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No Sleep

This image portrays No Sleep by Addiction Poetry.

When Sorority Noise sang, “Just last week, I slept 8 hours total. I barely sleep.” I felt that.

Back when I was taking 120 milligrams of Adderall per day, I stopped sleeping. Literally.

I’m talking 72 consecutive hours of uninterrupted consciousness. Most of which was spent staring at a computer screen.

I knew it was nuts as I was doing it. But the rush of Adderall, the sweet alertness and confidence, held sway over both human biology and my sense of logic.

I would wander into work with deep circles under my eyes, voice hoarse from dryness.

Hunch over my computer screen, frantically pounding out emails, social media posts, blog content, and so forth for my employer – a tech startup run by friends from college.

One time, I had a one-on-one with my boss, who’d been my friend for a decade.

“What’s the number one thing you want to see out of me going forward?” I asked.

He paused. A weird, sad expression crept over his face.

“I want you to look less tired.”

Road to Recovery

In the summer of 2018, I experienced the biggest blessing of my life: amphetamine psychosis.

Full-blown paranoia. Grandiose delusions. Imaginary threats. All gradually escalating to a crescendo over a matter of 3 months.

Even though I was mentally insane for its duration, I vividly remember the thoughts, feelings, and sensations of psychosis.

How real it all seemed. How strongly it overtook the rational side of my brain.

I was a high achiever with a law degree, a solid professional reputation, a loving family, and tons of friends. And Adderall still broke me.

In breaking me, it forced my hand. I spent 6 days in a psych ward, at my parents’ behest once it became evident I was losing my mind.

I never would have agreed to go had I not hit rock bottom.

In the days before entering the ward, I was at my lowest.

My parents took my paranoid delusions in earnest and prayed over the phone with me for God to protect me from whoever was after me.

He came through. As He always does.

That morning, I took Adderall for the last time.

Forty-eight hours later, I was in the psychiatric ward.

One week after, in rehab.

Where am I now?

Sharing stories of my addiction with you.

Grateful for my rescue from the days where I’d abuse my body and mind with Adderall.

Sleeping like a baby.


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