Wednesday, December 28, 2016

9. Hit a Dear, Get Lost, Run out of Gas

“This is my third time trying to get clean,” Gerry said.  “The first two times I thought recovery people were a little too dramatic, saying addiction ended in ‘jails, institutions, or death.’  It made me think I wasn’t that bad.”

“What changed?” I asked.

“Watched my parents’ addictions. Started to think of addiction as a bad road trip. You hit a dear, get lost, or run out of gas.  My dad was sober for about two weeks after he punched my mother. She couldn’t have been dearer to him and he broke her nose. Never did it again, still feels guilty about it, but he hit a dear.

“I get it,” I said, “A D-E-A-R dear.”

He nodded. “My mother was a nurse who got addicted to Xanax.  Got on disability somehow and never worked again. She got lost. Always looking for the next prescription rather than finding her way back to work.  My parents spend their nights watching TV.  He’s drunk and she’s a zombie.  They’ve run out of gas. 

I said, “I know someone who’s addicted to porn.  He lost his girlfriend when she saw he liked the movies more than being with her. She felt betrayed, and it felt like a punch to the gut. He hit a dear.  She dumped him, so he bought himself a top-of-the-line computer. He watches porn all night, gets lost in it.  When he gets fired because he can’t keep his eyes open at work, I think he’ll stay home all day.  He’ll be out of gas, and probably move into his Dad’s basement.”

Gerry said, “I’ve seen so many people hit a dear and not realize they're on the road to addiction.”

Today I’ll beware of signs I’ve hit a dear, gotten lost, or run out of gas.

Needles Not For Knitting (c) 2016 by Ken Montrose

Needles Not For Knitting is a work of fiction.  Any resemblance between the characters and anyone you might know is purely coincidental.

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