The Other Side of Hell

Imagine, if you can, putting your three week old baby into the freezer because her crying is interrupting your peace and quiet. And yes, I did say freezer and not refrigerator. And why was the baby crying? Because you were too messed up on heroin and hadn’t fed her all day.

Imagine, if you can, waking up in a town on the opposite side of the United States from where you remembered being. You have no recollection of what you did or what was done to you during those four weeks. You didn’t wake up in a four star hotel either. Instead, you’re in a dumpster with smelly, putrid trash and you can’t tell which smells worse – you or the trash.

Imagine, if you can, walking into a fast food restaurant, pulling a gun on a young, innocent cashier. She’s frightened, trembling and near tears. Her hands are shaking so hard she can’t get the money from the cash register to you fast enough, so you just pull the trigger. She falls to the floor – dead. But that’s not your problem, you reach into the cash register yourself, grab the money and yell “bitch” at her lifeless body as you walk out the door.

I can’t imagine it – can you? But what I can imagine – because I lived through it – is being on the other side of stories like those and many more. And this is my story of survival. No, I wasn’t the alcoholic or drug addict who created the nightmare; I was simply the person who made the mistake of falling in love with one.

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