Archive for the ‘Life Before Prison’ Tag

HAS ANYONE SEEN MY PANTS?

I don’t really know what’s worse…accidentally bringing illegal drugs into rehab with me, being overly happy about the fact that I found these accidentally placed pills in my hoodie pocket, or better yet…maybe the worst of all…the fact that I offered to share my new found surprise with the group of guys that I had been chilling with…like that was a perfectly okay and normal thing to do.  As if a group of drug addicts, stuck in a shit hole for a rehab, bored out of their minds, would say no….

At the time I didn’t see a problem with any of these things.  My high that I walked in there with was fading.  It wasn’t completely gone, but it was definitely fading fast.  I looked at my new found treasure as a sign from the powers above.  As if to say, let’s keep this fucking party going…and shit, the way I saw it, I thought I was doing a good thing–being unselfish–by offering to share with everyone when I could have just kept them all for myself.

I would love to be able to tell you that we fought the good fight against drugs and we came out victorious…that we just said NO to drugs…that we were above the influence…or that we practiced any of those other cliche drug ads that you see on TV…I can’t.  As soon as the smoke break was over with and we were let back inside the building, I led the brigades to my room and victory was ours, and ours alone.  The pills were crushed and sniffed faster than I’d ever seen the process done.  I was happy.  I can’t speak for the other guys, but I’m sure they were pleased as well….

While still enjoying my new found high, I figured I’d hop on the ol’ payphone and call a few friends and family members.  Well, I could only remember a select few phone numbers, so I figured I might as well call my mother Laura.  We exchanged obvious pleasantries.  I believe her first words and the gist of the conversation from her perspective, was something along the lines of just how proud she was of me for getting help, how much she loved me and supported me, and how I didn’t have to worry about anything while I was gone, other than getting the help I needed, cleaning myself up, and getting better.  Guilt ensued.  Shit…guilt is an understatement for how I felt on that first night during and after talking to my mother.  Here I was, son of the fucking year already, admitted drug addict, admitted drug dealer, high as a fucking kite while sitting in a rehab, listening to my unsuspecting and supportive mother tell me how proud she was of me.  I had hit a new low.  I obviously lied to her.  I told her that I was doing great.  I told her of how I had run into an old friend and how my first day went by without a hitch…I was on my way.  I told her how I was so eager to clean up, go back to working a regular job, and how I hadn’t even thought of ever touching another pill ever again (stories)…what was I supposed to do….rat myself out?  “Oh yeah, hey Ma.  I’m doing great.  I love it here…listen to this…so I found a bunch of loose 30s in my sweatshirt.  Pretty funny right?  Oh yeah, crushed and sniffed faster than I found them, all gone.  YES Ma, of COURSE I shared…what kind of man do you think I am?  I DO have manners…ok, ok….love you too, call you tomorrow.  Ciao….”  Yeah, that would have went over really well…let me tell you.  So…I did what I thought was necessary.  I lied…at least I felt guilty about it.

After the phone call with my mother, I was pretty disgusted with myself.  I made no more calls.  I spent the remainder of my night all alone…high…but not enjoying it because of the overwhelming guilt and feeling sorry for myself.  I ended up falling asleep fully clothed while reading one of my favorite books that I had brought in with me.

I realized I had really hit rock bottom when I woke up the next morning to a plethora of unpleasantness (if that’s even a word…lol).  Let’s see… I was in a strange, unfamiliar bed, which normally might have been a good thing…lol…but that day…not so much.  I was all alone and it was brutally uncomfortable.  I was mildly soaked with presumably my own sweat.  I had what appeared to be mild chills.  “Fucking pissa…the withdrawals had begun.”  I was no longer high.  I was insanely hungry.  I still felt guilty for the previous night’s debauchery and for lying (yet again) to my poor mother.  To top it all off, when I opened my eyes, the first thing I saw (yes…I said thing) was what looked like a fucking wildebeest sprawled out in one of the other beds a few feet from mine.  It was facing in my direction.  It was presumably a male of its species, seeing there were no female patients in rehab.  It was drooling or sweating, or perhaps both, definitely going through some major withdrawals.  This creature was snoring and farting simultaneously in the most unpleasant melody I have ever heard….nice way to wake up and start my day huh?  Yup, I had arrived in hell…oh yeah, if anyone sees Tucker Max, tell him they don’t serve beer…and if they do…I didn’t get any.  All I got was drug withdrawals, a snore and farting symphony for the ages, and my first ever legitimate excuse for wanting to end my life….

After I woke up to that shit, I figured that my day could only get better…boy was I wrong…

I was told by the nurse, even though I was clearly going through some serious withdrawals, that I wouldn’t be placed on any medications to help me until later that night…or even worse…possibly the next morning.  Which meant, since it was six in the morning at the time, I would have to suffer for possibly the next twenty four hours.  “Fuck. My. Life…”  Remember, withdrawals from opiates only get worse as the day progresses.  Considering I felt like shit then, I could only imagine what was in store for me.  As one would imagine, this didn’t please me.  Once again, I thought of escaping…once again, I realized I was fucked.  I’ll tell you one thing, I definitely regretted sharing the pills I had found the night before with everyone.

I tried to take my mind off of the fact that I felt like death, which was rapidly getting worse by the second…or so it seemed…by trying to wolf down a little breakfast.  Bad idea.  That hunger I felt upon waking up had subsided.  The mere sight and smell of food made me nauseous.  Anyone who knows what it’s like to withdraw from roxys, or any opiates for that matter, feels my pain.  I couldn’t eat.  I couldn’t go back to sleep.  My body ached in the worst way.  I was cycling from hot to cold every ten minutes or so…it was fucking miserable.  Especially considering I wasn’t withdrawing in the comforts of my own home, in my own bed, with my own TV.  Nope…I was stuck in some shitty rehab, with an uncomfortable bed to lay in, with no TV anywhere close to where I laid my head (it was two rooms over).  Not to mention, I was stuck in a room going through all this shit with a room full of strangers…good times…let me tell you.

However, I didn’t have to suffer for too long.  One of my new friends, whom I had selflessly shared my pills with on the previous night, decided to return the favor.  He had witnessed me arguing, more like begging and pleading, with the nurse in the AM pill line about how shitty I felt and how she held the key to making me feel all better.  Then he witnessed me attempt to eat breakfast and fail miserably.  After mid-day pill line, he gave me…well…to this day I’m not quite sure as I never asked…some pill-like object that he smuggled from the line.  It could have been a fucking Tylenol for all I know.  Regardless, I took it without question considering I thought I was on my death bed.  I would have taken anything to make me feel better.  It did the trick.  Within ten minutes I felt so much better, as if I was never sick.  Looking back, I’m pretty sure it was either a methadone wafer or some other sort of opiate that I took.  Whatever it was…it worked.  See folks, that’s karma for you… always share…lol.

Speaking of sharing, I have a little advice that I’d like to share with anyone that is thinking of checking into a rehab.  First…DO IT…GO…don’t think about it any longer.  If you have a problem…go get help now!  It was by far the best thing I’ve ever done.  Second…DO NOT…and I repeat…DO NOT bring anything valuable or expensive (clothing, jewelry, etc.) with you that you would mind losing.  I didn’t know this considering I had never been to rehab before.  I won’t get into too much detail here, but my wrist watch (that I thought nothing of wearing in there because it was my everyday watch) apparently caused a little bit of a frenzy among the more less fortunate patients.  Allegedly, there was talk among a few of them that they were going to try and steal my watch from me somehow.  I guess they figured that they would steal it, pawn it, and buy drugs and/or small used sedan with the proceeds.  Well…they thought wrong.  Nothing happened to my watch, or me for that matter.  I actually almost laughed when I caught wind of that little nonsense plan because if you saw the caliber of people I was in there with (other than the few guys I became friendly with) you would know that neither I nor my wrist watch was ever in any danger.  However, somehow word got to one of the staff members that my wrist wear was causing a distraction among the patients.  When I say distraction, I mean two little pussies that were 100 lbs. combined challenged me for my watch.  When I stepped up, they backed off and ran and told the nurse… so after hearing that, the nurse made me hand my watch over so someone could come and pick it up…or I had another choice…I could leave the rehab with it still on my wrist…if I refused.  I reluctantly obliged.  I handed it over and all went back to normal…whatever that meant in that place.

Even though I didn’t lose my watch (as if that was ever going to happen anyways…lol), I did end up losing a pair of pants later on in the day while I was at a group meeting.  I remember laughing hysterically when I realized my pants were missing…as if to say… who the FUCK steals another man’s pants like?! shit are times THAT tough out there…PANTS!?  I could understand stealing the watch…it’s worth money…it has value…but  PANTS!?  I actually had to laugh out loud to that one.  Shit, if someone needed a pair of pants that badly, all they had to do was ask me nicely and I would have given them a pair.  It just goes to show you the caliber of people I was dealing with in there.  Aside from the few I kicked it with, and my pal Anthony, they were straight trash…

All in all it was a pretty fucked up day.  I had woken up to what looked like a mutant creature a mere few feet from me withdrawing from god only knows how many drugs…don’t forget the fact it was playing a special musical for all who were there…I had to endure withdrawals of my own for the first six hours of my day…a possible plot to steal my watch was unfolded, and when the two idiots were confronted they told on me…and to top it all off…somebody went and stole my pants…I loved those pants…

TO BE CONTINUED….

Posted 12/15/2011 by Matty McDonald in Uncategorized

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A FAMILIAR FACE IN AN UNFAMILIAR PLACE

Silence is pure bliss…well…it is in most circumstances anyway.  Not when your stuck in a rehab while high on pills.  Silence is pretty fucking depressing when your laying down on quite possibly the most uncomfortable bed ever invented, all alone, with nothing to fill the empty space of absolute silence, but thoughts of how miserable you are, how much you want another pill, and just how badly you fucked up your life.  I didn’t think it could possibly get much worse than that.  Then again, I hadn’t been to prison yet…had I?

I had a plethora of different emotions, thoughts, and memories going through my mind as I restlessly laid there.  I thought of my friends and what they were possibly doing at that moment.  I thought of my family, mostly my parents, and wondered if they were okay…I mean…since I was in rehab for drug addiction and all.  I thought of the countless women from over the years…whatever ones I could remember anyway…lol…and smiled to myself.  I thought of everything I had done thus far, the many places I’ve seen, the people I’ve met, and how it had been a wild ride.  I smiled, I felt lucky.  Then as I thought more and more of the good, I started to feel pretty shitty.  I started to realize how I had thrown it all away.  I had literally sniffed my life away.  I began to grow sad, hopeless…like “Oh…woe is fucking me”…then I had a bright idea…I could do it again, I’d just start hustling again.  I’d make some more money, and this time I’d do it right, I’d be smart.  I’d stay clean, I wouldn’t sniff a single pill this time around.  That was the key…right?  Yeah, that’s what I would do…I’d get cleaned up at rehab and as soon as I got out of there I’d call my former friend and be on a flight to Florida.  I closed my eyes and smiled.  I remember falling asleep…or maybe it was all the pills I had sniffed and I was nodding off.  Either way, I was out like a light.

After a short while, my nap…or my drug induced coma…whichever way you want to look at it…and the silence…was disrupted by what sounded like a small stampede.  I remember thinking to myself…“Fucking pissa.  It’s bad enough I’m stuck here in this miserable room, laying on these itchy ass sheets, and now I cant even nap?”  I heard all sorts of random voices, yelling, laughter and mixed conversations, and it grew louder as it presumably neared my room.  It was either my new roommates or someone freed the animals from the zoo in the next town over.  Sadly, I didn’t hear one female voice among the bunch.  If there was one, she was silent, or had possibly the deepest voice I’ve ever heard.  Now I’m not saying I was trying to pick up a woman in rehab or anything…I mean I was engaged and all…although that would have made for an interesting story…all I am saying is that I enjoy the company of women, and it would have been nice to have one, or several for that matter, around while I was stuck in fort detox.

As soon as I headed into the corridor to see what all the commotion was about, I was immediately let down.  As I had assumed, there wasn’t a female in sight.  The only females out there were the nurses I had mentioned before…whom…unless I was still paranoid…were still looking my way.  All that occupied the hallway were a bunch of suspicious looking males of all different ages and ethnic backgrounds.  My hopes of the rehab hookup were deflated…lol.

As I turned to head back to my room to avoid any awkward introductions or interactions, I heard someone call out my name.  (I wasn’t trying to make friendly with anyone else just yet.  As I mentioned before, I wasn’t in a good mood being there, and truth be told, I was just awoken from my drug induced slumber by these people, so I didn’t go out there with open arms ready to make friends).  The only thing I can remember thinking was…“Fuck!!  I guess this whole little trip to rehab isn’t going to be a secret for much longer.”  Then I realized, “Wait…who the fuck knows me all the way up here?  This cant be good…”

When I turned around ever so slowly, not knowing what to expect, I was surprised to see my old friend Anthony heading my way.  Let me tell you, I have never been so happy to see a familiar face in an unfamiliar place in my entire life.  I practically ran over to him, all smiles, to give him dap and a hug.  Now I won’t get too into how I know Anthony.  Let’s just say that I met him through an old flame of mine’s little brother.  We had hung out and partied together in both Boston and LA.  I hadn’t seen him in a few years.  If memory serves me correctly, the last time was out in LA, right before I went on BB9.  It had indeed been a while.  Seeing him changed my whole mood and my outlook on being there.  As if to say, “Fuck it, it’s all good now.  Now I won’t have to be stuck in here all alone…I have a friend to kick it with while I kick drugs…this could be alright after all.”

Anthony and I played catch up for the next few hours while he showed me around my new digs.  He had gotten there a day or two before I did, so he pretty much knew the ins and outs already.  He basically gave me a rundown on how the joint was run…how the other inmates…or should I say patients were…how the food was…the schedule…meetings…the staff…you know…all that good stuff.

In talking with Anthony, I learned that the staff members (nurses, counselors, case managers, etc) were pretty laid back for the most part, which pleased me.  The last thing I wanted while I was detoxing was to be around unfriendly or aggravating people.  I knew how bad withdrawals sucked and how they were going to fuck with my emotional and mental state.  What if a nurse decided to be super nurse on a bitchy power trip, while I was mid-withdrawal…well let’s just say it wouldn’t have been pleasant for either of us.  So…it was really a relief to hear that they were all chill.  He did tell me however, that the one thing that they were extremely strict about was the med line.  I was told that I had to be on time and there was to be absolutely no talking.  By the way, for those who don’t know what the hell a med line is…it’s a line formed by the patients, three times daily, to receive whatever type of meds that the clinic put them on to help detoxify from whatever type of street drug(s) they were abusing.  For example…heroin users typically got methadone at a high dose, oxy users (such as myself) had the choice of the clonidine and librium cocktail or a low dose methadone taper.  Cocaine users got librium, etc.  You get the idea.  The reason they were so strict about med line, as I would learn, is because patients would try to pull such moves as hitting the line up twice for double the fun, or better yet, they would go up, pretend to take their meds but really cheek them, and then in turn sell them to other patients later on… so unless I tried to pull any stunts, I wouldn’t be bothered.  I could detox in peace.

I also learned the rest of the ins and outs of the place…there were to be daily NA meetings, in which an outside guest would come in and speak…there were to be other daily group therapy sessions, and better yet, one-on-one sessions with whoever my case manager was…there were smoke breaks every 15-20 minutes in the backyard…to make outgoing phone calls, there were two payphones in the corridor…there were two vending machines, a TV room, ping-pong table, and two random tables that were used by the patients for illegal poker tournaments at night time…right up my alley…the food was edible and they even served coffee every morning.  Truth be told, after walking around and talking with my friend, I had a whole new outlook on the whole rehab thing.  It still sucked being there…don’t get me wrong…but I guess I was starting to feel like it wasn’t THAT bad.

After I got the grand tour and the rundown on how the place operated, I got introduced to a few of the normal guys there.  There weren’t many, let me tell you.  Now, I’m not one to pass judgement on others.  I realize I’m no prize myself, but some of the dudes in there were straight up trash, well beyond fixing…however, I actually met a few cool guys during my time spent there.  There were these two brothers from Woburn that I ended up kicking it with hard body until I got out.  There was a younger kid from Stoneham that Anthony knew from before, so he chilled with us.  There were a few others from around the Boston area that I also became friendly with.  All in all, even though I was in a shitty place, it didn’t mean I was surrounded by shitty people.  These were guys like me who had just made a few poor choices along the way.  I wasn’t alone in battling addiction after all.  I met dudes from all walks of life and I came to the realization that addiction can really happen to anybody, regardless of social or economic status, and that scared the fuck out of me.  Shit, what scared me even more was when I told some of the patients that I was friendly with, what drugs I was there for and that it was my first (and hopefully last) time in rehab…they laughed, as if to say…that’s it??!  That really fucked me up.  Now mind you, I was sniffing like 20 pills a day and a bunch of cocaine sporadically during the course of a week up until I walked up in there.  For them to say “THAT’S IT” made me really start to think a lot about life and where mine was heading.  It also almost made me thankful that there may still have been hope for me after all….

When the evening was coming to an end and it was time for a smoke break, I told the guys that I was chilling with that I’d be right back so I could go grab a hoodie out of my luggage, since it was nighttime and getting a little chilly outside.  When I came back to join in on the conversation and smoke a cigarette with my new compadres, I remember reaching in my hoodie pocket and feeling something very familiar, more like a few somethings that were very familiar.  To my new friends and my surprise, I pulled out a few blueberries.  Yes, I guess I was one of the idiots who smuggled drugs INTO a rehab.  Now I didn’t do this on purpose.  Remember, I used to have so many of these things…and I had them everywhere.  All I can remember saying, while smiling yet struggling with conflict, was….”What you fellas tryin’ to do?!……

(To be continued)…

Posted 11/29/2011 by Matty McDonald in Uncategorized

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THE LONGEST WALK OF MY LIFE…

I’m not quite sure of what I’m allowed and not allowed to talk about in regard to why I had abruptly stopped blogging about a month or so ago, so I’ll keep this as brief as possible.  They tried to shut me down…they failed.  So now I’m back and I’m going hard on this until I’m out of here…which just so happens to be pretty soon (sometime in 2012)…

Also, please try and bear with me on this blog topic specifically.  Traveling down memory lane isn’t always easy, especially when it concerns me thinking back to my time spent in rehab.  I was in a pretty fucked up place in my life at the time.  I guess you could say I’m still pretty ashamed that my drug use and my actions ultimately landed me there for an extended stay.  Until recently, I had kept my time spent there a secret from a lot of people for fear of being judged.  Shit, most people had no idea that I even had a drug problem of any kind until I started this blog.  But now I’m in prison…all the fear and embarrassment is out the window.  I’m not too concerned with how others view me anymore.  I am only focused on how I view myself.  I realize I’ve done some crazy, stupid, and fucked up shit in my life…some of which I’m not too proud of.  Rehab is the exception.  I am proud to be able to say that I’ve been..that I made it through (and only once)…and managed to stay clean after.  Not many in the position I was once in can truly say that.  So follow me if you will.  Down the long, lonely corridors of rehab, while I describe what it’s like to detox from drugs in a room full of complete strangers…what it’s like to be forced into group meetings to share feelings and experiences…and what it’s like to finally convince myself to give up the life that I was leading…the life of a hustler…the life of a drug addict…this is my moment of clarity……..

Walking into rehab (which for now will remain nameless) on that particularly sunny mid-September day back in ’09, I didn’t really know what to expect.  For the most part, it was an entirely new experience for me.  Sure, I’ve watched guilty pleasures such as Celebrity Rehab and Intervention before, who hasn’t, but going to rehab is sort of like prison–unless you’ve been there before and experienced it first hand, you truly don’t know what it’s like.  All I did know for certain as I walked in there high (like I owned the place) was that I was a drug addict and I needed help.  Supposedly, rehab was the place that could help me safely flush all the different shit I’d been slowly killing myself with out of my body for good.

I was originally going to write, while I was checking in at the front desk that day, I had all of these hopes that while I was there I could learn how to stay clean and sober once I left…how I was so eager to get my old life back and how I was ready to do everything and anything to make that happen…how I didn’t want to wind up a news clipping or a cautionary take…how from the moment I walked in I was a changed man who finally saw the light…I was going to sound righteous, profound and motivated…inspirational perhaps……it would have all been complete and utter bullshit.  Sure, it would have sounded good, but not a single word of that would have been true.

Truth be told, I hadn’t changed…not even close.  I walked in there high on pills and I was itchin’ for more.  I certainly wasn’t concerned with staying sober.  That didn’t even cross my mind at that point.  I could not have cared any less if I was going to wind up as a cautionary tale.  I just didn’t want to be there.  It was nice out.  I was high.  I should have been enjoying my life, yet I was there, checking into a hotel that would take my high away for good.  I was really only there to please my family and friends, to pacify my girl at the time, and for financial convenience.  Sure, I was pretty sick of pills having my balls in a vice grip.  I was sick of how my entire life revolved around drugs.  I was sick of the mood swings, the ups and downs, the lies, and the lacking social life and family relationships that ensued.  But to tell you the truth, I was REALLY sick of almost two grand a week going from my safe to right up my nose.  That’s just not good business.  That was my main motivation for going through with it.  All those other reasons came in a distant second.

I had thoughts of pulling some Jason Bourne type shit and hopping over the counter, slipping past the guard at the entrance, and bolting through the door to freedom shortly after my mother left.  However, I realized I had zero cash on me.  Nor did I have my key fob or a phone…I forgot I had given them to my mom so conveniently a little while before.  So in other words, I was fucked.  Even if I made it to the parking lot, I wouldn’t have made it very far.  Whether I liked it or not, I was going to go through with it.  Rehab was going to be my residence until I was free from drugs.

Now it may seem that my blogs are a constant contradiction.  In one blog I’m having epiphanies because I meet this little boy with cancer and I realize how bad I’m fucking up, so I vow to quit selling drugs and quit doing them.  Then I’m talking about how I want to escape rehab to sniff pills and go back to hustlin’.  It seems as if I’m all over the place.  Welcome to the mind of a drug addict.  I only write about how I felt at each particular time.  If your confused, imagine how I must have been.  I had a devil on one shoulder telling me, “Fuck rehab, go cop some more pills and let’s get this money.”  Then I’d think of my family and how I had already put them through enough of my shit, and I’d snap out of it and realize I had to get my act together.

So, if at any point it sounds like I regret going that day, that is not the case.  Going to rehab is BY FAR the BEST decision I’ve ever made.  Shit, I wish it didn’t take me so long to get my ass there.  Maybe I wouldn’t be sitting in Federal Prison right now.  OK, where was I?

Once I finally convinced myself that I was indeed stuck there, I was commanded by the ever so pleasant woman checking me in that I had to hand over my luggage so it could be searched for drugs and other contraband.  This still baffles me to this day.  Sure, I can see maybe smuggling in a cell phone or an iPod for recreational purposes, but c’mon, who the fuck would bring drugs INTO rehab?  You would have to be a real idiot…or better yet…a real asshole to pull that kind of move.  I mean isn’t that counterproductive?  That’s like smuggling fudge brownies into a Weight Watchers meeting.  It kind of defeats the whole purpose.  But, as I would later learn, there are more idiots out there than one would guess…and I’m one of them.

While my luggage was being thoroughly searched, I was given an interview and a piss test from the same pleasant woman who had checked me in.  The interview was pretty basic.  They wanted to evaluate how bad of a drug addict I was, what drugs I was then using, how much and for how long.   The whole time I was secretly praying that I didn’t have any loose blueberries or god knows what else floating around in my luggage.  That’s ALL I needed…to get kicked out of rehab before I even made it to my room.  The piss test went pretty smoothly, no pun intended.  I studied really hard for that test and it showed.  I had three different drugs in my system.  The fucking trifecta.  Yippie!  Well, not really.  All that meant was that they wouldn’t start helping me detox with medication until withdrawals from the shit I was on started to happen.  You remember…the sweats, chills, aches, pains, nausea…yeah, all that good stuff I mentioned before.  In other words, since I sniffed and swallowed a handful of pills a mere half hour before that intake interview and piss test, I wouldn’t start to withdraw for 24-48 hours…I was fucked yet again.  The first two days I had to spend there would be for nothing…I was already batting a thousand.

When the whole intake ordeal was through and my luggage was cleared by security, I was given a fresh bed roll and pointed toward my room down the hall.  I can still remember that moment as clear as day.  I passed a few nurses as I walked down the white walled corridor alone…all of which were blatantly staring at me…or at least it felt that way.  It was almost eerie.  I mean I know I’m devilishly handsome…lol…but this was different.  I almost felt as if I was being judged as I walked by dragging my suitcase.  I remember feeling my face start to flush with embarrassment.  All my confidence, my ego, my male bravado…out the window.  I must have left it in my car.  I was nervous.  No, it was more than mere nerves.  It was a cross between a panic attack and shame…if that makes sense.  Like I had some sort of sign on me that read, “I am a drug addict”.  It almost felt like a walk of shame or what I would imagine that would feel like.  I remember thinking, “Now I know how my one night stands must have felt…leaving my apartment the next morning as I walked them quickly to their car, my car, or to their awaiting cab…wearing their clothes from the previous night, usually something provocative,  hair all over the place, shades on, barefoot, carrying their heels so they could keep up with me as I hurried them along…as we passed neighbors who greeted me and smiled at my guest as if to say (without saying) that she’s not the first and certainly not the last woman they’ve seen do that very same walk from my place, but yet they were still trying to be somewhat polite.”…yeah…I felt like that when I did my lil’ walk of shame by those nurses that day.  I felt low.  It was brutal.  Quite possibly the longest walk of my life….

I was hoping for a single room with my own private bathroom, TV, and possibly a window with a nice view.  Something to perhaps make detoxing a little more comfortable for me.  What I got was an eight man room with a bunch of single beds evenly arranged along the walls.  There was a bathroom, but it certainly wasn’t private by any means.  There was no TV and the only window appeared to be sealed shut with a view of the parking lot.  If I had one word to describe the ambiance of the room I stayed in, I’d say miserable works nicely.  The walls were bare, off white.  The floors were tile, dirty beige.  The beds were small, metal, with mattresses that didn’t appear too cozy, lumpy.  It almost looked like what I would picture a mental ward to look like, minus the padded walls.  It would have been a perfect setting for a horror film and I was there to get off drugs, just great.   The only upside to the misery of the room upon me entering…there was no one there.  That pleased me.  I took that as a chance to make my bed and unpack some of my shit without being bothered by anyone.  After I did all of that, I remember lying there…high, still feeling judged, staring at the ceiling thinking…“So this is where my life has ended up?  I’m in fucking rehab?  Like really Matty…rehab??”  I vividly remember yearning for another blueberry, anything for that matter, to help take my mind off the fact that I had fucked up my life to the point where I was in some dingy room at an overpriced understaffed rehab trying to get off of drugs.  I never felt so disgusted with myself as I did at that moment.  I almost teared up, but I held back.  I think the drugs I was on played a small part in that, or maybe I didn’t want one of my new roommates to walk in on me crying on my first day.  Tears or not, I was sad.  I felt like a complete failure.  I felt like history repeated itself.  I ended up just like my deceased father……addicted to drugs….

(To be continued)…

Posted 11/08/2011 by Matty McDonald in Uncategorized

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THE ROAD TO REHAB…

Hey Ma.  Hey Mike.  How ya doin?  Oh me, I’m good thanks.  Well, sort of…um…yeah…so….um……I’m a drug dealer.  Pills.  Oxys.  Yup, have been for quite some time now.  Explains a lot huh?  No, don’t ask who.  Definitely don’t ask where.  There will be none of that.  Why?  Oh money of course, and well….I’m telling you because I’ve decided to stop….oh yeah….I’m hooked on drugs.  Pills mostly.  Lately it’s been a lot more though.  I mean…with life and work, and this wedding shit, everything is happening so fast.  I know…no excuse.  Yeah, I’m pretty bad.  OK…OK…I’m really bad.  Yeah, I’m high right now.  I sniffed a few in the driveway before I came in.  See…that’s why I’m here…because I have no control anymore…I can’t stop…because I desperately need your help…will you help me?

I played all sorts of conversations and possible outcomes over and over in my head on the drive over to my mom’s house.  I went alone.  It was probably the longest ride of my life, even though I lived but five minutes away in Charlestown…right over the Tobin Bridge.  I didn’t know where to begin, or how to begin for that matter.  I was about to tell the two people who I loved and respected more than anyone else in the world that their son was an epic failure.  I was not only a drug dealer, but I was hooked on pills.  I’m not going to lie…I was scared shitless.  Looking back, other than the day I was sentenced in Federal Court, and had to stand up in front of Judge Wolf and practically beg for him not to smoke me with too much time, telling my parents about my drug dealing/drug using lifestyle was probably the hardest day of my life.  Now mind you, I’ve been to rehab, I’ve been to prison, I’ve survived both motorcycle and automobile accidents, I’ve lost loved ones, I’ve lost a parent, I’ve had bad break-ups, you get it…so that says a lot when I say it was the hardest day of my life…

I went over there to my mom’s, high as ever on drugs, with my hat in hand, with my tail between my legs.  I don’t really remember too many details of the conversation.  I know I told my mother Laura and Mike about all the drugs that I’d been doing.  How I was sniffing more 30s in one day than most pain patients get prescribed for the month.  How I was sniffing the pedico everyday like a fucking crackhead.  I told them how the drugs were making me lose my mind, how I was very depressed most days, paranoid, up and down, and how I had absolutely no control anymore.  I was an addict.  I finally admitted to them that I was a drug dealer and had been for a while.  They weren’t stupid, they had their suspicions.  They noticed how well off I was and how good I lived, considering I didn’t have a job for a long time.  They knew something was up but didn’t want to believe it.  I mean who wants to actually believe that their son is a drug dealer?

I told my parents everything…well everything I could with out implicating anyone else.  I spoke of my many Florida trips and my wild times, again without mentioning names.  I’d say “my boy” or “my girl”…I wasn’t there to blame others for my wrongdoings.  Every choice, both good and bad, that I’ve ever made was mine…and mine alone.  I made the choice to smuggle drugs from Florida and take them back to Boston to sell them in mass quantities.  I made the choice to literally party my life away by sniffing even more pills than I sold.  I made the choice to lead the life that I was living.  No one forced pills down my throat or up my nose.  No one put a gun to my head and said “let’s make this money…sell pills.”  Nope, all these poor choices were mine unfortunately.  Now I was standing in front of my parents, owning up to what I had done, coming clean.  I needed to rid my body and mind of these drugs once and for all.  I asked for their help…

I won’t get into details about the reactions that I got from my mother Laura and Mike…or what else ensued that day…some things are better left unsaid.  Maybe that and all the other shit I can’t or choose not to talk about will be in the book…lol.  I will say that I am surprised at how well they both took the news of the life that I’d been leading…especially my mom.  You see, my father Stephen died when I was just a young kid…9 years old.  He died from a drug overdose, mixing an upper with a downer, ironically.  Then there I was, admitting that I was a drug addict…history just about repeating itself right in front of my mother’s eyes.  I’m sure it wasn’t easy on her, or Mike for that matter.  In Boston it’s much more than a cautionary tale about the oxy dealer getting hooked on his own supply and then…well let’s just say that I’m certainly not the first person around my way that this has happened to.  Like I said before, where I’m from these pills are an epidemic.  Oxys usually lead to two places: prison or dead in the ground.  They’re known to break up homes, ruin lives, fuck up friendships, etc…there aren’t too many success stories of drug dealers.  I’m really surprised at how well my parents took the news…grateful even.

My mother Laura was on the phone and the computer within minutes of me breaking the news to them, looking for inpatient rehabs and detox centers in Mass and out of state.  If you knew my mother, you wouldn’t expect any less.  After many searches, she finally found one in Mass that would take my health insurance.  Damn, I guess I wasn’t going to Florida or Cali to clean up after all…lol.  The only downside is that a bed wouldn’t open up for 5 days from the day that I told her.  I agreed, gave them my info, and that was that…

5 days…..now that posed somewhat of a problem.  That’s a lifetime to a drug addict.  Remember…with the amount of pills I was doing per day, the withdrawals would be brutal.  They would start within 12 hours, maybe even less, from the last time I had taken or sniffed one.  5 days……shit I might be dead by then.  So against the will of my parents who wanted me to stay at their place until I was set to go, I left.  There was NO way I was going to go through withdrawals for that long…that’s fucking torture…especially when I still had to go to work and function socially.  I had other plans.  Life didn’t stop because I was an addict…it definitely wasn’t going to stop because I was dope sick.  For 5 days I bought pills from a local street dealer at street prices.  Not exactly cheap if you take into account how many pills I was doing per day.  Not even close to how cheap I was getting them in Florida.  I’m not going to lie, I thought about taking one last trip down there, to grab some pills, make some more cash, but I made promises.  I was sick of hurting the ones I loved.  So instead, I shopped at the local hustler and sniffed away for five whole days.  I sniffed away like shit was sweet, went to work and life went back to normal.  Though in the back of my mind I knew where I was headed…good ole rehab.  No, not the Vegas pool party…DJ Prefanna wouldn’t be spinning, shutting down the pool party (stories lol), there would be no sexy girls, no big rehab cups filled with my favorite mixed drink, none of that…I was headed to a real rehab.  A place I had only seen on TV and heard rumors about.  I won’t lie, I had second thoughts during those 5 days, with me being high and all.  Shit, I had third, fourth, and fifth thoughts…then one night I got a call from my boy Alessandro.  I still remember that call to this day. “Matty, whats up kid?”  We exchanged pleasantries…then, “Are you doing okay palzy? Someone told me they saw you the other day…said you looked like shit…”  That was all I needed to hear.  I lied.  Told him I was great, looked great, felt great, started this new workout, just got back from Florida last week, looking at wedding venues.  I lied…not about Florida and the wedding thing…that was true…but about how I looked and felt.  I remember getting off the phone with him and thinking, “fuck it…I’m getting my life back.”  His call may have been the final kick in the ass that I needed…

As luck would have it, the Dana Farber job I was working on was ending for my company.  My cousin Jackie told me I was going to be laid off for a month until the next job was going to be set up to start.  I was thrilled.  I could use this time to clean up my act, then get right back to work as if nothing ever happened.  It also saved me a pretty embarrassing conversation with my cousin and union foreman, Jackie.  He didn’t know of my drug use, not until much later.  Things were falling into place…

The day I was to go to rehab was like any other.  I woke up.  I sniffed some pills.  Did some laundry. PLR (pills, laundry, rehab) haha…. I packed my suitcase for my stay at hotel detox.  I ran some errands…the usual.  I had to be at the rehab by 3pm, so I used the beginning of my day to get as high as I possibly could…my last hurrah if you will.  I sniffed an obscene amount of pills on that warm September day.  I was so high that I started to have doubts again.  I thought about blowing off rehab and hopping on a plane to Florida for a few weeks to stay with my former friend.  I could clean up down there, and I could come back with a boatload of pills, and stack up some more money.  Yeah, I didn’t need work.  It was like it was starting all over again.  Cold feet isn’t the word for what I had.  I just simply didn’t want to go.  I was back on my “I don’t need fucking rehab shit.”  That was obviously the pills talking.  Luckily for me, my mother thought otherwise.  She was hip to my plans.  She was outside my apartment in Charlestown in the early afternoon, blocking my driveway, beeping like a madwoman for me to get my ass downstairs and on the way.  Shit, I guess that was it.  I was going…not like I didn’t put up a fight.  Once again, I’ll spare the specifics, but I screamed, argued, cursed, you name it.  My mother wouldn’t budge.  There was NO getting out of this lil’ vacation.  I finally caved in once my mother said I could drive myself in my own car and she would follow.  I had some calls to make and I really wanted some privacy.  That…and I had a pocket full of pills I wanted to sniff on the ride.  So she moved and I pulled by…I was speeding like a madman…to call my trip to rehab a high speed chase would be an understatement.  I flew over the Tobin Bridge, all the way up Route 1, driving like a real asshole.  I was in and out of traffic, speeding, doing about a buck, while still managing to crush up some pills and sniff them while talking on the phone at the same time.  I didn’t know how long rehab would last and I was told that I couldn’t bring my phone in with me, so I had a lot of goodbyes and loose ends I had to tie up that I had to handle via phone, some of which weren’t pretty.  Again, I’ll spare details.  I still have NO idea how my mother kept up with me the whole way.  I was really putting my car to the test with the speeds I was hitting.  God I miss that car.  At first I was trying to lose her…I had visions of Florida, pills, money, and warm fun in the sun.  Then…as soon as I would see her in my rear view, I knew she was determined, and if I fucked this up, I probably wouldn’t get any second chances, so I kept on driving til I hit the rehab.  After the long chase, I finally pulled up to my new home for the next some odd days.  It was a big brick building with a fenced in backyard of some sort.  I noticed there were some people playing wiffle ball in the backyard as I pulled up, and they were all looking at me, probably cause I pulled in there like a madman.  I parked my car, grabbed my suitcase and walked over to my mom.  I gave her a huge hug…my last hug I ever gave while high on pills.  She was crying…I wasn’t.  I was more aggravated…like this was some sort of chore for me…like I had somewhere better to be.  In all reality, it was the BEST choice I ever made.  I tossed her my keys, handed her my phone and walked inside with her…like fuck it…here goes nothing…

“Hi, I’m Matthew McDonald…I have a 3 o’clock reservation…..”

(To be continued)….

Posted 09/21/2011 by Matty McDonald in Uncategorized

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THE ULTIMATUM (Part 2)

Did I just make the right decision?  I mean, did I really just get engaged? What the hell am I doing?  Is this woman even the one?  Or am I just stuck in some blueberried-up love cloud?  Speaking of blueberries…think I’ll have one…yeah that will help me think.  OK…where was I?  Am I really ready to give this all up…this life….. for a woman? C’mon Matty get a hold of yourself…what’s the worst that could happen?

My mind was literally clouded with all sorts of unanswered questions.  I had so many thoughts…both good and bad going through my mind all at once…that I couldn’t really think clearly.  I’d see a future me…a family man…wife, dog, couple of kids running around in the backyard while I was cheffin’ on the grille.  I seemed genuinely happy.  Then in a flash, I’d see another possible future me…skinny and pale, passed out in some dark hotel room, empty bottles all over the place, table full of drugs and powder residue, two women in the room putting on their clothes and rummaging through my pockets at the same time.  Then in an instant I’d flash back to another possible decent future, then back to another shit show.  You get the idea.  I was losing my mind.  I had either just made the best decision of my life, or quite possibly the worst.  You know how they say everyone hits a crossroads in their life at some point or another…well looking back…I feel that this was mine.  Did I want the simple, wholesome life of a family man, or did I want to continue on thinking I was some sort of wannabe rock star drug dealer for the rest of my life?  At the time, I honestly didn’t know the answer to that question.  So, as usual when life got hectic, I did what I normally did… I sniffed oxys like they were going out of style.  And at this point, cocaine was no longer an occasional thing.  I was sniffing the white lady just about every day after work, along with the berries to try and escape reality.  Work, engagement, hustling, friends, family, this that and a third…it was all getting to me.  I thought I was running away from my problems.  I was actually running toward them full speed…with no brakes.  I was a walking disaster at this point.  This was probably the darkest time of my life…the climax of my drug use if you will.  Drugs, not only blueberries, pretty much had me by the balls.  And now I was engaged to top it all off.  Nice.

Not too long after I began to literally drown myself in drugs on a daily basis…something…or should I say someone…threw me a life jacket.  One day, when I just got off of work, I noticed a little boy and his mother walking toward the elevator in the parking garage that I was in right next to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.  The mother was holding her son’s hand.  The boy had to be about 5 or 6 years old…tops.  I can still see his face as clear as day.  He had big, bright blue eyes, a round handsome face, and a big smile but with really little teeth.  He had on a red Boston Red Sox hat, a Dana Farber Red Sox t-shirt, shorts, and those croc sandals.  I remember thinking, “cute kid, he’s going to be a hit with the ladies someday with those eyes.”  I guess he reminded me of myself when I was a kid.  I even began to wonder what my future son would look like.  As they got on the elevator, I took a break from playing on my phone momentarily.  The mom and I smiled politely at each other and I continued on.  She and her son were talking about God only knows.  Then all of a sudden out of nowhere, the lil’ man lifts his hat completely off his head, holding it up in both hands in triumph, revealing a completely bald head while smiling from ear to ear, and asks,  “Mom…why am I like this..?” in quite possibly the cutest, most innocent, inquisitive/curious voice I’ve ever heard in my life…while continuing to smile like it was funny.  I’m almost choking up as I write this.  I literally froze.  I almost dropped my phone.  The mother and I looked at each other instantly.  She had somewhat half of a smile with semi-sad eyes…a look of embarrassment/fear/sorrow all rolled into one…knowing that there was no good truthful answer to the boy’s question.  Then there was me with a half smile as well…along with a look of shame/sadness.  I didn’t really know what to do or say at that moment.

All I did know was that in an instant, that little boy’s question broke my heart right on the spot.  I knew the answer to his question.  I mean the Dana Farber t-shirt and the bald head made it pretty obvious.  That 5 year old boy had cancer.  Now to tell you the truth, I don’t really remember what the mother said back to the kid.  I was in that much shock from the question itself.  I guess it really struck something in me, maybe because I saw some of myself in him, maybe because I felt that mother’s pain, maybe I had done too many blueberries that day and I was all emotional.  Whatever reason, it was one of those moments in my life that I will never forget.

I got off the elevator and hurried quickly to my car.  I sat in the driver’s seat, crushed up a bunch of pills, sniffed away, and thought for a while.  I’m not going to lie…I’m pretty sure I shed a tear or two.  I started to think…here I was young and healthy…had the world by the balls…yet miserable…and I’m literally pissing my life away to drugs.  Then here’s this cute lil’ man, with a huge grin on his face, just wondering why his head is bald.  He didn’t know the truth.  He was 5 years old.  For all I know, he probably wasn’t going to make it to 6.  I was literally crushed.  I guess my conscience was starting to come back after being gone for so long.  For the first time in a very long time, I could actually see that I was doing wrong.  It was like I woke the fuck up.

I went home and literally dove face first into a pile of pills and cocaine.  I was trying to sniff the image of that kid’s face out of my brain.  I can still see his face today.  I still wonder what happened to him.  He didn’t choose cancer.  He seemed like a happy-go-lucky 5 year old boy… a Red Sox fan…just happy to be there with his mom.  He’s supposed to have his whole life ahead of him.  Here I was, literally killing myself slowly with drugs…and choosing to do so.  With every sniff, I was loathing in self pity, self hate, almost wishing I could trade places with that kid.

I showered.  I figured that would help.  I was still trying to wash off the image of that lil’ kid’s face and the thoughts of his probable fate.  I tried to scrub off the fact that I’d been a lying to everyone for so long about my drug use and my drug dealing.  I couldn’t.  No body wash could cleanse my conscience.  There was no shampoo for my soul.  This was no AXE commercial.  This was me bugging the fuck out on drugs.

I remember getting out of the shower that day and looking in the mirror.  I was disgusted with the person staring back at me.  There I was…Matty the drug addict.  I had dark circles under my eyes.  Despite the tanning, my face and lips looked pale.  I looked really tired and worn out.  I was  muscular, yet skinny at the same time (if that makes any sense).  I didn’t look healthy…that’s for sure.  It looked as if I’d been partying for two years straight.  All the drugs were finally starting to take a toll on my looks.  It was the first time in my entire life that I can actually say I hated myself…and that’s a lot coming from me.  I hated everything…who I was, how awful I looked, the life I’d been leading, the lies, the secrecy, the man I’d become.  I hated my place in the world.  Addiction had won.  I lost myself to drugs.  I wanted to die.

I splashed water on my face and tried to snap out of it.  I decided right then and there that it was time for a major life change.  Maybe it was the mass amount of cocaine I sniffed that afternoon, maybe it was the little boy on the elevator, maybe it was the weight from all the other shit I was going through, from the headaches of drug dealing to my new engagement.  Whatever the reason, I finally saw the light and decided to really quit drugs and quit selling them altogether.

I took the first step.  I went to my then fiance and finally told her the truth…about everything.  I didn’t leave out a single detail.  I told her the whole story…about my Florida trips and how I was a drug dealer…and had been for quite some time.  I told her about all the drugs I’d been doing, about all the money, and how it was going up my nose at a rapid pace.  Every little lie, every little excuse, I spared no detail.  I can’t sit here and say she took it too well.  Can you blame her?  I mean it was almost unbelievable.  For the past however long, I was a drug dealer, I had a secret life, and to add insult to injury, I was hooked on the very pills that I was selling, and in a very bad way.

I told her about the little boy…and how I had this cocaine fueled epiphany when I got out of the shower.  I was ready to make a life change.  I was at a crossroads and I made my choice.  I no longer wanted to be a slave to drugs.  No more breaking the law, no more sniffing pills, no more lies.  I wanted a new life…a clean life…a life I could be proud of.  I’d love to sit and tell you that it was all smiles and hugs after I admitted all this shit, but it wasn’t.  I’ll spare the details for now, but lets just say it was epic.  The little word…trust…well that went out the window…and she almost went running out the door.  Luckily for me, I was actually being genuine and sincere in my countless apologies and my desire to quit.  So instead of me having to chase after a runaway bride, I got a new ultimatum.  I had to prove that I was done with pills and all other drugs once and for all.  I had to give up my phones…all of them.  I had to cut ties with anyone associated with my drug dealing…no exceptions.  I had to hand over every single pill, every gram of cocaine, every vial of steroids, and any other drug paraphernalia that I may have had stashed around my apartment…or wherever else.  I had to check into a rehab and clean up my act.  I couldn’t do an outpatient program…oh no…I had to do an inpatient rehab to ensure that I actually got help.  There would be no excuses, no more lies.  This was it.  If I didn’t complete all demands, every single one, not only would I no longer be engaged and newly single, but my parents would be getting a nice telephone call, followed by the authorities.  At the time, prison wasn’t even on my radar.  This was before anyone in my conspiracy was arrested, indicted, or decided to flip.  Needless to say, this woman meant business.  I have to admit, I was impressed.  I mean she could…and probably should have…just cut me off right then and there after I admitted all that to her.  I mean it probably wasn’t easy hearing that I was a drug dealing, lying, drug addict.  At least I can’t imagine it was anyways.  If I hid all of this for so long, what else had I been lying about?  So…I have to give credit where credit is due…this person played a role in helping save my life.  Whether her and I worked out or not is irrelevant, because I am forever grateful for at least this one thing.  I guess it’s true what they say…certain people may not come into your life for a lifetime…but they do come into your life for a reason.

It felt better than anything I’ve ever done to get everything off my chest that day.  It was a high like no other.  I felt free…which is ironic because a mere eight months later…I’d lose my freedom.  Regardless of what the reaction was in me telling her what was really going on and how bad I really was on these drugs…it was the first step.  I admitted I had a problem, no small problem at that, and that was a huge step for me.  It was something I was never able to do before.  It was like I was starting to get myself back.  Now all I had to do was break the news to my parents and get my ass in a rehab.  That might be a little difficult…

(To be continued)…

THE ULTIMATUM

I guess you could say I was stuck in a pretty vicious cycle at this point.  My life was spiraling out of control at a rapid pace.  I sniffed more and more pills.  I was a full time union construction worker, putting in roughly 45-50 hours per week for the company I was working for.  I was a full time drug trafficker.  Sure…it was less hours and way more money…but it involved a lot of traveling on short notice…and even more headaches.  So, between my two jobs, all the drugs I was doing, and my steadily declining social and family life, I actually managed to date a woman exclusively, full time as well.  At least it was supposed to be full time.  Because of the madness I created in my life, I guess you could say my relationship was more part time.

My typical week now went from the previous party mode…all day every day…to me working…breaking my balls all day…sweating for a week’s pay…which I truly didn’t mind.  I enjoyed working and having a purpose other than smuggling and selling drugs.  Then I’d make moves after work, distributing and collecting, spending the majority of my afternoons in my car while on the phone.  I’d hit up the gym if and when I had a free hour.  Then I’d play the relationship game at night time with the woman I was seeing.  I did all of this while on massive amounts of pills…and occasionally cocaine or some other drug…just to spice things up a bit.  Oh yeah, don’t forget steroids too.  Needless to say, my weekdays were always very hectic…never a dull moment…put it that way.

On the weekends, it didn’t get any better.  I had even less time or control over things.  I thought I was some sort of drug dealing James Bond.  I’d drive the woman I was seeing to work early on Saturday morning, wearing my construction clothes.  I’d tell her that I either had a side job or that I was working Saturday overtime, which isn’t uncommon in the union.  More lies.  Meanwhile, I really had an early flight to Florida that I desperately had to catch.  I’d hightail it to Logan Airport, sniffing a few pills on the way, while breaking records and most state traffic laws with my speed and lane changes.  I’d get there just in time to change out of my work clothes and into a nice suit and tie or a light travel outfit, depending on which story I would be using, in case I needed one that day.

I’d usually get to Florida by mid-morning.  Right after I landed, I’d either call or text my girl to let her know I was on coffee break or lunch, depending on the time.  She’d think I was working 10 minutes up the road in Boston.  I was 1000 miles away.  I’d meet up with my former friend/connect.  We’d make moves.  Then I’d either grab lunch with him or with one of my lady friends down there, depending on how much time I had of course.  I’d sniff a few more pills to calm my nerves before getting on the flight back to Boston.  No matter how many times I did it, I always got butterflies smuggling pills.  I’d be home within a matter of hours, always in time to pick up the woman I was seeing from work that night.  I’d change first, of course.  I’m sure if I rolled up in a suit, it might look a little suspect.  I’d even throw the construction clothes in my hamper, just in case she checked.  You can never be too careful.  I’d sniff a few more pills, then I’d pick her up.  She would ask how my day was, and I’d lie of course.  I used to always say, “tough day at the office.”  Then I’d make up some story about my day.  She was utterly clueless of where I was, who I was with, and what I really did all day.  Double life.  I did this little Saturday adventure more times than I care to mention.  Little did I know…those same day trips back and forth to Florida would ultimately be my demise…and be the one piece of evidence needed to convict me of conspiracy.  I thought I was being smooth.  I wasn’t fooling anyone.  There’s NO excuse for flying to Florida for a few hours.  It was pretty crazy…I’ll admit…it was stupid as well.  At the time…I wasn’t thinking rationally…I was on all sorts of drugs remember?

Sometimes, I’d even see the same flight attendant on the way down and then again on the way back.  Occasionally they recognized me from the show.  Other times, if they remembered seeing me on the AM flight, I’d have to come up with some sort of tall tale, depending on which ensemble I was wearing.  I’d be a businessman trying to close a deal on a Saturday…I’d be a reality star who was doing an AM appearance for a small fee…I had a side chick in FL that I was seeing…I left the keys to my business down in FL while visiting a friend and had no spare set…I definitely came up with some stories, that’s for sure.  They didn’t call me Walt Disney for nothing.

Other times, I would literally have drugs or large amounts of cash on me, depending on which way I was traveling, and I’d run into a “Big Brother” fan.  They’d want to talk about the show, who I still talked to and what it was all like.  They’d usually want a picture with me or occasionally an autograph…of which I’d always say yes.  Little did they know where I was really going or coming from, or what I was truly doing in the airport…or how many drugs I was on for that matter.  It’s actually sad to think about it.  Even TSA people recognized me occasionally as I was going through security.  Here I am, scared shitless, with a smile on my face, trying to be Matty from BB9 and drug trafficker at the same time.  It was pure stupidity and pure madness at the same time.  Even more sad, when I got home, I couldn’t tell anyone.  It’s like here I am, all day doing all this, and I have no one to vent to about my run-ins with BB fans or my close encounters.  It’s not like I could just say, “Oh hey babe, I went to FL to pick up drugs today and I ran into a few BB fans…they were really nice”…LOL.

This type of living could only last for so long.  I was doing an awful lot of drugs…too many at this point.  I had constant sweats or shakes at all times.  I felt empty inside.  I felt like I had absolutely no time in the world for myself…let alone anyone else I held dear to me.  I guess that’s why I used more and more…it was kind of my release at the time.  I thought I was too busy for everyone before I had a “real job”…now I literally saw no one.  My life was spent on a construction site, in the air, or on a cell phone.  My existence was consumed with pills.  I was living that life.  I secretly loved it all.  The lies, the secrecy, the rush, the money.  I mean here I was, living a fucking crazy double life for a long time, and no one knew.  I was making some serious cash, spending and sniffing it faster than it came in.  I was famous.  I was a drug dealer.  I had a beautiful woman on my arm at all times.  My life felt like I was in a movie and I absolutely loved every second of it…I’ll admit it now…as I’m in prison.  It was fucking wild…that’s for sure… yet stupid.  I had everything I could have ever wanted at that point…just no free time…easy trade off.  I much rathered that than to live a monotonous existence.  You only live once right?  I was a drug addict with no control…I barely saw anyone anymore…and I was breaking more laws than I care to mention…but I didn’t care.  My life was definitely far from average, and that’s why it was so god damned hard to quit.

Then things started to change.  I began to get sloppy with my secrecy and my double life.  The woman that I was seeing would find airplane ticket stubs from my one-day Florida travels in my apartment.  She’d find lunch receipts from various restaurants in Florida in the center console in my car.  I had a bunch of phones at this point.  She’d find them, seeing a plethora of Florida numbers in the call logs.  I got a little careless, you could say that.  I’d always lie.  Not to mention…with all the drugs I was on…my mood was always up and down.  I’d be on cloud nine one day, the next I’d be legit miserable to be around.  My relationship, or lack thereof, was on the rocks.  I was out of control and didn’t give a fuck…there would always be other women…besides I loved my pills more.  She’d threaten to leave me.  She assumed I was cheating.  My travel and attitude suggested infidelity.  I’d tell more lies and make more false promises to change.  I never attributed drugs to my problems.

I even attempted to see a therapist for a little while…mainly to keep my girl quiet about me trying to change my ways…to bring some sort of calmness and order to my life…and because I was still partly depressed half the time.  I needed answers or better drugs.  I was still blaming everyone but myself and drugs for my problems.  Sadly, I cut my therapist off after only a couple of months.  I was lying to my therapist more than I lied to my girl or my friends and family.  I guess that’s kind of counter productive.  So, I self diagnosed myself with seasonal depression (it was the summer) and took more pills.  I didn’t tell the woman I was seeing that I had stopped going to therapy.  More lies.  I just didn’t feel like hearing it…not from her…not from anybody.  I was definitely a piece of work back then huh?

I got engaged in Las Vegas about a month later.  Yes, I realize that statement of my engagement came out of left field.  So did my actual engagement.  I pretty much shocked everyone with that move…including myself…lol.  I got the ring on a whim and proposed even more out of nowhere.  That was my life at the time…fast, wild and spontaneous.  Don’t get me wrong, I was indeed in love with this woman, or at least I thought I was, but I was in NO way, shape, size or form ready to be married.  For one, I was a fucking drug dealer.  Even more importantly, I was hooked on pills, as well as other illegal substances.  I don’t think I was really ready for a life of monogamy at that point.  I was young…and wasn’t in the right frame of mind at the time…plus her and I were like oil and vinegar…tastes great together…but doesn’t mix well.  She’s a great girl and I have nothing bad to say about her…nor will I ever…we just weren’t right for each other.  To be honest, now that I’ve had time to really sit and think it all over, I should have never asked her to marry me if I wasn’t truly ready to commit.  It was very selfish on my part…and it certainly wasn’t fair to her or her family for that matter.  I should have let her go… and that’s all I’ll say about that…

The morning after I got engaged, she caught me sniffing pills in the hotel bathroom.  I won’t get into specific details…but let’s just say that didn’t go over well.  It wasn’t pretty that’s for sure.  Now add that to the fact that the night before, while celebrating our engagement over a nice dinner and champagne at a restaurant in Vegas, an ex of mine happens to walk in with some friends and ends up sitting two tables over from us.  Out of all the restaurants in all of Las Vegas, on all of the nights…I couldn’t make this shit up if I tried…I told you…one big movie…lol.  Anyway, that didn’t go over well either.  First the ex, then she catches me ripping lines of pills in the bathroom, right after she agreed to be my wife…one might say we were fucked from the start.

I panicked.  I didn’t know what to say or do.  The jig was up.  My secret was out.  The woman I just asked to marry me watched me crush up a pill…or six…and sniff them up my nose like it was common practice.  There would be no lying my way out of this pickle…I should know…I tried desperately.  I tried everything.  I tried to explain.  I told a mass amount of lies.  I was acting like a real drug addict.  I couldn’t admit it.  I tried reversing the blame, throwing it all on her.  I called her delusional.  I didn’t sniff anything.  She was clearly seeing things.  Nothing worked.  I was caught…I feared the worst…

She searched my luggage and found a stash of blueberries.  I told even more lies while crying for my pills.  I flipped out.  I threw out every Hail Mary I could think of.  Nothing worked.  She gave me the ultimatum.  It was the pills or her…I couldn’t have both.  “Matthew, you can have these pills back and I walk out of this hotel room and out of your life forever…or you can have me.”

Needless to say, she walked out of that hotel balling her eyes out crying, while I was happy as a kid in a candy store with my pills…I KID…I KID!!  Damn…do I really seem like THAT much of an idiot LOL?  The pills got flushed.  That was tough to watch…I almost wanted to dive in after them, but I held back.  Promises were made.  I FINALLY admitted that I had a slight problem with these pills, but I downplayed it.  Hey, it was a start.  She didn’t know that I had been on pills since the first date, and I surely wasn’t going to tell her that, not after the chain of events that took place over the past couple of days.  I asked her for help and I mostly meant it.  Problem solved…for now.  I still pondered that offer, pills or her, until I got back to Boston.  Of course I SAID that I’d quit and that I chose her over pills any day, but I had a lot to think about.  I mean I had a 17 month love affair with perc 30s.  Could I really just give it all up for a woman?

I ended up sniffing pills during the rest of the trip.  What, you didn’t quite possibly think that I just quit “cold turkey” there in Vegas did you?  Oh, helllll no…Vegas is like 105 degrees, and I wasn’t trying to have chills, sweats, and all those other fun withdrawal symptoms while I vacationed.  I had a squirrel stash of pills in another pocket of my luggage…in case of emergencies…thank God.  If I had gone “cold turkey” that day, I may have died or went into some sort of seizure.  Remember, I was doing about 20 pills a day at the time.  I was bad.  As usual, I hid it from her and told more lies.  Look, I may have got caught and said I was willing to quit…and I partly believed it to be true…but when you’re on something for so long…as I was…it wasn’t like I could just shut the need off.  I needed professional help…that was for sure….and until I got it…I was going to stay hustling…and stay sniffing.  Shit…I just got engaged…I deserved it….that’s how it was with me back then…always balls to the wall…sniffing pills, lying about it, and acting like I was living this wholesome life.

The flight home was rather tough for me.  Sure, I may have been on cloud nine from the blueberries, but I couldn’t relax at all.  I had a lot on my mind.  My mind was literally racing a mile a minute.  I had so many questions that I needed to answer…

(To be continued)…

Posted 08/24/2011 by Matty McDonald in Uncategorized

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HOW ADDICTION TOOK OVER MY LIFE (Part 2)

A normal person would have gotten help immediately, right then and there, or stopped cold turkey while it was still relatively early enough to safely do so.  I wasn’t normal.  I didn’t think I had a problem.  If anything, I just merely chaulked it up to another weekly expense, like buying groceries or getting a haircut.  I could afford it.  What’s a few pills a day compared to how many I was moving?  Plus, to be brutally honest, I didn’t want to stop.  I absolutely LOVED how I felt on those pills.  They made me feel like…well…fantastic.  One pill crushed up…that’s all it took…sniff…wow…they made me feel warm all over, energetic, ready to take on the world, they gave me an overall sense of well being, almost euphoric…I was literally on cloud nine…24 hours a day…it was love at first sniff.  When something makes me feel so fuckin’ good, why in the world would I ever want to quit?  Not with my personality…I was like…I want MORE!

I thought the berries enhanced everything that I did.  I never went anywhere and couldn’t do anything without them.  It was almost like a fucked up version of those credit card ads… “Blueberries….Matty never leaves home without them.”

Say I was going to take a trip to the mall or head downtown for some shopping, I’d sniff a few pills to get nice and right to shop.  Those pills really helped me spend…that’s for sure.  When it was time to hit the gym, I’d down a few pills.  I had this idiotic idea that pain pills could actually enhance my workouts.  I thought that I wouldn’t be able to feel the burn, so I’d be able to bang out more reps.  Mind you, at the time, I was also heavy on the steroids.  Nice mix.  Yes, I was a moron…I’m well aware.  If I had a hot date or was going out with some friends, I’d sniff a few pills beforehand, while I was getting ready.  Then I’d down a few more later on in the evening, with some cocktails of course.  Yup, I was going to be the life of that party, that’s for sure.  If my mother was having us all over her house for Sunday dinner, I’d take pills for that too…pills go great with Italian cooking…lol.  Whether it be to see the dentist, the doctor, my tattoo artist, a haircut appointment, well…you get the idea…I was “blueberried up” at all times…sadly.

I was convinced that I didn’t have a problem of any kind.  I was even more convinced that no one had a clue of what was going on.  I’d show up in another new vehicle, have on another new watch, I’d switch apartments, have new clothes, yet I was unemployed.  I was on drugs, thinking shit was sweet…I didn’t realize that addiction had truly taken over my life.  I got deeper and deeper in the drug trade.  I was addicted to both the pills and the money.  I took so many pills and thought nothing of it.  It all happened so fast.  It’s like one day I’m taking half of a blueberry with a few cocktails and I’m Mr.Social, Matty from BB9, absolutely loving my life, and the next I’m taking pills just to get out of bed, so I can function throughout the upcoming day…and I STILL wouldn’t quit.  Addiction is a motherfucker huh?

I thought I was making my great life even greater.  I didn’t think I was hurting anyone.  I especially wasn’t thinking about where all of those pills I was moving were going.  To be honest, that was the LAST thing on my mind.  I was more focused on me.  It’s not like anyone knew…right…except the few I dealt with.  I enjoyed those pills, I’ll admit it. I enjoyed every second of it.  My plan was to save up enough dough to move out west.  I kept setting the limit higher and higher every time I reached the goal.  I didn’t want to quit…I kept telling myself I’d quit when I was ready.  I was powerless to those lil’ guys…that’s for sure.  I guess I wasn’t ready until 17 months later…cause that’s when I finally quit the life.

I was still mixing the now more than occasional party drug or two with the pills when I went out.  Whether it be on vacation, a club, lounge, bar, home…any excuse to party.  Now add in a whole boat load of alcohol…then take into consideration I was always on anabolic steroids to stay in shape so it wouldn’t appear as if I were on drugs.  I had an image to uphold, remember?  I was mildly delusional…as you can see.  As I mentioned in the previous post…I only used to party on the weekends.  Well… not at that point in my life.  Everyday was Friday in my eyes.  I wasn’t working.  I was a reality TV star who just happened to be a drug trafficker.

I was in all out party mode for the better part of those 17 months.  I thought I was a rock star.  Shit…I think at the end I started to even look like one too…sadly.  I’d sleep all day long.  I’d hit the gym.  I’d shop.  I’d party at night.  I’d take trips bi-weekly to FL to re-up on pills.  Rinse, recycle, repeat.  I’d take vacations as if I deserved it.  I dated a few different women during this time period, but right now I don’t feel that my love life is really relevant to this…however I did mention that I had an addiction to toxic women, so I guess I gotta throw this in.  I used to confuse jealousy, madness, and craziness with passion and love…the more crazy a woman was over me the more I thought she loved me…it turned me on….I think I just truly thrived on the attention.  Don’t get me wrong…I was no angel either.  I can say that during this time, with all my drug use and all that was going on with my double life… I probably wasn’t exactly the best boyfriend in the world…sure I made many mistakes, and I was an asshole at times (emotionally NOT physically) but it wasn’t ALL bad…c’mon even my friends call me lover boy…lol.  Sure I have regrets, but who doesn’t…right?  Every woman I’ve ever loved, I really wish them nothing but the best…that’s truth…besides if they had to deal with my nonsense and way of living…they deserve to be happy.  Maybe I’ll go into details about my love life in another blog…or with my track record another several blogs… but for now back to the story…

All the partying, trips, drugs and whatnot may sound glamorous to some of you.  It wasn’t.  All the drugs, booze and steroids I put in my system really threw a dent in the plans.  I had many hospital visits during that time…even while on vacation.  To tell you the truth, it still boggles my mind to see how much the human body can really withstand.  I’m surprised I am not dead…

From the day that I realized that I needed the pills to function, things only got worse.  Maybe not financially, but definitely my physical and mental state for sure.  As time went on, my tolerance built up.  It no longer took me only a few pills to be on cloud nine, I had to take 5…then 10…then 15.  I was now taking 15 a day to feel normal…just to not feel sick. Those withdrawals are fuckin’ brutal…let me tell you.  Luckily, I usually always had them on hand, either around the house, or in my car, or wherever else I would stash them in case of emergency.  There were a few times when I had to hop on a plane to FL on a moment’s notice because I had run out and the withdrawals started.  I’d be on the plane…literally shaking cold then sweating…the person next to me would always look at me funny. Hey I felt like shit…I didn’t care… 3 hours from Boston and I’d feel like a champ again.  Shit, I would have flown to friggin’ China to not feel sick…that’s the truth!

Now one would think that when I needed THAT many pills in order to function, and even more to feel the way I loved feeling, that I would quit, or at least get some professional help.  Well, that wasn’t happening any time soon.  I still enjoyed the pills…I just happened to need a lot per day.  I loved that life.  I loved the rush of the hustle, the rush of getting on a plane going to make money, the rush I felt as soon as I sniffed one. I knew I’d have to quit hustling if I truly wanted to quit.  There would be none of that.  I got used to living a certain way, I wasn’t going back to a regular life with a regular honest job.  Besides, I wasn’t a drug addict, remember?  Those pills were just a hobby of mine.  Addicts are on corners asking for nickel rocks.  Not me, I was living in a nice apartment, driving a new Lexus.  I had money.  I was no addict.  NA meetings?  I don’t need those…only crackheads need those…the shit I used to tell myself to rationalize my drug use…out of control…

Then things started to change.  See, when I started out, I had the world by the balls.  I thought I had it all…money, a little taste of fame, a great social life.  Life was but a beach chair.  But it wasn’t all fun and games.  All the different shit I was putting in my system, along with all this money I had, turned me into a completely different person. I went from an outgoing, likable, respectful human being to a complete dickhead.  Hey, I’ll admit it.  I thought I was above everything and everyone. You couldn’t tell me shit.  Everyone was on MY time…not the other way around.  The more and more pills I took, the more lies I told.  I’d be telling my poor mother, who just spent all day cooking dinner, that I was 5 minutes away…everyone would be waiting on me to eat.  I was already late.  She would go and make my plate for me…and all that…and in reality I was in FL boarding a plane…coming home from picking up pills.  Five minutes my ass.  I was a disgrace.  That happened on more than one occasion.  I was living such a double life.  I thought nothing of it.  It still sickens me now to think of how many times I chose drugs over friends and my family.  Now as I’m typing this (I have email…FINALLY), I’d give ANYTHING to really be five minutes away for dinner at my moms.

Drugs really distorted my values and my views of the world.  Before I was on these 30s,  I’ve always been gainfully employed.  I’ve always been pretty responsible in that department.  I’ve always been a hard worker, and I’m proud to be able to say that.  There’s NOTHING wrong with an honest day’s work.  I even briefly had a job right after BB9…selling cars.  I didn’t want to go back to construction after the show, so my boy Kevin hooked me up with a nice lil’ gig.  I was pretty good at it…so I’m told.  I was even better at first when I was on the blueberries.  I could sell fire in hell on those things.  Then as I started to really make money with them and really get addicted, I became really lax with work, which was so unlike me.  I stopped caring.  I was let go.  I used to think,  “who needs work when I can take a trip to FL and make a month’s salary in a few hours…”  My way of thinking was definitely warped…that’s for sure.

My personality continued to change dramatically.  I began to shut everyone out.  I barely saw my friends.  I always had some bogus excuse of why I wasn’t going out…some lie.  I hardly even saw my parents.  Any time I went over there, it was “hi…bye”…five minutes in and out.  I had places to go, people to see.  No time for anyone.  I became very moody. On more than one occasion, I would lash out on a friend or a family member, for no reason at all…which was very out of character for me.  The drugs were changing me…I just couldn’t see it.  I was in my own little world.  My emotions were up and down…like a rollercoaster.  When the littlest thing would go wrong, it felt like the end of the world.  I remember one night I misplaced my wallet.  I hadn’t even been out, so I knew it had to be somewhere.  I was on the phone with my aunt, literally crying over a lost wallet.  In between my tears, I was sniffing pills…like that’s gonna solve anything.  It was almost as if someone had died…it was crazy…all over a wallet…which I ended up finding the next morning…by the way.  Those pills really fuck with your emotions.  One minute I’d be so happy, ready to go out, up for anything, outgoing…then the next minute…boom! …I’d be utterly depressed, thinking life was over.  Life was no beach chair…it was all rain and clouds.  It was like that on a daily basis for me…up and down….STILL wouldn’t quit.

Regardless of how much money I had and how much I was making, my life was spiraling out of control.  Nothing made me happy anymore.  Some days, I had really wished that I was dead.  It would be easier than dealing with life.  I literally wanted to die…though I never tried anything crazy.  I was just strait up depressed.  I began to be reckless with my spending.  I was living ridiculous.  I spent foolishly.  I tried to literally buy my happiness…nothing worked.

There were a few times where I half-assed tried to reach out to a few people, saying I needed help.  One person had been through what I was going through, not too long before me.  The other had a friend who died from what I was taking.  But like I said, it was a half-ass attempt.  I was vague.  I didn’t want to admit I had a problem.  Matthew McDonald is no fucking drug addict.  I’m just depressed…that’s all.  I still wasn’t ready to quit.  I was in denial. I felt so alone.  No one had a clue what was going on (I shut everyone out…remember).  From the outside looking in, I had it made in the shade.  I wasn’t working, I was pretty well off, but if you were to scratch the surface, you would’ve seen that I was broken.  I was no longer myself.  I couldn’t quit though.  I couldn’t dare go through those withdrawals, and “hell no” to rehab…people would find out.  I kept on sniffing!

I figured I was depressed cause I wasn’t employed…like I had all this free time to do absolutely nothing.  So my cousin Jackie got me back in the union.  We were working on building the new Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.  It DID feel great to be back to work…to have some purpose…but I was still really heavy on the pills.  I’d be doing pills in the porta-potty at work, before work, right when I got out of work…you get it.  I STILL busted my ass at work though, can’t take that away from me.  I realized I couldn’t continue on this trend forever…. time was running out… if I didn’t stop now, I’d either be doing 50 pills a day or I’d be dead… that’s when the ultimatum came…

(To be continued)…

Posted 08/10/2011 by Matty McDonald in Uncategorized

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