The day before I came to treatment….honestly, a lot of it is a blur to me now. And that’s not just a figure of speech. I am, in all honesty, struggling with some cognitive deficits, especially when it comes to my memory. It’s a symptom of PAWS and I just have to remind myself to be patient and gentle when it comes to my rehabilitation and recovery.
I can tell you a few things I do remember, though. First of all, I was what you could call a ‘functional addict’ and, as such, was holding down quite a decent job at the time that I decided to go to treatment. I remember that the day I arrived at the rehab facility, it was a Tuesday; September 11th to be exact. So, I can tell you that the day before I came to treatment was a Monday and therefore, I was working. I knew I would be going into treatment the following day; it was planned. In fact, I was able to go to rehab because I had a job with good benefits, which covered inpatient treatment for substance abuse.
I was probably a little nervous, but also a little excited. I know, that probably sounds weird to a lot of you out there reading this but, I was so broken inside and so desperate for change that I was actually looking forward to waking up the next day and getting showered and ready. But not to go into a job I had grown to hate, with coworkers I couldn’t seem to get along with anymore. No; I was going to wake up and go somewhere safe, where I would be taken care of. Other than that, I didn’t really know what else to expect.
When I went to treatment, I was on Suboxone maintenance and had tried to taper myself off but to no avail. I was actually on a really low dose but that stuff is pretty powerful and has quite a long half-life, making it more difficult to kick than heroin, in my opinion and experience. And, in fact, a couple years prior to this, I had also tried methadone maintenance, a program I eventually quit cold turkey (never do this, its hell on earth). So, after trying to do the Suboxone thing myself, and experiencing hellish withdrawals again, I decided that this time, I was going to get professional help. I was going to go to treatment.
The day before I came to treatment, I actually went and refilled my Suboxone prescription, even though I knew I would be going into detox the next day. But, like I said, I couldn’t bear being dope sick again. Also, I had this crazy idea that, when I completed the program and returned home, I could sell the rest of the strips for a profit. I look back on that now and laugh. (My mom got rid of it all while I was in treatment, which was a good thing).
Unlike probably most people, I didn’t do the whole ‘last hurrah’ thing. In fact, I don’t think it even occurred to me. I think I was already focused on the task at hand: taking that first step of getting clean and sober and ultimately the first step in getting better and having a great life.
While in treatment, I considered checking into rehab as the single most important thing I had done in my life – and still consider it to be the best thing I have ever done for myself, to date. Don’t get me wrong, I am clear that I never want to do it again. But, I am grateful that such programs exist and I am grateful I took a leap of faith. The alternative would have been quite tragic.
If you are struggling with substance abuse or addiction or you suspect that a loved one is abusing drugs, there are programs designed to help. Going to rehab can be a scary decision to make – it certainly was for me. But, like most other things, it is a fear of the unknown that keeps people from reaching out and getting the help they need. Others fear certain consequences such as losing their job or disclosure of their treatment. The truth is that there are federal laws that protect your job as well as your privacy and right to confidentiality. Give us a call toll-free at 1-800-951-6135 to speak with an Addiction Specialist around the clock. We can answer any questions you have about substance abuse, the treatment process, and your rights. Remember, addiction kills. But there is help available. Avoid tragedy and call today.