Enlightened... Until the Delusions Dried Up
Citation: TinOCranberries. "Enlightened... Until the Delusions Dried Up: An Experience with Heroin, Cocaine & LSD (exp21305)". Erowid.org. Oct 13, 2005. erowid.org/exp/21305
'Addictive personality' is how the patronising walrus of a counsellor described me in her report forms earlier today. I felt ready to gouge her eyes out with the plastic coffee stirrer I had at hand for using such a generalisation. An arrogant term coming from a woman who completely looked through my character and the actual facts to a textbook reference she'd committed to memory when her vapid brain had decided that it needed another buzz word. I left the clinic feeling dejected and miserable. As if I'd had an insult branded to my scrotum.
But, just to take a look at myself objectively, I think now that it's absolutely true. I become bored and destructive when I'm in my default consciousness, and strive to fill my days with at least one type of inebriation. But, as with information, facts or anything else the brain can assimilate, addiction is a learning curve, which, when it abruptly stops, lingers in the brain's and body's chemistry and composition but eventually fades, given the right circumstances.
Soooooooooo... This is another one of those stories about (drum roll, please) 'The Downward Spiral'. But underlying this, I think, is an important and valuable lesson, which gave me the motivation to write this: Even though addictive drugs (narcotics, stimulants, some psychedelics, etc.) can be an absolute bane to somebody's life, one can't just escape that addiction by taking a few trips from psychedelic drugs. This misapprehension took me from a slow, attenuating spiral to a perpetual corkscrew, before I plunged into a demijohn of insanity. Let's start over:
Back in 1999, I was a fresh-faced idealistic sixth former [equivalent to high school student] - clean and prepared to take my future to whatever soaring heights this education could attain. That is until I stepped into the teacher's toilets one day.
Two girls were slumped over one another in the cubicle, one was bleeding pretty heavily from her left arm and the other was just... staring. Four irises constricted to just leave pinprick pupils and bloodshot whites. Now I wasn't exactly ignorant about these things - I'd been to scads of parties and seen the effects of many drugs on people reckless or foolish enough to snort, swallow, shoot or take suppositories, and the bleeding arm gave away that last little telltale detail (I'd later learn to love that vinegar/chemical smell that lingers on one's clothes and hair). The Big Bad Horse had been released from its hypodermic stable and was now walloping a couple of kids' brains with its hepatitis hooves.
'What the hell do I do about this?' was my first impression.
I walked over and gave the non-bleeding girl a gentle slap on the cheek. She just rolled her head over and continued to stare blankly for a second before the facts hit home (another phenomenon I came to love) and her face whitened with shock. I'd known this girl for a couple of years, casually, and had pretty good reason to surmise that she really didn't give a shit about her education. The police, on the other hand, would have evacuated her bowels pretty quickly, despite the constipation. That meant she had at least a couple of wads on her. I rubbed my hands together as I prepared to be an absolute bastard to her.
'This is a pretty sticky situation, isn't it Rachel?' (names are changed, obviously);
'Rachel the Rogue, having taken naive, impressionable Sarah in her sidecar to the test dummy site. Perhaps the old chromatograph will take your side at the test lab.'
'Don't tell anyone. Oh God...'
Sarah was now stirring a bit, but she just slumped right back over, shivering every once in a while.
'If I can't tell anyone, I'll have to blackmail you.'
(In case you hadn't noticed, dear reader, I was a bastard back then.)
'Whaddaya want?' How eloquent of her.
'I'm not asking for any high price. Let me think for a second...'
I'd wanted to try at least something for quite a while, but it never occurred to me that a hookup would just jump from the briny blue.
'You got any on you? Now, I mean.'
'I got one but I wanna keep it.'
'That's fine, fine. I'm a smoker, I know all about the misery of addiction. That's why I'm only asking for half of it. Just a taste.'
I took Rachel and Sarah to a more secure, lavishly furnished broom cupboard across the site where we could sit with our thumbs up our arses until the cows came home. She cooked and shot her wad with some juice from a Jif lemon I'd recently stolen from the home economics kitchens before offering me the needle.
'I'm not sticking that into me. Got a clean one, or do I have to get one of those from the home ec labs as well?'
'My bag's back in the toilets.' Susan was still fucked out of her eyeballs, but she was starting to wonder how the hell she had travelled across the site in her dreary opiate-induced state. I told her to go back to sleep (which she didn't) and ran back to the toilets.
Long story short, here, as I'm rambling a bit, I took my first shot that day, and returned to my physics class bleary-eyed and, well (to use a charming expression) fucked. I felt completely amazing: I still had my steadiness and coordination, I could still think with the logic and accuity needed for the class, but I also felt completely carefree, unrestrained, slightly drowsy and completely at peace. I itched like fuck, and there were vomit stains on my tie from the regurgitation session I'd enjoyed in the broom closet shortly before leaving those two lovely lasses in peace, but... oh wow. Instant nihilism in a syringe, with very few of the absurdities that Nietzsche overlooked in his more insane days. And best of all, I thought I could still continue with my classes in this way, and, to an extent, I did. I kept my shooting strictly to lunchtimes. And breaktimes. And after school. Oh, and (still strict here) every once in a while, before shool.
Heroin, however, became number one on my 'most boring things one can do to one's veins' list (although I'd minimised other people's recognition of the track-marks by using an intravenous catheter and taping the syringe's barrel to my arm. I'd keep it taped / strapped there permanently and simply replace the hypodermic needles when the need arose. I'd obtained a wheel filter and fresh points from the needle bank, no problemo. It also made loading & shooting the syring a hell of a lot easier, and, after adding a pipette-end to my syringe assembly, the injection rate was perfect. The bionic junkie. It also ensured that I'd only ever use my own syringe.)
Anyway, exit junk, pursued by a bear.
I was feeling low. Very low and strung out from withdrawal. I'd just about given up school (a temporary hiatus, I'd told myself, until the postman informed me that I'd flopped.) and sat around at home, drinking, smoking dope and wanking until my dick was sore. I needed uplifting. When, of all cosmic coincidences, whose path of fate should bissect mine but dear Rachel's, avec the world's favourite brain tonic - Mr. Coke himself. The other big cheese I'd been meaning to wrestle with for quite awhile (internet access is a wonderful thing - page upon page of useful druggy information). I was apprehensive after my little heroin debacle, but that all just seemed to disappear once the coke hit my nasal mucosa. Now this was cool. I felt dynamic, energetic, witty and sophisticated. I got my shit together and jittered like a jackhammer over to the old school house, appealed to the head of the science department and the head of the sixth form for reinstatement, on the grounds of depression.
So after I'd re-entered 6F, I managed to cram and cram and cram nonstop with charlie's aid, achieving exemplory results. The only repercussions being crashes, nosebleeds, heart palpitations, uncontrollable ataxia (shakes) and a 2000 cigarettes a day habit. No bother. The old ticker would be put to good use when it exploded from my chest cavity, as power for the entire city of London. I was just like schroedinger's cat - alive, dead, escaped from the box, and mutated into a horned incubus simultaneously. What a blast.
But, shock and horror. It stopped working. I'd used amphetamines before and as an alternative, they offered very little aside from empty, engine-driven stimulation. I needed to dry out, but I couldn't deal with all the crap that detox entailed. A different measure was in order. So, now our chalky friend disappears into the soul's heavy winds of memory. All for the best, really. My nose felt as if it had psoriasis treated with a fibreglass poultice, and my bowels were ready to evacuate themselves through my mouth and strangle me. So who else should enter, stage right, then our little pixie friend Rachel, with fifty blotters of recent acquiesence stuffed down her bra, and a playful grin embellished upon her face.
Blotters WERE the answer. They completely offset the withdrawal and posed existential questions that I'd never asked to myself before. I went on a blotter-fuelled tour of the realms of perception, Manson family style (except without the homicides). I began to believe that I was the golden child. No problems that I couldn't deal with, a religious guru in the church of extra-dimensional resonance, and that I could skip from dimension to dimension at will. This continued for five or six weeks, frying on five or six blotters as soon as any hint of a comedown. I was a self-created sollipsism, a God of my own universe. All I had to do was provide the matter, define the constants and watch as the visions proliferated. A complex delusion, but a delusion nonetheless. But the absurdity of that was easy to see when sober, it just merely returned when tripping. There was a delusion of the bigger picture as well: That I was fine and happy with the way my life was going.
The truth was, that I was absolutely miserable. I felt dysphoric whenever sober, I was broke and almost dying from anorexia. My sense of touch become a game of distingushing the jelly that composed the table and the jelly that composed the walls. Call it nuts, perhaps you could call it HPPD or peripheral / central nervous system damage from all the drugs I'd been taking, but the bottom line was that it was really shitty. With every consecutive trip I took, I became more and more despondent, more withdrawn from the outside world. I didn't like the crowd I hung around with, they were shallow and lived their lives for taking drugs, talking drugs, buying drugs and pushing drugs, and they loved the image that came with it all. I'd reached terminal velocity and hit the ground with a mighty whallop, before being mopped up by the professionals and reposited into a counselling session. In other words, I'd taken 10-12 heavily loaded blotters and enjoyed a schizophrenic outbreak in a town centre.
Whilst still tripping, I recounted the above story to her and absorbed her condescending word as if it were the grand unified theory. There's more in store, and I'm absolutely miserable about it. I've now been unemployed, anorexic and delusional for eighteen months and my body and brain have seen better days, let me assure you. I suppose optimism is called for, but right now, counselling provides all the homogenised optimism I could ask for.
So let me conclude this saga by getting back to my main point (this isn't just an observation in myself: I've read about, and witnessed people having the most profoundly stupid revelations while tripping, only to find in dismay that, despite their memories being shot to shit, they still remember) and that is:
Psychedelics DO (a lot of the time, anyway) seem to amplify any emotional response one has to a thought or idea, especially if it seemingly affects the whole outlook on life. I guess the fact of the matter is that I should take these profundities with a pinch of salt. Psychedelics may be fun, and I probably will take them again in the future, even after all this nonsense, but reality, whether it sucks or not, is still the only viable permanent solution outside the looney-bin.
If you've read this far through my pontification, I really do congratulate you, and hope that this message can prevent at least one person making an unequivocably stupid mistake. That'd make me happy, I think. Even though this is an anonymous report, I'd like to thank the people to whom I'll show this report if it's published. Thanks for supporting me, and enduring my undeniable selfishness through all this.
Over and out.
The tin of cranberries.
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