I began devising a plan.
Ok Jason, calm down. Deep breaths. It’s Friday. Just take Saturday’s pills tonight, and just don’t take any tomorrow. Yeah, that’s the plan. Take tomorrow’s today, and by Sunday you’ll be back on track. Shit, you’re a genius!
This is some straight drug addict reasoning and rationale, derived from wherever addiction and dependence resides in the brain, and it happened without me even trying. It just happened. I didn’t know it at the time, but my journey had begun.
Before the addict manipulates and lies to others, he or she first manipulates and lies to themselves.
I learned to compartmentalize in a very schizophrenic sense, a skill I’d use throughout my years of addiction. There was the now me, which was the center of the universe, the only thing that really mattered, the most important person in the room. And then there was tomorrow me, who would have much more will power, much more strength, and make much better decisions than now me. To be honest, I really didn’t give much of a shit about tomorrow me. Tomorrow me would be able to go without drugs for a day. Tomorrow me would be able to get through the day because he had will power, a strength that now me didn’t possess. Tomorrow me was of the utmost character, with integrity to spare. He could handle it.
Inevitably, tomorrow would come, creating a third character in this schizophrenic dance: Yesterday me.
Fuck, I hated yesterday me. He was an inconsiderate asshole, leaving now me without any drugs, nothing to make myself feel different. I hated yesterday me with a passion. I’ve woken up in jails, strange houses, gutters, hospitals, all thanks to whatever yesterday me did, leaving now me to deal with the fucking wreckage.
Every morning I’d wake up with the same thought:
Fuck you, yesterday me.
Every morning. .
For 15 years.
That’s 5,475 mornings for those of who keep track of such things.
Every morning, until one morning I decided to stop.
Until one morning I decided that I didn’t want to wake up like that anymore.
Excerpted from The Bitter Taste of Dying by Jason Smith, Thought Catalog Books, July 6, 2015.
Hardcover and softcover available at www.authorjasonsmith.com. Contact Jason here.