Friday, July 27, 2012


I've kept mum about the whole Jerry Sandusky child molestation trial and verdicts, partly because it's an issue that hits way too close to home for me, and partly because others have been able to express their thoughts much more eloquently than I.

When all this shit hit the fan last fall and the story broke across media outlets, I felt like I had been kicked in the gut.  Here was a man who was in a position of authority, leadership, and supposed to be a mentor to the kids in his care...and he mercilessly took advantage of that position to feed his sick needs.  Who knows how many other children he abused other than the handful involved in the trial?  For those kids, now grown men, to come forward and admit this happened to them took an extraordinary amount of courage, but how many others are out there that will never come forward?  How many others out there have had their lives completely shattered by this sick fuck and are struggling in silence?

I struggle with what happened to me as a child everyday.  A couple of years ago I found the courage to start writing about it in my other blog, which is public, but I'm still anonymous somewhat because the random person who might come across it has no idea who I am. So I feel safe writing about it.  It helps me, and it may  help someone else to know they're not alone.

However, most people who know me in my private life have no idea that this is my reality.  I've told only two people "in real life":  two ex's (my former therapist I don't count, but I guess technically that makes it three people).  And some days, I feel that it was two too many that I told.

My "confessions" were done in private.  How must the men involved in the trial feel about having their stories splashed across headlines for the whole world to see?  I commend the news agencies for refraining to use their real names and only refer to them as "Victim #1" and such, even now that the trial is over, but still.  I only hope that they have been able to navigate through all of this with nothing but loving support from their friends and families.

I did read that now the trial is over, a few more men have been willing to come forward and admit that they too were victims.  To reveal something so private, so intimate, so fucked up, takes a shitload of courage.    And now "Victim #2" has come forward to say he was the child in question in the shower incident witnessed by McQueary and is suing the school in a civil suit.  I'm just waiting for the naysayers to start in with comments about how he's just looking to make a quick buck.  Trust me, if you have experienced something as traumatic as this in your life, you do not take coming forward lightly, just to "make a quick buck".  In fact I think that was what Sandusky's defense lawyers tried to posit about the number of victims involved in the lawsuit, that they were just 'hangers on" looking for money and notoriety.  No amount of money can bring your innocence and faith in humanity back.

And then there is Dottie Sandusky, wife of the shitbag, who even now protests her husband's innocence.  I'm not sure how to read her.  She says she never saw any evidence whatsoever of any child abuse in her home.  Well, to this day my own mother denies what happened to me and claims I made it all up.  Of course a perpetrator will cover their tracks!  They are experts at lying and covering up, and make sure their victims become experts at lying and covering up as well.  I sure as hell never entertained the idea of telling anyone, even my mother.  It wasn't until years later that I had the realization of, "Wait a minute.  How could my mother not have known?  How did she not notice the blood on my bed linen and my underwear?"  So either Ms. Sandusky was so unaware of reality that she genuinely didn't suspect anything......or she was like my mother and chose not to believe what was almost literally right before her eyes.

The relationship between the perpetrator and the victim can be as varied as night and day.  From outright terror, to friendly companionship.  Ms. Sandusky's claims that the boys in question were loving and 'clingy' towards her husband just proves the intricately complicated web of lies, devotion, brainwashing, and confusion that transpired.  Many times the victim will have an almost 'hero' worship of their perpetrator and be too young to really grasp the connotations of it all, but yet still feel that something is not right.  But because of their love and devotion to the perp they feel that something not right must be their own fault.  That feeling can last far beyond the abuse into adulthood, making it hard for the victim to admit he needs help.

This case, thanks to its notoriety and livid details, has pushed childhood sexual abuse into the forefront of everyone's conscience, at least here in the U.S. But what about other cases, like the atrocities of the Catholic church and their now stereotypical pedophile priests?  Those cases fall out of the public limelight really quickly, as if there is some 'higher power' pushing to make the headlines go away. I find it amusing in a sickening way that the Sandusky case only got the attention it did not because of the heinous crimes he committed, but because it involved the sanctimonious all-American past time, football.

But even if it casts a tiny bit of light towards sexual abuse victims and the trauma they have suffered, it is a step forward.  Bit by revolting bit.


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Blogophilia 22.5 Errance

The mind in errance,

intelligence in forbearance.

To think is to dream they say...

but to dream too much is to

waste away.

In front of the tele,

with a potato chip belly,

we ignore reality

and escape mundanity

with the punch of the remote.

I have to quote,

"The fat is in the fire now,"

the sheeple have forgotten how

to think for themselves.

Ignore the books on the shelves,

just grab the latest iPad

and say

"Ah, you shouldn't have."

Copyright Steven Clark 2012

Submitted for Blogophilia 22.5

topic:  Ah, you shouldn't have

Bonus Points:
(Hard, 2pts):  Use the Designer Haider Ackermann's line, "I love what the French call Errance."  
(it means losing yourself by escaping to an unfamiliar place or just dreaming)
(Easy, 1pt):  Mention a really effective fat-melting treatment

bonus guesses:  color blind, a world of black and white, true colors, tuning out, fade to black, vision, taste the rainbow

GBE #62 Breathless

He left the restaurant in

breathless anguish,

ring clutched in his hand,

her "no" echoing in his ears.

Copyright Steven Clark 2012

Submitted for GBE #62 topic:  Breathless

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


You'd think staying clean would mean abstaining from alcohol too, right?  For many addicts, that is the case, especially if they adhere to NA tenets.  I've always "cheated" by continuing to drink when abstaining from other drug use.  I know it's risky.  I tell myself that it's the lesser of two evils, it's legal, at least I'm not jabbing a needle in my arm, and I can control it.  Alcohol is not my drug of choice so it's OK, right?  Right?

Control is such a grey area.  In my desire to escape reality, I'm drinking myself into a stupor every night.  I know when I've gone too far though, and when it's time to pull back.  Now is one of those times....various physical ailments are popping up in unpleasant ways and I know I need to give my body a break and take better care of my health.  So is that control?  

That brings up the internal battle that is always being waged in my head, the feeling that I don't deserve a happy healthy life, that I'll just fail anyway so what's the point in trying.  I know it's mostly my disease talking....but the feeling of inadequacy was instilled in me from such a young age that it's part and parcel of my being.  I do try to believe that I deserve better, but it's like what I was writing about faith a few posts back -  it's hard to wrap my brain around it when I don't feel it inside.  Maybe I'm just so out of touch with my emotions that I have no clue what I'm talking about.  But I'm writing about it so I must be searching for some inner strength somewhere. that I'm doing it again, both the creative stuff and introspective stuff, I'm realizing how damaging it's been to isolate so much.  I think I've smiled more in just this past week than I have all year, so thank you my friends for your support through all of my bullshit.  There's a part of me that says "You can't quit drinking, you write better when you're drunk!" which I think is funny but sadly true.  So we'll see how this goes, this writing completely sober thing.  It's a bit scary to think about.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Blogophilia 21.5 - The Monster Under The Bed

The Monster Under The Bed

Horatio listened quietly in the darkness.  He stretched himself as flat as he could possibly get, on the hard dusty floor, under the bed.  He saw bits and pieces of childhood detritus under there with him; random LEGO pieces, a marble, and a sock that had been missing for two years.  He was content to wait was his specialty.

His name wasn't really Horatio, but he liked the name after seeing a book by the same name, Horatio Hornblower, lying on the floor by the bed.  His real name had no English equivalent; no, make that no human equivalent.  Horatio would suffice.

Horatio was a Monster Under The Bed, sent here through a portal to keep watch on human children.  The Monsters of his world had different purposes here:  some were here to scare children senseless, some were here to kidnap them outright, and some were sent here to act sort of like guardian angels.  The Angel Monsters were the elite; only the Lesser Monsters were sent to scare and maim. Once the children grew up, the Monsters returned to their world to be assessed, and assigned to a new child.  Sometimes, the Monsters were recruited to return to the adult children in their dreams, lest they forget their erstwhile childhood nightmares.

Horatio was one of the Lesser Monsters, assigned to Peter for the duration of his childhood.  Lesser Monsters were thought to be incapable of feeling emotions, were considered more crude and unintelligent, and so got the less savory jobs of creating fear and mayhem.  He scoffed at that thought....they really don't know that it takes intelligence to create fear.  One must know their subject, learn the unique individual fears, and prey on them.  Really, he thought, they should consider US the elite; but no matter.  Horatio was content in his job, and knew he did it well.

He laid there under the bed, smiling to himself, thinking back to the first time Peter suspected that there was a Monster Under The Bed.  Little Peter's head kept lowering down to look under the bed, only to whisk up again by the mere suggestion that something might be under there.  Horatio fed off that fear and it made him stronger.  For an added touch, he allowed his growl to be vaguely discerned by the tiny ears above the bedspread....just a whisper of a need to go all out like some of his coworkers did.  They had no subtlety about their work, just barged in and started gesticulating with their fangs.  No, his approach created a much more deeper fear in the child, that lasted longer.

Peter had grown up a little, now nine years old, and already was beginning to show signs of no longer believing in The Monster Under The Bed.  Horatio had had to up his game, match wits with a boy approaching adolescence and more interested in football and cars than monsters and fairytales.  Peter still had a wariness about fetching items that had been kicked under the bed and would only do it in full daylight, and he still had the long habit of jumping into bed instead of sitting down first then swinging his legs into it, lest something grab his ankle.  Horatio beamed at the thought that the sway still held.  Still though, he new he had to stay on his toes, so to speak.

One thing did irritate Horatio's thoughts though....he had come to like Peter.  When Peter would have his young friends over to play in his bedroom, Horatio eagerly listened in on their games and talk.  He learned what was going on in school that day when his parents came to tuck him in and would talk about things before turning out the light.  He had the ability to peek in on Peter's dreams (in order to break in to create a nightmare), but he found himself holding back on the nightmares and simply watching Peter's own dreams unfold.  They were unlike anything he had ever beheld before, dreams of innocence and purity, light and laughter.  Horatio was mesmerized.

Monsters, unless they were of the upper elite Angel type, were not supposed to like their charges.  They were not supposed to harbor feelings of affection for them.  They were not supposed to protect them from harm, but to create harm.  Horatio was confused by his feelings and scowled to himself whenever he found himself waiting to hear Peter's news of his day.  Once or twice he even broke Monster rules and came out from under the bed and stood in the hallway, wanting to hear Peter practice his piano lesson.  After these bouts of emotions he felt ashamed, and vowed to be extra scary that night to make up for it.

That night Peter came to bed, his mother behind him, asking him to repeat his music theory lesson one more time.

"And what are the sharp notes again?" his mother asked.

"Fat Charlie Goes Down And Eats Breakfast, F-C-G-D-A-E-B," Peter said, rolling his eyes.  "Don't worry Mom, I know it!"

"Ok, Ok, just checking.  Now hop in, we have an early day tomorrow," his mother said while straightening the sheets around him.  Do you want me to check.....?" she asked Peter, hinting at their old ritual of checking under the bed for monsters.

"Mom, there's no such thing as monsters, you know that," Peter said.  Horatio, listening, was cut to the quick. He felt a tear well up in his eye.

"Alright alright, just thought I'd ask.  You know, I looked under there the other day searching for something and could have sworn I saw something move...."

"Mom, you're just doing that to scare me," Peter said, rolling his eyes again.  "But if you wanna look, go ahead."

Both Mom and Horatio smiled at this, but Peter was unaware, having closed his eyes.  He's just faking, Horatio thought.  Oh well played Peter, well played.

After his Mom turned out the light, Peter turned onto his side and fell fast asleep.  Horatio considered giving him a good old fashioned nightmare just for the fun of it, he was so overjoyed that Peter still believed in him.  But he let him rest, and settled down to sleep himself, under the bed among the dust bunnies.

A few hours later Horatio woke up, knowing it was far too early.  He smelled smoke.  He wondered if the portal door was ajar allowing smoke and brimstone to waft up (it had happened before, it was an HR nightmare to cover that up) but no, that wasn't it.  No, this smoke was inside the house.  He tensed, waiting to hear the smoke alarms go off to alert the family to safety.  They weren't going off!  Horatio knew the rules, he was absolutely forbidden to interfere with the activity of the family or to approach them in any way, even in an emergency such as this.  But.....this was Peter.  Peter!  His Peter.  He had to do something.

He now heard sounds out in the hallway, and determined that Peter's parents were unable to get to his room.  Horatio broke every single rule in the Monster Manual in one second.  He came out from under the bed, gently shook Peter by the shoulder, and said in as gentle a voice as he could muster, "Peter, wake up Peter.  You need to get out of the house, now.  I'll help you.  Peter, Wake UP," he added a bit of the old growl in his urgency.

Peter woke up, frightened, and looked around.  He thought he saw a shape by the bed but couldn't make it out.  He smelled smoke and started coughing.  "Mom, Dad!  Help!" he shouted, and he could hear their screams down the hallway.

Horatio used his ability to peek into dreams to speak to Peter's conscious mind now.  If he showed his corporeal form to Peter and talked out loud to him while awake it would do more harm than good, so he kept himself hidden in the shadows and let his voice penetrate Peter's mind.  "Peter, go over to the window, open it, and jump to the ground.  NOW."

"But what about my parents!" Peter screamed.

"They are already outside, you need to go to them.  NOW."

Peter hesitated one last second, looked around him for the voice, then went to the window.  He opened it, had the presence of mind to grab whatever books and toys were nearest to him and threw them out ahead, and then followed, jumping to the dew-wet grass in his bare feet.

Horatio risked a look out the window to make sure that Peter was safe, that his parents were indeed outside, and then skulked back to his portal door under the bed.  He knew he was going to be in big trouble.

Back in the Monster world, Horatio was approached immediately by his supervisor.  "Just what do you think you were doing?  Revealing yourself to the child?  Saving the child?  Oh my, there is going to be A LOT of paperwork on this.  You are temporarily relieved of duty until we can investigate this further.  Turn in your portal key."

Horatio turned in his portal key and walked away, shoulders slumped.

A few days later Horatio was summoned by his supervisor and the rest of upper management.  He stood nervously in the middle of the room, lined on all sides with various Monsters in whispered conversation.

"You have hereby been summoned to a hearing concerning your post.  Please explain to us, what happened that made you reveal yourself to your charge," a deep voice said.

Horatio took a deep breath and said, "Well, the burned down.  It was burning down all around them and I had to keep Peter safe.  He is my charge and I just had to.....keep him safe," he finished, hanging his head.

The Monsters whispered fervently to each other all around him.  Finally, the deep voice asked him, "But why did you want to keep him safe?"

"I have grown to like the, love the child," Horatio answered.

"But you are a Lesser Monster, how is it that you know love?" the deep voice asked.

"I do not know, I only know what it is that I feel.  I care about the boy, his family, and his world."  Horatio looked up, then, defiant.  No longer would he hang his head in shame.  He was sure of himself and would suffer the consequences without fear.

More whispers.  Then the deep voice said, "You may go.  We will call you when we have made our decision."  Horatio walked out of the room.

Days later, Horatio was summoned back.  He had feelings of misgivings, and wondered if he had been too brash.  He certainly didn't want to be demoted.  No, those that were under the Lesser Monsters were truly depraved.  His newly awakened emotions caused him to balk at what his future might hold.

Standing in the middle of the room again, Horatio waited for his sentence to be given.  The deep voice said, "You have shown extraordinary qualities that we did not know Lesser Monsters were capable of.  The ability to love, the need to protect.  This is unlike anything we have ever seen before.  We did not know what to do with you."

Horatio cowered, sure he was going to be demoted.

"However, we have come to decide that we would like to give you a chance at the elite front.  Angel Monster, 3rd class.  We want to study you, see if you really have what it takes to be an Angel Monster.  Really, it's unheard of, a Lesser Monster exhibiting these levels of depth within himself.  You are hereby sentenced to one year probation to the Elite Squad.  And, I think you will like knowing you will be going back to Peter's house.  Or rather, his new house."

Horatio was so overcome with gratitude he was unable to speak.  He realized what had just been said and blurted, "I'm going back to Peter?  I'm to look after him as an Angel?"  He quivered with joy at the thought.

"No, you are not being reassigned to Peter.  You are being assigned to his little brother."

"But Peter doesn't have a little brother!" Horatio said, confused.

"He will in about two months," said the deep voice, smiling.

Horatio walked out of the room, smiling as well.


Posted for Blogophilia 21.5

Topic:  It Burned Down
hard, 2 pts:  Include a childhood monster (like the monster under the bed)
easy, 1 pt:  Include a mnenomic device

Bonus Picture:
Guesses:  in too deep, being swallowed, drowning, petrified, reaching out, turning to stone, stoned, reaching, blending in

Sunday, July 15, 2012

GBE #61 Education

I was bent on going serious with this topic but decided I desperately need a lighter change of pace, both mentally and writing-wise.  So without further ado, I bring you....

"How To Cut Up A Mango (if you haven't before)"

*language warning, if you're not into that

Step #1:  Buy mango.

Step #2:  Slice into mango, expecting it to be like a peach or an avocado with a normal pit.  Hit something that feels like cement and get knife stuck.  Say, "fuck!"

Step #3:  Attempt to get knife back out but proceed in making a slimey mess on the cutting board.  Finally wrench knife out, almost stabbing yourself in the eye.  Shout "fuck" again, loudly.

Step #4:  Give the mango a dirty look as if to say, "Why don't you have a normal pit like a peach or an avocado?  I know how to deal with them."  Glower a lot.

Step #5:  Attempt to slice into it again, being wary of the abnormally big "pit".  Manage to get some decent slices of actual fruit flesh off.  Smirk at the fruit, and say "Yeah, take that, bitch."

Step #6:  Continue to take tiny slices all around this mutant alien "pit" and wonder why eating healthy has to be so fucking hard.  Say "fuck" many more times, because it makes you feel better.

Step #7:  After slicing off as many pieces of actual flesh you can, pick up this mutant pit and stare at it.  Wonder at its size, and say, "You've jipped me.  There is more pit than fruit.  I want my money back."  Throw said pit in trash with relish.

Step #8:  Look down at the millions of pieces of fruit you've sliced, and realize now you have to peel all of them.  Use as many variations of "fuck" in as many phrases and ways as you can think of.

Step #9:  Try to peel a slice, realize the fruit is slippery and slimey and cut yourself in the process.  This calls for more than mere swear words, so pour yourself a shot of rum to cope. Continue to glower.

Step #10:  Manage to get the 1.2 million tiny slices of fruit peeled and into a bowl.  Taste one.  Think...."hey, that's not was totally worth it."

Step #11:  Look at your bleeding finger, the slimey mess on the cutting board and pieces of peel littering the counter and floor, and say, "No, that was so not worth it."

Step #12:  Vow to never buy a mango again.

Submitted for GBE #61.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Spiritual Disconnect

My friend Jo left a comment on one of my posts yesterday that something lacking in my recovery is a faith in God.  It got me thinking.

I usually tell people I'm an athiest because it's easier than trying to explain things.  My definition of an athiest is someone who is 100% confident in their belief and knowledge that there is nothing out there.  No creator, no great spirit, no higher power, no great shamoo, nothing.

Well, I'm not 100% confident that there is nothing out there.  Something had to start all of this.  What that something is, I don't know, and I don't care.  I know that I don't believe in the Christian version of things or the Christian God.  I know I don't believe in any other organized religion either.  In the 90's I went through a pagan/Wicca phase but we'll just pretend I didn't admit that.....heh.  So, because I can't say I'm 100% athiest, I guess that puts me in the agnostic camp.  I do believe we all have souls.  I'd like to believe that there is an afterlife and good people are chillin' out having fun and the Hitlers and Ted Bundys of the world are roasting in agony, and I'd like to believe that when I die I'll get to see loved ones again who went before me.  But the whole Jesus salvation born again thing?  Nope.  Not drinking that Kool-Aid.

Anyway, I fully admit that my struggles sticking to 12 step programs is the hangup with the higher power thing.  I just don't get it.  I don't know how to make the spiritual connection that's supposed to take place in order for some great inner transformation to occur.  I mean what do I do?  Literally?  Talk out loud to something that's not there?  Have a conversation in my head that no one will hear but me?  Talk to the chair? And what emotions am I supposed to be feeling while doing this?  I just don't get it.

But I do understand being spiritual. Years ago when I was admitted following a suicide attempt, one of the group therapy sessions was led by the chaplain and going into it, I cringed because I thought it was going to be "Jesus Recruitment Hour."  Surprisingly he didn't address religion at all, but focused on spirituality.  One of the more lasting impressions I took away from that was how nurturing your spirit has nothing to do with religion.  Listening to a piece of music that moves you, reading a book or watching a movie that makes you cry, experiencing a moment of pure joy at the site of a child laughing or a cat purring....those are the spiritual moments that make us human, and it's these emotions that we shouldn't run from even if they're painful, but should embrace them and let them nurture our soul.  Now that I can understand, even as I do try to drown out emotions with booze and drugs.

But to apply that understanding of spirituality to the 12-step higher power thing?  Clueless.  What I described above about my understanding of being spiritual is related to human emotions, not trying to make contact with some third party entity.  The KEY tenet of the steps is that you come to believe a higher power will help restore you to sanity and that you are willing to hand your will and life over to that higher power.  Without that belief, the "steps" don't work.

Add to that the fact that many meetings only adhere to the "higher power" thing with lip service only - most just flat out say God instead of higher power and there is an unspoken, unofficial, but very real and strong expectation that newcomers do so as well.  I've been to some who even quote biblical scripture during the meetings.  It all had an uncomfortable cultish vibe to it.  That really turns me off of wanting to give AA/NA another try.

Now I am NOT bashing AA/NA.  Not at all.  I know they have helped millions of people.  I'm just trying to explain my experiences and my disconnect with the 12 step process.  I wish I could believe.  It would solve  a lot of problems.

So is recovery dependent on a spiritual connection?  Is that the only way to go?  I'm interested in your opinions and thoughts on this.

Thursday, July 12, 2012




Lover o’ mine...



My life for thine...

Cracked and

Jacked and

Hacked o’er time...

Sucked and

Fucked and

Trucked for a line...



Praying for time




Lover o' mine.

Copyright Steven Clark 2012

Illusion of Recovery

I came to an interesting realization yesterday about myself, concerning addiction and recovery.  I'm not always quick on the uptake about learning things about myself, I've spent a lifetime trying to hide from me to the point that I have no idea who I really am.  Really obvious stuff - obvious to others anyway - comes to me slowly.

Anyway, I was reading an account of a fellow heroin addict and he made the statement that his recovery attempts were really only him setting his tolerance level back at zero again so that he could once again use and have a 'proper high'.  That he wasn't interested in getting clean for keeps, he only wanted to take occasional breaks from using so that he could come back to drugs again and he'd get that new novel feeling all over again from them.  Like falling in lust with a new lover.

I read that over and over and it made me wonder, is that what I've been doing all of this time, too?  It really was like an epiphany moment, this new way of looking at my life.  Do I really want to recover, or has this unconscious agenda been there all the time, guiding my choices, my repeated relapses?  I've been thinking on this ever since and trying to analyze whether this is the case with me or not.  I truly do not know.

I don't like what addiction has made my life.  I think about using heroin all the time.  All the time.  It's always there, hovering in the back of my mind like a fly waiting to land on a piece of shit.  I think back to the misery of active using, the panic, stress, sickness, and the person I become when needing a fix....willing to do anything, hurt anyone, to get money.  I make myself remember the physical and mental agony of lying there in bed after waking in the morning, dopesick, with no money and desperate for a fix before I shit my pants.  And even with those memories, I still want it, always.  It is insidious, the pull it has on my mind.  Probably because the only times in my life where I felt an ounce of peace, calm, and happiness was when high on heroin, and my brain is desperate to feel that way again.

The longest consecutive period of time I ever had completely clean and sober was 4 years.  In all that 4 years time of going to meetings, reading recovery and self help books, living life, I never felt peace, calm, or happiness.  I faked that I did because that was what was expected of me.  I smiled and laughed like a robot, right on que.  I had none of the feelings of surrender and acceptance that other addicts talk about feeling while doing the steps.  I don't believe there is some magical higher power that can whisk these feelings away from me; or into me, however you want to look at it.  It was 4 years of white knuckling it, full of depressing, suicidal thoughts despite the ever changing cocktail of antidepressants I was on.

What is wrong with me that I haven't had those same feelings that other addicts do in recovery?  What am I doing, or not doing, that prevents me from wanting to keep on with it?  Has my brain become so permanently rewired from years of opiate use that its impossible to ever feel happy again without them?  I want to feel what other people feel.  If recovery means more years of white knuckling it, always feeling depressed and angry and not quite right, I don't know if I want it.  I don't want the misery that the addict lifestyle brings either so I'm fucked both ways.

I know what I'll be told - better to be depressed and angry but clean, instead of happy and in danger of dying or ending up in jail.  A rational mind would say so, but an addict's mind isn't rational.  I know this also sounds like I'm setting it up to justify a relapse, which isn't necessarily true.  Even on my best days I'm an inch away from relapse.  Just needed to get out what has been circling around my head about all of this - this new idea that deep down I may have no intention of ever really staying clean from opiates.  It's heady, this idea, and I don't know how I feel about it.