December 31, 2009
Falling off the deep end
Originally published June 8, 2004
I'm not sure when it started, but I just felt bad from around Christmas until I ended up in the hospital at the first of April. I reached the point where I fell down a lot and became dizzy every time I stood up. (That was the sinus/inner-ear infection I was carrying around, plus too much vodka.) My stomach hurt and I had no appetite. (That was the ulcer problem, plus too much vodka.) I broke my foot. (That was Oddball The Dumbass Dog, plus too much vodka.) I couldn't sleep. I felt like Fido's ass. (Too much vodka.)
I didn't go to a doctor about ANY of that crap. I just started drinking vodka at 5:00 in the morning and taking valium as if I were eating Pez candy. I believe, in the deep recesses of my mind, I was out to kill myself, and I was doing a pretty good job of it.
Along the way, I managed to fuck up a few friendships and alienate some people that I never meant to offend. I have no excuses except a total lack of self-control for what I did. I wish that I had never done it, but I did, and I can't take it back now. That's all blood under the bridge.
I believe that I've saned up a lot lately. I'll drink beer, but not a whole lot, and I haven't had any liquor or white zin in the Crackerbox for a couple of months. In a lot of ways, I am proud of myself. I stood at the edge of the abyss and I managed to step back instead of going in head-first. I have NOT had an easy time of it.
I can't undo what I did. I can be contrite and I can apologize to those who are willing to listen, but if you are NOT willing to listen, I don't blame you. I blame ME. I fucked up, period.
I will offer one thought on my behalf. I didn't lose any real friends during that ugly time. The ones I've known for most of my life worried about me, attempted to offer advice (which I rejected) and then just got out of the way. I've always said that a real friend doesn't expect you to be perfect. A real friend accepts you, warts and all, and probably knows those warts better than you do yourself. If you go flying off the handle, they'll still be there when you come back.
I believe that I'm at least halfway back now. I've still got some climbing to do, but I'm not so deep in that black hole anymore.
And now, more than ever, I know who my true friends are.
All content © Rob Smith