My Journey Through Darkness

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Chapter 13


13 January 2007

The thing I hate most about being left alone when you finally fade and fall into that deep sleep, is your company… I long to chat with you and tell you how much I love you and discuss out future together… but I can’t. I am alone and wide-awake and left with an insane longing in my heart. It’s hard to explain or define, but there is a deep sadness inside of me and it makes me want to cry.

This is always the time which I despise more than anything in this life – coming down alone, left to face, yet again, the reality of what I am stuck in and to accept it. The hopelessness that follows is unbearable and I often try to occupy my mind with thoughts of anything else to avoid that intense feeling of failure and doom.

I love you. Oh, how I wish I could find a way of really making you understand the depth of my love for you! The only real way is through our earth shattering lovemaking, which still doesn’t quite seem to hit the spot. Close, but not spot on. When I make love to you and I get that indescribable feeling of love for you in my soul, I can only hope that you feel it too…and thus, I never really feel satisfied that you know just how much I love you. For, unless you feel it too, you cannot know the true essence of my love.

It’s all too overwhelming right now and I cannot find an amusement to numb my mind, but trying to write how I feel is far too intense so I will stop for now, and lie down, and pray for sleep to come.

I love you!

18 January 2007

I want to write a book about my eventual addiction to Cat… so what on earth would you imagine I would write about? I mean, I’ve already covered my heroin and crack addict days in a book, which touches on just about all the facets of addiction, so what more could I possibly write about which will make up an entire book?

Upon first asking myself this question, my immediate reaction is panic… because there cannot be enough to be told to fill a book… but then I reconsider and change my mind. Becoming more at ease, I realize that there is in fact more than enough to write about, should I base it on the past year and a half of my life.

Drugs… clubs… dance music… the people… This is all it takes. These are the main ingredients, and when combined, form the lethal weapon to wipe out a generation. This weapon operates quietly, subtly, gradually, to ensure that the mass destruction is well covered and disguised… almost unnoticed. The damage will only really be seen and acknowledged when it’s too late, and the universe suddenly misses an entire generation, which prevents reproduction… that will be the bittersweet end and there will be nothing anyone can do to reverse this mass destruction.

The scene and the substance are slowly eating away at our youth, our future. I understand that the drugs have been present and performing their evil for lifetimes… but, with the birth of a new culture a few years ago, came acceptance of drugs, a new way of seeing them and eliminating a large amount of fear which we used to have.

I am a radical I admit, and I get extremely passionate about what I believe and I also have a tendency to take things to the extreme. Thus, I will introduce you to the Scene as any rational person would see it, not necessarily the way I see it.

Clubbing is about dancing and electronic music, known as dance music, therefore creating a new religion in some ways. Music with a beat makes you tap your foot, so listening to music with fast, excited and infectious beats for hours on end will inevitably have you dancing, bopping and shaking. When you are dancing, you don’t feel sad or angry, in fact, you smile, because you are just simply happy… to be dancing… to the happy music!

Now, so far there seems to be nothing wrong with the situation above… so let’s add the venue now. Let’s use quite a large room/area to enable all these people to dance to this happy music and also perhaps a bar where they can buy drinks. After all, dancing so energetically for some time will make you work up quite a thirst.

Still no harm in any of this… until now that is. There is now a problem which arises among all these happy, innocent people: they cannot enjoy the music for too long because they get tired too quickly from all the dancing, and this is not an ideal situation.

Enter ecstasy. It’s not a completely new concept, this drug has been doing the rounds for some time now and we all know that by swallowing a small pill called Ecstasy, you will feel a few physical changes. Firstly, it’s known to help you stay awake a lot longer than normal, it provides an extra boost of energy and also, we have heard that it heightens one’s senses. On top of all this, it allows you to feel confident, unafraid and quite loving. Generally, it makes you lovable and cuddly and just plain happy for no reason!

Wow, how awesome! If we take one or two of these little pills, we will be able to dance much longer (enjoying the music for longer) AND we will get to experience the music instead of just listening to it. With sharpened senses, the music takes on a slightly more moving sound, especially when played at extremely loud volumes. If we add a creative and visually beautiful lighting effect to match the music, we will be stimulated visually as well as through the power of the music. Besides all this, we feel so happy and uninhibited that it’s easy to talk to strangers and never get upset if someone bumps you accidentally. You smile as he apologizes and after sitting down next to a stranger for a while, you suddenly find this person extremely interesting and feel a strange sense of trust in him.

We don’t even indulge in much alcohol at these parties and only make use of these pills, which cannot be THAT bad. The outline is that a big group of youth are all simply having a great time, not getting drunk, causing fights or vomiting and falling over the place, but meeting new people, getting fit by dancing for eight straight hours to perfectly harmless music which doesn’t always have lyrics. Everyone is happy! And everyone seems to like everyone else – what more could one ask for? So what’s so bad about the club scene? Nothing, you might still be saying… sure, but let’s take away our special pills called ecstasy…

As in the very beginning, we are now left with a large group of youth, who don’t know or care to know one another, enjoying themselves for a while as they dance to the music… which eventually can become repetitive or annoying when you want to dance but your body finally gives in… AND, there are these blinding strobe lights flashing about, making you semi blind after being on the dance floor for a few hours.

A point to note at this stage is that the above scenario is completely impossible or unenjoyable…A certain level of enjoyment will still be reached, however, let’s take away the innocent, happy, electronic music with a beat which makes you want to dance… out of this equation.

Well, a bunch of youth standing around a dance floor wondering what they are doing there… They would save their pills for an occasion when they could combine the effect of the pills with good dance music and the chance to dance all that energy out.

Conclusion: No Dance/Rave music = No Dance/Rave clubs = no need for drugs (at least pills).

Isn’t it just infuriating how we can easily, confidently and without fear make the decision to stop using (whatever it is we are using) and sometimes we even get genuinely excited at the prospect of resisting the temptation, kicking it and reaching the reward of a drug free life… while we are on the stuff!

However, just wait for the stuff to work out of your system - when you are no longer able to take on the world and conquer all kingdoms – but when you feel physically weak and tired, your emotions dark and you are void of any form of desire... except maybe to be all bundled in bed for a week. It’s during this time where we have a faint recollection of something to do with a decision to stop; we even manage to recall the reasons for this desire, and still agree that they are valid reasons.

Thus, you still do have the desire to stop, you have all the reasons which have meaning to you and you genuinely would prefer a life free of drugs… but right now you’re coming down – slowly or hard, doesn’t really make much difference – and your desire, will and energy to pursue anything at all has vanished without a trace. There is not even a trace of these forces to be found. In order to stop using however, as we decided we would, one needs at least one of these forces to be available. If they do not exist there is no means of trying to resist… oh well, next time hey! And so it goes on.

I have never been a part of such a blatantly repetitive cycle in all my life! No matter what angle you approach it from, trying various methods of using/cutting down/stopping, trying to change your frame of mind about why you are using/cutting down/stopping… honestly, I actually challenge you to try it – give yourself a complete and thorough psychological analysis and change the way you see everything… try a new method for stopping… Like for example, instead of having the last of the stuff and thinking, “This is goodbye, I will never taste you again if I do happen to succeed in stopping this time! Boo-hoo-hoo,” you make the choice to stop right now and your goal is to manage to live your entire life without it, so you would normally see the cut off as the final failure.

This hasn’t worked up until now, so you decide to change your way of thinking – even though you know it’s a trick – you tell yourself that this is not the final time, so it should not be sad. Instead you are setting out to take a little break, not to give it up and never ever taste it again… heavens no! You’re only about to spend a set amount of time not using so that your body can take a break and replenish etc etc… and you can look forward to reaching the end of your detox for the reward of being able to use it again!

The truth is that you do not actually intend to just take a break, but in fact want to give it up for good, but each moment/day/weekend without stuff is easier to face if you allow for the option of having some later. So you hope you can brainwash yourself enough that you will reach each new moment/day/weekend and push through to the next, without actually ever reaching the end of the break… bollocks! It doesn’t work! All this did was make me feel stupid for thinking I was stupid enough to fall for my own trick!

31 January 2007

And so, the mad musings in my head begin… At this stage it is not drugs but alcohol generating the thoughts at a major speed. Interrupted…

Next morning – I just had a thought; I never imagined that I would spend such a vast amount of time finding all kinds of ways to stimulate my busy mind as I face hours of insomnia, unable to sleep along with the rest of the normal people and having this unbelievable need to find release for an over-active mind. The fruit I have picked from this abnormal problem is that I have had the opportunity to document events, thoughts and feelings, as I never imagined I could. Not only have I been able to document this, but I have also found a voice - if not various voices – in my writing, a discovery I could only have made by going on the journey I have been stumbling along.

1 Feb 2007

Our Bonma has passed away… At about six o’clock this evening, I got a phone call from my brother on my mom’s phone. He didn’t sound like himself and I immediately asked what the matter was. He said it simply and quickly; “Bonma died just now Mimi.” As the words; “Oh no…” fell from my lips, my whole body began to shake, eyes flooded and I gasped for air as my mind registered what this meant.

I have been close to Bonma and Bonpa growing up and even though they are old and Bonma has been so ill since her stroke, it tears me up that mom missed seeing her with one night… she flies at 12 tonight and she wanted to talk to Bonma about Salvation and also be there for Bonpa in this time, say goodbye to Bonma… but it’s too late.

I spent most of the eve at Waylon as I was visiting him when I got the news, and he was great at distracting me for a while, but now I am alone at home and all I want is to be with my family in this time. Seth is thankfully on his way here but I hate that he didn’t come thru out of his own, that he couldn’t sense that I need him and that he didn’t offer to come “if I wanted him to”, again leaving the decision up to me… right now I don’t want to make decisions, not about anything.

I want to digest what is happening and work my way through it… accepting that my beloved, lively, chatty, headstrong, loving, admirable, gentle, exciting and utterly unique Bonma is actually gone now and I will never be able to rest in the comfort of her lap, or entwine our arms as we walk through markets… She really was so special to me. My love for her ran unusually deep. She wasn’t only a grandmother to me, but a certain type of special friend as well. She used to quietly take my hand if we happened to be sitting next to each other and just hold it in hers. I remember when that hand became shaky but it made no difference to the love she was sending me through that hand.

I have just spent some time reading Scripture and I am left with the realization that I am rather far from righteous and Godly. God says, in various places, that fornicators will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven… this is me. And this is merely one sin that is clearly frowned upon and not taken lightly… what about all the rest of my sin? I don’t deny that I am actually black with sin... it is just too shameful and too horrific to deal with the entirety of it right now.

For the last while I have had this strange empty feeling inside of me. More than ever do I desire a home, being married to Seth, and perhaps not children just yet, but a pet would be so satisfying to have. Without these things my life seems so meaningless… The time I spend away from Seth is dead time when I do nothing… definitely nothing constructive. Go to work, come home, eat rubbish or nothing, watch a TV show if there is a decent one on and then to bed. I have no desire to do anything if it’s not building towards our future, home or any part of our togetherness.

Is God asking me to come closer? Repent of my sins; refrain from doing them and finally dedicating and committing my life to Jesus 100% No more drugs, Seth and I will have to stop making love and we must turn to God with our whole hearts and souls. If we choose not to do this, which will be a lot easier, we may not be doomed, but I know we will be robbing only ourselves of a much fuller and blessed life.

I have to put my foot down… as I yet again am overcome with conviction that we must not wait any longer to make God the absolute focus in our lives, and all I can do is pray for strength and courage as I am scared I am too weak and secretly wish Seth would take a stand instead of me. Yet, I know this is a part of what will prove my level of commitment to God, I need to follow God’s voice and listen to the conviction, and not wait for Seth to the take lead. God wants my attention and thus, I need to now take the time to meditate on becoming sure that God takes first place in my heart, and not Seth. No matter how scared I feel or fear that he may leave me if I focus myself elsewhere, I must be willing to give him up if God so chooses.

I know that it’s mostly out of laziness that I neglect God and this is pathetic and shameful, but I long to serve Him and I do not want to do it half-heartedly and be mediocre. Not like I have for the past 25 years…so I will need to be strong, determined, and passionate from now on. So, I will pray:

Dear Lord,

You know my heart, which has always desired to serve you, and yet, there has always been something that has taken first place, thus always making You second and inevitably neglected. I do not want to continue living like this, for not only do I know there are rewards in Heaven, but I believe I will never be fulfilled on earth as a person if I just live the easy, self satisfying and average life. I therefore willingly choose to live a life serving You.

I pray Father that You will help me with determination, strength, courage and faith. As with everything Lord, I cannot do this without Your help.

In Jesus’ name, Amen

My eyes are beginning to play tricks on me, this is always a sign of over-tiredness and down right over-doing it.

It still niggles at the far back of my mind… if I will really ever achieve what I want and truly overcome my vices?

The amount of sodding rubbish I’ve written in the past 2 years is staggering! The question is: will any of it be put to good use?

During this year things just got much worse. Our finances went for a complete ball of rubbish; we were paper thin and dying inside. We both still had our jobs and I particularly liked my job as a trainer but I wasn’t sure how much longer they would put up with me. My colleagues and bosses had noticed that there was something amiss with all my sick days and my constant tiredness. They started keeping a close eye on me so I made the decision to get myself together as I definitely didn’t want to lose my job.

I was good at what I did and I loved it. I stopped calling in sick and sucked it up no matter how awful I felt. Some days I would be coming down so hard that I felt sick but I went to work and performed as best I could.

Seth and I still lived cities apart and I did most of the traveling to visit him. We got a Jack Russel puppy called Schnapps and he was our baby. He stayed with Seth at Nadine’s house because there was a garden for him to run around in. Schnapps slept in the bed with us and became the most important thing in our lives… besides our Cat.

Through everything, Seth and I still loved each other. We got engaged in February and had a huge engagement party at our favourite old haunt Nirvana. We booked the club for a private party and all our friends came and we partied till the next day. It was a match made in Heaven…I kept telling myself that and I never imagined that Seth and I might not be together forever.

That October we finally agreed to get a place together, in the hope that it would relieve our financial crises. Always ignoring the fact that if we stopped using then we may actually have enough money. We found a cool little cottage for next to nothing in an upper-class area in Jo’burg. It had a fireplace and we spent weekends in the lounge in front of the fire taking pills or schnarfing Cat. We’d moved up in our drug status so our dealers would make drop-offs to our doorstep. This was so much more convenient than having to drive to other suburbs, wait for ages in dark side streets and then drive home in fear and paranoia. I would make the call on a Friday afternoon on my way home from work so that by the time I got home my dealer would be waiting for me at the gate.

The battle grew fiercer as time went by. The more we used, the more I wanted to stop. I wrote masses of rambling rubbish in my journal and I prayed and prayed. Most times I cracked while coming down. The guilt and the fear became overwhelming. I cried to Seth so often and when I wasn’t crying I was sitting with pen and journal writing down plans, budgets and dreams of a drug-free future. Nothing helped. It never changed. I was exhausted. I started looking into going to a rehab. Any rehab. I wanted so badly to get healed from this disease.

8 March 2007 – Thursday

There has always been some beast or another that I have been at war with, a challenge I take part in… the obstacle I need to overcome in order to be “ok”. I have always felt that “if only I can beat this”, then I will be a wholesome, righteous young woman, on her journey to serve God the right way, the way I long to.

The most dominant obstacle right now is one I have been facing for over two years already, which is by far the longest time I have ever spent on one single issue alone. It is quite ironic how I thought after the initial victory, only six months after this problem began; that it was the end of the darkest hell I had ever lived through. Only to find that more than two years later I am still facing the same problem, only now, it has a slightly different face. The different forms and shapes of this problem have developed quietly and gradually, making it nearly impossible to recognize it for what it is - a growing problem – but instead, believing that it is merely a harmless bit of fun… a phase.

Regardless of my positive inner faith and my will to fight for freedom relentlessly in the hope that there MUST be salvation, I do still sometimes face my hidden truths. I say they are hidden because I actually fight to keep them suppressed and ignored, as I know that by facing them I will inevitably wind up with the same conclusion – that I am to blame. There are, however, rare times in which I allow myself a good look at some of these truths. No matter how painful, facing the Truth ensures that I never fall into the trap of trying to fool myself into believing that there is actually no problem at all… allowing me to become lazy and disillusioned.

I know the trickery of disillusionment too well. It isn’t very difficult to live in a constant state of ignorance. Where you simply choose to believe what suits you in that moment in time, lying to yourself out of fear of feeling guilty or shameful. I used to convince myself that I had valid justification for doing and being what I was. The reward of course is a temporary joy or satisfaction. The punishment is of course the moment after, when the consequences of reality occur, and there is no longer the option to hide under a false pretence or belief. The music must be faced sooner or later, and later, I have discovered, always seems to be the more painful of the two. Thus, I prefer to lay the truth out now and again, to avoid getting a shock someday when everything has turned to shit and the mountain I face is impossible to climb. Perhaps if I see the rocks appearing one by one, I can move them one by one… and I will be prepared for a mountain of rocks, should I choose not to move them.

I prefer not to entertain the possibility of these realities, but I also refuse to ignore them, for they are there and they need to be considered… like:

Will this thing really be able to kill me eventually? Will I possibly have to lose everything that means anything to me? Can it really be that freedom will only be found from being completely broken once again, leaving me weak, nearly defeated by death, and left with absolutely nothing…? No job, no home to call my own, no possessions or friends, and most importantly – alone, without the love of my life. AND, considering this has continued for over two years already – like a slow, decaying disease – is it possible that it may drag on for some unimaginable amount of time, killing me slowly, and leaving me alone and defeated when I am old?

To start over, rebuild a life and recover your soul is much more probable and possible when you are young, as you are still filled with strength and passion and the motivation in knowing that there is still plenty of room to make the best of your second chance at life. When we are old it becomes harder to accept the truth (if it hurts), we are weaker in- and out-ward, and may struggle to see the need for re-inventing yourself for the short amount of time that is left. You are more likely to give up the fight, accept your failure to be the finish line and simply let the ride take you where it pleases.

Today I am scared. Lately I have chosen to acknowledge these truths, and in doing so, I have been visited by a familiar enemy called Fear. The thing which I felt more fiercely and found to be the most debilitating weapon I have ever been attacked with. FEAR. In my heroin and crack days I came face to face with what I believe has to be the most painful and prolonged method of torture… suffocating in Fear. Fear consists of a few things; waiting for an unknown horror to strike at any time; losing sight of the light at the far end of the dark tunnel, the only visible escape; the black abyss before you; and then, the undeniable truth you finally face, when you admit that you would not be in your predicament at all if you had made a different choice to begin with – one which you most likely knew would be the wise option in the long run.

I cannot allow my fears to be faced too much, it gives them power… and when Fear has power over you, there is very little that can be done to restore you back to fighting fitness. It is the most powerful and poisonous killer in existence.

I feel that once I allow them to surface, they may grow and in turn, diminish my power and pure ability to fight

It was like fighting a big monster inside of me. A great big demon called Psychological Addiction. I met Physical Addiction briefly when I was hooked on crack and heroin for about five months. Not a walk in the park but for me, much easier to fight than psychological addiction. Physical Addiction can be locked in a room for a few weeks and as long as the substances are kept away it’s possible to eventually - after much agony – be released from its grip. Psychological Addiction is in your head. You cannot escape from it and lock it up. You are faced with it every second of every day.

It used to actually talk to me. Usually from about Wednesdays through to Saturdays. On Sunday nights and Mondays I would hate it and fight it and curse it and override it. I would be strong and promise myself that I would never give in again. It seemed so simple. Just ignore that voice and all of this will go away. Tuesdays I would be too numb for anything to penetrate my mind. By Wednesday life would start looking a little better again and I would start wondering if I wasn’t overreacting on Sunday and Monday… this is when it would start talking to me again.

“Come on. It’s not that bad,” Addiction says gently, creeping up on her.

“It must be for me to feel the way I did two days ago!” Michelle shouts back.

“No… you were just upset because all the drugs were finished and you had to face the real world again. You know how you hate coming down…” he says sweetly.

“Hmmm, I do hate it when the Cat is finished…” she says contemplatively.

He moves closer, “You see? You were just being melodramatic.”

“Maybe I was…” she’s wavering.

“I mean, you don’t even use everyday.”

“That’s true, it’s only on weekends.”

Claws are just about in now… “Exactly! So it’s not that bad you see!”

“I guess one more weekend won’t kill us.”

“Of course not.” Evil grin.

Reason kicks in, “But wait! Not this weekend! We promised to stay clean this weekend.”

Addiction recoils, “Of course. No rush… you can skip a weekend. No one’s stopping you.”

Thursday’s conversation would be similar but I would start losing the battle as Addiction would come up with every good reason why one last time is a great idea. By Friday morning I would wake up with this loud voice in my head…

“Yeehaa!! It’s Fridayyyyy! Party time!”

Somewhere in the depths of me there would be this feint voice: “But you can’t. Not this weekend. You have to fight it… just TRY…”

And then, the loud voice would cut it off and dominate my mind with:

“One last time…”

9 June 2007

Rattle rattle, ponder and discuss… I’m dizzy from going around in circles like this. My need and especially my ability to write as a form of therapy, release, searching or analyzing has diminished. I have not written for many weeks and even though I crave release and often use my writing as a distraction from my active mind, I have simply not been able to put pen to paper recently.

I reached the dead end… admitted and accepted that there are no more options, solutions, reasons or alternatives – none that I can come up with! No rock has been left unturned and I am tired now. I don’t know where else to turn to, but to God. Perhaps I have too much guilt in all my disobedience that I feel that I do not have a right to turn to Him now.

How many times have I prayed, asked God for help, for forgiveness, promised a renewed commitment…? Countless. To date I have not achieved any of the goals I’ve had. I am still using Cat, I am still smoking, I am still in a sexual relationship with Seth and we are now even moving in together. I do not go to Church or talk to God daily… in fact I have actually put God aside AGAIN, tried to solve all my problems on my own and revolve my life around Seth. Precisely what I intended NOT to do when I met him, as I believed that my life would only turn into chaos once more if I did not maintain my love and commitment for my Maker. I knew I should live for God alone – not for Seth or other things in my life – and I disobediently and out of laziness slid back to the same way I have always served God. In second place and half-heartedly.

I ask myself: “What is wrong with me? Why is it so hard for me to live out my desire to serve God if it means making a few sacrifices?” I am not stupid or ignorant and naïve, thus always knowing what it should take to achieve this desire, and knowing what I am risking in the long run, should I not live up to this. Yet I always opt for the temporary pleasures, also being aware of the repercussions later on. I am beginning to think that perhaps I am stupid after all, because who would give up on a life-long vision in exchange for a momentary fulfillment with very dangerous - if not lethal - outcomes?

Even my poor parents are starting to believe that I may die soon as they observe the high-speed deterioration in me. Dad wanted me to resign at work and live with them for at least 6 months to come clean, physically AND psychologically. I was considering this option and even though not exactly the ideal situation as well as being rather unwilling to give up my work which is finally paying off, it does seem like the only way… and it’s ok because I REALLY DO WANT TO BE FREE OF DRUGS!

I can only try to imagine what my mom and dad are going through as they watch their daughter whither away. They both noticed my gradual yet dramatic weight-loss and also said I am looking old with sunken-in eyes which look haunted. It’s terrible enough to face myself in the mirror, as I’m not oblivious to all these signs showing, but it must be soul destroying for mom and dad. I am starting to look worse than I did when I was on crack and heroin, and I know it. I’ve noticed that my body isn’t repairing and gaining weight within a day or two after a gram anymore, and unlike before, it only takes one sleepless/foodless night for my face to look like a true addict. The drugs are obviously affecting me more rapidly now and I can’t blame dad for saying that he is afraid when I go home, as he isn’t sure if he’ll ever see me again. My system must be shot and extremely frail compared to any other time in my life. It shouldn’t take much to kill me or even do serious damage. This realization scared me terribly.

My mom asked Seth if he doesn’t see how I am deteriorating physically, to which he nodded a “yes”… but I keep wondering why it is that he hasn’t ever mentioned it to me or commented out of concern that I am looking alarmingly ill. Whenever I point out that I am looking terrible he just blows it off lightly. Perhaps he is trying to be positive and build me up instead of possibly breaking me down by acknowledging that I don’t look healthy? Perhaps he doesn’t see it at all though? I’ve come to know and love Seth for being notorious in the denial department. He doesn’t do too well when having to admit to a cruel truth. As long as he follows me in trying any means to fix this problem, I don’t care if he cannot admit to the problem out of his own. It’s when he becomes unwilling to comply with the steps we may need to take that I will have a problem. Then I will need to save myself, without him.

I cannot believe this has continued for so long, and I can also not go on like this for much longer. Upon mom’s suggestion, we all decided that we would go down to the Vaal every single weekend for as many months as we need to. Should this fail, we will have to resort to dad’s plan of me giving up everything to go and live with them for a few months. I am accepting of this and willing to do anything to get my life back again. I am just so thankful that my parents care enough for me to offer all their help and also forgive me all the countless times I have disappointed, hurt or lied to them. I would be lost – or rather, dead – without them.

I will use my time there on a weekend to work on my book again and even though we will be missing out on spending time in our own place, the sacrifice is small compared to what could happen if we just go on and on. I sometimes really wish that Seth would take the lead, even if he simply acknowledges problems and makes some effort in showing that he also really wants to stop. It feels sometimes like he only agrees once it’s been brought up, but until then he enjoys it while he can. I hate feeling some of these things toward him, and suspecting and assuming, but that is exactly what drugs start doing. It creates doubt, suspicion and disappointment where there shouldn’t be any.

12 June 2007

This past weekend left me with an undeniable urge to really try and beat this problem this time around. It’s not even fun anymore, we always end up in the same situation; me alone and wide awake while Seth comes down too quickly and falls asleep. Besides the fact that we are looking like shit and that our poor bodies are taking serious strain, there is actually no reason that we are doing it at all anymore. We are never on the same wavelength and it always ends sadly. Why we throw our money into the bin weekend after weekend is beyond me.

16 June 2007 – Saturday

Writing and being sensitive to my feelings, thoughts and emotions is always easier when I’m on something, especially when coming down alone with nothing else to do. It gets tricky when I’m sober. This is our first weekend of fighting our habitual craving to get a gram, and so far so good, we’ve beaten Friday night! It wasn’t that bad last night, as I focused on how terrible I always feel once Seth and I drift to different planes, not to mention the aftermath and facing the painful truth of the extent of the problem. I was happy to go to bed early and wake up like a normal person this morning, feeling hungry and being able to cuddle till late.

This evening however, it’s a little trickier. I was doing quite well all day, continuously accepting that it’s better this way, until Kleo invited us to visit later on tonight with the possibility of getting stuff. My mind immediately went into conflict mode. The fight began. I have R100 left, which we could contribute, should she and her friend get stuff… alternatively we could get a trip for R70, which Seth and I could share, but then everyone would have to agree on taking acid instead of Cat. So… they would either have to be okay with sponsoring us with our small contribution only, or take acid with us, otherwise we would rather stay home, and go visit her tomorrow like we planned. The last option leaves me feeling frustrated and angry.

The frustration comes from wanting to get a gram but not having the money, and the anger is solely directed at myself for putting us in this awful endless battle. I will always regret taking the first drug I ever tried… that drug which took the fear of drugs away from me. This is the reason I carelessly tried all the stuff I have and even in the end took heroin and finally, snorting stuff up my nose which was always something I swore I could not do, as I hated the idea of anything up my nose. What’s done is done though, and I can never change the past, as Oprah said the other day, but it’s in my hands what happens in my future…

Oh wait; here is the message from my friend now… I am afraid we will not be making it through the entire weekend after all…

25 July 2007

I have to wonder what will happen when I do eventually give up the drugs completely. I never write unless I’m coming down, alone and wide-awake. These are the only times when I have no choice but to write, as my body is tired but my mind still busy and there is no one to talk to. It’s the only way I am able to satisfy the growing frustration and need for finding a solution.

My mind is unusually fast today. There are so many thoughts, ideas and plans speeding around that it’s difficult to capture a single train of thought alone. I want to write about my recent desire to REALLY get closer to my God, my need to go to church, read the Word and just fill myself with God’s spirit. Then I also want to write about a few random opinions and ideas I have about certain topics. I want to try and be creative. I want to record my current feelings about how ridiculous it is to me that even though the desire to stop using Cat is so strong, I still carry on doing it.

The last part of the month gone by we stayed clean for 17 days in a row! This is the best we’ve done in I don’t know how long. Not having a cent to our names made it a little easier, as we didn’t exactly fight our temptation head on – we even tried to get money from a few sources – but simply had no other option. The moment we got paid, we went to get a gram. Well, Seth got it without us actually agreeing on it or saying we want one, but the thought also crossed my mind.

For me it was almost like we deserved to reward ourselves with a gram as we’d been without for so long (only 17 days). Oh, it’s all just so silly! Especially when the past week has revolved around getting closer to God. From somewhere within me, I just felt an urge to make it to a church on Sunday. Then I craved for Seth and I to spend time each night doing Bible study and praying. An excitement has risen up in me as I have been feeding myself with the Word. I have also come across a few core messages which I’ve received from all kinds of sources, like the sermon on Sunday, the sermon on the c.d. from the welcome pack and even a few unexpected individuals like a colleague at work, Ivan, and my friend Kleo.

Admittedly, my cravings or desires have not been as strong and I find that it has become a bit easier to convince myself that getting a gram would not be a good thing. The inevitable Next Day of crankiness, which leads into the lonely hours of the night when the gram is finally over, has become reason enough to resist the thoughts. All the negative aspects, which by far overrule the few moments of pleasure gained, are amplified to make me able to resist.

I’m not saying I am over it and breezed through the past two weekends. In fact I experienced a fair amount of frustration and anger when having to accept that we cannot get a gram. The difference is that since our move I have actually resisted the thoughts a few times, unlike normally when resistance was completely non-existent. I guess it boils down to the fact that I feel a small change in me, this strong urge to be close to God, to become healthy in what I eat and thus, automatically not wanting drugs in my life. As I am filling myself with Godly thoughts and things, there is less space for the rubbish.

I will continue to constantly feed myself in this way, as it may be that it is the solution to the drug problem. The spirit in me will be so present that there will simply not be any space for anything else.

The battle raged inside of me every day. I longed for release. For an answer. A solution. I was full of good intentions and there were times when I felt strong enough to fight against the temptation. I knew God was the only thing that could help me and I wanted to give it to Him. I just didn’t know how. My mind was not strong enough. My Spirit was crushed.

Towards August things started to fall apart quickly. I started giving up the fight.

10 August 07 – Friday

This is just such bullshit! Not even strong sleeping tablets get me to sleep and I am yet again not only alone but also the one to face a day feeling like shit as usual. The worst of all is that there is nothing to say. I know I am to blame and one would think that after going through this countless times, I would make the decision to not put myself through this again. But no, I don’t and this makes me utterly stupid.

I want to blame everyone right now, even though it’s not his or her fault. I just feel so furious and frustrated at this whole joke of a life I am living. I just want it to be normal. I want to marry Seth and have children and have enough money to survive through a month. I am just a stuff-up and I can’t resist stupid temptation. It always leads to getting more and more to feel a little better but one never feels better. I’m just done. I can’t go on like this. I want to give up today. Let’s just go on until we clutch out.

28 August 07

The 26th of Aug represented a profound realization and turning point. It boils down to one simple choice - there are no alternatives. Life or death.

Just One Last Time

The truth comes like a rushing wave of the ocean.

Expected, overwhelming, unpleasant and unwelcome.

It smashes us down, turning what we know into chaos.

Drowning in eternal moments of shame and regret.

The swim out into the carefree sunset of ignorance,

Seemed safe in the gentle calm of salty surf.

Children laughing running in the soft sand,

Bodies soothed in the glow of bronzed rays.

The beach the ocean the people are oblivious.

It’s all a dream, the subconscious a dim light.

The reality, powerful danger of the wave ignored.

Everyone chooses to believe it will not rise up.

Smash tumble torn broken into little pieces.

The bottom of the ocean dark fear eternal.

Drowning suffocating bleeding dying.

The final thoughts regret shame anger…

You knew the wave would inevitably arrive!

You wish you hadn’t denied its presence,

Too arrogant to admit that it could just be…

While you paddled around JUST ONE LAST TIME!

I feel like the life is slowly leaving me, I am so weak… This was the last of it, I will surely die otherwise…

I never in my life want to feel like this unless I am actually physically ill. I actually feel like it would be nice in hospital for a few days, to rest and detox from all the poison in my frail body.

I was at the very end of my line. Excuse the pun. “Lines” had in fact become my best friend and my worst enemy. We couldn’t say anything that had the word “line” in it without thinking of chopping a few and getting high. We couldn’t even use a straw for drinking cool drink with. Straws were always inspected for quality. We used a straw cut off at about 5 or 6 centimeters to snort with and the thicker and stronger the straw, the better. Our favourites were the straws from KFC or McDonalds.

I couldn’t take it any longer. I was sick to death of the ongoing battle in my mind and not only was my soul and spirit sick and tired, my body was sick too. I felt like I was withering away, dying from the inside out. In some ways I wished I could die, just to be relieved of the hell that was my life.

The funny thing is that very few people knew what was happening to me. It was like living a double life – a normal career girl at work during the day and junkie at home. At work I still managed to keep my pose, although we had started using during the week and I’d often go to work high, taking some with to keep me going. Some days I’d be so wired from days and nights of solid snorting with no sleep or food that I’d be edgy and sweaty and very fragile but I went anyway and did my best.

There were one or two friends who knew about our drug addiction and of course also my parents. I longed for everyone to notice so that somehow someone might be able to offer help with some magical solution. I had no idea what or how but any help would be good enough. I knew it was useless wishing for someone else to step in and help me because only I could help myself… but I just didn’t know how.

29 Aug 07 – Wednesday

The End of the Line

On Sunday we made the decision to face our Truth. For a long time we had both been opting for ignorance and denial. It seemed easier than continuing with our ever-failing struggle to stop, and felt so much better than being honest about the horror we were living. I was personally tired – exhausted in fact – of the vicious circle I found myself in after almost two years.

I wouldn’t say that I ever gave up, but I did take a rest. I simply had nothing left in me after such a long time. My energy was drained and my spirit and soul shattered with the realization that I was weak, lazy, pathetic, selfish and of course, a failure. The lies began to ring true and I resigned myself to accept that this is who I was.

After staying clean for only three weeks, we decided to party. As all good intentions go, our small party turned into a weekend-long binge with our best friend. We met her new man, who was a gift from above. Not only did he seem to be perfect for our friend, but he spoke words of truth to me, which I had needed to hear. Indirectly and unintentionally, he made me realize what a lie I had been living. I could no longer ignore the truth. I would no longer speak the lies over myself.

And so, when everyone had gone home and the party was over, Seth and I discussed our reality. We faced the truth in its purest form, and realized what we’d lost, how much time was wasted and what we would lose unless we stopped using drugs. Our words were calm, serious, sad and filled with so much regret.

We had lost more than a year and a half of our profound love, spending most of our free time on drugs – not being our true selves. We had lost the magical and spiritual connection we used to share when making love. We were reduced to being sickeningly thin, hollow beings of emptiness. We had postponed every desire we had – moving forward in our careers, getting financially stable, getting married and heading towards our spiritual visions.

There is no knowing how much longer we would have been able to maintain this meaningless and destructive life-style, but we knew that if we did not bring it to a halt now, there would be no more chances of salvation. We had faced this place to a lesser degree so many times before, that we knew in our spirits that this time the Truth was not merely a warning. This time there was no more option. There would not be another breakdown, only a very blatant and abrupt end. We could both feel the finality of the situation.

Our beautiful exteriors would ultimately diminish and fade away, giving in to death. Our rich spirits would eventually burn away to ash, leaving us numb, emotionless, unbelievers of everything. Our jobs would suffer and leave us without any means of survival and no hope of success. Our relationship would fray into worn out strands, and unravel into nothing, never to be mended. Our family and friends will be eternally scarred from the lies and the hurt, as we turn our backs on them in shame. And ultimately, we will never have the honour of fulfilling the task that God has appointed to us.

We both wept as we made love, sad and regretful for what has passed, but at peace and comforted in knowing what lies ahead. For we both knew that we would not choose to throw away the beautiful lives we have been given, nor give up on the divine promises of our future. We also felt profoundly humble and grateful that this day had been given to us, allowing us to make this decision, before it is too late.

God has blessed us with His divine Grace and Mercy by granting us with another chance. There have been countless moments for us to make the right choices, when we have had a vision of rock bottom… but we never saw it as clearly as we did on Sunday. Until now, we have ignored these warnings with disrespectful and undeniably arrogant attitudes. I cannot comprehend the love God must have for us, that He has forgiven us so much, and provided us with the opportunity to choose Life once more… How close we were to the end of the line!

The familiar feeling of panic and despair is not present in me this time. This will not be a battle, but instead, each time I am faced with temptation, I will rejoice in the victory I already have. This final warning bell will forever ring in my very being, making it clear what the rewards will be for making the right choice. The choice will not be a difficult one at all – I choose the life God has ordained for me, with Eternal Life as the final reward!

Since I was a small girl, I have believed that God has planned a unique, specific and significantly important task for me. It will be a life of adventure, alongside my long-awaited partner, continually walking along the path towards my purpose. Through my self-discovery into adulthood I have come to know that I have been created with a divine purpose: reaching the masses with a message of God’s Glory and through this, bringing hope and salvation to the lost and broken-hearted. I do not desire any glory unto myself for what I may achieve for God, as I am merely His instrument and it will be an honour to be in His service.

I am relieved that I can finally embark on this journey. There have been times when I have been fearful of wasting time, through always placing more importance on temporary fleshly pleasures. I realize now that my years of disobedience have been the obstacle course I needed to complete in preparation for the journey ahead. No battle can be fought without armed and equipped soldiers.

The obstacles and trials will never end, as I desire to grow for the rest of my days. Facing a challenge drives me ahead, making me crave to go further and higher. Victory of my struggles is what has kindled my fighting spirit, and since God created me, He will ensure that I am challenged and never feel that I have reached the pinnacle. That will be when I enter Heaven.

I have been broken, in order to be built anew.

I have been saddened, so I am able to comfort.

I have been toughened, so that I can protect myself.

I have been softened, so that I may have compassion.

I have been let down, to avoid living with expectations.

I have been robbed, learning to appreciate what I do have.

I have failed, only to learn how to get up and try again.

I have been misunderstood, only to discover that I was confused.

I have been disappointed, which taught me how to be loyal.

I have been rejected, which taught me that I don’t need acceptance.

I have been alone, which forced me to discover myself.

I have been inferior, which taught me not to look down on others.

I have been a child, which has prepared me for motherhood.

I have been angry, but I’ve learned it is because I chose to be.

I have lived a lie, through the eyes of others, which brought me freedom in finding that I am wonderful in my own eyes.

I have been judged, which taught me not to judge others, and that judgment of myself is all that counts.

I have learned to recognize God’s Spirit, for guidance.

I have come to understand that I am still not whole, and nowhere near to perfect, which I know I will thankfully never be

There was one significant thing that happened somewhere during October. I was on trip to Durban for my job and I arrived at the guesthouse with a fellow colleague late on a Sunday afternoon. I was wired as usual from having my last line before leaving for the airport. I went to my cozy room, ran a bath and called my dad. We spoke for almost an hour and I cried my eyes out to him. I told him that I couldn’t go on. I was still on drugs and just couldn’t find my way out.

He ever so lovingly told me that I have forgotten who I am in Christ. I needed to remember that I am a joint heir to the Son of God Himself. That all I really needed to do was surrender to Him. He would help me. In that moment like many other moments, my daddy was my hero. He never ever let me down!

When I put the phone down I lay on that soft, pretty floral bed of the guesthouse and cried out loud to God to help me. I told Him that evening that I finally give up. “I give up this fight Lord. It’s over to You now.”

Then things started to change.

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