At the age of 16, I promised myself I’d never get addicted.
I swore to myself that not one thing could drown me in the ocean that is addiction, but at age 18, I shattered the promise into pieces.
Growing up, the smell of cigarette smoke escaping my mom’s sweaters always made me sick to my stomach,
but as soon as sadness found me at the age of 16, it whispered in my ear to find the addiction in nicotine.
I found myself sneaking into the garage to steal cigarettes out of half full packs,
blowing smoke out of my window at the Devil’s hour.
And at age 18 I replaced the stolen packs of cigarettes with bought packs of Marlboro Blues.
The packs sit at the bottom of my purse, the smell masked by over usage of perfume,
the addiction hidden by me telling everyone who loves me “I don’t like it anyway.”
Growing up with an alcoholic father, full of terrifying nights wondering whether or not I’d see him come home after the bar,
I swore to myself I’d never drink any sort of alcohol,
but that was soon broken when I found the bottle of wine no one wanted to drink,
and the forgotten beer cans nobody from my family drank at a birthday party.
I drowned it all, and for that second I understood why my father could want this addiction so much.
The burn was a numbing experience, and I found more relief in shots of mixed liquor and blackouts than any therapy session.
There’s no “growing up” story with the blade, with the cutting, with the self harm.
Maybe I was always fascinated with blades. Maybe I was drawn to it. Maybe I liked the idea of it,
but becoming addicted to dragging a blade across my skin was never something I could imagine.
When the knife first drew blood,
a part of me thought the waterfall of crimson was beautiful,
trailing down my arm in a river of red,
dropping into a puddle like raindrops on a stormy day.
The blade cut through skin as easy as pen on paper,
and I promised myself I would never become addicted,
but the faded white lines on my arms tell a different story.
I remember meeting you,
I remember telling myself,
“****, you’re *******,”
because even if I did promise myself never to become addicted to anything,
I easily became addicted to you.
you weren’t toxic like every other thing in my life.
You were the sunshine through storm clouds,
hazel eyes sparkling when you talked about something you love.
But it wasn’t how you talked about the items in your life that made me become addicted,
it’s how you light up when talking about me.
It’s how your eyes look before I kiss you,
full of not only lust but so much love,
a love that is so foreign to me I can’t find myself to ever want to stop kissing you.
It’s how you kiss my hand, or my forehead,
or sing in the car when I’m not okay.
It’s how at home I feel in your arms,
and maybe that’s cliche,
but if this is addiction,
then I never want to be in rehab.