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Always Something There to Remind Me June 16, 2010

Posted by Kimmothy in Experience, Health, Nail Biter, Tee Vee, Uncategorized.

Every once in awhile I’ll see (or hear or smell) something that unpleasantly transports me back to the time when I  was ingesting substances more than food. I’m not surprised by the flashback phenomenon itself, but I’m still somewhat taken aback every time it happens and the ick factor is always still there.

Last night on the fishing show Deadliest Catch, one of the fishermen’s sons was acting a little strangely throughout the show until the very end when the kid gets caught by his dad breaking into dad’s pill stash. Dad, who didn’t have a very good temper on the best of days, blows his stack, screaming at his son and calling him a thief and a liar, saying he never wants to see him again…until the son, pale-faced and shaking, whispers into his dad’s ear that he’s sorry, he’s sick and he’s an addict. That was all it took to stop dad in his tracks and his anger was immediately replaced by what looked like a resigned exhaustion.

Whoof, was that hard to watch.

This is not one of those reality shows that spends an hour showing people trying to outdo each other in assholery and made-up drama. The type of job they do and the conditions they do it in provide all the drama any good TV show could ever ask for. Obviously no one is immune to addiction, but for someone like this to admit to having a drug problem has a lot more impact than say, one of the Real Housewives. I guess what I’m trying to say is it felt more real. To me, anyway.

After the shock, the scene hit me a few different ways. The first thing was imagining what it would be like to suffer withdrawals out on a boat in the middle of nowhere, hundreds of miles from any help. I think I’ve tried to describe opiate withdrawal before and I say again, no words I have can ever accurately explain what it’s like. As Jake was crying and saying over and over, “I’m sick, you don’t understand,” I thought, Oh my hell. People who don’t know might think, wow – stealing pills from your dad who’s in poor health and suffering from extreme back pain? That’s pretty low, dude. No. You have no idea.

If I had to take a guess at what happened, I’d say the little dude has probably been dabbling for awhile and had most likely gotten to the point – maybe stemming from an injury – of being prescribed his own meds. Happens all the time. He’s only in his mid-twenties, but has probably suffered more on-the-job injuries than most of us could rack up in a lifetime. So okay, taking pills regularly. And then once in awhile popping a couple in-between the prescribed times. Slowly, without even realizing it, you feel much better and everything is so much more pleasant and easy to deal with after using whether you’re in pain at the time or not.

They go out to sea sometimes for weeks at a time. I’m guessing he either didn’t plan his drug supply accordingly, they stayed out longer than what he anticipated and if he hadn’t yet tried to kick pills, he had no idea what he was in for when the drugs left his system. When that happens? Desperation doesn’t begin to cover it. I’m sure he did not take his dad’s medication for the fun of it, and maybe not even to get high – at that point your body has taken over and is in total control. Ethics? Morals? Right and wrong? Fuck that – your body is telling your brain to FIX IT.

The look of pure shame when his dad was yelling at him hit me square in the gut. Having to keep something like that to yourself until the time comes when you have no choice but to admit it to your loved one – oh I remember that conversation with Brian like it was yesterday. I probably shouldn’t have told him “I need to talk to you after work tonight,” in the tone of voice I did, because when you’ve had the kind of shit happen we have, he was figuring I was going to tell him there was someone else or something equally as pleasant. Which actually turned out better because he was almost relieved when I told him I need to fix my problem. (“Oh, it’s just drugs? Sure, we can deal with that!”)Unfortunately in the time between when that episode was filmed and now, the father has passed away. My dad’s passing was one of the big catalysts that kicked my habit into high gear. I hope there’s someone else he’s close with who can be a source of support and caring as much as Brian did for me. I also ope wherever he is in the process, that he’s seen the worst of it. My heart goes out to anyone who’s ever had to fight this.



1. Taoist Biker - June 16, 2010

Dys bawled her eyes out at that one.

The “info” on our cable box referred to a “dark secret” on the Cornelia Marie. And of course, we’d seen the promos of Phil yelling at somebody to GTFO and I never want to see you again.

It was when Jake was slow getting up, and then he was out of sync, wandering almost aimlessly around the deck, stepping in the hole, that I sat up on the couch and said to Dys, “Oh my god, Jake is fucking high. That’s what it is.”

Knowing that Phil didn’t make it too much longer after that makes it so much harder to see. Poor Jake. I hope he can pull it together and keep it together.

Kimmothy - June 16, 2010

One of my friends, another DC nut, had to go searching today to see if she could find out any info on how Jake’s doing now and she reported he just bought a house with his girlfriend that’s located close to Josh and is currently out on another boat fishing. That was very encouraging to me.

2. Heather - June 16, 2010

Well…you know he got into some trouble after his Dad passed, but at one of the memorials they filmed he said he had been getting his stuff together. I sure hope he does. I can’t imagine the guilt the kid feels knowing that right before he lost his Dad, he broke his heart.

Kimmothy - June 16, 2010

I always used to imagine my dad seeing stuff I was doing and that was bad. I hope Jake’s guilt is minimum, but you know how that goes.

3. morethananelectrician - June 16, 2010

I am having a hard time watching Phil this season…that scene hurt.

Kimmothy - June 16, 2010

Next week is going to be BAD.

4. Shari Sherman - June 17, 2010

Great post, Kim. I’m so glad you pulled through that experience in your life. Another hard part of this situatioin is when you want to help someone but they keep going back, even after they have kicked it physically…it’s like a slow suicide and very difficult for someone on the outside to watch. When it goes beyond accidentally becoming addicted to purposely doing something that you know is killing you. Like I said, I am sooooo glad you came through. You are a wonderful person, with a husband who loves you, and a family that would die if they had to watch you spiral out.

Kimmothy - June 17, 2010

Thank you Shari!

5. Jean - June 17, 2010

I would like to email you privately about this post. I’m in a situation where insider information would be very helpful to me.

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