Dave's Story 2
Sober - a fictional tale
Sober. That foreign word that all of us addicts need to, have to, eventually face. While I was in active addiction I thought of that word that place, often. Sober. What is that? WHERE is that? How is it? The answer was always, I’ll find out tomorrow. Tomorrow I’ll know what sober is, today I’d rather not find out. Well, maybe the day after tomorrow. I don’t know. Let’s see what tomorrow brings.
Ever go into a bar and see that sign? The one that says, “Free beer tomorrow!” That’s where sober was for me for 10 years. It was tomorrow. It was next weekend. Oh, wait, I have that concert to go to. Sober will have to wait until the following weekend. THAT is the sober weekend. This weekend? Not so much.
I mean, sober is just not using right? Sober is NOT high. Sober is where all the squares live. All the do-gooders, the Better-Than-Yous and the Boring Ones. Sober is where aging rock stars go to live when their bodies say enough and they put out that album of Rush covers. Sober is when you can’t afford to not be sober anymore. Sober is where fun goes to die.
Sober. I needed sober, just didn’t know where to find it. Or what to make of it. Or how to live it. I guess it’s just being not high. What else could it be? But still, where do I go for it? How do I get to it? Fuck it, I’ll figure it out tomorrow. TODAY is HIGH day! And I know EXACTLY where HIGH lives. It lives in the air I breathe, in my bones and my blood. HIGH lives in my brain and my awareness. HIGH is the iron that smooths the wrinkles. HIGH is the liniment I put on my weary soul. HIGH makes me tired, but it also makes my blood warm; makes my soul glow.
Sober. I guess I should go ahead and try it. I guess I’ll just go on and be a bore. Drag everybody down to me, where I sit. Yep, that’s what I’m going to do, be sober tomorrow. Well, tomorrow I have that thing, somaybe the next day? No, definitely the next day. Today and the day after is HIGH. Why not? I’m going to be sober in a day or two. I deserve to be HIGH. I earned it. I mean, with me getting ready to be sober and all, this is what I owe to myself.
Another not sober day. ..ahh, just what the doctor ordered! I was going to get sober but then that thing came up. What next? Sober, of course. But right now I have that trip to make and it wouldn’t be a good time. No, not at all. HIGH is a good time. HIGH keeps me going. Tired, yes, but HIGH OH YEAH. One more day baby!
Shit its Wednesday. Might as well finish out this week. I mean, it started HIGH, it might as well end that way. I earned it for being aware that I’m going to be sober soon. So one more week, well half a week since I’m already there.
Sunday HIGH, Monday sober—yep, this is happening. Monday morning one pill left. Can’t throw good money away can we? One more pill/toke/snort/PARTY. Fuck. Tomorrow. Wednesday at the LATEST! One more good sized pick-up. That’ll keep me for the next two days then time to take the train to sober-town! Live that good life they tell me about. The one with the meetings and such. With the “sobers”. The guys and gals with the coffee breath and the endless cigarettes. Readings and such business. Keychains and coins marking out sober days.
Tuesday night, one pill too many. Better take this so I don’t have one in the morning. Nodding, dreaming. Heavy sedation, deep sleep right on that precipice. Onelast HIGH.
Wednesday! Sober day! Time for that meeting. This is easy peasy. Just don’t do it, that’s all. Messed up hair, who cares? Time to join the coffee breaths and ciggie smokers. The sober zombie squad! Ha! Sobers. Long meeting, fatigued and a little scared. Maybe a HIGH on the way home? Nope! Sober for me! Easy peasy. But one wouldn’t mess up my SOBERIETY, would it? Nah. Well, no, I’m SOBER and staying that way.
Thursday. SOBER! More like sober. Greasy hair, greasy smile. Sickness comes in waves. Up and down and up and down. One HIGH? Take the edge off? Before the meeting? Nah. SOBER! That’s me now! Dirty hair and all. Sober in my bones and coursing through my veins. No meeting, too sick. I’m sober, I need to rest. Wish I could! I’ll just stay here in this place until tomorrow.
Friday! Sober! Sober. Somber. Bored. Sick. Tired. RESTLESS. Annoyed and cloying. Rough. Never-ending bathroom. No food, just sober. Diarrhea. Vomit-y. Ramen? Too much. Pills? Maaaay-beeee? One more time, just to get through this. No one told me about this. What about fresh-faces and hopeful dreams? I’ve watched Intervention a THOUSAND times! Smiling Family! Healthy look! Gaining weight! What about that? Oh yeah, that takes work. I don’t have time for that. Not right now. I need to think. Can’t think like this. Yep, ONE. MORE. TIME.
Morpheus! Sweet Morpheus! Buy more than one and I’ll cut you some slack. Meeting? No, not tonight. Tonight we get HIGH. Just this once. Just because I’m . So. Damn. Sick. Better take the deal. I’ll sell the extra, just need one. Home, all the pills. Time to get HIGH. But then, think. I’ve got some thinking to do. One, no two, no four! It’s been awhile. Come on, hit my brain!
There it is, oh sweet Morpheus. Not such a bad guy. Now I can think, make some sense of it. Nodding. Oh the nodding. Too heavy this time. Can’t stay awake, I’ll just take a little nap. Yeah, a nap. Then it’s time to make a plan. SOBER! But for now, HIGH. Or high. Too HIGH. Lowered tolerance was a surprise. Poppies and fields. Endless fields of joyous sunshine and poppies. Going, going, GONE. Visceral. Literal. GONE.
“Neighbor called. Hasn’t seen the guy for a few days. Just another fucking junkie.” – EMT 1
“Hey man, have some respect. He’s still a person.”- EMT 2
“Yeah but these guys are a dime-a-dozen now-a-days. Keeps us busy.” – EMT 1
“Doesn’t mean you can be a dick, but then again, that’s just you. I’ll go get the bag.” – EMT 2
“Alright man. I’ll get him prepped and ready.”- EMT 1 What a mess. These fucking junkies. EMT 1 shakes his head, looks around. “Clean and Serene” reads the key fob on the table. Yeah, right. EMT 1 spies a pill