Looking at my old pictures I don’t recognize myself. 8 years is the time difference between two pictures and the second one was taken in 2011, about this time of year. The guy on it is 19 years old.
What can you tell about this young man from just looking at his portrait picture?
What kind of lifestyle he lives?
What habits he may have?
Does he appear to be healthy?
How do you think he feels in his body?
How do you think he will look and feel at the age of 30-40-50?
What do you read in his eyes?
I lived in that body and I remember vividly how it felt
I didn’t like myself.
I didn’t feel good in my body.
I was often low energy.
Every morning was a struggle to leave my bed. I was driven by emotions, by external impulses, by other people’s opinions and expectations.
Physical discomfort and poor appearance were only the symptoms of underlying issues. The pain was burning deep inside. Emotional pain was eating him alive, at times making it impossible to endure it.
Alcohol, cigarettes, marijuana, constant overeating he used as pain relievers. It worked! It felt good! It also helped him to socialize with others. Usually the bigger dose promised greater escape from the pain he was in. It numbed his mind and feelings, made him indifferent to the world and people around.
However everything has the price… Hangovers, poor health (kidney issues), overweight body, low self-esteem, regrets and even greater emotional pain followed shortly after sobering up.
This “Rat Race” in attempt to escape emotional pain continued until the event that changed trajectory of his life forever. This event was nothing more than catalyst of the rusty problems that were inside of him for a long time. The magnitude of pain went up to the point where enduring it became nearly impossible. Scared and hurt, he ran to proven “self-medication tools” he used before. Night clubs, bars, liquor stores are essentially the pharmacies, where you can get a “fast escape pill” from pain without prescription. Bar tenders are the pharmacists would poor the medicine into each patient’s throat depending on the level of pain they are in.
However, in search for instant relief, alcohol, smoking or overeating on dopamine releasing foods was not working anymore. Increasing the dose did not help either. The only escape he had left was in his sleep, which he also lost. He became scared.
The magnitude of pain kept on raising day after day. One day it reached its absolute peak. Completely alone in between four walls of his apartment he got the hit, straight in his head. He could not endure it any second longer. He realized he could end his suffering right there. Suicide became a real option. However even when his life no longer mattered to him, he was still looking for a lain-less way to go. Even at that point he was trying to avoid the pain…
That night he decided he must go. Finishing his last drink he crawled to his bed and closed his eyes…
The day I was born
Bright sunshine woke me up the next morning. I opened my eyes and kept staring through the tiny window of my apartment. I was laying still in my bed, feeling the blood flowing through my body. I wasn’t moving, not because I couldn’t, but because I didn’t want to disturb the feelings I had in my body.
I could feel gentle warmth of the sun on my face. I hear birds singing so loud and beautifully. How come they always been there, but it was the first time I’ve noticed them.
I felt such a strong feeling of gratefulness for being alive. I felt pure happiness and tears rolled down my face. I AM ALIVE! I am breathing, I am hearing, I am feeling! I feel good!!!
My mother said she doesn’t recognize me anymore. I’ve changed. I no longer that Sasha she used to know. That hurts to hear… but she’s right. She is looking for her son Sasha that no longer alive. He died in a Spring of 2017, in a little apartment in Phoenix, Arizona.