The glamour of this poison is irresistible And once in our bodies, it runs in our veins eating and drying our bodies from the inside Making us slaves of the short lived high All around us, people are getting entrapped and enslaved to the effects of alcohol and nicotine consumption Here is an excerpt from the diary of a substance abuser.

 From the Diary of a Substance Abuser

Every time I look at the smoke, I feel something inside me turning into ashes. Every time I see someone buying cigarettes or alcohol, I see a part of my house collapsing, and every time I want to stop them, my body refuses to assist me, my inhibited speech restricts my words and my pitiful condition makes me regret their actions as well as mine.

I was 15 when I first got a ‘beedi’, a type of cigarette which is quite affordable for people like me. The detestable soot from the cigarette made me choke, I coughed hard and instantly knew that it was bad for me but I saw how proud my friends were . As an insecure teen, wanting acceptance, I succumbed to their will and thereafter, that smoke became my escape.

At 17,I bought alcohol; sneaked it under my father’s nose into the house, and took the first gulp. It was repulsive, but brought me a certain kind of inexplicable joy. The intolerable bitterness slowly turned into sweet syrup that made me forget my problems. I would steal the hard-earned money from my family to buy all this, not only for me but also my friends. My naivety made me spend all I had recklessly on these, just for the fake and short-lived recognition from my peers, to forget the challenges in my life that could have inspired me to get everything that I thought I could never have.

With the responsibilities of my wife and my children, I did try to leave all of this behind. But the addiction would not leave. The desire for smoke or alcohol, the habit of using it as an anchor would not leave. Even though I was fully aware of the hazards, my dependency did not stop. And now here I lay waiting for life to give me another chance. Another chance to hug my parents, kiss my wife and laugh with my children.

 Another chance that I would not lose to ashes and blobs.

(work of fiction)




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