The year was 1996: alternative rock was at its prime, Whitewater consumed airtime, Quake was cool, and they cloned a sheep. I had created my own sheep, Shauna. My high school was literally across the street from an all girl catholic school full of attractive blondes who easily put out, which all the popular guys dated. This left an abundance of girls for any guy, even tall skinny nerds like myself, at my school. Shauna bloomed into a beautiful woman in high school but kept her middle school "ugly girl complex", which made her timid and able to bend to peer pressure with ease. I used this to my advantage and manipulated her to do anything I wanted. I was always "nice" since the day I met her and we became instant friends in middle school. She liked me since the beginning but I never took interest in her till she grew into a girl I wanted to bone. My shallowness hurts me even ten years later. Shauna found security and happiness with me to a level I still don't understand. Her fate was my fault.
I had a completely different background than Shauna; I had a loving mother and father. My family wasn't super rich but we were definitely well off, we had a nice house, nice cars, nice pool, and a vacation home in Tahoe. Shauna was poorer than dirt and I loved spoiling her and giving her the things I always took for granted; she loved it back. My family embraced her like a member of our family and she never had to go home to her parents (who both molested her). We would spend three great years together before her heart-breaking death in 1999.
I took my first line, felt nothing. Did a second and third, felt nothing. I told myself cocaine was a weak drug that I'd never try it again, I was so wrong. Justene was already hooked; the euphoria that came to her my first time scared me immensely. Isaac was already brain dead; coke did nothing, he never experimented again (as to my knowledge) and lives a happy life as a blue-collar worker (why do the simple minded end up happy?). Shauna saw cocaine the same way I did and shrugged it off. Tragically, she and I were already addicted.
In my experience, cocaine addicts are automatically hooked their first time but cravings wont surface for months. It was months after I had tried coke before I tried it again, and I didn't even know it. I did it subconsciously; I remember waking (I wasn't asleep but my short term memory was wiped, giving the feeling of waking) up in the back of a car and finding white powder smeared on my jeans. My friends in the car yelled, screamed and told me what I had just done; apparently I pulled out a bag of coke, spilled it on my leg, and sniffed it with a straw. For the life of me, I don't remember purchasing the coke or actually doing it, let alone remember having the will to do it. I was frightened but it was too late. I experienced cravings and was getting high at shorter and shorter intervals: a month, a week, two days, and then daily. Shauna was constantly at my side.
I couldn't tell you exactly why I started to do coke. My parents gave me all I have ever wanted, I had friends, I was fairly smart, but I needed something more. I was like at a limit; I kept saying, "This is as smart, as popular, and as fun as life is going to get." I just hoped cocaine would help me break that limit; it sure did. At first, cocaine made me feel indestructible and genius. My schoolwork, ironically, improved; cocaine made me a feel like an Einstein and homework became a priority. Plus cocaine gave me all the time in the world to work on projects. I got a job at a bakery and worked fifty hours a week on top of school. I was always at a party, whether it was drug related or not, and always had someone to hang out with. I suddenly had all the money, grades, time, and friends I had always wanted, but cocaine had merely pulled a curtain over my eyes.
Shauna, on the other hand, frequently skipped school to get high and her life suffered. She had loved her little brothers more than I could ever understand and protected them from the world (and her parents). But she all but forgot about them while binging on coke. She forgot their birthdays, no longer walked them home from school, and simply didn't care. Our first two years together were heaven; we were always somewhere having fun: a rave, coke party, even orgies. We were always side-by-side and she became addicted to her social life the cocaine brought- maybe even more than the cocaine itself. Our last year, our senior year, was hell; our drug problem was spinning out of control.
Shauna had stopped working during her senior year and I supported her drug addiction. I was irritable and tired. I had done so much cocaine that I was afraid of coming down, and when I did I could no longer sleep without large doses of hydrocodone or marijuana. It seemed like the unlimited time cocaine had brought was diminishing. I had to drive increasingly farther out of my way to obtain the amounts of coke we were both using to feel normal. I was $6,000 dollars in debt to various banks, friends, and dealers and it seemed like I would never recover. I had simply no time for school and barely passed senior year (my overall GPA in high school was still a 3.54, which combined with a 1360 SAT was enough to get me into college). The day Shauna dropped out of school was, at the time, the saddest moment of my entire life. I saw what she had become, a drug fiend and a bitch. Everything I loved about her was gone; the sweetness and shyness I had found attractive was gone. It finally hit me, I had ruined the life of another, and I was going too. I vowed it to myself that I would quit; I decided to celebrate with a little coke and overdosed.
I was no longer the social outgoing person I once was; I often stayed home to get high alone. This time I took my $100 dollar baggie of coke to a Safeway parking lot after my shift ended at 11 pm. I don't remember actually doing the coke just the euphoria and comfort of getting high, the only comfort I found in the world. My eyes dazed in and out and I had tunnel vision. I remember my nose starting to bleed; I lapped up the blood with my tongue because I thought it had the faint taste of cocaine. It wasn't until the streetlights turned into angels that I realized I just might die. Fading fast, I had to tell myself to stay awake or I would surely be dead. I remember the two longest hours of my life trying to stay awake. I became dizzy and my head twirled until the ground flew up at me fast. I eventually awoke in a hospital the next night. I still do not know who found me or when that night. I had surpassed the lethal dosage of cocaine; I should have died.
Shauna wouldn't be so lucky. I quit cold turkey after that incident; unfortunately, this is one thing she didn't want to follow along. I could have forced her to quit but at the time I was weak and feeling horrible. Her mother found her under an overpass after she didn't come home for a few days. She was just hours past death. I couldn't deal with quitting and her death at one time; I bottled the remorse and pain from her death while I defeated my addiction. I tried to convince myself she was on vacation or anything but dead. It finally came to me: the poor, abused, and beautiful girl who loved me with all her heart was dead, and I was the cause. I had killed her. The selfish pleasure I felt from taking advantage of her insecurities had killed her.
For the first year, my life was hell. I was depressed and suicidal; I wanted to end the pain. Although I have never done cocaine again, my drug addiction would continue. Vicodin, ecstasy, and pot would continue to be my drugs of choice for next three years. I eventually kicked everything one by one (I just recently gave up pot and now completely clean). The drugs are now out, but the emotional pain of Shauna's death will be with me forever. Therapy helped me realize that the pain would never go away; I just had to accept it. I also had to realize that if I did die in that parking lot, Shauna might have quit; she could still be alive. Therapist tried to convince me that her death wasn't entirely my fault but I call bullshit. I was in control of blind love and led it off a cliff.