A brief history of my “drugging”:
I have bronchitis. I sounds much more appealing than it actually is. After several days of struggling to breathe-mind you this was after a breathing treatment, albuterol and steroids, I went back to the doctor. They gave me cough syrup with codeine. Holy. This stuff is insane. How they would just hand it out is amazing. It seems everyone had a story about this orange drink.
I did some research (thank you Google and wikipedia) and it turns out the stuff is a narcotic with some snazzy properties. NIH states: Codeine belongs to a class of medications called opiate (narcotic) analgesics and to a class of medications called antitussives. When codeine is used to treat pain, it works by changing the way the body senses pain. When codeine is used to reduce coughing, it works by decreasing the activity in the part of the brain that causes coughing.
And that it does. Not to mention it provides some strange fuzzy-headedness. Drugs fascinate me. That’s putting it lightly. Anything that changes the body and it’s perceptions has my attention.
I’ve worked professionally in substance abuse prevention and treatment for the last decade. The reasons people try, use and abuse drugs are numerous. Every story is different but similar. I know the normal development patterns of experimentation, the classifications for abuse, dependence, etc. I know the legal, social, psychological and biological aspects of drugs, but I’ve never tried drugs.
It’s true. I’ve never tried drugs. At least not in a non-medical sanctioned setting or situation.
I tried cigarettes in middle school. I got lucky, the tobacco made me nauseated and I threw up behind the social studies classroom. Strike one. Earlier with some older cousins/aunts I tried chewing tobacco. The mud made me sick for at least a day. I never considered chewing again. I think my aunts still chew.
In high school I played sports. I didn’t see the point in trying drugs. No one I knew did meth or cocaine. I feel bad for these kids smoking and injecting heroin. That shit wasn’t happening when I was growing up. There was plenty of pot but I thought it smelled like butt-faced-loser. Backstory: My father was a pothead. I grew up with him steaming up the bathroom and pretending to “read.” For the record my father didn’t start reading books until I finished college. I had an uncle who was a speed head. I knew there were drugs around but I didn’t see the point.
I had also had some very traumatic experiences as a young child with a mentally ill/drugged out uncle who tried to kill himself, others and did some very uncool things in front of me. So, drugs in my mind were tragic for teen aged girls, they were akin to naked penises and hiv needles-all around bad news yo.
In college there were many more chances to do drugs. I again side-skirted the drugs and have memories of watching a girl dancing on a balcony and taking off her shirt in front of everyone. I just didn’t see the point. She didn’t seem free, hip or interesting. She was beautiful and broken. She looked like glass, fragile and also oddly slippery. I left that party and revisited my social circle.
In graduate school there were more drugs. Not just any drugs, but complicated drugs being used by more interesting people. At that point I figured I had dodged the bullet enough times, so why pull the trigger? I was curious about pot and had a boyfriend who claimed it “helped” his ADHD. For a little while I fantasized about trying pot but seeing as how I worked at a rehab it seemed contrary and stupid, so I never tried it. I figured my window for exploration had expired. We broke up and I was thankful I hadn’t tried pot. Honestly he never offered and I think it would have freaked him out if I had asked. I wanted to understand what make it so appealing. I wanted to know why he would sacrifice his job and his securities to smoke after work. I wanted to know what it felt like. From the outside looking in, it just never seemed all that interesting. What about it could make someone do all those things? It just didn’t make sense.
So, the codeine, it fascinates me. My body needed the relief to heal. But the recreational aspects of opiates and other drugs are a mystery to me. Not that I don’t understand a high. Once after a surgery they gave me some opiates, holy hell did I ever get high. Imagine runners high times 98 times 65.3 plus the rush of a 12 pack paired with a crate full of donuts. Yeah.
But, drugs, they’re still not for me. I philosophize about them. I learn about them. My clients struggle to recover from them. My family suffers because of them. My tribe is being demolished by them, and still they are a mystery to me.
In summation: Danna’s elicit drug Experimentation: zero. Abuse: zero. Dependency: zero. Capacity for dependence: high.