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I needed this album 4 years ago

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Apr. 16th, 2009 | 10:41 pm

Originally published at Project 2357. You can comment here or there.

Growing up I was a huge Nine Inch Nails fan. Broken, the Downward Spiral and the Fragile were on constant rotation and their lyrics influenced everything that I have ever written both on paper and musically. I suppose the mix of slightly gothic and depressed, one person against the world industrial metal suited me perfectly being in a school of mostly new money rich kids addicted to Britney style pop and what ever punk band was doing the rounds on triple J (the only real alternative radio station in Australia). I remember taking tracks like wish and happiness in slavery and turning them into spoken word pieces for class. Which was great cause the sight of an angry 6 foot teenager with long hair, black clothes, spike collars and an immunity to anything remotely morbid scared the crap out of everyone including the teachers. It wasn't the best time of my life. I hated the school I was in, I hated the people that were there and I was still in a hell of a lot of pain from leaving Jakarta behind, in hindsight and having talked to trained professionals I was probably suffering some sort of post traumatic stress and even today I have trouble with the images I can't get out of my mind. In the end I moved schools and also of moved away from NIN to the Smashing Pumpkins and Something for Kate. I found some sort of happiness surrounded in the hell that was the boarding house I was in and NIN never seemed appropriate. To this day I don't think I have listened to the Downward Spiral or the Fragile in full since, it's just too depressing.

So snap forward to this week and I was looking for something new so I went and downloaded ghosts and the slip.

I don't think I have ever listened to an album from start to finish ever. I tend to focus on a few tracks and just expand from there. Well the first track I played was called Discipline. I can't stop listening to this track, other than the fact that it's absolutely brilliant it was like a punch in the face.

A lot of people won't know this but I'm an addict. From the end of 2004 through to about mid 2005 I developed a pretty serious addiction to Ecstasy, Cocaine and Speed. When I came down I often turned to alcohol to try and sleep and numb the cravings for more. The result of that was a dependency on alcohol, I was often drinking a full bottle of Jack Daniels in only a few days doing 5 to 10 shots a night. To this day I still can't drink responsibly. I have given in to the fact that I will always crave alcohol in the same way I will always crave the feeling that taking an ecstasy tablet or a line of speed will give me. My problem is that I always want more, it's not about one its about how many can I have. I can't just have one. While I still have a beer or two on some nights I always want more.

So as of today I have been clean off coke and speed for 4 years. It took me a lot longer to work out I didn't need the ecstasy and most days I still get the feeling that I want to take a pill or two. I went cold turkey off the whole lot, changed most of my friends, basically got fired from my old job for being an idiot and got away from the dealers I knew, most of them are now either in Jail or quite before they got busted.

I cleaned up and I got better. It took me a while to accept that I was an addict. It's not something that just goes off like a switch. I realized what I wanted I couldn't have and the result on me it was having. I realized the effect it was having on the people around me and I realized it had to stop. I'm not sure if it was the alcohol or a massive dosage of good TV but going cold turkey was a lot easier than I thought it would be. The fact that I was only addicted for a short amount of time (6 to Cool for others.

So what does this have to do with a Nine Inch Nails song? Well take a look at the lyrics below.

I need your discipline
I need your help
I need your discipline
You know once I start I cannot help myself

I came to the realization this week that I may never be free of my addiction. I am always going to want just one more, and one more after that. I think I am stronger than I was back then but it's still going to haunt me for a long time to come.

If none of this makes sense to you then that's understandable. Most people don't get it and have never experienced what addiction is. It isn't an easy concept to get your head around and a lot of addicts don't even know they are addicted. I was lucky compared to a lot of others and while I caused a lot of people a lot of pain I think I have done my best to make up for it. I give money each month to charity to help others in my position and would be willing to help anyone who needs help getting through their own addictions.

so if you have read this far, thank you and I hope you gleaned something from the chaos.

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