I’ve spent the past 7 months trying to live my life as if I was normal. As if I wasn’t an Ativan junky. Ativan. Lorazapam. Benzodiazepines. I’ve cooked pancakes for Cassius and Jonquille. I’ve persisted in my efforts to teach Cassius how to pull his pants down so he can learn to go potty despite the hilarity it seems to give him. I’ve had an art show. I’ve played Donna Reed meets Patti Smith and I’ve pulled it off. With some exceptions: the occasional trips to the parking lot where I could be alone to shiver and vomit because of the withdrawals; the clench of shame; the occasional slips down the stairs because my balance gets off when I drop a dose.
The time is coming that I will change this, and it’s breaking my heart. I can’t be normal anymore. I can’t even try. My children will have to go to daycare and my life as I know it will change because I am am going into detox heavy. No fucking around. There’s no way around it. You don’t detox off off heroin by keeping your day job and coming home to grill chicken for the kiddos. Not gonna happen. You’ve got to go through the black to get back home.
And it’s the simplicity of the loss that astounds me. I can’t be with my family. I can’t wipe Jonquille’s nose when it runs. I can’t be the one to make her laugh hysterically by saying “chicken wing” and nibbling on her shoulders. I can’t be there in the morning to hear Cassius’s hoots, letting us know that he’s awake. I can’t roll over in the morning and feel Chase’s warm back against my stomach. None of it. Little of it. Which feels like none of it. I will be somewhere else. In a room. So when the hurt comes, it doesn’t hurt my family.
Benzodiazepine detox is a process we know little about in the U.S. We know that it takes a long time. Just to get off. And then there’s the actual repair of the GABA receptors, those little spaceships in the brain that regulate just about everything. The benzos are a fist on your GABA‘s. They’re like the mafioso that doesn’t let you run your business unless you pay more and then more and then more. And if you want out of the deal, you risk your life.
This is where I’m going. I’m escaping from the Big Pharma mafioso. And I’m pissed. And the grief makes a hot cocktail with rage that’s going to make a book. Watch for it. I’m imagining a sort of Michael Moore meets Jim Carroll‘s Basketball Diaries. Literary but
with the kind of exposure that reveals one of the deadliest aspects of our medical system. Hey, we’ll help you get off heroin, but benzos? You kidding? They’re legal. Ask your dentist. He may know little about the long term effects, but that’s okay, because for a week or two you’ll feel like you’re flying. Just remember Icarus. He flew to the sun and the heat melted his wings to oblivion. It’s a Faustian bargain, anyway you look at it.
May 1st. This is the countdown. Tick tock, tick tock.
And I’m going to videotape. Because so little people know how deadly this candy actually is. Someone’s gotta speak up. And I’ve got the horse of fury on my side. I’m gonna ride it to the end.
- ‘Xanax’ Nation? My Anti-Anxiety Meds Give Me Enough to Worry About – Beacon Broadside (beaconbroadside.com)