Posts Tagged ‘depression’

room1

I moved out on my own I was finally free.

I signed a lease and boom, my own pad, my own apartment. I was so excited to finally take on the responsibilities of being an independent man. First thing’s first, a new T.V. I went to Best Buy, opened a credit line and got the biggest and baddest T.V. they had, well at that time, the Sony Wega. Lets get a virtual cinema surround sound system while I’m at it. I was a carpenter so I made a sweet set of custom maple speaker stands for the front left and right speakers. And let me tell you, that T.V. and surround sound system made movies alive!

I went out and got myself a little kitten. I couldn’t have a dog there so I figured a cat would be comforting enough. I opened up multiple credit cards, bought myself a really nice laptop, got some furniture, got a new truck, a new motorcycle and a new girlfriend. Things were great, really great. I owned my own business at the time and was making a lot of money, had a great reputation and made a lot of new connections. I held parties all the time and had friends over a lot too.

A few years went by, things were going good. I was successful and busy. I had a lot of new ‘friends’. I was really making a name for myself in the new town I was in. Until one day it hit me, like a ton of bricks… Oxycontin. Yes, the old school ones where you peel off the coating and go at it.

Someone had come over and introduced me to my new girlfriend, my new chemical romance. Now, I was drinking here and there, popping Valium and sniffing Ritalin, maybe some ecstasy once in a while, your typical weekend party moments. But nothing was more incredible and more euphoric than this form of oxycodone. I bumped a 10 mg line on my glass kitchen table and fell in love immediately. The sun came out in my living room. My smile went ear to ear. I leaned back and said to myself, “Why do I even go to the gym? This is great!”

I couldn’t believe the rush of happiness and strength I got off that one little 10 mg pill! It lasted quite a few hours too. I was just in simple amazement by what I experienced. Well, obviously that connection hung around for a bit. I put everything else aside that I tried and focused on my new obsession. I started using Oxycontin just on the weekends for a few months, I honestly thought it was so good that I didn’t want to waste it.

I noticed myself thinking about it during work. I also noticed how it freed me from stress and problems that were running through my mind. It took me away while still being here on earth, it helped me function better and perform better, so I thought. Things were still going great.

I started using during the week and I went up from 10 mg to 20 mg per bump. Cocaine came into the picture during the weekends too. I really didn’t like the cocaine and noticed that I needed to take a couple of oxy’s to counter the speeding rate of the coke. So I would do them after my bag ran out so I could sleep, after 12 hours of blowing cocaine up my nose, it was needed.

I would wake up pretty messed up, fighting with my girlfriend, getting in arguments with my friends. I was showing up to my jobs later and later. My landlord was getting complaints from my neighbors about me being too loud and saying weird things. I was like, whatever. It’s normal, I’m a free man living the dream! Everything’s gonnna be alright.

Well, I went from 10-20 mg a day to 40 mg. Then 40 mg to 80 mg. In just over a few months too. I had multiple connections. All my ‘friends’ were doing it too. Actually, just about everyone I knew was doing them. They were so easy to get and available 24-7.

Time goes by and my little mental vacation habit turned me into a full blown addict doing well over 1000 mg a day. I tried stopping in the early stages but nothing ever worked. I accepted myself as an addict too, I accepted myself as a junkie and justified my problem daily. I was railing two 80 mg Oxycontin for breakfast and an 80 every hour just to function. I was smoking cigarettes every 2 minutes too, close to 3 packs a day.

Now what I’m about to explain happened within the 3rd year of me abusing oxycodone. My entire run of being an addict lapsed 10 years, but the downward spiral started right around my 3rd year.

I started to not show up to work. I would take deposits on jobs and never show up on some of them. My girlfriend was fed up with me showing up late, lying and cheating, malnourished and unhygienic. Not being a good boyfriend at all so she left me. I would be late to any family gathering because I had to ‘pick up’ before I got there.  Credit card statements and bills we not getting paid.  I was getting threats of being kicked out of my apartment, I had 3 of my surrounding neighbors move within 6 months of each other due to my recklessness. Things were changing and I saw it, and not for the good either.
A few more years go by and I am stealing money from family members, stealing from stores, hustling anything I can to make a few bucks to go get high. I wasn’t making the money I had because my reputation was getting destroyed so my daily intake of oxy’s were dropping day by day and I was getting dope sick.

During this time of being dope sick, not showing up at work and hustling and thieving my way to get high, my truck got repossessed and I had to leave my home. I sold everything, my T.V., the surround sound, my lap top, my guitars, my couch, my motorcycles, my credit cards were maxed out by cash advances, I almost sold my cat… I became that guy that needed to ‘borrow’ money and things all the time. I bounced from home to home, even moved to the south for a year to get away and quickly realized that my problem followed me everywhere. I became homeless because my pride didn’t want to fix anything. I didn’t understand how to mend a bridge and didn’t care.

At this time I’m having full blown panic attacks, insomnia, skeletal pain, bicycle legs, hot sweats, cold chills, nightmares for the 2 minutes I may have got from a nap, diarrhea, heart palpitations to name a few. The flu had nothing on what I was going through. This spiritual and physical pain I was going through was something I wouldn’t want on my worst enemy.

Finally during my 10th year reign of self destruction, after losing everything that mattered to me and all my personal possessions, I became suicidal and did not want to live anymore. I was beyond depression and beyond mental illness. I was incredibly dope sick and needed out. Getting clean on my own was impossible and I knew it. I had no structure and not an ounce of effort to find any. My only hope was in a pill which I could no longer get.

I lost all my hope and all my faith.

I hit rock bottom.

I admitted myself into a 6 month rehab program at the Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center.

I will have 5 years clean this November 11th 2016. Today I am grateful for everyone at rehab, church, friends and family who offered admonishment, support, encouragement and their time to help me.

I have learned so many things in Recovery and still do to this day. I learned that we are all human and that we all may fall. I also learned that I can not judge another person when they fall. I’ve learned to give back and to help others. I’ve learned that we are all in need of a Savior which we so constantly search for on a daily basis. I have learned that God puts us through things for reasons and that we all have a purpose. I have come to know Jesus Christ as my Savior and understand that my purpose here is much greater than what my mind could and will ever conceive. I have learned that this life is not about me, it’s about others. It’s about sending a message that our Creator, in whom we are to glorify, loves us unconditionally and all He wants is for us to surrender our ways and to live according to His Word.


God is very real, miracles happen every day. I lost it all and got so much more back from nothing.

To be at total peace and to live in His harmonious Grace is the most overwhelming gift one can ever use.


Become Free. Become the Difference.

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Some of you may have read this before and agreed with it or disagreed with it.
The highlighted area is what bothers me.

If we believe we have a disease, that there is no cure, that we can’t beat it and that we will always struggle with it, then we will never get better.
God gave us the ability to conquer anything. How do we do that? We surrender to Him daily. We remain humble and admit we have a serious problem that is not only an addiction but something deeper that we need to fix.
I refuse to accept that addiction is a disease. We are able to overcome, we are able to succeed and we are able to let go.
This is why I named this site Become Free. I was an addict for over 10 years. I struggled with heroin, opiates, cocaine, benzo’s, anti depressants and God only knows what else.
My daily intake was over 1000 mg’s of OxyContin a day. I got to the point of suicide and absolute complete depression.

Then one day I gave my life to Jesus Christ and I haven’t been the same since. It took time and perseverance. It took rehab and wonderful people in rehab to help me. Over time I became free from my bondage and my slavery to drugs. I had a renewal of my mind, I gained my self control back and I am a new creation.
In order to believe I have a purpose I must believe I was created. As a book glorifies an author, as a painting glorifies an artist, so are we to glorify God.
And you know what is awesome, I’m not alone. There are so many that are living the same way. Freed from addiction.
You have to want it as bad as you wanted your poison.

I didn’t learn to deal with my addiction, I learned that I was in need of a Savior. I learned that I was created by an Almighty God that loves me no matter what I do. I learned that giving up MY ways and living according to His Word, I am set free!!!!!

Listen, God is either real or He’s a fantasy. You either have a purpose or you do not.

You have a choice to believe it or not and that choice is going to determine your lifestyle.

Become Free, Become the Difference.

tyou-are-still-here

Hey!!! How are you?

I’m just making my way through town today and thought I would come by and say hello.

How is everything? I miss you.

Don’t you miss me? I was there for you every step of the way. Through heartache and loss. I was there for you when you needed me. I comforted you every day. Gave you a place to hide, a place to erase the guilt and the pain.

I offered you a way out every time.

You fought for me. You stole for me. You lied for me. You did whatever you could to satisfy me. I was on your mind every second and every minute of every day. You even dumped your girlfriend for me. You ignored all your friends for me. You divorced your spouse for me. You sold your belongings for me. You put all your priorities and responsibilities aside for me.

You made up every excuse in the book to cover for me. Remember?

You got rid of everything for me. I was your number one! You told me you couldn’t live without me. You told me you needed me, that you would never leave me. You told me you loved me!

I was all you needed and you know it.

Remember that time you went to jail for me? I know I couldn’t be there with you but I just wanted you to know that I can take you back there again. What? You were helping your best friend and they put you behind bars?! Who do they think they are?
Listen… me and you go way back, I would do anything for you! I would even kill for you.

I would even kill you if you wanted me to.

I took over your mind, your body and your soul. You owe me more time. All I want is a few more runs, just me and you, like the good ‘ol days man! Come on. Lets go out tonight and get lit up. One more time bro. Me and you. What do you say?

How dare you turn your back on me! You liar!
Tell me why then did you do all these things for me?! Why did you put me first and your friends and family last?

I was there for you all the time.

Yes, it cost you everything but hey! Nothing is free my friend. You were pretty happy when we first met! We got introduced to each other from your old pal there, you know the one, who isn’t around anymore because he was too weak to be one of us. I had to get rid of him. Listen man, he didn’t have what it took. I only had him around to get to you.

I would do anything for you.

This may sound harsh but I don’t keep the weak around, only the strong. Like you. You’re strong. So strong that you are living your life without ME?. You think you’re happy with that “God” you constantly talk about. You think you’re fine with your new friends, walking around with a ‘Purpose’. That’s BULLSHIT and you KNOW IT!!! Addiction is just a term used by the weak, it’s just an excuse!
Get over here now! Just because you ended up getting sick and suicidal doesn’t mean I had anything to do with it. All those physical and mental withdrawals were on YOU! You lost your faith and your hope? That’s not my fault. You should have tried harder for me, my job is just to make you feel better about yourself.

I put my all in and I deserve your all!

You know what? Screw it, I kill on a daily basis. I am a murderer of the weak. I destroy lives. I am on a mission to take away loved ones from their friends and their families. I am THE manipulator. I am THE liar. I trained you, I gave you lessons on how to serve me and now you owe me your life. The only reason you are still alive is because of ME!!!

I’m sorry. I lost control there for a minute. Listen, forget all that, I’ll always be here for you whenever you need me. Remember, I’ll be waiting for you with unconditional torment and pain, I mean, unconditional love.

Love,

Your Poison.

P.S. The first one is on me ūüôā

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Does a cloudy, stormy picture like this make us miserable or are we already miserable and this triggers it? I think storms are awesome and beautiful myself…

I’m no doctor. But I can tell you, that through perseverance, dedication and remaining grateful for what I have simply makes me happy. I actually love life and everything it has to offer.

I’ve heard quotes like this one, “The seeds of depression will never take root in a Grateful heart!” How true is this? I sit back often and reflect where I was, where I could be and where I am. Yes, I have days where I am stressed out but it’s temporary. I feel anger, sadness and loads of pressure with the daily struggles of life but I constantly tell myself that I have a God who is greater than any problem I will ever have.

Usually when I’m driving to work first thing in the morning, I daze off a little and remember where my life used to be. I put myself where I was, depressed, tormented and enslaved by addiction then quickly I snap back to reality. I usually say to myself “Thank you Lord for your Grace and where I am today” or “What a sick way to live”… those are my two replies usually.

Then I thank Him for saving me and I reflect on what I am grateful for. I go over every little thing I have and am so thankful because I know that if I were still living in addiction, I would be so miserable and depressed; barely living, just floating around like a zombie, hustling and haunting anyone with money and seeking enablers.

I see people who claim and hold on to bi-polar, anxiety and other excusable issues. I see people who are so stressed out. I see people who are constantly complaining and are just absolutely miserable. I don’t know if it’s because they haven’t experienced what it’s like to lose everything. And I mean everything.
I don’t know if it’s because they haven’t fully surrendered their old nature and allowed a change to take place. I don’t know if they are just so stubborn that being humble, teachable and grateful are nonexistent in their daily vernacular, that they are words they probably do not understand.

I used to be on the quick acting Ativan, Xanax and many other long term anti-depressants as well. I actually still have panic attacks but they are getting so much better. Yes, the hyperventilating, “where did THAT come from”, no warning, “I’m gonna piss myself” panic attacks. They suck. I actually went to a respiratory doctor, had x-rays done and he said, “Everything’s fine, it’s all in your head Mike.” “Oh, great, that’s just wonderful, thanks Doc.” I said to him as I was leaving the hospital with a confused look on my face. Now what am I supposed to do? I think I may have even laughed at myself the whole ride home!

“So not also do I have an addiction problem, I now have a mental issue!? Great.” That’s what I was dealing with. Totally freaking out over everything. This was a time before I got help. Before I tried. Before I put any effort into anything. I was still lost. I didn’t even know how to persevere, I couldn’t, I was so weak. My choices were wrong and my addiction belittled my sense of who I was.

Well, 3 years coming up with one very short relapse after 10 months, after a surgery I was not even close to being prepared for. Glad it happened though. I am stronger from it. I knew what to do, who to talk to and where to go, thanks to time in rehab and thanks to the people who offered time and served as lighthouses in my life, God I am so thankful for them.

It took time, clean, no drugs at all, not even Tylenol or Advil. It took time to persevere and gain a strength that I have never had before. A strength that keeps getting stronger as each day goes by. I persevered by remaining teachable. That I am and will always be a work in progress. That I will always have the ability to learn and grow. That I do have the capability to be humble and close my mouth when I am supposed to. To thank God for a paycheck, for family, for friends. That listening to others speak and understanding that it is not all about me. That accepting others for who they are and where they are in life, without judgment, puts my life into perspective. That I do have something to offer. That I am strong enough to overcome obstacles and achieve my goals. That I do indeed have the power to say no, but not only say no, but to tell someone that they do not have to live this way, and offer advice, plant a seed, and move forward.

Thank you Lord for this gift. As I continue to be humble, remain teachable and stay grateful for what you have given and continue to give me, I am looking forward to a happy life with You and every blessing You are going to offer. The biggest blessing is hoping I touched someone’s life in one way or another.

Become Free! Become the Difference!

Well, it is at first. ¬†Then again, at first, we are not addicted. ¬†So when does addiction take it’s power over us? ¬†How far into our habitual¬†obsession do we need to go to see the decision making become automatic; into it’s predestined pattern? ¬†

Yes, we have the power of choice.  We choose to experiment.  We choose to hang out and commune with the right people and the wrong people.  We have a decision making process which makes good choices and bad choices and we have to deal with the consequences either way.

We constantly hear of people, friends and family, overdosing and dying from substance abuse. ¬†“Oh, they made a bad choice. ¬†What were they thinking? ¬†They chose that path; they made their bed now they have to sleep in it.” ¬†I hear it all the time. ¬†Usually from people who have never experienced addiction and the power it has over us. ¬†People think it was our choice to suffer and become thieving junkies. ¬†That first day when we experimented with our long term poison, we weren’t saying to ourselves, “I can’t wait to screw everyone over and destroy my life and every bridge I have ever walked across.”

Addicts made a choice one day to use. ¬†We made a choice, for whatever reason; depression, stress, a loss, childhood trauma, whatever. ¬†We chose to take a mental stimulus to impose happiness in one form or another. ¬†We also chose to take a dip in it at the end of every stressful week. ¬† Which became a couple times a week, to every other day, to every day. ¬†Has addiction set up it’s scaffolding yet? ¬†Not yet.

mhYqfi4Believe it or not, our minds are still at peace. ¬†We are happy. ¬†We’re feeling really good and enjoying the high. ¬†It enhances our abilities and helps to see positively; it’s a new hope! ¬†Well, that’s how it seems. ¬†We don’t know whats going on yet. ¬†As far as we are concerned, it’s just something we are doing, like brushing our teeth, with magical toothpaste.. we do that every day right?

sad-woman-silhouetteSome time goes by. ¬†Something tells us we may have a slight problem so we try to stop. ¬†We try and quickly realize life¬†isn’t the same without this chemical. ¬†Our thoughts change, our conscience tells us one thing and we compromise with another. ¬†There is a¬†mental battle going on between what is right and what is wrong. ¬†What we used to spend time on, our priorities, important things, very¬†important things, we no longer have a care for and become secondary. ¬†Then we get depressed because we are trying but we are not able to choose.

Something either tells us or moves us to constantly feed this compulsive obsession. ¬†It’s needed. ¬†We persistently depend on it. ¬†Now addiction has moved in and it is renting space we just don’t have. ¬†It has become our engine, being fueled with chemicals. ¬†It is the mainframe of our thinking, the electrical system for our thought process and like a cancer it grows and grows and surrounds our thoughts like a vine wrapped around a telephone pole.

Every choice and decision we make from here on is like flipping a coin. ¬†We are lost in a maze with no solution; we have no idea how we got in and have no clue how to get out. ¬†Integrity, motivation, self control, and happiness are all out the window. ¬†Hope and faith are so far away we can’t even come up with any words to define them. ¬†We are on a self centered path of destruction and we don’t care who or what is in the way. ¬†Emotions and feelings are for the weak. ¬†“Just give me what I want, please, I need one more…”, is a daily mission statement. ¬†Scheming, lying, cheating and manipulating are now our new characteristics. ¬†We are on auto pilot and we are so far in, well, lets just say it’s like a tunnel in the shape of a circle, it’s a vicious cycle of disappointment and regression.

Welcome.  This is drug addiction.  You can relate to this or you can relate this to someone you know.  Some of you may even be able to relate this with addictions other than drugs and substances; the thoughts and the obsession.

Choices and decisions are not of our own. ¬†We are not thinking clearly. ¬†We are lost. ¬†We are addicts and in our addiction, getting high, fueling up, our doses, our outcomes and our thinking become compromised. ¬†No quote card on a website is going to make us better. ¬†We are under siege, we are being controlled by something else. ¬†It’s not us. ¬†It’s not a choice any more.

If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse or drug addiction, there is hope.  Constantly offering help to a loved one is difficult and they may hate you for it, but when they come around, they will love you for it.
This is why there are detox and rehabilitation facilities nation wide.  There are people willing to offer help, resources and information on treatment for people struggling with addiction.  Call 888-831-2327 for a Treatment Center near you, anywhere in the United States, 24-7.

Most importantly, keep them in your prayers.  Do not give up on them. Pray to God Almighty that He intervenes and breaks their addictive behaviors and sets them free!

Become Free!  Become the Difference!

sick and tired

If you are a full blown addict, you know there are days where all the lying, cheating and stealing has caught up to you.

Nobody trusts you, nobody wants to be around you and nobody cares. You have exhausted all your resources for scheming money and you’re broke as a joke. Withdrawals and depression are setting in and there are thoughts racing through your head; robbing stores, stealing money, your mind is coming up with crazy ideas to make itself feel good. There is nothing you can do so you sit on a couch or lay in bed all day.
You’re starving but you can’t eat, you have to piss so you lean over and piss into a Gatorade bottle. You’re stomach is making noises and shivers set in. The only time you get up is to release diarrhea out your rear end every half hour. Your legs start moving in a bicycle pattern; trying to get comfortable. Hot and cold sweats arrive, heart palpitations, cramps, insomnia, racing thoughts and nightmares from 10 minutes of so called sleep. Hygiene is out the door.

You are so fatigued, walking even seems to be too much. That Suboxone you had saved for today is gone. Why you thought one little corner of a Suboxone would make your life better is a mystery. You make a frantic phone call to your drug dealer to get anything to make you feel better and he’s not answering, you pissed him off too. You know you’re screwed. There’s nothing you can do. Now it’s time to think of ways to die.

Suicide sounds like a very good alternative at this point. But as quick as you think of it you realize you can’t do it.

People, here is a new definition of being Sick and Tired. What is explained above is a tiny bit of what a drug addict goes through. Why do we put ourselves through this? Ask me now, I can’t give you an answer… ask me then, I would have had plenty of answers!

Believe it or not, these times where we get sick are probably the best times where God is most likely shouting at us… “HEY, WAKE UP, YOU DO NOT HAVE TO LIVE LIKE THIS!”

Although it’s depressing and we feel like we’re dying, it’s the lowest we can go, the only way from here is up. Yes, it may be the 700th time you have stopped cold turkey but you know deep down inside you can’t keep doing this. “Why do I do this to myself?” “Why can’t I stop?” “Oh my God, I have a serious problem don’t I.”

Listen, there are places, especially today, everywhere, that offer help. Rehab is a great place to get away, take a vacation and get better; think of it as a spiritual retreat. Because that’s exactly what you will be doing, figuring out why it is you do what you do, why you turned to drugs and why you destroyed your life.

Once you get some clean time under your belt, you start seeing more clearly. The obvious is revealed. Happiness slowly becomes a daily feeling. Bridges are mending. Family starts trusting. Money is getting saved. You start filling your gas tank instead of just putting a few bucks in just to get from one hustle to the other. You don’t wake up in the fetal position, sweating and freaking out anymore. Life is good.

It’s a daily walk. You do a devotion every day. You pray. You pray for yourself. You pray for others. You want to help others with what you have learned and the experiences you have gone through. You go to church. You fellowship with other people with this common bond of addiction. You have clean time and you are stronger than ever!

And you realize it’s not you. It’s God. It’s ALL HIM. That daily reprieve, that daily surrender, that daily prayer is what is keeping you from using again and keeping you from not wanting to live a life of being sick and tired all the time.

One thing I have noticed along my journey, even today, is everyone who is living a clean life and continues living a clean life from their drug abused past, in one way or another, has God first in their life.
Be grateful. Be humble and remain teachable!