Tuesday, June 15, 2010

True Love, Free Will & Powdered Death

Isn't it striking that right now in this country there is a move to ban pornography on digital media, specifically on mobile phones and the internet? This is ostensibly to "protect children" - a favorite excuse of the religious right wing, who fail to see the obvious - that while they are all fired up doing the Lord's work - the same kids they are trying to protect from seeing people having sex, or even making love on the web, on their phones or on TV - can watch gratuitous violence, mayhem and dismemberment on TV, and hey - in real life as well. Thus it is a logical conclusion that seeing sex and intimacy in whatever context is bad for children, but everything violent and bloody is just fine. Or is that just next on their list after gay rights, hate crime, abortion and freedom of religion?

What about the reality they are skirting around? That the poor vulnerable "children" they want to protect from viewing internet porn, despite the safety mechanisms which are all too easily enforced by parents interested enough to bother - are far more exposed to violence, bullying in schools, child abuse and even drug abuse than porn.

Right at the top of my list right now I would have to target drug abuse. Why? Because I have just been through a most painful breakup because of drugs. Right now I hate drug dealers, manufacturers and also hijackers. People who make their living out of the suffering and deaths of others, people who deserve to be stopped with extreme prejudice. If there were no hard drugs to sell, there would be no-one to sell them, and no-one to use them and pay for them, steal to pay for them or lie and hurt others and themselves in using them.

I lost a friend to drugs at high school, an end to a talented and creative young man who burnt out on heroin and coke a decade after just trying a little weed at varsity once. And now a lover too. A few months ago she survived a hijacking in Johannesburg, and it knocked her flat. She went for trauma counseling, she seemed to be recovering, but then the nightmares and paranoia got too much for her. Then she started on the prescription stuff, sleeping tabs, tranquilizers, pain pills and slimming drugs and anti-depressants. This will pass, we thought. At least she started driving again. And then without any of us knowing it, she started using Cat. It's a cheap-ass street drug containing tik among other things - and by all descriptions, it's a really nasty thing that quite literally fucks you up from the inside out - but you love it anyway, you love it more than life itself because it makes you feel so good, even though it is killing you, body and soul.

She's not dead yet, but perhaps soon she will be. Maybe I am being a little miss drama here, but please forgive me for caring. I'm not looking for sympathy by the way. I just had to warn other people of what can happen in an otherwise happy and perfect relationship.

I found out from a friend who I showed a picture to – one she sent me, presumably to torture me with - of three lines, about 2 grams of white powder cut with her driver’s license card. The value of it I was told is around 800 Rand. The license card was there to prove it was from her. He told me the powder in the picture she sent me was real – and he should know, he was a user for several years. Mind you, she told me it was real too. I didn't believe her, I thought it was another lie.

Cat makes permanent personality changes, and the person who said all those nasty things to me, and sent me those pictures of her hurting herself, taunting me, wasn't her. I don't know who that was, but it wasn't her. It was the drug talking, glorying in the new-found chemical strength and dutch courage of powdered death. The anger and hatred in her for the good, loving, strong person she was before, who she now sees as a pathetic, weak victim of a hijacking who deserves to die a chemical death, now needs no-one and is headed to the abyss of self-destruction.

He basically told me to stop worrying and forget her – she’s as good as dead already. She will be stuck on it for years now, or die. He survived, but it cost him his health, his personality, his looks, his teeth and the life he had before. He still has the most terrible nightmares caused by the trace elements of the drug still in his body, years later. Forget her, he says. Good advice, I realize. I thought she was lying to me, I know other things she told me during this turmoil were lies, and I thought this one about the drugs was one too. But how can I? Now that I know? How can I turn my back knowing she really did love me and I’ve lost her to this monstrous thing? How can I fight something like this? How can anyone? What do you do, what do you say, what do you feel?

How do you just cut someone loose and move on, when you know the person you love is still inside there, lost? How do you stop feeling? How do you accept this, and why should you have to – aside from eventually admitting you have no other choice and no matter what you say or feel or do, or how much you cry, or mourn or beat your chest – the universe just doesn’t give a flying fuck?

I tried to handle it using tough love, set a deadline for her to come home to me on Sunday and it backfired. I lost her completely. She begged me not to do it. I did because I thought it would save her, and us. Why didn't I believe her about the drugs? I thought that was a lie too. Now she's going to die or self-destruct and screw up her whole life. And nothing I can say or do can change that.

For the first time in my life I was free, without issues about past relationships - and then I found someone who loved me, and I had that ripped away by hijackers, dealers and a chemical substance. Chain reactions and irony. I truly hate this life, this mortality and powerlessness. But I guess its just a bit of guilt on my side and the nasty things she said to me. And I can still hear her crying "I can't anymore" on the phone over and over again, the last time I heard her voice. It will haunt me forever.

I just have to stop feeling I guess. I'm just so tired of feeling right now. And I just can't cry anymore. You start to lose friends when all you do is cry over things people don't care about. Sure, there are plenty more fish in the sea, but there's only one of each of us.

I asked God for help for the first time in years, the first time I spoke to him in years and nothing. I won't make that mistake again. And do not tempt my patience with stories of God giving us free will. Free will to try drugs yes, a mistake many people make – but how much "free will" is required to break free of them when they make you their slave? My heart has gone out to her and has not come back. I don't want it back. Let it keep her warm, light whatever life she has now, and let it die with her.

What a fool I have been to judge her.

I miss her, but the real her - not this thing walking around in her body now. She made choices. She chose to use the drugs, she chose to give in to them. She chose death over me. She chose that white, powdered death over us and our love. So now she is dead. That’s how I need to think of her to survive. She’s dead. And so is God. If there is a God, and all this transpired anyway - then there is no love, or justice, or mercy or goodness - only God. What a comfort that is. And if God does exist, and doesn’t care, then God is a bastard not worth knowing.

So those in this world who claim to be doing "his work" need to stop trying to bluff us and themselves. They need to stop wasting time and resources on rubbish like "pornography" in order to get their own little political agendas into government - and concentrate on things that really are bad, things that really are evil.

They need to stop buggering around, flattering their own egos and start actually saving lives. Instead of contributing to circumstances that make life so miserable for our community that people turn to drugs as a way out, giving them the opportunity to claim that being gay or trans is a "suicidal lifestyle". And we need to stop giving them that opportunity. People who love this God should be opening their hearts and their minds to the suffering of others and embracing them, as their Christ embraces everyone.

And as for me? I'll survive. Keep fighting the good fight, stiff upper lip and all the dull cliche's you can think of. I got that off my chest and passed on my warning. I did all I could. For her and for you. For today I will be fine. And tomorrow can take care of itself.

3 comments:

  1. Hi Christina I'm so sorry. I also had to leave a girl who was destroying herself. Her thing was suicide attempts. For years, at odd times, I had to drag her to hospital to get pumped out or stitched.
    Once I got home after work and her workshop(at home) was blood all over the place and couldn't find her... neighbours helped her. That day I passed out.
    Eventually I realised it was killing me too. She is now being taken care of by a church community. I moved to another town but I keep in contact with her though, phone once a month & visit once a year.
    To leave her was a mixture of trauma & relief.

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  2. Dear Christina, I feel your pain at the loss of a soulmate. Fate is cruel to some and kind to others and there is no way to understand it. In the end all we can do is accept our fates with as much courage and fortitude as we can muster. I don't know what Cat is. But I have lost friends to their own self destructuction. Personally I think drugs and escapism in general are social mechanisms without regard for the human cost. Why are people so empty and unfulfilled? Why do we punish a spiritual disease anyway. It never worked and never will.
    You are obviously a strong resilient woman..like many of us highly sensitized to the violence and judgment perpetrated by religion. Insidious in it's self righteous judgment of those who do not conform they burned us at the stake in this country 400 years ago and never really stopped crucifying us.

    I am a fifty nine year old Transwoman writer from the southwest desert of the US. I have a keen interest in the Politics and subsequent oppression of all trans people on a global scale. My heart goes out to my sisters and brothers in Africa for they seem to be the recipients of the worst examples of religious based violence and persecution. If your situation is comparable to that in Uganda, you have my compassion and support. I want you to know that many of us here are on your side. The news may not get there. But I want to emphasize my unwavering support for you and your struggle.
    As I read your most recent post, I identified strongly with your passion and sense of rage at your dehumanization at the hands of religious zealots.
    I call myself an atheist. It is not legal here to persecute me being secular humanist....not yet.
    So I write some radical stuff. Unfortunately I don't think too many people in this country are open minded, intellectual, introspective.
    Thinking about our , you and me, passion for writing about the oppression of Trans people, I have long thought that we need a global Transwoman Writer's Project. Doesn't seem like it would be that difficult. Our problem as Trans people is our low numbers per capita.
    And ideally in an egalitarian society the most attention is given to the smallest minority. But we cannot form a political block due to our lack of capital which is due to the gender apartheid control mechanism of the state
    In closing I would be honored to be your friend. I am Medicine Woman at Laura's Playground and I have a blog there too if you have some time. I would like to continue correspondence with you for the sake of Trans-Sisterhood International. Hey not bad for a name? In Peace

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