With one or two exceptions, these people were one in the same.
Let me sure you that upon entering rehab, you not only look like shit, but you feel it too. This is to be expected, of course: whatever substance brought you there, you took enough of it to tranquilize a rhino.
Somewhere between feeling fine and feeling like hell you then had the brilliant (truly, it is brilliant) thought that “Hey, I should maybe sort myself out”. Or a much wiser and more sober friend/family member did. Regardless, brilliant move.
Most people who arrived today were shaking so badly you could’ve put them in a tub with some soap and warm water and had your laundry done after a good rinse.
What has amazes me though is that for some reason, after their shakes settled down to the ever-so-gentle “hand wash” cycle, they figured they were fine so checked themselves out.
What the hell?!
I assure you it is not inexpensive to be able to rattle into a private rehab facility whenever you’d like to. The finest hotel in London would’ve been cheaper. No Librium there of course, but even then why not just rattle you way into a hospital? It’s free AND there’s Librium.
So why leave? If you think about it, rehab is actually bloody brilliant.
My first few days here were a nightmare, it’s true. But now that the drugs have kicked in, I’ve had a few solid meals and have overcome my fear of the giant face that stares at us in the communal area, I have never felt so free in my life.
I am totally fucked up, amongst other people who are totally fucked up, and there is staff here 24/7 to make sure that when we leave we will no longer be fucked up (or at least we’ll be significantly less so).
In between now and then, pretty much anything goes.
I tell you, it’s liberating. I do not have to face the outside world and pretend I am a normal well-adjusted person, because I am not.
Those people who came and went today? They do. It’s not easy. I’ve tried.
Here it’s practically like being on a holiday, albeit one with a lot of group meetings and talking about feelings and childhood traumas and crying… but that’s okay because that’s what “therapeutic retreats” are for: a holiday from pretending these issues don’t exist.
The shakers? I wish them all the best as they go on pretending. I wonder if any of them will come back tomorrow.
In the mean time, I am going to settle in to my fucked up-ness, and then hopefully learn to work my way out of it. Or at least learn to hide it in the outside world without having to drink a gallon of vodka.
I don’t think I’ve ever felt more at peace in my life, if I’m honest.
One thing though: I don’t think I will ever be able to come to terms with the necessities for that enormous face (is it a protective figure? A healer? I have no idea) but then again there are a lot of people free to be crazy in this place, so maybe it’s just the right size.