus, Georgia until the end of November 2016.

Shauna, isn't it amazing how creative and philosophical and social we can be when we've simply taken the edge off with our "snow" of choice. The weather cleared up for me nearly six years ago. Thanks for this TRULY creative story. I enjoyed it very much.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Cam, I like the way you put it: the weather cleared up. Love it! And congratulations. It's no easy task to accomplish.


CrisSp profile image

CrisSp 22 months ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

How very creative! I really enjoyed this all throughout. Hibernate - yes, that's what I do when heavy snows come in and I'd temporarily shut the door but I surely look forward to opening the door again with caution though. Remember one of my hubs, "The White Framed Door" --I almost spilled everything in there and it's pretty much self explanatory.

Great hub Sha!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Cris, I'll have to re-visit the hub you mention and check out what you spill.

It's easy to hibernate in the winter. I think the cold affects our mood as much as it does our ability to enjoy the activities that are better suited for warmer weather.

Thanx for the read, my friend and stay warm!


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 22 months ago from Minnesota

Oh my goodness Shauna-I have so many emotions going on right now with this Incredible story. I know your a strong woman who has been through many trials, but never knew this. You illustrate what it's like to live the life of an addict. This is one of the most poignant writings I have ever read. I am sharing this all over the place. You should really get this published or in a contest. I am beyond moved by this true account. What a powerful way to use Billy's prompt. Blessings


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Linda, you're the second person to suggest I publish this elsewhere. I'll have to consider it.

Your comment is beyond awesome. Thank you so much!


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 22 months ago from Minnesota

I really hope and pray you think hard about it. Remember, it could save someone's life. I lost my brother to addiction; at his funeral we spoke frankly about the hellish life he lived. We learned that a handful of his friends that were struggling with addiction ,went straight to treatment because of David's tragedy. I see this as a very special mission you've been called to. Thinking about it gives me goose bumps. Love Linda


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Linda, I have been thinking about it since I read your comment. I'm thinking of submitting it to Chicken Soup for the Soul (with a little tweaking at the end of the story to make it more apparent that it's a true account that had a positive outcome). I'm also going to look into trade pubs that deal with addiction.

I'm so sorry to hear about your brother. I lost a cousin to addiction. I also lost a dear friend the same way. It's never easy, is it?


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 22 months ago from Minnesota

Oh my gosh Shauna-Chicken Soup for the Soul is perfect as they have a bunch of different categories of stories. I also like your idea of getting into places that work with addiction. Again, what a important issue. Sorry to hear of your losses with this disease. I lost mom when I was nine-she was only 39, my brother David died at 40 and almost lost my older sister who is now in recovery. Addiction is so prevalent and ruins lives. God Bless you my friend and please keep me posted. If there's anything I can do to help out, just let me know :)


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 22 months ago from Central Florida Author

Wow, Linda, you've been hit hard by the effects of addiction. You should consider writing about the effects of addition on family.

Thank you for your kind offer. You're very sweet.


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 21 months ago from USA

The fact that this is based on your experiences makes it even more remarkable.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 21 months ago from Central Florida Author

Flourish, proof that we can overcome whatever gets in our way once we make our minds up to do so.


PegCole17 profile image

PegCole17 21 months ago from Dallas, Texas

You really stepped up to the challenge on this one. The analogy of the door to nowhere as the issue of addiction fit the bill perfectly. You are certainly a Bravewarrior and I'm so thankful that this turned out like it did. I knew a couple of people who faced this ongoing problem. One was a former boyfriend and he didn't make it. The other switched to another avenue that was almost as bad. Not sure if he made it or not. We lost contact over the years.

Your story was compelling and realistic. Well told and well done.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 21 months ago from Central Florida Author

Peg, I had a friend who didn't make it also. People tried to help her, but she wanted no part of it. She ended up overdosing. So sad.


aviannovice profile image

aviannovice 21 months ago from Stillwater, OK

Wow...I felt like I was in that painful world of nothing, where the silent screams just came and there was no reality, just high speed all the time. You did a great job on this.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 21 months ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you, Deb. This actually was my world once upon a long time ago.


sallybea profile image

sallybea 20 months ago from Norfolk

I think I must have lived a rather sheltered life:) Not in my wildest imagination would I have dreamed up this one. I loved this challenge and your take on it was excellent. Thanks for sharing.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 20 months ago from Central Florida Author

Sally, I think my sheltered - rather, regimented - life led to my rebellion. In fact, I know it did. Be thankful you didn't step out of the fold! I've been back in the fold for a while now, but it was a rough road to travel no matter how you (I) look at it.

Unfortunately, I didn't dream this up. I lived it.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 19 months ago from Nashville Tn.

I love your style of writing which is why I'm back again for another read. When I latch on to talent such as yours I find that one read is never enough. The excitement of discovering new information with each read is addicting. A good addiction!


Nadine May profile image

Nadine May 19 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

Wow this was truly a great response to the challenge, and so very brave. The name bravewarrior so suits you and now I know why! Let me tell you the door to nowhere as you call it is in fact leading to a loving brave woman who has a lot to give to the world. Your lives experiences. My wish for you is happiness and peace. Great Post well done!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 19 months ago from Central Florida Author

Audrey, I'm flattered. What an awesome comment! Needless to say, you've made my day. Thank you for coming back and taking another look.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 19 months ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you for your very kind comment, Nadine. Your words are very much appreciated and inspire me to keep bettering myself. Thank you for that.


Julie K Henderson profile image

Julie K Henderson 19 months ago

This is a descriptive, compelling piece. I find myself aghast at the idea of having six cats in such a small space. Well done.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 19 months ago from Central Florida Author

Julie, my door was open most of the time. The cats were in and out. I've always been a sucker for strays or cats people needed to find homes for. Now I have three indoor cats of my own and three outdoor cats that have adopted me. They don't belong to me, but they seem to know I'm a cat lover.


Julie K Henderson profile image

Julie K Henderson 19 months ago

I am glad you were able to find each other.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 19 months ago from Central Florida Author

They found me, Julie - the outdoor cats, that is. Two of them think my property is their home. The third is a cat someone abandoned. He's been coming to my house twice a day for meals for about three years now, then he saunters off and goes about his business.


Julie K Henderson profile image

Julie K Henderson 19 months ago

I love when animals "find" people who will care for them. This happened with a dog I met who was abandoned as a puppy, and his devotion to the woman who adopted him was heart-warming.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 19 months ago from Central Florida Author

Animals are a good judge of character.


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 17 months ago from Minnesota

Hi Shauna-I do write quite a bit about my family history of addiction and I find it incredibly healing. I too should think about getting it published on other venues besides hub pages and my blog. Glad I read this and have been inspired by you. XXOO


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 17 months ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you for reading, Linda. I'm afraid I haven't looked into trying to sell this piece. I really should do that, huh?


Sherry Hewins profile image

Sherry Hewins 15 months ago from Sierra Foothills, CA

Wow, that was a really creative use of that writing prompt. Very engaging.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 15 months ago from Central Florida Author

Thank you, Sherry. I'm glad you enjoyed it.


Larry Rankin profile image

Larry Rankin 15 months ago from Oklahoma

On an unrelated note, I've seen you around Hubpages a lot, and I am beyond pleased to have the chance to get to know you.

As for your response to Bill's challenge, wonderfully done. The picture you painted of cocaine addiction is a sad, lonely, paranoid, and exhausting lifestyle.

I'm sure, like any drug, there is a glamour phase at the beginning, but once it's gone it's gone, and the long term effect sounds no damn fun!

Again, wonderfully executed.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 15 months ago from Central Florida Author

Larry, in the beginning, it's a blast. But then it overtakes your thinking, ability to eat, ethics, judgement and more. Then it gets to the stage where you no longer like the high, but do it anyway. That's when I told myself it was time to stop. Friends wanted to help me prior to my revelation, but - as all addicts experience - I didn't think I had a problem. I was having too much fun! How could it have been a problem? Getting over denial and taking a good look at myself was what did it for me. I had to clean up my act and leave that door to nowhere far, far behind.

Thank you for your beautiful comment. I look forward to getting to know you, too.

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