Junk Cycle

I saw my brother today.  Sort of, I guess.

Two weeks ago he began the motions of getting clean.  He went to a detox facility and has since been in an outpatient program waiting to get into an inpatient program.  He hit rock bottom I suppose.

My dad dropped him off in the ghetto and prayed.

I saw my brother today.  Sort of, I guess.  It wasn’t totally him though.  He was the in between brother.  The almost clean, still heroin addicted shell of my brother.  The brother whose mind is still foggy without memories of the recent months.  The brother who hasn’t seen my daughter since a year ago because he chose the needle over her.  The brother who is trying not to be a junkie anymore.

Unfortunately though, we have been down this road so many times before.  He goes to detox, he gets clean.  He goes back to school.  He starts drinking socially and sooner than later the needle is in his arm and the knife is in his families’ back.  The cycle of destruction that has been killing our family for five fucking years starts again.

I hope this time something changes.  I pray he stops.  I don’t think my dad will survive another round.



Hitting rock bottom

Today I realized that I haven’t seen my brother since July.  Nine months.  I could have had a baby and he wouldn’t have known.

My brother has hit rock bottom.  Again. He is homeless.  He is a junkie.  Since his arrest over Christmas holiday, he has been arrested twice, gotten in one car accident, and overdosed.  He didn’t tell us about any of it.  His best friend who was once a user, filled me in on his life since I’ve last seen him.  It wasn’t easy listening to the sordid tales of his awful life but I had to.  I had to know what his life is like.

This time it’s the worst.

My dad picked my brother up this morning to take him to detox.  My brother was high and looked homeless.  His shirt and pants were torn, his skin grey and dirty, and his nails black as night.  He couldn’t talk, walk, or open his eyes.  I am absolutely sure my father’s heart shattered a million times over.  As they drove to the detox center my brother would become randomly coherent to point out street corners that he could score on.  Devastation.

It’s getting to the point where I no longer fear his death.  Now I fear him becoming a nameless face, begging for change, that  I pass on the street one day.  I worry that his disease will take his life but leave him alive.

I think about his mind and how smart he once was.  Smarter than me that’s for sure.  I think about how good-looking he used to be, tall & handsome.  I think about how much I would laugh when he was around.  My belly would ache. That boy I once loved will all my heart is gone and I am beyond scared that I will never see him again.  He is a shell and heroin is his body.