Unhappy Fourth of July

July 4th, 2010, is a day I will never forget, except for the fact that I don’t remember too much of it! I guess I should back up a little and provide some back story.

You see, this was two years prior to me getting sober. I was the guy that had to invite 30+ people over for a huge 4th of July BBQ and party. Any party at that time in my life required large amounts of alcohol. In my eyes, the more people who were drinking around me, the less people paid attention to my over-the-top drinking. Not so!

Somewhere along the preparations for the BBQ and party on the morning of the 4th, my wife had approached me and asked me to either not drink hard alcohol or slow down on my drinking for that day. Like I said, a lot of these memories have had to be told to me. With that being said, that shows that the level of my alcoholism had already been brought to my wife’s attention. Even then I wasn’t able to follow such a reasonable request from my wife. Alcoholism had me in its grip!

So like any level-headed husband would do, I picked a fight with my wife and left her holding the bag for the BBQ. I knew my father and mother were coming to the BBQ and that my father would cook and play host to all my friends and family. Did I mention that my alcoholism by this time had affected anyone and everyone who was close to me and loved me? 

I knew I couldn’t drink the way she wanted me to, I had succumbed to my alcoholism again!

So I did exactly what I needed to do. I had a key to my parent’s house and I went there and started to drink the way I wanted to. No, the way I needed to. At this point in my alcoholism, I was also abusing prescription medications. So now I am doing massive amounts of opioids, antidepressants, and alcohol. I am very fortunate to be alive! 

Over the next 4-8 hours is when things get really hazy. I was texting the wife things like, “I am sorry, I’ll do better next time and, “Please don’t leave me, I can’t live without you!” and one of my favorites, “You and the kids would be better off without me!” Even writing this right now still turns my stomach all these years later! 

I’m so thankful that my wife still loved me enough to notice when my texts stopped being coherent and when I stopped responding to her. My parents rushed to their house to find their son overdosing and non-responsive on their living room floor. While my father performed CPR on me, my mother called 911 and I was rushed to the Emergency Room. This was not how I planned my 4th of July to go!

The next foggy memory I have is of me being naked, strapped to the bed in the emergency room, with two really big security guards at my side. My wife was also next to me, telling me to drink the cup of liquid charcoal, so she could go home to our 3 children. Did I forget to mention that my parents were in the corner of the room crying while they watched what drugs and alcohol had done to their only son?

 The next 3-4 days are a bit hazy also. I was given my own room, still strapped down for the first 24 hours with my own personal babysitter. You see, with that amount of drugs and alcohol in my system they thought I was trying to intentionally overdose and commit suicide. I was not, I was just trying to get drunk and high enough to shut off my head! 

Even after this event, it took me another 2 years of pain and misery inflicted upon myself and my family before I would go to treatment. I can’t imagine the hell I put my family through, but they have told me.

That morning I woke up on July 4th, 2010 I had no intention of overdoing it. I really thought I was going to be able to drink and use the way I wanted to. My disease had other ideas. Needless to say, I was the firework display that year. I am so blessed I don’t have to live that way anymore.

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