This I Believe

Darrin - Park Ridge, Illinois
Entered on April 12, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

People always ask me what I want to do in life, and to be completely honest I am unsure; but I do believe I know who I want to be. I want to be true to myself and my loved ones. For so long who I was, was defined by my drug addiction. I was a lying, stealing, and manipulative young man who had sold his soul for just one more fix.

The memory remains as clear as day. I was sitting outside a project on the west side of Chicago with an eight year old boy in my car, for whom my friend and I were to look after. As my friend went to get our daily fixes I was left with the boy. I sat and joked with him and talked to him about baseball. This child was so young and innocent and here I was joking around with him in one the most violent and dismal places, while I waited anxiously for my fix of heroin. As my friend returned I felt my soul leave me. I had finally hit rock bottom. I had turned into a person I never thought I would be, a person no one wants their 19 year old son to be. I had forgotten who I once was. I was once that innocent child and now I was a strung out drug addict. My morals were torn out of my body as I snorted that heroin up my nose in front of that innocent child’s eyes.

I have learned from the terrible things that I have done, but my addiction is still an everyday battle that I have to fight. Today I can say I am a moral person, but I cannot forget my past. I feel a sharp pain in my heart every time I think of the things I did to my loved ones, but I also get a sense of pride whenever I think of what I am doing for myself right now. Although, I am unsure of where and what I want to do in life, I am sure of one thing. I don’t want to be the person I once was.