Archive | December, 2016

The Addiction Story

3 Dec

Every time I visited the government hospital, I never paid any heed to the half torn, faded posters that preached about the harmful effects of addiction. I was pompous enough to believe that it would never happen to me, that I was strong enough to never fall into the trap, that I could never be the pitiable person they depicted, the one who lay half-dead on the hospital bed.

I had always glanced at the cigarette boxes, which warned us about how smoking causes cancer, earlier with a one line statutory warning, and later with horrific images, which have only been getting larger and larger over the years. The warning never affected me, because I knew that I wasn’t foolish enough to let something else govern my life, enough to insidiously render me powerless, at its mercy for my survival. I always managed to find a way to ridicule the advertisement at the beginning of a movie, at any theatre in India, mocking the poor acting by the characters in the advertisement, at the outright portrayal of doom which they implied was sure to befall on you if you succumbed to your temptations. I mocked because I knew that I was safe, far away from cigarettes, or alcohol, or any other drug. I prided myself on the ground that I was a sensible, independent, well-informed young woman, who would never voluntarily give in to cravings, regarding how fatal they can prove to be, and hence, was at a self-appointed higher position from which I could look down at the other humans who had given away their souls to the devil.

Until I met you.

As soon as I started to get to know you, my ground slowly started slipping from under my feet, and I found myself falling in love with you. I could feel myself falling, but the fall was sweet, and I let myself loose, falling down from my self-appointed higher position, and into levels way under the earth. Moments of self-doubt crept into my head, but aided by the notorious Cupid, I managed to shoot them down, convincing myself that my condition wasn’t the same as that of the young boy who started smoking marijuana occasionally with his friends just for recreation, but the high was so sweet that he slowly started smoking it every day, and soon, all day every day.

Initially reluctant about the possibility of it turning into a routine, I soon started speaking to you every night on the phone, giggling and blushing. I used to feel light in my head, almost dizzy, quite like the woman who drinks alcohol every day, until she’s inebriated enough to allow herself to be happy. Cupid’s aim had started to get better by then, and he could easily shoot down the balloons of doubt even before I could see them.

Days turned into months, and then into years, and when things between you and me got over at the end of the two years, I couldn’t even recall the exact moment I had started getting addicted to you. My mouth did not have any blisters or ulcers to show for proof, nor had my liver or lungs started to degenerate; but my heart felt hollow, and my soul felt battered. I sat on my bedroom floor, hours of tears dried up on my face, with not a grain of energy left in my body and soul to fight the craving that consumed my heart. And I dialed your number, and again, and again, drawing comfort from the sound of your voice mail. I looked around for my old accomplice desperately, only to realize that Cupid was after all, just the devil in disguise.

The haze gradually lifted, and it dawned upon me, that after months of consuming my addiction, it had finally consumed me.

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