Wednesday, November 25, 2009

So What If You Can See The Darkest Side Of Me?

The other night I relapsed into an old addiction. I was fighting with my closest friend and no one was there to comfort me. I was literally all alone, and felt like everything was bearing down upon me. I took some hydrocodone but the high did little to dispel the feelings of being completely alone. So I did something I hadn’t done in years.

I went into my medicine cabinet and pulled out an unused razor head. I stripped out the blades, and with surprisingly steady hands I pressed the cool edge into the skin on my leg. I could feel the tearing, and it was fantastic. I felt a rush and then… nothing. No more pain, no more misery. It was as though my emotional slate had been wiped clean, I looked down at the blood now pouring out of the fresh red lines on my thigh and felt a sense of peace. The rivulets of blood held my attention for a while as I basked in the complete lack of feeling, positive or negative.

And then… he texted me. The feeling of peace was gone, and the world came roaring back with a vengeance.

But as much as we can rub each other the wrong way, I need him. Sometimes it even seems like he needs me.

It's not just him either. He's actually a great friend, but I'm completely in love with him and sometimes that creates issues between us. It's everything else that's pressing down on me. My failure at school, my complete lack of a romantic life, my very few friends, complete uncertainty with my life, the ever-present desire to try heroin or to get trashed, and my awful relationship with my parents are what weigh on me most. Usually, he's the only thing that keeps me sane.

I want to escape. I want out. I want to run and never look back.

How To Save A Life

"Can I talk to you for a second?"
He rolled his eyes, and snapped.
"What is it this time?"
His words stung, but she persisted.
"Please, I just want to talk to you." she pleaded while trying to keep her voice from breaking. He turned to leave, but she caught his arm.
"Please, baby. You've been so distant these past few months, just talk to me for a few minutes."
She cringed when she saw his jaw clench, but after a few seconds of eye contact, he obliged.
"Thank you."
He smiled, but it was tense, forced. He hated confrontation, and it was only a matter of time before he started yelling. She hated it when he yelled at her. It didn't matter what she'd done, it always felt like she'd been punched in the gut. He never actually hit her, but his insults hurt just the same, and once he had slammed his hand against the wall beside her head. That was one of the most terrifying moments of her life.

Step one you say, "We need to talk."
He walks, you say, "Sit down, it's just a talk."
He smiles politely back at you,
You stare politely right on through,
Some sort of window to your right.
As he goes left and you stay right,
Between the lines of fear and blame,
You begin to wonder why you came.

She stared at the wall, trying to summon the courage to confront him. Her stomach clenched at the thought of the upcoming fight. She didn't want to put what they had in danger, but he was slipping so far so fast. She couldn't lose him like this; she wanted so badly to save him from this monster. This wasn't the man she loved; that man had disappeared long ago. She just wanted to try and salvage what was left of the sweet, loving, patient man she knew so long ago.
He sighed, impatient, and looked out the window.
"You gonna get started anytime soon?"
"You need help." There. It was out there.
"Fuck. You. There's nothing wrong with me and you know it."
"Please don't… I only want to help."
"You don't fucking get it. You never have and never will. So back the fuck off! I don't have a problem and you fucking know it."
His words stung, and her throat tightened. "I'm not talking about that, and you know it."
"So is it then?"
"It's this! This isn't you! You never used to yell at me like this! And you always said you never wanted to be like your dad, so why are you following in his footsteps?!"
He jumped to his feet, and screamed at her. "Don't talk about my fucking dad that way!"
She breathed deep to try and calm down, and dropped her gaze. "Please just listen…"

Where did I go wrong? I lost a friend,
Somewhere along in the bitterness.
And I would have stayed up with you all night,
Had I known how to save a life.

"Please, just get help. Try rehab, a therapist, anything that can get you out of this spiral!"
"No. I'm not going to some quack that's going to throw prescriptions at me until something works, and I'm not fucking detoxing. I'm doing fine on my own."
"You're going to kill yourself if you keep up this pace!"
"I'll be lucky to make it to 30 and you know it!"
She couldn't hold back her tears any more, and she choked out "Please, please don't talk like that. If you just stopped this…"
"Don't preach about shit you don't know!"
"Let me see your arms."
"What? No!"
She grabbed at his wrists, and he pulled back. "Just let me see! If it's nothing, then why are you pulling away from me? Just show me!"
"I'm not fucking doing that, don't you trust me?"
"Just show me."
"Fucking coward."
"Fine! It's fucking pathetic my own fucking girlfriend doesn't even know what my bare arms look like…" He pulled up the sleeves of his shirt to reveal the puncture marks that ran across his veins.

Let him know that you know best,
'Cause after all you do know best.
Try to slip past his defense,
Without granting innocence.
Lay down a list of what is wrong.
The things you've told him all along.
Pray to god he hears you.
And I pray to god he hears you and,

"I know there's more. And I haven't seen your arms because you haven't spent the night here in almost 3 months!"
"Fuck this! Fine! So what if I'm shooting up! Big fucking deal."
"Please, you aren't the man I love anymore… You're a monster."
"Oh, I'm the monster!? Self-medicating doesn't make me a monster! You listened to your divorced mother's relationship advice that turned you into the world's biggest bitch! You're the fucking monster here!"
"Don't say that, you'll regret it later." She tried to remain calm, and not cry again. When she cried, she couldn't think properly, and that would give him the upper hand.
"I seriously doubt I will." His tone cut like a knife, she had never heard him sound so cruel and apathetic. "You're a worthless bitch, and I couldn't give a flying fuck what happens to you."
Her knees finally gave out, and she crumpled to the ground, sobbing. "Please, you don't mean this, please stop."
"How do you know what I mean, you don't even know me anymore!"
"I know you better than anyone, and I know you don't mean that." She struggled to catch her breath, and calm down. "I know you better than anyone, and I know that you're a different person than the man I fell in love with. Right now, you have two choices." She took a deep breath, and hiccuped slightly. "You can keep up your self-medicating, and continue your spiral downwards. If that's your choice, you can do it alone. I refuse to be dragged down with you."
"What the hell is that supposed to mean?"
She took another deep breath. "It means that if you don't go seek professional help, I'm leaving you."

Where did I go wrong? I lost a friend,
Somewhere along in the bitterness.
And I would have stayed up with you all night,
Had I known how to save a life.

"Is there someone else?!"
"No, there has never been anyone other than you." Her voice trembled.
"FUCK!" He screamed, and threw his chair across the room. "You and your fucking ultimatums!"
"I have no other choice." She closed my eyes, and braced herself against the coming storm.
"I know there's someone else! Tell me who!!"
"Don't you fucking go there; you know I would never cheat on you."
"Well you also said you loved me, but if you really loved me you would never have dragged me into this shitty discussion in the first place!"
She couldn't take it any more, and fled into the bedroom as he punched the wall in anger.

As he begins to raise his voice,
You lower yours and grant him one last choice.
"Drive until you lose the road,
Or break with the ones you've followed."
He will do one of two things.
He will admit to everything,
Or he'll say he's just not the same,
And you'll begin to wonder why you came.

She was lying awake in their bed, when she saw his silhouette in the doorway.
"I'm so sorry baby. I'll get help first thing tomorrow, if it will make you happy."
She smiled, and held up her arms to him. She heard a sigh of relief, and he made his way to the bed. It was dark, and he stumbled once or twice.
"Careful, love. The room's a little messy."
He lay down next to her, and gathered her into his arms. "I love you, and I'm sorry about everything that I said today."
She smiled, and turned so that their bodies were parallel. She kissed him, and murmured "It's alright, I forgive you."
He kissed her back, deeply, drawing her in close to him.

Where did I go wrong? I lost a friend,
Somewhere along in the bitterness.
And I would have stayed up with you all night,
Had I known how to save a life.

Afterward, she lay there, her body entwined with his, hoping that he had meant what he said about seeking help. She couldn't live with the person he had become much longer. She pushed back thoughts that he was just manipulating her, that this was another manic episode. He had seemed so sincere this time, and she desperately wanted to believe him. She breathed deep, and settled herself against him, and letting her eyelids finally close.

Where did I go wrong? I lost a friend,
Somewhere along in the bitterness.
And I would have stayed up with you all night,
Had I known how to save a life.
How to save a life.
How to save a life.

The early-morning rays of light peeping from around the curtain woke her up much earlier than usual. The blankets had been pushed to the foot of the bed, and she reached towards his side in an attempt to find heat, but his side was cold. She groggily rubbed the traces of sleep from her eyes, and looked around for the room for him. He was nowhere to be found.
"Ugh, I need to pee."
She made her way to the bathroom, and saw him. His lips were tinged with an unnatural blue, his skin was too pale, and he was lying too still.
"Oh, God, please, no!" she whispered and dropped next to the prone form.
He was so cold. She desperately tried to find a pulse, but it was useless. He was gone.
"Please, no, no, no!" She collapsed against his chest, and sobbed. This was the most painful thing she had ever experienced; she didn't know what to do.
She pried herself away from the lifeless body, and fumbled for a phone, and called 911. As she explained what she had found, she saw the empty bottle of pills from her surgery next to the sink. Open on the opposite counter was an empty bottle of vodka.

Where did I go wrong? I lost a friend,
Somewhere along in the bitterness.
And I would have stayed up with you all night,
Had I known how to save a life.

She couldn't move. She willed herself to pick up her feet, and walk forward, but it was as if she was moving through water. The driving rain mingled with her tears, but she could still taste their salty sweetness.
She stood there, staring at the mound of fresh earth. No one had listened to her protests that he'd wanted to be cremated; this would have pissed him off so much.
So much had come to light after his death. He'd been having an affair for several months, and she'd shown up to the funeral. His parents fawned over her, and his sister had said that he was going to leave her the day after she'd talked to him. All the what-ifs and might've-beens were constantly running through her head.

Where did I go wrong? I lost a friend,
Somewhere along in the bitterness.
And I would have stayed up with you all night,
Had I known how to save a life.
How to save a life.
How to save a life.

What did I do wrong? Did I drive him to this? What if I'd woken up sooner?
All these questions where driving her mad. She tried to move again, and failed.
I wish I'd known what I could have done.