Those are my wings at my prom, the year I was inked at 18 years old. It’s my only tattoo and I love it. People sometimes tell me I have an angel watching over me. With all the shit I’ve been through, maybe so. But sometimes I think that I act as my own protector. When it comes to the topic of recreational drugs, I this definitely applies. .
Before my hospitalization I was never a dedicated druggy, but like many of my peers I experimented every now and again with things like cocaine, molly/ecstasy and weed.
While maybe I had some fun, I usually left the experience thinking it wasn’t that great. Once I nearly OD’d, or at least had a severe panic attack believing I was going to OD, on ecstasy (that was the last time for that). I smoked a lot of weed in college because everybody did. It made me paranoid and the psychoactive properties hit me hard. I quit after college, knowing it was hurting me. One time at a drunken party just months before psychosis, I was having a mixed episode (I think) and I recklessly took a huge bong rip at a party, even though I hadn’t smoked forever. My friends say I collapsed like a rag doll. Luckily they caught me before I hit the hardwood floor. I woke up the next morning alone in an unknown room, confused. I was ok but scared. So reckless. Never smoked weed again. .
There were a couple times I stupidly took drugs when I was maybe a year out of the hospital. Not worth it. I was paranoid I would trigger a manic episode and quickly determined that I would fully commit to a drug free life. It was the most adult decision I’ve ever made and I’m proud of myself. My brain is already amazing, it needs no help in that way. .
I’m sure that this is a huge part of maintaining my stability. I’ve had a few depressions, but nothing major. And I’ve had one manic episode since treatment. That’s it.
Through my own trial-and-error coupled with professional advice, I came to believe that drugs had no place in my safe-zone. I would recommend that path to anyone with a mental illness.