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Jan 2012
It happens all of the sudden.  One day it’s just one time and then it’s need.  That’s when you run into trouble.  After that, it’s a whole other ballgame.  It isn’t addiction until you need.  

I remember the first time.  You always remember your first time.  It’s like opening the biggest present at Christmas, it’s like sledding on that extra icy hill you knew was just a little too slippery, it’s like skydiving shooting stars high flying crazy.  

Instant exhilaration.  

It’s like that millisecond licking your lips before you go in for the kiss, that steamy shower on your cool skin.  

Absolute seduction.  

You just smile, lean back and say


My first time I said no.
No way.
No how.
I don’t do that.

It was a door in the back of my mind I had branded with a Do Not Enter sign.  I argued morals, I argued boundaries.  A secret promise to myself I kept safe behind lines I swore I wouldn’t cross.  But what really stopped me dead in my tracks, what kept me away from the forbidden fruit was fear.  

Maybe even some paranoia, or a little indignation at the idea of putting things up my delicate little pixie nose, scratching the thin tissue of my sinuses.  

But suddenly your friends are doing it, and they look just fine.  That security blanket of fear dissolves, a scary story to tuck away under your pillow like the boogieman.  They call it peer pressure, I think of it more like peer assurance.  Or maybe an experiment.  And that’s all we’re doing right?  The first time I said no.  The second time suddenly those lines were disappearing up my nose.

And then just, ah hah! This is what it’s like, this is the hype.  Like the first time you sit in the front seat of a car.  And think to yourself, well

That was pretty fun.

But nothing serious, just a fling.  One **** one night stand, no biggie.

But it’s nothing like that.  It’s like someone running up to you and whispering in your ear the biggest, darkest secret of life.  And that’s the funny thing, because that’s just it.

It starts with want.

And you have fun.  You get lost in your own lust and you take all you can get.   And you crave those little white pills because you just feel sosososo good.

And then one day you’re tired before school and you don’t know how to pep yourself up.  And you get this idea.  This crazy idea.  And you rail a little white pill.  And as you walk out the door, you feel like a million dollars.  You feel like you slept for 10 hours, like you just got every question on a test right including the extra credit.  And you breeze right through your day, high flying on autopilot.

That’s the ***** secret with the whole thing.  It makes everything so **** easy.  

Tired? Have a line.
Hungry? Have a line.
Sad? Have a line.
Bored? Have a line.

It becomes a ritual, it becomes a secret club no one else can know about.  It’s that lover you sneak off to in the middle of those lonely nights, when your thoughts endlessly thrash against your skull, doubts echoing into the dark room surrounding you.  

But it’s not your life.  More like a habit, like a friend from the wrong side of the tracks.  

What happens from then on is hard to say.  For me, it was when my world shut down around me, when I felt like I was absolutely alone.  When I felt like I was free falling and I had nowhere to land.  Like I had just been beaten in an alleyway left for dead.  I needed someone to hold me.  And all I saw was the Ritalin.  

For me, it was falling in love.  It was giving my soul to you and having you rip it apart.  It was the way you looked into my eyes and stroked my hair.  It was the echo of you closing the door.  You left me behind.  You made me love you and then you just kept walking past.  It was getting my heart broken for the last time, it was a moment of weakness.  As my world crumbled, I took a whiff on courage.  

And suddenly it’s need.  

It tricks you, it makes you forget that once upon a time you were fine alone.  It manipulates you and makes you think you can’t live without it.  Suddenly, there is no life without drugs.  

You’re avoiding people, you’re skipping lunch to powder your nose, your eyes are bugged open and you’re chomping gum 24/7.  People insist you look fabulous from the lost weight and you feel ******* fabulous from your lost hate, buried under the influence.  You are up for 3 days and asleep for 20 hours.  And the crash.  Your head pounds and your hands shake.  You yell at all your friends and you’re late to work 4 days in a row.  And you just needneedneed to go up again because you just can’t take it anymore.

You scamper up as high as you can reach and you’re afraid to come down.  But your body can only last so long.

The big OD is not something taken lightly, a grey no-man's land where brittle lifelines tend to snap.  I was lucky.  I didn’t break, didn't get the 911 nightmare, just took too much too fast, and I felt SO good.  But then, I didn’t feel so good.  Suddenly, I felt pretty **** awful.  I didn’t go into cardiac arrest or anything, but it scared me shitless.  Scared me right off the ****, minus a binge or two.

At least, it did.  For a little while.

Now that voice I know too well is whispering again, and I don’t always feel like saying no.  

I remember when I used to flaunt my new hobby to my friends.  I felt like some sort of glamorous superstar that knew exactly how to have a good time.  Like it was some sort of VIP club that they just had to get into.  And then I didn’t wanna talk about it, they just don’t get it.  They don’t get it.  I need it.  But only sometimes.

Yeah yeah, stupid.  I get it.  You think I’m asking for it.  I lost control and I’m gonna lose it again.  But I made myself stop before, of course I can do it again.  I am cool, calm, collected and totally in control.


 I felt so cold when you left me here.  I never want to feel again.
Christina McCourt
Written by
Christina McCourt
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