What do people think of when they hear the word coma? I don’t remember what I used to think. Maybe something peaceful? Maybe something blank. Maybe a big long stretch of nothingness? This is not the case. Now when I hear the words comatose or coma I think horrific.
I lived a thousand lives those five weeks. A thousand painful, terrifying, horrific lives. I was sodomized by giants, tortured by friends and family, attacked by demons, crucified on a cross, tortured by bee’s, kicked out of heaven and escaped from Hell. The experiences and the details to go with all of the many world’s I went through are unimaginable. Indescribable. I didn’t know such fear was possible. Even thinking about it I pray I’ll be able to sleep tonight. . Ask my mom about how terrified I was to sleep after I was awake. How the touch of another human would send me spiraling out of control.
The scariest part is that it was all real. It still is all real. Because it happened to me in my head. When I started waking up I didn’t realize I had been gone. I thought I was in another level of Hell. One where my loved ones were possessed by demons. One where I was physically tortured all day, everyday. If I could imagine Hell that’s what it would be like. How could I not think I was really dead? And Brett wasn’t there for any of it. So I knew I must be dead! I was in Hell and he was on Earth living a beautiful life. As I write this I realize how much I wish that were true. I would live through an eternity of Hell to know that he was still here, living a beautiful life. I would give up my whole entire life for one more day with him. One more day with that smile and that laugh and that sweet spirit.
Everybody has always told me how strong I am. What a warrior I am. Well, if I could have spoke they would have known I was praying for it all to end. I spent literal years praying for it all to be over. I still do sometimes. Not as much as I used to, granted. I have pockets of gratitude and moments of appreciation for this life. But it’s like that puzzle piece my mom wrote about. Everything was put back together again and nothing changed but nothing is the same and there’s a huge piece of my sky missing. It’s like the sun of that big puzzle got blocked out…lost somewhere.
I wouldn’t be able to tell you how painful wound care is for the extensive burns I experienced. I literally would not be able to. It wouldn’t be possible. You couldn’t fathom. I can multiply that physical pain by a million and not even come close to touching the emotional pain. Ten short long years past have passed. Ten years and I still have yet to meet anyone who even comes close to being a quarter of the person Brett was to me. I don’t say that to be mean or evoke sympathy. Excuse my language but, screw your sympathy. I’ve been drenched in people’s pity for far too long. He was my love. He is my love. He is love. And there’s a big part of me that got cut out when he died. I’m pretty sure everyone who knew me before the fire can see that piece that’s missing. I’m pretty sure everyone knows that I’ll never be whole again. After years of counseling and therapy and medications I’ve realized I have to accept that I’ll always be sort of broken. With that broken part of me I can still make a whole life. I am just learning this vital truth. I have found another piece of the jigsaw puzzle.
On this Quest of finding this piece, however, I’ve lost so much. That friend that my mother spoke of (Rach Boo) that was there from day one…I lost her. She left me. My addiction drowned our friendship. My addiction suffocated our love. She helped me survive the worst heartache of my life and I pushed her away. I’ve pushed so many people away. I’ve been so ashamed of who I’ve become and the things that I’ve done. Being alone seems so much simpler than having to disappoint all these people who care so much.
And the anger! I was so angry! My mom and I used to go to my doctor’s appointments at the hospital and I’d see a couple helping each other around. One of them in the wheelchair, the other pushing them. I would get so angry. Why couldn’t that be me!? Why couldn’t that be Brett?! My anger consumed me.
So, what does this have to do with addiction? It has everything to do with it! My problem is not the drugs or the alcohol. It’s the way I think. That’s where the problem is for all of us. I don’t process things the way normal people do. I got in a fight in 7th grade with my best friend and I tried to kill myself that night. That is not normal. But, for me, it seemed like the only logical solution. Make the pain go away. I realized, as I got older, that I wasn’t suicidal; things got a little bit more simple. I figured out how I could be happy and numb and function. Drugs and alcohol.
I drank to handle the world outside of me and I used drugs to handle the world inside of me. It’s that simple. Brett put a halt to that. He completed my life in a way that I wanted to be a better human and I was hungry to feel life. So when he died, that part died, too.
Honestly, I have no clue where I’m going with this. I’ve never really spoke or written about these things. They are the darkness inside of me. I try so hard to live in the light. That’s what Brett would want. I learned at some point, I had to stop trying to live my life for him. It was too much pressure. Every failure sunk me down deeper into my depression.
Slowly I am grasping how to live my life for myself. Just me. I’ve been single for the longest time probably of my whole life. I’ve learned so much about myself and the world around me. I am starting to feel like the woman I was when Brett was here. Strong, independent, intelligent, beautiful, funny, accomplished, worthy. I feel like all of these things. Just for today.
Was I an addict before the fire? I think so. I smoked pot daily for nearly three years. I drank very often. If you had drugs I would gladly do them with you. I used to find a book that I liked and stay up, reading until three in the morning knowing I had to get up in three hours for school. I did things in an all-or-nothing manner. I have always been compulsive and hard-headed and felt the need to learn by experience. Regardless of the lesson, I have to always try it myself. When you are little people think you’re wild and brave. As an adult people think you’re reckless and irresponsible. I am all of those things. Being an addict is learning the difference and being willing to make the effort for change. And, my God! It is such a struggle. The struggle is real. But, so is the peace that comes after.