HAMSTERS & HEROIN: Not all junkies are purse-snatching grandmother-killing psychos. I'm keeping this blog to bear witness to that fact.


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I used to take heroin at every opportunity, for over 10 years, now I just take methadone which supposedly "stabilizes" me though I feel more destabilized than ever before despite having been relatively well behaved since late November/early December 2010... and VERY ANGRY about this when I let it get to me so I try not to.

I was told by a mental health nurse that my heroin addiction was "self medication" for a mood disorder that has recently become severe enough to cause psychotic episodes. As well as methadone I take antipsychotics daily. Despite my problems I consider myself a very sane person. My priority is to attain stability. I go to Narcotics Anonymous because I "want what they have" ~ Serenity.

My old blog used to say "candid confessions of a heroin and crack cocaine addict" how come that one comes up when I google "heroin blog" and not this one. THIS IS MY BLOG. I don't flatter myself that every reader knows everything about me and follows closely every single word every day which is why I repeat myself. Most of that is for your benefit not mine.

This is my own private diary, my journal. It is aimed at impressing no-one. It is kept for my own benefit to show where I have been and hopefully to put off somebody somewhere from ever getting into the awful mess I did and still cannot crawl out of. Despite no drugs. I still drink, I'm currently working on reducing my alcohol intake to zero.

If you have something to say you are welcome to comment. Frankness I can handle. Timewasters should try their own suggestions on themselves before wasting time thinking of ME.

PS After years of waxing and waning "mental" symptoms that made me think I had depression and possibly mild bipolar I now have found out I'm schizoaffective. My mood has been constantly "cycling" since December 2010. Mostly towards mania (an excited non-druggy "high"). For me, schizoaffective means bipolar with (sometimes severe)
mania and flashes of depression (occasionally severe) with bits of schizophrenia chucked on top. You could see it as bipolar manic-depression with sparkly knobs on ... I'm on antipsychotic pills but currently no mood stabilizer. I quite enjoy being a bit manic it gives the feelings of confidence and excitement people say they use cocaine for. But this is natural and it's free, so I don't see my "illness" as a downer. It does, however, make life exceedingly hard to engage with...

PPS The "elevated mood" is long gone. Now I'm depressed. Forget any ideas of "happiness" I have given up heroin and want OFF methadone as quick as humanly possible. I'm fed up of being a drug addict. Sick to death of it. I wanna be CLEAN!!!

Attack of the Furry Entertainers!

Attack of the Furry Entertainers!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Night-Night Gran

MY GRAN DIED AT THE WEEKEND. She had been battling terminal cancer for over a year and was living life in such a medication-blurry daze she barely knew what was what or where or whether she was coming or going. Not that "coming or going" was an issue any more; from my understanding she was almost totally bedridden for the last months of her life.
I sent some letters and got one extremely shaky reply, which was touching. To see my Gran, who had been a secretary all her working life and wrote immaculately, fading before me on paper as it were, in tiny, shaky writing, just about said it all.

In the end, letters had to be read aloud as and when she was conscious enough to take bits in. Not fully realizing this there was one particular missive in which I really did prattle away, yakking on about the intricacies of the Japanese writing system (because very gradually I am learning Japanese) and illustrating my descriptions with characters from the Chinese. My poor Uncle, who'd had to battle through all this, (I heard months later) had said they were fascinating...

She left me some poetry books. Here in tribute, by William Wordsworth, was one we both liked:

"Daffodils" (1804)
I WANDER'D lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the Milky Way,
They stretch'd in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed -- and gazed -- but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.


THIS is the musical tribute
I wanted my Gran to have. It's the best version of this classic tune ("music from Platoon") that I know:


JP said...

I'm so sorry Gled :( Losing someone is always so hard, but I'm sure it's nice knowing her suffering has come to an end. Best wishes to you and your family.

Noah said...

Sorry for your loss Gleds - terminal cancer took both of my parents so I am quite familiar with what it leaves behind. Time heals all.

Gledwood said...

Thanks. Biggest irony was, as far as I understand she wasn't really in pain most of the time, thanks to enormous doses of morphine/etc.
It feels weird to me writing a public blog and feeling responsible because anyone could read it, that opiates aren't always "wrong"... it was thanks to these she slept through months of what would otherwise have been terrifying unremitting agony. Were it not for the painkilling drugs I cannot imagine how bad it might have been...

kelly Al-Saleh said...

Sorry too. My grandad died of bowel cancer and my mum told me they gave him a shot of diamorphine. When he came round he said 'that felt so good' and the nurse replied 'it was heroin'. He had a huge bottle of morphine by his bedside in his final days. Being an ulster orange man and a wee bit right wing I don't think he would have been too happy admitting he 'enjoyed' heroin but there you go.

At least your Gran left you some nice books to delve into and remember her by. I can see where the literary genes come from.

take care xk

Gledwood said...

cheers ;->...

kelly Al-Saleh said...

It's a gorgeous day (in East London at least). if you're not stuck at work why not go out and feel the sun warm your back?

I have to get my head down now and get a job application in for Senior Graphic Designer at The Southbank Centre, it's a long shot but one can only try.

ice cold beer...mmmmm

chin up ;-D

gledwood said...

actually I am (which is why I can't log in again) on my way "out" as we speak... cheerio!!

naomi said...

i am so sorry to hear that xxx
my nan is 82 and i dont know what i will do without her. my prayers are with you both x

Aunt Reeny's After Thoughts said...

Sorry to hear about your loss. At least she is a peace now and out of pain. Take in the day and let the sun shine on your face, it always helps me ;)

gledwood said...

NAOMI: cheers. I'm glad she's "in a better place now" ...

EILEEN/REENY: Yeah I'm glad she's gone in the sense we'd pretty much lost her already. She was way too out of it for me to phone her or anything...
Sunshine: I might have to wait a bit for sunshine the weather's a bit inbetween, aye

Smack Happy said...

I am so, so sorry...


Noah said...

No thank you - I'll proceed directly to the intravenous injection of hard drugs please

Akelamalu said...

I lost my Mum and my Gran to cancer - terrible disease. I'm sorry to hear you've lost your gran Gleds. May her journey home be a peaceful and happy one. x

Deadbeaten said...

Gleds, I am so sorry to hear about your gran. My heartfelt condolences to you and your family.

lime said...

so sorry for your loss, gledwood. it's not easy to say goodbye to those so dear to us. i am sorry the last year was such a difficult one for your gran but it makes me smile to think she still enjoyed your letters. i wish you peace and comfort.

Baino said...

Sorry Gleds and also accept my condolences. My father died of cancer too, never took more than Panadol Forte through the whole thing. Stoic lads these men from Lancashire.

Jeannie said...

Sorry about your Gran.

Gledwood said...

I'm posting Perfect Day up tomorrow, I don't really want Trainspotting and my Gran going together...
I wanted a tune that really WAS in memorium, so see what you think of this new one Agnus Dei/Barber's Adagio by Trinity College Choir

Fractalmom said...

I am very sorry for your loss. I still miss my gran to this day. it has been 30 years

Queenneenee said...

big hugs to you Gleds, thinking of you today with best wishes my friend.

Melody said...

I'm terrible when it comes to condolences because to me it always sounds so generic and a bit trite but I suppose there's really no other way to say it.
Sorry for you loss G. and I hope there are brighter days to come.


Lou said...

I hope she is in the peaceful, pain free place by now. God Bless.

WAT said...

Damn. Sad story about your gran, but I love this post about her. Though I never knew her, you certainly made a nice tribute to this woman.

Whitenoise said...

Sorry to hear about your gran, Gled.

Gledwood said...

Thank y'all!...

Tea N. Crumpet said...

May her memory be Eternal, Gled!

I love that poem-- it's one of my favorites!

Gledwood said...

Cheers. She loved Wordsworth, I had mixed feelings, but that one I do like...

Syd said...

I'm sorry about your grandmother. My grandmother also liked Wordsworth. She read poetry to me also. I'm sure that your grandmother knew how loved she was. My condolences.

gledwood said...

cheers ;->...

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Heroin Shortage: News

If you are looking for the British Heroin Drought post, click here; the latest word is in the comments.

Christiane F

"Wir, Kinder vom Bahnhoff Zoo" by "Christiane F", memoir of a teenage heroin addict and prostitute, was a massive bestseller in Europe and is now a set text in German schools. Bahnhoff Zoo was, until recently, Berlin's central railway station. A kind of equivalent (in more ways than one) to London's King's Cross... Of course my local library doesn't have it. So I'm going to have to order it through a bookshop and plough through the text in German. I asked my druggieworker Maple Syrup, who is Italiana how she learned English and she said reading books is the best way. CHRISTIANE F: TRAILER You can watch the entire 120-min movie in 12 parts at my Random blog. Every section EXCEPT part one is subtitled in English (sorry: but if you skip past you still get the gist) ~ to watch it all click HERE.

To See Gledwood's Entire Blog...

DID you find my blog via a Google or other search? Are you stuck on a post dated some time ago? Do you want to read Gledwood Volume 2 right from "the top" ~ ie from today?
If so click here and you'll get to the most recent post immediately!

Drugs Videos

Most of these come from my Random blog, which is an electronic scrapbook of stuff I thought I might like to view at some time or other. For those who want to view stuff on drugs I've collected the very best links here. Unless otherwise stated these are full-length features, usually an hour or more.

If you have a slow connexion and are unused to viewing multiscreen films on Youtube here's what to do: click the first one and play on mute, stopping and starting as it does. Then, when it's done, click on Repeat Play and you get the full entertainment without interruption. While you watch screen one, do the same to screens 2, 3 and so on. So as each bit finishes, the next part's ready and waiting.

Mexican Black Tar Heroin: "Dark End"

Khun Sa, whose name meant Prince Prosperous, had been, before his death in the mid 2000s, the world's biggest dealer in China White Heroin: "Lord of the Golden Triangle"

In-depth portrait of the Afghan heroin trade at its very height. Includes heroin-lab bust. "Afghanistan's Fateful Harvest"

Classic miniseries whose title became a catchphrase for the misery of life in East Asian prison. Nicole Kidman plays a privileged middle-class girl set up to mule heroin through Thai customs with the inevitable consequences. This is so long it had to be posted in two parts. "Bangkok Hilton 1" (first 2 hours or so); "Bangkok Hilton 2" (last couple of hours).

Short film: from tapwater-clear H4 in the USA to murky black Afghan brown in Norway: "Heroin Addicts Speak"

Before his untimely death this guy kept a video diary. Here's the hour-long highlights as broadcast on BBC TV: "Ben: Diary of a Heroin Addict". Thanks to Noah for the original link.

Some of the most entertaining scenes from Britain's top soap (as much for the poor research as anything else). Not even Phil Mitchell would go from nought to multi-hundred pound binges this fast: "Phil Mitchell on Crack" (just over 5 minutes).

Scientist lady shows us how to cook up gear: "How Much Citric?" Lucky cow: her brown is 70% purity! Oddly we never see her actually do her hit... maybe she got camera shy...

And lastly:

German documentary following a life from teenage addiction to untimely death before the age of 30. The decline in this girl's appearance is truly shocking. "Süchtig: Protokoll einer Hilflosigkeit". Sorry no subtitles; this is here for anyone learning German who's after practice material a little more gripping than Lindenstraße!

Nosey Quiz! Have you ever heard voices when you weren't high on drugs?

Manic Magic

Manic Magic

Gledwood Volume 2: A Heroin Addict's Blog

Copyright 2011 by Gledwood