An apt description for my time at Ridgeview and the 90 days afer, attending AA and NA meetings at Peachford and the cultish-looking building down the street.But lets begin at the beginning.
It was that fateful night of July 4, 02. I will spare the long story as I dropped it on FB some months ago. That was the night I SO. We met before entering Eleven50, a bomb ass club that is now Opera(blech). That night I was rolling my ass off, with a bullet of that dirty white to keep me geeked up. THis was after a 7 months long absence, where I had disappeared, returning no calls, not working, and basically hiding out in my parents basement. Mental illness rears its scary head during this time. Enough, back to the story…
So, the first night I met SO, I was already fucked up. How could SO have ever known me a different way? I give her credit for putting up with me for so long. I was never abusive or fighty, – unless by word or pen – never question my pen, it’s a mother fucking death sentence, my friend! – but there was always drugs around, and shade, and late nights and even later mornings. Then days of recovery, mixed in with bipolar disorder(unchecked and unmedicated for 10 years,hahahhhahaha, what a fucking mess) and Crohn’s Disease(almost died from that piece of shit, hahaha) Sorry SO, and the dysphoria – I WAS A FUCKING MESS.
But a functioning fucking mess hahahahaha. One day, after something like 9 months!!! of not doing coke(big deal for me, at that time, I decided to revisit my old frienemy. We quickly fell in step, and I made the – and let me break here –
Can we ever actually change? at our very core. Is there really a metamorphosis, and complete change that we can go through? In that same vein of thought, can we ever keep secrets that we really don’t want to keep anymore? Can we hide in darkness when we clearly see a path to the light?
–big mistake of telling SO that I got the gram(shout out to Big Grams!). Well, that was stupido because SO exploded. When I finally put them back together, they issued me an ultimatum. Rehab or divorce. Divorce, that rotten word. That would be the first time that word popped up. So, off to rehab I went. Intake session concluded that I did not need to be inpatient, so I got the 30-day outpatient treatment plan, consisting of individual therapy, group therapy, and other classes and such.
Group therapy in Ridgeview was the first time I said out loud to anyone other than myself that I was trans. Group therapy was fun and really did help. Individual therapy was enlightening in its own way. It seems that Ridgeview was concentrating more on the drug thing than the bipolar disorder. My shrink decided to put me on an antidepressant(Pamelor). Within 1 day I was in a manic episode. Not so bad that I needed to be hospitalized, but manic indeed! Ask SO about that time, hahahaha! Anyway, they immediately switched my treatment plan, so that it was heavy on the mental illness/bipolar side and less on th drug rehab side. Still, I had rehab classes that I had to attend.
During the one and only family counseling session we had, SO came up and we were to meet with a family therapist. So the therapist enters the room and says “So let’s talk about the trans issue.”. Dude, I was hot! Already manic, I was gonna tear that dudes head off. He realized his mistake pretty quickly and after apologizing, cleared out. So that is how SO found out, officially, that I am trans. Isn’t that fucked up? the people you trust to keep your info private and shit…
So the 3o days were up, and my next challenge was 90 in 90. You guessed it? No? 90 AA or NA classes in 90 days. If you ever thought AA or NA was a cult, well guess what? You’re right! Changing one addiction for another. Anyway, I wasn’t working, so why not. I got myself a sponsor, worked through the steps, then stopped at the 12th step, because I couldn’t convert anybody to this bs. Listen, NA/AA are great for a lot of people. It is a great way to keep your mind off your vices, while your neural pathways are being remapped. The sponsor was as gung ho as you would expect, and that in turn made me gung ho. How easily I fall in step, hahahahaha. Long story short – I completed my 90 in 90 and havent been back since, nor will I ever.
I’m not gonna lie. My 180 nights in hell did clarify some things. My head was clear and I was drug free. Not for long. But for a short time. and that was good. Also, I am never going to Ridgeview on an ultimatum, unless it is dire. I had fun in Ridgeview, less so in NA and AA. But still, this is a true account of my 180 nights in hell.