I am not unique. I use to think I was. What started out 15 years ago (when I was 15 years old) was simply a fun, harmless way to get a buzz that grew into an obsession, which led to an addiction. A silent one, that sneakily controlled my thought process and actions in every waking moment. I thought at 30 years young, I was in control of my life. I was wrong. I didn’t even recognize it until after I got out of the fog, somewhere between day 35 and 50, but my next fix controlled my entire life.
I’ll never forget one day when I was 17 years old and my Dad had caught me dipping for the umpteenth time. It was the same old back and forth:
Dad: Brian, you don’t know what you’re getting yourself into. You are already addicted. The longer you do it the harder it will be to quit. Blah Blah Blah.
Me: I’m 17, I’m a man, I make my own decisions. You don’t know shit. I’ve got this under control. It’s just something I like to do from time to time. Blah Blah Blah.
We’d been through this song and dance probably a dozen times over the previous two years. Except this time, something different happened. I saw a defeated look in my Dad’s face. One of frustration and even pity. He looked at me and said “Brian, you’ve got all lights on green. Everything in the world in front of you. BUT, you’re whipped by a tiny little tin can. You think you’re strong and that you’re a man but you can’t even beat that tiny can of dirt. That tiny little can has you WHIPPED. That’s how tough you really are.” Damn, that stung a bit. But, like any other time, I brushed this off to him not knowing shit and carried along with my addicted ways.
13 years later, he was (still) right. And I was (still) whipped by that tiny can of dirt. I remembered that conversation though. Ever so often over the next 13 years, when I’d get discouraged thinking about how impossible it would be to actually quit this shit, I’d hear those words in my head. “Whipped by a tiny can of dirt.” That tiny can of dirt had become my master. A master so strong whose grasp grew ever so tighter around me (and everyone reading this) with every year that went by.
You all know the drill. You wouldn’t be here reading this if you didn’t. To those of you who are still a slave and are looking for the “magic” that will allow you to quit; stop. It’s not out there. There is no “magic”, nor is there a “right” time for you to quit. Not once you finish school, get married, have kids, get out of that stressful career, whatever it is that you’re waiting for.
What I can tell you is that once you figure out that will power is stronger than the grip of that tiny can of dirt, that’s when it’s time. For me, it was a random Friday night on July 10, 2015. I was sitting in front of this computer getting my last fix of nic while my wife was wondering why I never come to bed at the same time as her. That’s when I decided I would be a slave no more. I would be whipped no more.
I’m proud to be quit with all of the KTC community every damn day. I would not have been successful without this place.
-Brian (Geis2597, Oct 2015 HOF group)