Addicted to Lysol and other cleaners

Posted: September 8, 2014 in Uncategorized
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I am a little late with this blog, I started working on it Saturday, but I am just now putting the finishing touches on it. DISCLAIMER: If any of my family read my blogs know that you will hear things that will have you fearing for my safety, but know that I have no doubt in my mind that God will continue to keep me safe.

1. Addictions

One morning while I was taking the bedding off of a bed that was not being used, a needle fell on the floor. I couldn’t see at first because of the blanket, sheets and pillow were in my hands, so I had to move my arms to see this lone needle lying on the floor. As I was walking another one fell on the floor, I immediately put the bedding on the floor and carefully picked it apart to see if there was any more hiding in the folds. To my surprise I found a total of five needles or some people call them “rigs”.

I am so thankful that over the years God has kept me safe from harm, from physical confrontations to being pricked with a used needle, and more. Thankfully the ones that I found in this situation were not used and were still in their packages. So often people leave belongings behind, we donate all belongings after two weeks of departure. I have donated 100’s (no joke, and that could be a low number) of garbage bags over the past ten years. While doing this I will look through backpacks or duffel bags to see who it belongs to, I would just start looking through and not really pay attention to the contents. I am telling you it is a miracle that I have never been pricked, and I am so thankful for that.

Definition of Addiction: the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming, as narcotics, to such an extent that its cessation causes severe trauma.

An addict operates on the assumption that their next “fix” is the only thing that is important. They are often so broken, depressed, lonely, suicidal, and self-destructive. They know the people they have hurt, the promises they broke, the brokenness they have caused to the family, but for them there so often seems like there is no end to the madness. They also think they “need” of the “fix” that they have to do anything to get it.

Over the years I have met people addicted to:

  • Crystal meth
  • Cocaine
  • Marijuana
  • Ecstasy
  • Hash
  • Alcohol
  • Prescription drugs
  • Cough drops
  • Cough medicine
  • Lysol
  • Listerine and it seems like the list just continues.

I remember when I was a kid playing downtown with my cousin and seeing empty Lysol spray cans laying on the ground by a tree that we would often play at. I never knew why they were there, nor did I understand really what I was seeing, this was signs of an addict. Some people will take the Lysol can and pierce it and allow all the aerosol out and then take the liquid left and add it to water.

There was a gentleman who came frequently to stay in our shelter, an elderly man who used a walker, unfortunately he was often drunk. When someone is an addict they become very “crafty” in how they will use and acquire their addiction.

We will call this man Brian. Brian would stroll in the shelter in need of a place to stay, but his breath always smelt like air freshener. He was so fragile, but we have rules where if people constantly come under the influence then we have to ask them to leave.

I spoke to Brian a few times about trying to enroll in an addiction recovery program, but this would be so hard for him, because every facility has cleaning supplies. I remember one evening he came and I asked him the usual “Brian have you been drinking?”

“Not at all”, he informed me. I then noticed that he had a plastic water bottle that he carries around with him, I asked if I could investigate the bottle. “I am not going to find any Lysol in this bottle?”

“Nope you will not”, Brian had a hard time even standing. I smelt the water and it definitely was more than just water, but it might have been flavored water. I then took a little of the contents into my hand and then tried it, definitely Lysol. It was disgusting.

“Brian can you imagine what your insides must be like, with you drinking this garbage?” My heart would always feel for him, and I have often prayed for him.

Brian has never entered our addiction recovery program, but has gone to detox many times. An addiction seems so much easier to start then to stop. We often just think, get off the stuff, or go get help, but the individual first needs to want it, and second needs to really embrace a relationship with Jesus, because I know that is the factor in their life that they are missing.

imageThese are some needles that have been either turned in or found at shelter.

God bless Brian wherever he is, and I pray that you draw him to his knees, by crying out to you.


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