by Tony Jackson
We all have dreams and goals. Reflecting on my childhood, I can still remember the dreams I had as a kid. I wanted to be a police officer and a fireman. Even aspired to enlist in the Armed Forces.
Eventually I did grow up. A reality that seemed so distant and unattainable to my childlike self at the time, had arrived and become a reality for me. As did another reality. Being a drug addict.
Gone was any connection to who I once dreamed and aspired to be as a kid. Taking its place instead, was a dark reality for this grown-up I’d become. The monster under the bed had no longer become a childhood bedtime story for me.
“Who in the world would have thought that I would be a drug addict?” I’ve asked myself.
Reflecting, I could have connected to a different crowd upon entering High School. Wasn’t the case, and before I knew it, I was using drugs. Started out with Valium, 357 magnums, Black Mollys, and drinking alcohol here and there.
Then there was Marijuana. After that introduction, I smoked it through freshman and sophomore year. By junior year, I no longer had any interest to continue my school education because I was smoking so much marijuana, I dropped out.
“That led me to the streets”. Where Iwas introduced to crack cocaine. In a blink, I was using more than I was selling and became my best customer. My reality had become a 500-hundred-dollar habit that I was pulled into keeping up daily.
During this time, brief moments of clarity would surface. The recognition that I was in a dark place would be ever-so clear. As quickly as they appeared however, the clarity swiftly disappeared. And binges for an entire week was something I would rapidly return to thereafter.
Chasing that drug. That was my reality at one time. Because with that drug, there was never be enough. You want more, more and more. With brief moments of clarity during that cycle, where you realize that you grew up and became the monster under the bed in those bedtime stories you were read to as a child.
“Can you imagine something you want to stop and can’t stop?” Can you imagine facing the realization of turning into something you never wanted to grow up and become? Something that your family doesn’t recognize or terrifies them to be around because of the choices you’ve made?
The Monster Under the Bed. “My life turned out to be this?” This is who I was? A drug addict? A monster with no dreams or goals anymore because I was too consumed with chasing that drug?
Totally discounting the person who started out in life as the true ME, and the dreams and goals that younger version of me had at one time? I let him go, his dreams and goals, feeling insignificant without matter. All forCrack cocaine.
I don’t wish that drug on anybody. But the reality of crack cocaine and its total destructive takeover of people’s lives, is in fact a truth.
However, I am here to provide an added message to that above stated fact. A message of truth, faith and sincere hope that all those out there continuing to struggle with addiction, will give some contemplation to.
A shared message far bigger than the darkness of addiction and being an addict – Recovery is indeed possible. Which is not some tagline for me, but an actual journey of experience I’ve gone through.
You are not alone in your struggle. You are not alone in what you believe & see as a battle. Key focus here – You are not alone.
My dreams and goals as a child might not have turned out as I once believed they would. To carry such titles of police officer, fireman or a member of the Armed Forces.
However, my childhood aspirations knew far more at the time. Something which took me a while to fully understand and get a grasp of.
Today, I can express how honored and sincerely grateful I am to have experienced the journey Life has afforded me. Providing me with the opportunity to impact the lives of others that associate and relate to much of similar journey to my story. Honored for the opportunity to assist them in re-discovering and remembering how truly remarkable they are!
In his published book, “Prison Sentence to Purpose Driven,” Anthony has boldly laid out his life’s journey with total transparency. Describing how wrong choices led him into a life filled with darkness; holding nothing but danger, heartache, disappointment and destruction.