Not many people know that I’m an addict. I have been addicted to prescription pain killers for going on ten years. That’s a long time to be dependent upon a chemical to function.
Oxycontin. Such a tiny pill. Amazing that something you can fit on a fingernail can wreak such havok on your life.
I began as a chronic pain patient, but during the past year, I’ve spiraled down from dependence to straight up addiction. It has taken over my life.
As I write this, I sit in a campground a very long way from home. A very long way from my pill supply. I’ve blown through this month’s prescription and realized that no matter what, I’m going to run out, at least for a few days. I could do as I usually would and do whatever the hell it takes to get my hands on those scripts, I’ve done it every month during this epic trip. I always find a way. But this time is different. I’m tired. I’ve had enough. This madness needs to stop. I want my freedom. I want my life back.
So tonight I prepare myself, mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually, for the hell that awaits me over the coming days. I’ve found a place of peace and solitude. I’ve eaten a good nutritious meal. I’ve gathered plentiful water supplies. I’ve showered and moisturized my body. I’ve gotten high. Really high. A farewell high. I sat and gazed at the stars, set my mind and heart on the end game. I’ve asked the Goddess to help see me through this. I feel strangely at peace. Total absence of the panic that usually sets in at the thought of going without. I’m ready for what lays ahead.
The thing with opiates though, you’re never so sure of getting clean as when you’re dirty. And right now, all cells well fed, I’m so full of certainty that I can get through this. Yet I know, come tomorrow, when I awaken, the first thing my mind will grasp for is that dope. My body, mind and soul will be screaming for that hit. That is when it truly begins.
I am prepared. I put together a withdrawal kit during my time in Perth.
- Clonidine, a blood pressure medication, helps immensely.
- Temazaepam, a long acting benzo
- DXM, found here in cough syrup, is the addicts best friend in a multitude of ways. It relieves withdrawal symptoms and helps in dropping tolerance. Though I only have a pretty limited supply of that.
- Immodium. As well as stopping up the inevitable diarrhea, it also soothes the opiate receptors in the gut.
- I have a good supply of quality cannabis.
- I have essential oils.
I wish I had more herbs, but being out in the desert, my options there are a little limited. But these supplies will help me through.
Detox will take me a week, give or take. Just one week. It’s not much, but in the iron grip of withdrawal, seconds become minutes, minutes become hours, hours become a fucking eternity. This week will be an absolute living hell. Symptoms will peak around day 3. Then gradually start to ebb from there. I just need to get through this, one week. Only a week.
I need to stay focused on why I am doing this. I want to be free. I want to be free to travel, without having the constant worry about keeping up my supply. I want to wake up in the morning and not feel the pangs of dope sickness. I want my mind back, my life back, my self back. I want to be free of these damn chains that have held me tight for all these years.
Soon I will go to bed, and full of dope, I will sleep. The kind of sleep that will completely elude me for weeks to come. I will rest and prepare my body for the torturous marathon I am about to inflict on it. Addiction is such a big thing. It’s so real. It’s so physical. It’s so mental. Every fibre of your being craves that chemical. Without it, your entire being is thrown into chaos. You’re nothing but a state of pure need and desperation.
But I will get through this. This time, I have no choice. I have a few pills stashed away, in case things go bad and I need to get to a hospital or a doctor. Those pills will absolutely taunt me. They will whisper to me constantly, they will scream for me. But I don’t see a way around this. Doing this as I am, alone in a pretty isolated place, I need that backup just in case.
Just one week.
I can do this.
I have to do this.