Wreckage (noun)- The remains of something that has been badly damaged or destroyed.

I hear this word so often that it sometimes loses it’s meaning. So I felt it pertinent to include the definition, as supplied by Google. Remains. Damaged. Destroyed. You know, growing up, before and during my early drug use, I had never experienced anything like true wreckage. I mean, I had never had to. Drugs cause my wreckage. I cause all of my problems in my life. I am in one form or another the creator of all my chaos. Now, when I am in the throes of active addiction, this is especially true. But what is wreckage? And not by a definition’s meaning.

I see it everyday. I hear it in the voices. The tears running down someone’s face as they share their story of the horrors of their active using. I hear about women selling themselves, I think of my son that September day,I hear about a young man passing away, the pieces of a shattered life snuffed out too soon left behind to a broken mother. A lost boy sitting on the side of a mid-night terror, wondering why his father doesn’t love him anymore. And the father, lost and alone, wondering what he could have done differently to save his baby boy. His only daughter. I’ve seen the tears of and heard the groans of my grandmother, over a video visitation screen in a county jail. Praying to God that this thing doesn’t take me the way it has taken so many before. I’ve heard the rage in a man’s heart when he receives his Dear John letter in prison, from a woman who held on for far too long to the shell that was once her loving husband. I’ve been in the missions in Chicago, as part of a throng of hollowed out has-beens. The detox centers. The inpatient rehabs-full to capacity with people suffering from the wreckage.

This thing called addiction is truly the most vicious and devastating of cycles. We start to use to feel better or lessen some sort of discomfort. And at first it is, usually, in my experience, without consequence. Until it’s not. We start to experience the backlash of our using, which we escape, by more using. We create chaos, and then we run from it. During my using career, which is lengthy, I have left behind a wake of destruction. Broken relationships, and promises. Disappointment. Family grief. Broken laws. And as I have come to find out in the past year, a broken me. My son has missed out on an entire 54 weeks straight without his father, because I decided to try and use one more time. I went out in January of 2015 to hustle and didn’t return to his life until 54 weeks later. Not to mention the time that I was with him, when I was using, I was stealing from him too. I was stealing myself away from a young boy who looked at me like I walked on water. And that is time we can never get back. I neglected my own mother, my family, I refused to be a part of their lives, because I was so wrapped up in self that I could care less about anything but the next fix. Sometimes this destruction is somewhere we don’t see it, but we feel it. Somewhere deep in our souls. We feel broken, lost, and alone. We know that what were doing is killing us and hurting everyone around us, but we are powerless to do anything about it. And that, I believe, is wreckage.


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