In two motions, I spit out and crumble the half smoked blunt. This shit is bitter as fuck. As much as I like the damaging stuff, I hate bitter tasting stuff more. Dear God, now I’m laughing at myself. It’s amazing how deep depressed humor can run.
The TV cackles with life and I turn towards it. It’s some psychologist asshole being honored. Bullshit crap. Giving plaques to people who charge you money to fuck with your mind. I’ve had enough psychological fuckery to last me a lifetime. The asshole’s name is Dr. Ladipo and he’s supposed to be some miracle worker. For a moment, I wonder if he can cast his mental magic and change my life.
Nah. Fuck that, I’m too deep into muck to ever be saved.
The socket fizzles and the TV goes off.
And then I see it, my reflection on the blank television screen.
There’s nothing wrong with it.
I look beautiful, slim, detached maybe, but nonetheless all right.
But I’m not all right.
I’m in pain; I crave help; I need redemption.
I look around the house, and its state resembles exactly what I feel inside – organized chaos that simply refuses to be tidied up.
I look at the television one more time, and then I pick up my laptop. In a few minutes I had filled out Dr. Ladipo’s psychological analysis check sheet.
I’m going to see him.
(The office of Dr. Dare Ladipo. Psychologist MD.)
Dr. Ladipo thought he had seen it all. You see, he was one of those people who felt strangely detached from any kind of life outside their radar. Every day, he would wake up, make tea, and scan through the dailies. And every day, he would see another person whose life was ruined because of bad decisions. His reactions were always the same, a calm acceptance that the world was full of shit and there wasn’t a damn thing he could do about it. These situations only made excellent reference points when he was in session with his patients. And it was because of this Dr. Ladipo refused to deal with anyone he considered young and impressionable. Because you see, Dr. Ladipo was scared that his precious practice would be toppled when a youngling came with his/her excessive emotional baggage. He ran a successful psychological practice for middle-aged adults simply by using the right clichés at the right time.
“It’s not your fault. Life gives us all crazy blows. Your ability to endure and overcome is what makes us strong.”
“Just because they had a good excuse doesn’t make what they did to you any less terrible.”
As long as the mouth opening cases stayed far away from him, his practice would thrive till he had saved enough for retirement. It was selfish of him and he knew it.
So on Monday morning, Dr. Ladipo walked into his office with the same mentality expecting to have his only hour of privacy for the whole day. He would make tea and listen to Marvin Gaye.
And there on his couch I was, a blank expression on my face, fiddling with my phone.
It only took three words:
“I need help.”
Then I burst into laughter.
Dr. Ladipo kept looking at me with an expression halfway between shock and scared amusement.
“How did you get in here?” He demanded.
“I flashed my breasts to your security guard. Didn’t take much convincing after that. Why don’t you sit down?” I told him.
He sat. It was finally time. I was going to tell someone my story. I went to his speakers, brought out my aux cord and attached it. In a few seconds, 30 seconds to Mars, “Hurricane” was playing.
It was time and I was as scared as fuck. In the past three years, I had become the very opposite of what the world expected of me. I had gone a full 180 and now I was reversing to square one.
What could I tell him? That I was a young Nigerian girl gone astray too early? That I could still pick up the pieces of my life even though I had already lived two lifetimes?
I—-my— I couldn’t do it, so I did what I did best. I brought out what I had written to him. I sit down and calmly begin to read, and as the words escape my lips, I feel the friction of a tear sliding down my face. It’s followed by another, then another, then another. And all the while Dr. Ladipo is looking at me shocked beyond words. Perhaps it is because he has a daughter my age.
This is not one of those stories where I go on and lie to you or more importantly myself that I’m perfectly fine and any problems I have are normal for your average 18 year old Nigerian female. Because I have a problem, a serious problem with myself, and no the roots cannot be traced to any family issue I have/had. I grew up in a perfectly fine family, I didn’t suffer from abandonment issues, in fact, I had an overprotective father. My mother was always home because she was a businesswoman who conducted her transactions in the comfort of her house. She never made it big enough to expand and open shops, although I personally think it’s because she didn’t want to. She was a simple, very beautiful, deeply religious woman who had a very uncommon content with her life as it was. My sisters were the usual pain-in-the-ass petty females that exist in every reasonable human family and I was your average tomboy-turned-proper girl who never for once exhibited signs that she would become the oddity that is me.
I’m going off rehashing memories because it helps with the pain. I think of and enact any good memories I have and with the life I’ve led, my family is the one good place in my head I can go to and manage to subdue those cravings just a little but less. My name is Fareeda and I’m a recovering drug addict.I’ve gone through treatment, and I visit forums for recovering drug addicts whenever I can.
Yesterday, I saw you being honored on TV and in that moment I developed enough female balls to face my drug problem. Don’t get this wrong, I was never in denial, I always acknowledged that I had gone from a young, smart innocent, fresh faced teen to the drug sniffing desperate teen that I am. I knew I had a drug problem, but I chose to wallow in it. The first stage to solving my problem is embracing and accepting my issues as they come. I won’t underplay or over exaggerate them as just face the facts as they are.
I’m an eighteen-year-old drug addict in need of redemption.
For the first time in his whole psychology practice, Dr. Ladipo felt something akin to sympathy. He looked at the epitome of independence and self pity across him and in that moment, he changed.
“I’ll help you. Let’s start with meeting once a week, and in the meantime, I want you to document whatever aspects of your addiction you want to share with me. It helps to purge your grief by putting down those memories in concrete form”
“See you next week Fareeda”
Incase you missed the big announcement yesterday, read up on the TNC and HP Nigeria Wet & White Party and learn how you can get an invite .