Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Kick

I have been going through a lot of lot notebooks lately. I have found a lot of interesting pieces, mostly written by me...some of them written by Liam. It is amazing to me how things change. Once position, one's's way of life. Sometimes all I am left with of my former life are the memories, and in some ways this is good. And in some ways it is not.
There are quite a few memories that I do prefer stay locked away. Some things I would rather never see or know again. I do not care to revisit the desperate feeling of being homeless and rootless. I do not care to revisit those days when my writing ceased to exist. Most of all, I never, ever care to feel all the feelings that go along with kicking dope again.

Kicking heroin is a bitch. I am not sure how else to describe it, except it is a fucking bitch. Kicking opiates really sucks on every level. You are in such physical pain, and the whole time your mind is bouncing back in forth into the realm of insanity. It is an indescribable horror, and I feel like I will not do it justice with this piece.
Kicking was one of the things I had read about, but had never experienced myself before using heroin. I had read about it, and I thought I understood it. But, you can never really understand it until you have lived through it. Kicking is a different experience for each person, complete with drastically varying symptoms. No one kick is exactly the same, but they are all excruciating and horrible.

It has been a couple of hours since my last shot, and this time I am determined to quit. I have no choice at this point because there is no more dope in the house. I had tried the taper off method, and I always found a way to use just a little more. I also tried to kick while keeping just a little bit for emergencies. When you go into that all out insane and pain mode, the emergency suddenly becomes pertinent.
I know what is in store for me soon. I am no stranger to kicking. I have either been avoiding it or doing it for the past few years. I know that pretty soon, I will be immobile. My nerves are beginning to tingle all over, and my mind is already starting to think it has started. I know it is all in my head, but I am reeling with anxiety, anticipation, and fear.
I first feel the kick in the back of my throat. I guess it is not by chance that I feel both the dope and the kick in the same place first. The back of my throat begins to get dry and scratchy as the dope in my system runs low. If I have a pocket full of dope, this tickle in the back of my throat tells me it is time to do more. When there is no dope, this tickle is the first signal to set off the anxiety...building up to the insanity of need.
The back of my throat tickles, like I need to cough. I clear my throat, searching for the cough. Searching for the source of the tickle. I know this tickle will drive me insane as the influence of the kick wears on. I have two packages of the Dad's root beer cough drops made at Walgreen's. I will eat all of these in a couple of days while trying to kick. They keep the tickle at bay, and they restore a small piece of my sanity. And they do taste pretty good.
My mind is already starting to run away. My heart beat has quickened with anxiety. And the restless boredom of the kick is the next thing to creep in. I cannot seem to focus on anything other than the impending doom. I flip through the channels, not much is on. When the remote control rests on something interesting, it is only minutes before my mind begins to wander. I try to read, but I find myself reading the same lines over and over again. It is like I cannot grasp the meaning of the words, and my cloudy mind somehow thinks that by reading them over and over again I will understand these words.
But, I cannot focus on anything. My attention will start to focus when the fear of the impending doom start building this dark cloud hanging over me. My mind is flitting back and forth, revisiting the same thoughts over and over again. It is like my mind is on one of those toy trains, just riding around and around. Looking at the same scenery over and over again. Each time the train goes around, the same thoughts are circled round in my head.
I just want to chill out. I cannot seem to sit still. Television on, television off. Stereo on, and stereo off. Sitting at the kitchen table. Sitting on the couch in the living room. Laying on the makeshift bed created from pushing two couches together. Up, down...and up, down again. Pacing the length of the little red shot gun house, my feet wearing a smooth patch on the hardwood floors.
I cannot seem to get comfortable. My legs feel so uncomfortable. Not crampy like you see in the movies, but just restless. Stand up, pace. Sit down. Stand up again. Lie down, toss and turn. Maybe I should try to sleep. I know it may be days before I am able to sleep again.
I lie on the makeshift bed. I am on my left side, and it feels comfortable. Close my eyes. Not comfortable. Roll over, adjust. My mind is still running like that toy train. Turn on the tv. Cannot concentrate. Cannot focus. Anxiety. My heart quickens as my mind runs past that part of the track that is looking at the horrors of withdrawal. Anticipation of the dreaded worst.
The dry throat. And the stomach begins to turn. Growling, with that empty feeling that is brought on by the lack of dope. Growling empty stomach makes me feel like I have to puke. I do not want to go to the bathroom. But, I feel like I really need to throw up. My mind is telling me to just let yourself throw up and you will most certainly feel all better. My mind tells me not to even go into the bathroom, or you may not leave for a while.
I stand up. And I sit back down. I keep thinking about dope. The taste, the smell...the feeling of the shot. Sniff...that's all I really want...just a little taste. Growling stomach is pushing me towards the bathroom. Throwing up would make me feel much better, but dope would make me feel even better.
Heroin, Oxycontin, vicodin, morphine...images of pills and powders are running through my mind. They are riding on that train, too. Round and round. Pink little pills, blue ones and green ones. Brown powder, bittersweet powder. White pills, oval and round. Pills and powders, floating by. I am watching pills and powders out the windows of the train, whizzing by. Hundreds of them. All I can think about is pills and powders. Oh, just give me something.
Smoke a bowl. Whew...that helps. Calms the nerves. Stops the pacing. Stops the twitching of the hands and feet. Calms the thoughts. The train stops running round and round the track for a few minutes. Calms the stomach. The rumbling seems to have given it a rest. The trip to the bathroom is postponed indefinitely. I turn the television back on for the tenth time. This time my eyes can focus as my mind zeros watch. My thoughts drift to the television.
A couple of hours pass and the anxiety creeps back in again. My hands shaking with anticipation. My mind starts to obsess about the dread again. The impending withdrawal has begun its attack again. The train whistles out of the gate, headed on its path once more. The stomach rumbles and growls. This time the nausea takes over.
I get up, giving in to the disease. Call the dope man. No answer. Leave a message, and he will most certainly call back. Take the cordless to the bathroom for a while. Turn on the water. The running water is soothing to my ears. To the touch. I kneel at the toilet.
My guts are wrenching now. Nothing comes up, just empty attempts at vomiting. Stick my finger down my throat. If I could just throw up, I know I would feel better. Dry heave, dry heave. And then I throw up some bitter yellow bile. This must be all that is left in my stomach. This poison is making its way out of my system, and this yellow bile seems to be pouring out of every hole.
My head drops in front of the toilet in exhaustion. I am sweaty, and covered in my own spit. This bitter taste is all I can see; yellow in front of my eyes. Wishing the phone would ring. I don't know if I can take much more.
I take off my clothes and let my long hair down. I get into the tub, scooting up Indian style to sit as close to the water as I can. The flowing water is the only thing that seems to relax me. The only thing that seems to ease the pain. I run my hands under the water, flowing powerfully out of the faucet.
I put my head under the water. The warm water feels good, so I turn it up a little. Warm water, rushing past my head, my ears. Drenching my long hair. Warming me to the point I start sweating again. It is hard to breath with all this steam as my head is bend forward, under the stream of warm water.
Switch the water to cold. Ahhh, cool relief. A chill runs up my spine, but I am momentarily distracted. Regulate the temperature once again. It is flowing like a nice, cool bath. Plug up the tub, and let it fill. I lie back, staring at the ceiling. Mesmerized by the sound of the flowing water. I start to relax when I realize how much this uncomfortableness has invaded by bones. I sit back up. Hands under the running water. It feels like the veins in my wrist are screaming as the water runs over them.
They are screaming. I can hear their tiny voices, echoing in my brain. "More. more, more..." I feel like screaming, too. But, I cannot. I am too weak. And too uncomfortable. And too nausea's. Inside, I am screaming to MAKE IT STOP!
The phone rings. I jump on it like I have been sitting right beside it. Staring at the phone, waiting for it to ring. Almost knock it over into the bathwater. Click on the talk button.
"Oh, hi Bob. So glad you called. I was getting nervous when you didn't answer."
"Yeah, I was hoping you would swing by. Where are you?"
"In the neighborhood? Oh, thank goodness. Yes, I am very ready."
I hang up the phone, and leap out of the tub. I put my long, wet hair up into a towel. I do not care if it is a tangled mess later. I do not care about anything right now, except the ringing of that damn door bell. I hope he does not have too many stops before he gets here.
I throw on my bathrobe without even drying off my skin. The cold air feels good to my crawling skin. Distraction. I stand in front of the window unit air conditioner, letting the cold air run over my wet body. My legs are itching to pace these wooden floors. My stomach still growling and rumbling.
I hear uneven footsteps coming up to my door. I know the sound of those footsteps. They are the footsteps of a man with one prosthetic leg. They are the sound of a man with a pocket full of dope. I cannot open the door fast enough.
I swing open the door. A smiling dark face is looking back at me. Inviting him in, all my symptoms have already disappeared. My anxiousness is completely faded. I hold out a hundred dollar bill in my hand that is no longer trembling.
I am salivating as he pulls out a large bag full of that delicious brown powder. A part of me wants to attack the man, snorting all the dope out of the bag in a insane motion. I want to drown in this stuff right now. He carefully measures it out, using the tiny plastic spoon kept behind his ear. It seems like forever before he hands me back the CD case with a hundred bucks worth of dope on it. I practically snatch it out of his hands.
Ravenously, I cut out a big fat line and quickly snort it up. Ahhhhhhhhhh....Well, thanks, Bob, let me see you out. I open the door to let the man out. The sun is shining, and my day is so much better than before.
Never mind another failed attempt.

No comments:

Post a Comment