I’ve been surly, stoned and sober on the our nation’s holiday of gratitude. And for me, sober definitely seems to work out better.
In 2007, on the day before Thanksgiving, when I was not even a year sober, I was waiting to go see my family for the first time since I’d been sticking drugs up my nose and alcohol down my throat. I was at LAX and that year, 62 million people traveled through its runways. At the time, there were Marines guarding the terminals with drug-sniffing dogs barking at tourists.
I don’t like the term “going back home” since I’m a firm believer that wherever you pay rent is your home. Mine was the city of West Hollywood at the time and there I was in the middle of the LAX. Stone cold sober. Going back to the Central Time Zone to see my father. My mother. My brother and two sisters. Chain-smoking cigarettes outside Terminal 1 before boarding my flight while taxis whizzed by.
Here’s how Thanksgiving used to go: my mom would cook dinner and my dad would keep changing the music in the background because he couldn’t decide what Moby song to play. The soothing sounds of four-star hotel elevator music apparently calms down workaholic surgeons even in their homes. This was the mid-2000’s. Bush was President, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie had just met, Katrina was a household name and I wanted to get stoned, drunk, loaded and out of my mind. I wanted to smoke pot in my Explorer and chug vodka while driving to a movie alone. I was afraid of what my family thought of me even though I was really just a constant variable in their lives. I did my own thing and they did theirs. Read More…