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Neglect in a Bag

Story Of Hope By Rochell

I am a 21-year-old, single mother of a beautiful baby boy. I am also a recovering heroin addict. I am a user. I am a neglectful mother. I am a daughter, sister, co-worker, and friend to all of the people I have neglected. Heroin is neglect in a bag. A piece of plastic. And a powder.

I remember the day it all started like it was yesterday. I've many reasons to blame on my addiction. A rough childhood. An abuseful relationship. Low self-esteem. Never being enough. This all came into play before my addiction. So yeah, I could use all of that as an excuse. But i won't.

My first use was a Lortab, 5 MG. I was with my son's dad for 3 years at this point. He had always used. I fell in love with the 15-year-old rebel. The sneaky, degrading asshole that “loved” me and made me feel like I was enough. So, one day, after 3 years of us being together, he met his dealer to get his tabs for the day. I wanted to see what it felt like since he seemed to enjoy it so much. I took one. I nodded here and there and it was the best, relaxed feeling ever. i'd found the resolution to my heartache. This little white pill was my medicine for all of my internal pain and my low self-esteem. 

I started using Lortabs daily. All of a sudden, I stopped feeling the relaxation. My now fiance had moved on to Oxycodone. I, following his lead, tried one. I took it. I loved it. Once again, I was in my own paradise. Our relationship became toxic. It was based only on pills. These little tiny miracles that could tear apart everything in a matter of 10-15 minutes but yet also make the world a better place all at the same time. Eventually, after 4 years of unprotected sex with him, I became pregnant. I quit all of the pills. It was hard, but I had already had 2 miscarriages and I wanted a child of my own. I was only 19 at this time. I knew I would be a good mother. I knew I could do this on my own.

One night, like many others, I found out he had cheated on me again. We had a friend over. They went out to go buy some pills. After they had been gone for about 45 minutes, I started to get worried. I started thinking the deal went bad. So, like any worried fiance that is 3 months pregnant with her lover's child, I began blowing up his phone trying to make sure they were safe. It was only after the 5th time I had called that I noticed he had left his phone in our room on the bed. Curious to see if he was up to his old tricks, I checked his messages, calls, and internet history. While in the process of this unrelenting, cruel, self-tormenting cycle, he received a text. A text that broke my heart over and over again. It was from the same girl I had been jealous of since he and her had started working together. The same girl I had found messages from before, the same woman he had messed around with before. And it started all over again.

Finally, they arrived back home (my fiance and his friend). When he walked in the door, I was on the floor in a ball holding his phone in one hand and a hand placed carefully on my growing belly. When he walked into the room farther, a rage washed over me. This SOB is cheating on his 3 month pregnant fiance. How could he? How could he ruin us this way? Our growing family is now torn! I got up and started screaming that I was leaving and was sick of his games. He didn't like that very much. As his friend was standing in our room, we were in the living room screaming back and forth and finally I threw his phone at him and he ran up to me and slammed my carrying body into the door.

I packed that night. All of my clothes, all of our baby's clothes. I left to my mother's. When I was 5 months into my pregnancy, I started having horrible back pain. (I've had back problems since I could remember.) I told my doctor at my 6 month check-up. He prescribed me 5 MG Lortabs. Of course, with my relationship dilemma, I didn't tell the doctor that I had had past addiction problems. So, I started taking them. Now, I did only take them as prescribed. Every 4-6 hours as needed for pain. The further along I was into my pregnancy, the more my back pain increased. I told the doc once again that the meds weren't helping anymore. He then prescribed 7.5 MG Lortabs. This is when I started noticing I was becoming physically addicted again. 

I still didn't abuse my meds, I took them as needed. The night finally came when it was time to go to the hospital to be induced. We waited hours and hours on end after I had been given the medicine to progress my delivery. Still, nothing had changed. Finally, the doctor came in for a final time to check my cervix and when he did so, he realized that my son had moved all the way down to my pelvic bone but that my hips were not “spreading” for my child to have room to come down. He then decided that I was to have an emergency Cesarean section. Two long, grueling hours later I was sent back for surgery. They gave me my spinal block, and it was time to start cutting. Throughout the whole procedure, my son's dad stayed by my side. He held my hand and cried with me. Our son was about to be born, and this was a dream come true for both of us. We were one again.

My son finally screamed and because I was behind a blue sheet, I could not see anything. I couldn't see the child I had carried for 9 months and had stressed so much through my pregnancy that I was scared something would be wrong with him; a deformity, a mental problem, anything. My ex finally came around the corner holding this small, tiny perfect little boy. I was so relieved. I was eventually moved back to my room in the hospital and immediately hooked up to an IV full of morphine. It took me a week to walk by myself again.

We finally got to go home with our beautiful child (we decided to try again as a family and move back in together in his parents' home). My doc had prescribed me 10 MG Lortabs and 10 MG Percocet for my recovery. After 4 months, he removed me from my medicines. I couldn't take the pain of the withdrawals and hell, I wasn't pregnant anymore so I took matters into my own hands. I started buying the 30 MG Oxycodone off the street from my old dealer. I was still doing everything to take care of my baby and my relationship was once again going downhill. I kept using. He kept cheating. I moved into my mother's again with my son. After 2 months of using the pills, it wasn't enough. I met a man at a gas station one night while I was with my new boyfriend and his friend. He sold pills and weed.

During a split with my new boyfriend, I decided to go get some pills from this new dealer. When I arrived, he told me he was out of all of the pills. I was in so much pain, suffering from the withdrawals. He could tell I was hurting something serious, so he told me he did have one more thing I could try. At this point, I told him I'd take anything as long as I could stop hurting. He went into his room and got it. I sat waiting in the freezing cold living room. He finally returned. He sat down beside me and told me everything would be okay. He continued to pour a light brown powder out onto the table. He scraped it into one thin line (I had started snorting the pills at this point) and I snorted it. It was perfect. This was it! I eventually asked him what it was. His reply was heroin.

I was so scared, but so thrilled. I had just done something I said I would never do. I couldn't believe it. But I didn't stop. I progressed to 2, 3, 4 tenths a day. All the way to a gram a day. I got bad. I stopped going home. i stopped taking care of my son. I stopped contacting my family and moved in with the dealer. This story ends quickly from here on out. I began prostituting myself for money to by this little piece of heaven. I lost everything. Family, friends, jobs, cars, clothes, and most importantly, myself. I didn't know who i was anymore. I was no one. I was an empty vessel.

Eventually, I came to the conclusion that I really needed to get my shit together; one way or another. I admitted myself into a hospital to get treatment. I lied to the doctor to get out. I finally got sent home and when i walked out to my car in the parking deck, I pulled out a glove from the drivers side door. Shoved all the way down into one finger of the glove was a bag a pills. I had not learned my lesson.

Months went by and again, I started using heroin. I neglected everything and everyone. My son hadn't seen me in months. And sad but true, I didn't care enough to go be the mother God intended for me to be. 

I received a text from my mother one day that read, “You need to get over here and take care of your damn son! DHR is thinking about moving (blank) into my permanent custody or either foster care! It's not too late.”

My son didn't deserve this. Doesn't deserve this. My son will not lose his mother to drugs. My son will have the life I didn't. So, I did what God intended for me to do. I did what God put me on this earth for. I started becoming a mother. I decided to stop. I decided to get my shit together so that i wasn't another story on the news, or so that my son wasn't another motherless child. So that my siblings, parents, and other family did not have to plan my funeral. I got clean last week. I have 6 days under my belt. It's not a long time. It's not perfect. I am nowhere close to being back in the loop with my family. But, my life is getting better. I just started a new job. I have seen my son everyday this week since Easter Sunday (except one day that I couldn't due to training at my new job). I am getting my life back. God has given me a second chance at this thing.

I will tell Him everyday, “Thank you for choosing me even when I didn't choose you.”

There is time. Save yourself. Save your children. Save your soul.

I wish you all luck out there. Anything is possible. Love yourself.

And praise God every chance you get.

I hope my story has reached out to someone. God bless.

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