Breakfast of Champions

(Author would like to remain anonymous)

It’s day one. I am laying on my assigned bed in my assigned room at the detox center; I never thought that I would end up here. I feel like crying but I can’t seem to. I feel as if they would be the trails of salt on my cheeks, scoured from my eyes and my emotions begin the slaved rakes held of a benign man. Salt is the harshest of retaining satiated nourishment for thirst but holds the fluid to the needs of the body.

I’m here because of a thirst that is so evil.

Sometimes I feel like I want to cry to cleanse myself. Cleanse myself of salt. Cleanse myself of pain; cleanse myself of the very earth of me. And what do I do, cry; to cleanse those thirsty eyes.

Everyone says that they are so proud of me for making a change that I feel like I should have made a long time ago. My body was telling me so two-years prior to this; I just didn’t know. I have yet to feel proud of myself. I’m interested in who I will become after my journey–if and when I am sober, I will be a better person.

I understand that this is not a jail nor, from the short couple of hours that I’ve been housed here, for it to breathe like one. There are no segregated lines on the floor that direct you as to where to go. There are no officers herding us like cattle. No bars, no jumpsuits, yet I feel trapped.

Yet, because of my sickness, I have trapped myself wherever I go. Everywhere, worrying if where and how soon I will get my last drink before the anxiety and DT’s take over. They settle in and are as unwelcome as a rotten fish on my plate. I don’t want this dish any longer.

Everyone that works here seems to be very nice. The cleaning lady especially. She sweeps quietly as I rest in my bed; changes my trash so quietly. She has the dexterity and grace, almost mouse-like, that goes unnoticed. A mouse that is only noticed when you see that there is a bite out of the round cheese after the deed.

I wake to breakfast in a Styrofoam box filled with food that is yet to be known. A surprise that is often welcomed, not because of the quality, but because of the comfort of a warm meal in a place that seems so cold.

The food is subpar but can be spruced up with the asking of salt and pepper packets as well as Tapatio individuals that are wrapped in plastic tins which can break your teeth if the opening of not not executed correctly. This is usually done with your head at a tilt, teeth gripping and eyes closed and hoping not to bust the contents all over any thing but your dish.

Between bites I sip on lukewarm coffee complete with powdered creamer.

I sit on my bed.

How the hell did I get here?” I think.

I finish what I can of my breakfast and change into another pair of comfort clothes. I’m here for rest anyway right? How can jeans and a fitted top feel comfortable right now. I throw my hair into a messy bun without even looking in the mirror. I slip into thick socks because the tile floors are so cold and I don’t have the strength to untie and tie my shoes. The only engery I have is to brush my teeth in a bathroom that I share with my roommate that is carring the same demons on their back, just like me.

I finally look at myself in the mirror after rinsing my mouth. Thicked suds are what I spit out. A part of the deteriation that my addictive behavior has wasted on my body. I look tired. My skin is cracked and warn as if I had been working in a field, red and flaked. My hair has thinned. Although I see all the flaws that I caused I take a deep breath and tell myself, “You got this.”

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