Alive or just breathing?

Reads: 146  | Likes: 0  | Shelves: 0  | Comments: 1

More Details
Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic
The story I'm about to share is about myself and losing something I never had

Submitted: May 29, 2017

A A A | A A A

Submitted: May 28, 2017

A A A

A A A


October 10th, 2016 I found myself standing alone in my best friend's shed debating which rafter would be sturdy enough to hang myself on. My life had finally reached its lowest point and the idea that it would ever get better was laughable to say the least. I had just lost my girlfriend and two of the best friend's I've ever had due to my alcohol and drug addiction. Everyone knew I was heading nowhere fast but had no idea what I was actually going through. Months before I had just been released from a 3 year prison sentence and was absolutely confused on how or what to do when I had nothing or no one to do it for so I turned to the one thing that took everything away from me in the first place, alcohol. It's amazing how this substance, this curse from which had destroyed everything I've ever loved was also what I used to numb the pain from its destruction. As my addiction began to take a turn for the worst so did my actions and before I knew it I was in the same position I was in before I went to prison. My lied, violence, and self destruction had shattered three relationships with the only people I had left and once again, I found myself alone and wondering where I was going to live. My best friend Dan was all I had left so as I packed my things from my best friend's trailer I had just been kicked out of I wondered "what next". Three days before hand I had not only ruined my best friend's wedding, but blacked out and put my hands on a woman I cared very much for at the time. My father came and took me to the last person in my life that hadn't given up on me. I was welcomed with drinks. We spent the next two weeks drinking ourselves to bed every single night and numbing the pain from days we couldn't forget. He had just lost his girlfriend too so we self medicated together. At first it was nice to be there and to have someone who understood a little bit about what I was feeling. But as the days went on my depression was becoming worse and I was now drinking from the minute I woke up until I fell into a drunken slumber only to wake up and repeat the cycle. The pain, sadness, and self hate was at a level I hadn't experienced yet and at the time the only solution to me was death. I was tired of hurting. I was tired of hurting the people I loved and I honestly and truly believed that within me dying everyone's lives would improve. I waited for him to go to work one morning. I already had the location and rope I would use to end it all and finally be at peace. I heard the door shut and him take off. It was almost time. I don't upstairs and started my morning like I usually did, rummaging through the fridge to grab whatever wasn't drank the night before and get that warm numb feeling that I craved more than anything. I found myself in his shed tying the rope to the rafter and I sat down to finish my drink, and then it happened, I broke down. I cried for what felt like hours and ended up actually falling asleep. I woke up an hour later and saw the rope above me and it scared the shit out of me. The sleep had sobered me up and I had what alcoholics anonymous calls a moment of clarity. I called my friend and drug counsoler I had met in ottumwa and for the first time asked for help and meant it. She found a place in Des Moines Iowa I could walk in the next day and possibly change my life. I called my father and asked him to take me, and he did. So there I was standing outside of a facility I knew nothing about in a city I had never been in. I was scared. I didn't know what to expect. All I knew was I had to try. If not for me at least my kids. But there was one problem. Not only did the facility happen to be in one of the shittiest neighborhoods I've been in but it wasn't an actual rehab. It was a faith based homeless shelter that was more worried about trying to convert me to Christianity than deal with my alcoholism. I had to get out of there. It was making me nervous. The staff creeped me out and there was already rumors of them kicking me out because of my "non conformity". But there was one problem. They took every form of communication I had so there wasn't much I could do. As I was laying in my bunk one night I debated on different options on how the fuck to get out of this place. But where was I going to go? I didn't know this city and they kind of had me feeling like they weren't going to let me just walk out the door so I devised a plan I knew would work. That morning I requested to talk to the main pastor and I told him I needed to go to the hospital for my alcohol withdrawals and instead of being allowed to I was told " pray instead". Now I'm on my toes. These people seriously arent just going to let me go so I said "sir, there's something else though too. I believe I have an std and I need to get it taken care of". He stared at me with disbelief so I looked him in his eyes and said " look, you want to see for yourself?". As my hands went for my zipper he stopped me and granted me an hour pass to go to the community health center a mile up the street. I couldn't have walked out that door faster. So here I am walking through the city dressed like a fucking Mormon and just praying someone in the lobby had a cellphone. I got to the clinic and sat in the waiting room and asked everyone around me if they had a phone I could use. No one did. Now I'm panicking but it's my turn to go see the doctor. A lady came in my room and asked me routine questions like "Do you drink, smoke, do drugs", all that good shit and my answers got me into the office of a woman who places people into actual rehabs, not some freaky ass cult. She called a local facility and I got a miracle. They had a bed opened that day. She asked if I was ready and I told her get your keys and get me the fuck out of that place let's roll. We're driving back to the shelter and I have one more obstacle, I have to get my stuff. Everything I own is in that building but getting back out was what I was worried about. I got out of her car and went to the front door and was let back in. I ran straight upstairs and put all my shit in a trash bag and headed for the door. Standing there almost blocking my exit was the one staff member who I knew didn't like me the most. "Where you going Mr Wood" he said to me. I dropped my bag, took off my shirt and told him if he didn't get the fuck out of my way the only place I'd be going is jail cause I was honestly 100% prepared to beat this dude's ass. He stepped aside and I ran to the admins car and off to prelude I went. I felt like a thousand pounds was just taken off my back. Not only was I out of that place but was finally going to an actual rehab. Maybe this was meant to be after all. I went through the front door at my new home for the next 28 days happy as hell! Walked past a door that said women's hygiene and got even more excited. I already knew I was gonna meet some girl but I had no idea that the one I did would leave me worse than I was before I got there. Two hours after I got there all my stuff was unpacked and I was sitting in the day room reading a people's magazine learning useless facts about what a douchebag Kanye West is and that's when I saw her. She was with a couple other girls who had just finished group and they were all stating my way wondering who the new guy was. Wasn't long until she came up to my table and asked to talk to me really quick. Apparently her friend thought I was good looking or something and wanted to know if I was interested. I looked at her and said " I'm interested for sure, but not with her". Her face got red and from that moment on the only thing that I could think of was this beautiful girl I just met. As the days went on things between us got a lot more physical and before I knew it we're sneaking past staff and started sleeping together. I don't know how it happened, maybe because I was in such a fucked up state of mind but I was falling in love with her. We both completed treatment and was living in sober houses in Des Moines doing nothing but spending every minute we could together and for the first time in years I was honestly happy. We would walk through the trails but the creek and talk, kiss, all that. The more time I spent with her the more I knew I never wanted to be away from her so we decided we were going to get a place together. Only problem was my insurance got cut off from not filling out my review so I was being removed from my program and was gonna have to end up going back to Dan's. We spent the day before I left together and all I could do was hold her and tell her I was going to come back for her. She didn't believe me. She wanted to but she had a life like mine so it was hard to think something good was actually going to come through. The next day my dad picked me up and I was headed back to the house I almost killed myself at three months before and something told me I was about to blow it all again and sure enough, I did. With in 5 minutes of walking through the front door I was already drinking and had a line of cocaine waiting to go up my nose. I had relapsed and was very upset about it. But it didn't stop me from continuing. Amber and me would talk on video chats and she was watching me slowly start to fade. My plans of getting an apartment for us was becoming more and more unrealistic and she was worried that I was going to try to kill myself again and to be honest I would've if it wasn't for hearing her voice everyday. After a couple weeks of fucking up, picking up a prostitute for my buddy who ended up commiting a murder days after she left our place, I took the hint and decided to leave. I had a plan. I was gonna go back to ottumwa and get my old jobs back and bring Amber there. It was a perfect idea. New environment for us both, she had a DHS case and in ottumwa I just so happened to be very good friends with people who work with people like her and the situation. She agreed to come so it was go time for me. Once again I put everything I owned into my bag and took off to my friend Jay's house I had met while I was in the halfway house. That week I already had my old job back at pizza hut and was waiting for the big job to give me my call. If I got this other job me and amber were going to be just fine, and guess what? They called. I got the OK to start orientation and called Amber. We were both so happy. For the last three weeks I had been working two jobs, walking miles upon Mike's in the snow every single day of the week making sure my lady and me were going to be OK. Finally the day came to pick her up. That's still one of the best days of my life. The excitement of seeing her again after being away for the last month and the pride I felt knowing all this had happened because of me and getting sober again was intense. We pulled up to her facility and there she was with all her bags and I held her and didn't let go. The whole ride back from Des Moines all we did was kiss and hold each other and tell one another how much we missed us. That was the best car ride of my life. We got to ottumwa and I surprised her with a new tattoo. The rest of that week we stayed at Jay's waiting for the landlord to call and say we could pay him and move in but something happened to the apartment and it got pushed back so I had to figure something out. I bout us a month long stay at this shady hotel but it was fine. Couple weeks we would be living in our own two bedroom apartment so I told her just think about it like a little vacation. Besides we had both been through so much that last year we needed a little break. That first night was amazing. I took her to what would become our favorite restaurant and we made love all night. I was so content and just, well I was happy and so was she. I ended up quiting pizza hut and just worried about the job at jbs because I wouldn't have time for amber the way I wanted to and I made more than enough money for us there. Things were going exactly how I planned them out and now on my lunch break, covered in pug blood and shit I'm spending it googling wedding ring ideas. I was going to propose on Valentine's day which was about three weeks away. I lived my life for the first time since I was born. For once I wasn't a fuck up. No for once I was being a man, taking care of the woman I loved and doing it sober. Everyone was blown away by how well I was doing since this was the first time I was actually succeeding in life. Every night I'd get home around 130 am and bring her favorite food and snacks, kit kats and Pepsi. It was just going great. One night, one of my buddies I met in orientation asked if me and amber wanted to hang out with him and his wife. They came over one night and in his hand was a bottle of whiskey. Now Amber was an addict too and I'm obviously an alcoholic so I should've told him to either take that shit back to his car or to leave but I didn't. In fact I had a drink with him and for the first time Amber looked at me sideways. I took her to the bathroom and reassured her that it was OK and I was just gonna have a couple. Besides, for the last month I've been working 7 days a week walking in the freezing cold for us both so why not right? Just a couple drinks what could happen? She agreed and decided fuck it, she'd have one too. We got halfway through the bottle and decided we were hungry so I sent them to go grab a pizza from my old manager. When they left her entire demeanor had changed and I asked if it was because we had technically just relapsed. That wasn't the case. She turned to me with cold eyes and asked if I really loved her and if I had cheated on her while she was in Des Moines. I told her no, she should know better than that and I loved her more than I did myself which was true. Then she said " well I cheated on you". My heart literally stopped and we sat there in silence for five minutes before he explained to me she was seeing another man in the side who she had met at an N/A meeting. I didn't know what to say or think so we just sat there quiet until Ryan and his wife go back. Well the pizza wouldn't be given to anyone but me so I had to get it myself so Ryan and me left to get it and I needed some more alcohol. My heart was beginning to break. As we got out of the car and I went to turn the key to our room I heard something, like moaning. I opened the door and on my bed was Amber and she was getting oral sex from his wife. I started yelling asked her to get dressed and why would she do this, especially after what she had told me not even an hour ago. His wife started crying and throwing up outside and Amber locked herself in the bathroom and proceeded to knock all my shit off the sink and was breaking my stuff. I got the door open and grabbed her and she punched me in the face. I lost it, I hit her back and dragged her out of the bathroom and began lose my mind. When everything settled we just laid there and eventually went to sleep. Things were never the same again between us. I went to work the next day and on my lunch break I turned my phone on to see that her family was apparently coming to get her in two days and they were going to shoot me. I just sat there and I knew this was going to get very bad very fast. I started to get paranoid and was wondering what was going to happen and what I should do. She convinced her family to fuck off and we made an attempt to go back to normal. It worked to a certain extent only now her feelings are hurt and my heart is broken again but I loved her so much I couldn't tell her to leave. Couple days later I decided we needed a day out just the two of us and I was going to use my call in and spend it with her. We had a great time. Only now ever since that night drinking was heavy on my mind again. I asked her if she cares if I grabbed some beer and she said she didn't and that she would have a couple too. I woke up the next morning still kind of drunk and opened my fridge to see there was still three tall boys left and opened one. By the time the third was gone I convinced the house keeper I knew to take me to the gas station and get more and by the time it was for me to go-to work, I was too drunk and I couldn't show up. I just lost the best job of my life. Now knowing she cheated and me failing again I kept up my drinking and was smoking weed too. I began to get bitter twords her and two days later without her knowing I called my buddy from Des Moines and paid him to come get her and take her back. Not only did I know we were just about to lose it all, I was having too hard if a time thinking about her and that man, wondering if she even loved me and thoughts of suicide began to come back. My buddy shows up and amber is in the bathroom. He sits down and pulls out a dope pipe and asks if I want to get high and I said yes. She came out and was shocked. I explained to her that she had broken my heart and was kind of blaming her for me losing my job and how much she had hurt and embarrassed me and she needed to get the hell out and this was her ride. She said OK and asked to hit the pipe. Kyle let her and then Ryan came over and he hit it too. Before I knew it all four of us were high as hell and I suddenly didn't want her to go. I paid my friend twice what I told him I would and said sorry for wasting his time and he left and I kept he with me. So now I'm unemployed, and we're doing meth. My mind started to slip and I was becoming paranoid and thinking people were going to kill me. After being awake with her for three days straight I had a nervous breakdown and told her I'd be right back. I sent to the hotel lobby and bought another room for just that night and for the next 10 hours I stood in the corner of the room and waited for absolutely no one to come and try to kill me. I couldn't even turn my phone on because I thought if I did they would see me and know where I was. Amber called and called and before I knew it it was 830 at night and I had completely lost my mind. Around 9 something weird happened. My paranoid trip completely disappeared and I was back to my normal self and was just dumfounded at what had just happened. I ran back to our room and she was freaking out too wondering where I was. I explained to her what had happened and we kinda laughed it off, and then we got high again. And for the next week and a half we got high some more and more people I knew were coming to our room and getting high with us. Ryan and his wife ended up back on the needle and one day that week he jumped the counter at a local gun shop and tried to steal a pistol. He's in prison as we speak. My friend who was getting it for us ended up in prison later that week too and then I had another commit suicide and my life had become crazier than it ever had before. Finally the day came and we had 24 hours because our month at the hotel was over and now she really did have to go back to Des Moines and I was going to be homeless. I just laid with her in our bed and held her hand and we both cried of and on until I saw headlights outside of our window. Jill was here to take her to her aunt's. I tried to hold it together in front of Jill because I didn't want her to see me like this and her and Jay were already contemplating having me committed. After I put the last of amber bags in the car it was time for our goodbye. I held her so tight I thought I was gonna hurt her. I kissed her over and over and told her how sorry I was and she did the same. I couldn't watch her drive off so I walked inside pretty fast and as soon as I caught a reflection of the lights from Jill's car taking the only thing I had left away I fucking collapsed right where I was standing and screamed and cried for hours. That was the most pain I have felt up until that point. I crawled into the bathroom and cried myself to sleep right there on the floor. I opened my eyes the next morning and got up and packed my shit and waited for my friend to take me to my dad's. I walked up to his porch and he saw my face and asked me if I was OK and I started crying again. He let me stay there for a couple days while I figured out what was next. Me and Amber talked all day every day but I was so sad. I couldn't get out of bed anymore, especially when she told me her aunt kicked her out and she was on her way to a homeless shelter in Des Moines. I was freaking out. Now she's pretty much on the street and it was my fault I felt. When she got there I didn't hear from her for two days until finally she called me. She had just got done shooting up for the first time since she went to treatment. I lost it. I told her I was coming to be with her but my father told me not to. Said it was only going to hurt me and I should convince her to get help. The next couple days got worse for her and she was sleeping in laundry mats and shooting up with a guy we both knew from treatment until finally she was found unconscious and was taken to a hospital. Her social worker called me and told me she was going to be OK and she was driving her to a sober woman's program and I could call and visit. Relief! Thank God I thought and I was so happy and proud for her. She couldn't make phone calls for the first week but it was OK because I knew she was safe. I ended up back at Dan's and was drinking on a regular basis but wasn't too far gone yet. My kids were coming over to stay the night and life was looking like it was gonna slowly get better again until Amber called and said she walked out of treatment and was going to live with her cousin who she does meth with. The next month was spent with me begging her to move down here and her changing into something I never thought possible Infront of my eyes. I was watching her slowly kill herself and it was terrible especially since I took the blame for it. She bought a bus ticket and came to stay with me to sober up and spend time with me. I picked her up at the bus stop and we had a great night. I took her out and held her for the next three days as she slept since she hadn't in weeks. I made sure she was safe and took care of her. Then the morning before she was to go back she told me she had done it again. Only this time she had been fucking two other men and still shooting up. I got really sad but at the same time knew this was her. This isn't the amber I fell in love with in Des Moines. The drugs had stolen her from me and I wanted her back so bad. I out her on the bus the next day and knew she would be high again by sundown which she was. A week went by and she called me and said she was homeless again and needed me more than ever. I thought on it for two days and then that Tuesday morning she video called me and I swear I thought she was going to die. Her beautiful face had shrunk from no food and she couldn't keep her eyes open. She was on the street so I did the only thing I could. I packed my shit and went to Des Moines to find her. I met her behind a homeless shelter and held her just as I did before. She cried and told me how happy she was I came for her. For the next three nights I was homeless with her. Protecting her while we found various places to sleep outside in the middle of the city. I stayed by her side and guarded her with my life. Crack heads and prostitutes would approach us and I would send them away. The days were hot and the nights were cold so I would wrap her up with my coat like a child and hold her all through the night to keep her warm. The third day she woke up crying and in terrible pain, her liver was shutting down and I got her to the hospital. The doctors treated her like a junkie and did nothing for her and in two hours we were back on the street and she went back to sleep. I thought to myself as we sat under a tree right next to the shelter if we were going to be OK or what I should do next. We didn't have a dollar and I couldn't let her sleep outside anymore I had to figure out something. Later that day one of the guys who ran the block we slept at approached me. At first I thought he was going to start problems but he just looked at me and said " you know the whole neighborhood is talking about you? We know why you're out here, you're protecting your girlfriend aren't you?" I explained to him how I left everything just to do this and make sure she survived and he came back twenty minutes later with sleeping bags, blankets, food and an offer. He told me that if I wanted to make some money he would front me some dope and all I had to do was stand by this corner and get rid of some and he would pay me. I said yes. I paid two guys to watch amber while I went up the block and did what I had to do for the situation I was in. I made about $150 and called it good. I wasn't trying to get locked up and all I wanted was to get her out if the cold. I came back and sat next to her. I figured id give her another hour of sleep before we walked to the bus stop to go to a hotel. My plan was every day go back to that block, make whatever money I needed for that day so she wasn't sleeping on the grass, get a job in the meantime and get her off the street for good, but I just had to know one thing. Last time she confessed to cheating on me she swore she had admitted everything she had done wrong to me but something told me to make sure before I gave my life for this woman completely. So I grabbed her cellphone and went through it and what I found was way worse than what I had imagined. She was dating two other men, sleeping with 6 others, one of whom was her own uncle. I just looked down at her and my mind went blank. Who the fuck could she do this to me? After everything I had just done. I missed my daughter's birthday to sleep in the cold with her just because that's how much I loved her. After waking her up and confronting her my worst nightmares came true. Even before the drugs, before I picked her up the first time she had been cheating the entire time and I realized I was a joke. Everyone was right. I just couldn't accept it because I loved her with all of my heart. My world came crashing down that night. We slept outside again instead of getting the hotel, we didnt have enough anyway but even after everything I knew I still held her that night. I still kept her warm. I still kissed her on the forehead and I still loved her but I knew it was ruined forever. At 4am that morning gunshots rang out and the neighborhood we were in was getting worse by the hour. By 6 am I was having another nervous breakdown and fell back into a paranoid state of mind and had the worst panic attack of my life. It was all too much. The lies, the cheating, the drugs, I just couldn't take it so when she woke up I told her I'd be right back and I ran to the hospital and admitted myself to the e.r. I hadn't eaten or drank anything in a while and my alcohol detox was at its peak. I slept finally on that hospital bed and when I opened my eyes amber was sitting in the room with me. I was admitted overnight and we slept together in my hospital bed. The next morning when I was to be discharged I told her I was leaving and that we were done. She left the hospital and I waited in the waiting room until my ride showed up. I walked outside to get in my friend's car and as we drove off I saw her for the last time. She was sitting on a curb on the side of the street with her backpack and we locked eyes for a second and before I knew it she faded away in the rearview mirror. I got back to Burlington a couple of hours later and met up with Dan. We went back to his house and for the next two weeks I drank more than I ever have and cried myself to sleep every single night. I finally came out of it and was feeling a little bit better. We were sitting on his front porch drinking some beer when I got a message. Amber overdosed. I remember Dan looking at me and I couldn't move. He asked what was wrong and I just looked back at him and tears ran down my face and I went back to the basement. I woke up the next morning and I packed one bag with clothes, my journal, and the rope I was originally going to use to kill myself with all those months ago. He took me to Burlington but he didn't know why. I got out of his car and shut the door without saying a word. I walked to an old friends house and got high with her. Spun out of my mind I ended up at my dad's and had him take me back to Dan's. Wanting to die but not having the courage to do it is a feeling I hope anyone who reads this never feels. It's been two weeks since I've been to bed. My mind is lost and things don't seem real to me anymore. I can't function and I swear to god I'm trying so hard to hold on but this has been the worst thing I've ever had to go through in my entire life. I never thought I'd lose someone I lived so much to something like this and the part that kills me the most is I keep thinking, what if that night Kyle showed up to take her to Des Moines and he had that pipe, would she be OK today? I've lived in regret for years but feeling like I'm responsible for her and the overdose is not something I think I can accept, maybe ever. I just want to go back to October. I want to see her again, like she was when we first met. I want to hold her hand and walk along the creek where I fell in love with her. But most of all, I want to know when my heart is gonna stop hurting for a woman who never was in love with me from the beginning. I guess I'll just have to see what tomorrow brings, because right now at this exact moment I don't think I could be worse than what it is.


© Copyright 2017 Lowlife72. All rights reserved.

Add Your Comments:

Comments

Booksie 2017-2018 Short Story Contest

Booksie Popular Content

Other Content by Lowlife72

Alive or just breathing?

Short Story / Memoir

Popular Tags