As I walk into the dark room lit by candles, I can feel my heart rate began to pick up. Not sure of my location or what my friend was dragging me into, I knew she wouldn’t lead me to a bad place. Navigating through the dark candle lit room I could feel all eyes on us as if the lights were on. My friend sits down and I grab a seat next to her. I’m at an AA meeting with a woman who’s my friend but because of life, it separated our friendship, it’s odd. This was the first time in months we really hung out and I told her I would go with her to her class; here we are, on a Thursday night, on her birthday in a dark candle lit room listening to the stories of those whose curiosity and weekend of fun landed them here. The environment was a tad scary at first, especially since I was expecting school desk and lights; the place was in the cut, off the path kind of thing.
Once you settled, you began to listen to the person speaking. Not able to see the faces and make an actual judgment, part of my senses were taken away which lead to my heart rate increasing; but the calming of the room, and the fact that I’m extraordinary good with vibes and the trust of my friend brought my heart rate back down to a normal rate. As you start to listen to the stories, your mind begins to think. The wheels start turning. My friend, at the AA meeting, she told me her story, she told me she was hanging with the wrong crowd and she didn’t do any drugs; the occasional puff, puff “pass the duthcie to the left hand side”, she drank alcohol but at night clubs, at a bar, with friends but nothing that would be considered out of the norm.
In the dark, your mind starts to linger and you began to question. In the dark is where all of your demons come at you, they eat you, a past revisits you. For some the dark is a place where you can reflect, because you can’t see; when light is taken away in a room of people you never really get to plan so you’re really near future is shot. It’s dark. You can’t Judge, you can make out profiles and still form a bond. The flickering of the candle light against the wall and the breaking voice, the roller coaster of emotions one exhibits in this room; then there’s the ones who aren’t addicts but were sent by the courts; as they text away on their phones, not caring about the stories of these people; as they carry on with their life, like it’s not a time to reflect. Once again, I find myself in a Rose Hill situation. I look at the guy texting and laughing, completely aloof from the stories. I often wonder could multiple duplicates of douche bags lead one to drugs. I don’t mean the teacher, the one who showed you and recommended you crack alcohol, acid, cigarettes or meth; I mean the one who pushed one.
In a room of about 10 candles, two candles were blown out and the dark was starting to win the battle. The dancing shadows on the walls began to fade and the light that illuminated on the other side, the dancing flames, dominated the side of the room not talking, not speaking out. In such a romantic setting, the evil in our minds began to squirm. As I sat there listening to the stories, I began to think about the battles of my very own demons; just great, what I needed, to be sat down in a dark room. However the dark room was comforting. The candle was soothing, the natural light and the occasional brush from my friends leg against mine took me back to a time when I was 21 and adorned her, the dark room and the couch we sat on, and us both looking at music videos, taking dives in the pool. The oddness of our relationship, the connection we made and the road that lead us here.
The strength she’s shown and the woman she has flourished to become just doesn’t match. Like another woman I know who is always on my mind, my flirty twenties landed me in so much trouble, always in trouble but would never take one day back; some I regret, some I needed. Some I cherish and some I hold close to me like a child hugging their teddy bear when sleep; our romantic moments, how some can stem in the dark. As I get out my thoughts and come back to the moment, the smell of her lotion or something, maybe just her scent threw me back to a moment I can’t remember. I could feel the emotion of whatever moment I was trying to recall. I’m trying to focus on the now, not trying to linger into the past. Then like a little kid on Christmas, I remembered! In the dark my face lit up, as I remembered. That night we were both drunk at a night club dancing really close, the song was Ciara Get up….anyways, the lights come on. An abrupt and quick switch from dark to light; everyone squinted and hissed at the sight of the light like Count Dracula meeting the sun.
The dark moment was over, the candles were blown out, the mystery was over; there were no more guessing who these mysterious strangers were sharing their life, pouring out their emotions. Some were strangers but for the most part, most were familiar with each other; if anything, I was the stranger, the new addict. In a sense, I am an addict; my addiction to cigarettes, that fucking monkey like’s to go bananas sometimes; for the most part I dislike cigarettes but certain moments like when I drink or I’m in a familiar environment where I would smoke heavy, the urge comes back but I fight it. Like someone said in that dark room last night, the situation may not become better, but it’ll become different….I took that as a connection to something better.