Out there in the jungle it’s dangerous and every day and every night I fought hard to look good and to act better when inside I was fighting a predator. Every time I drank I would rustle up the leaves and the lies would become real and the pain would disappear. I was born with a disease called Alcoholism. I believe from a very young age I was irritable, restless and discontent. I always wanted more because nothing was ever enough. I was living a miserable existence without knowing it with loving parents who suffered from my behavior.
I had no clue, for the first 19 years of my life I would be living without any real circumstances of my behavior until my first DUI. I was driving home from Los Angeles to Ventura County flat out drunk out of my mind (had a couple 40oz Old English Malts) while drinking with friends at a coffee shop. My best thinking was to drive and then smoke a joint on my way home to my parents’ house where I lived. This was nothing new, it was a game for me and when I bumped someone in the back after getting out of a club on Hollywood Blvd I would scare the living day lights out of them and they would keep going leaving me with no circumstances at all. Tradition every night with the ladies I partied with was to drive to the clubs every night through Laurel Canyon to Sunset Blvd drink out Cisco’s (a very toxic drink!) and smash the bottles against the wall at the end of the street as we approached Sunset. Drinking and driving was like a sport to me and I drove and totaled 14 cars never killing or hurting anyone in the car, THANK GOD. Back to that night, I was so wasted I passed out on the fwy just when I heard sirens and saw lights quickly waking and guided my car from hitting the center divider and crashing to getting pulled over. I could have been killed. At that time in my life I had no idea I was different than anyone else. That I get way more wasted than any of the other girls, that the cops had to hold me down at the hospital to give me a blood test and that at 19 I would be sitting in a jail cell.
What happened? Nothing.
My mom and dad paid my fines and I went to a few AA’s and then realized I could forge the signatures and no one would know. The only real thing that sucked, I got my first gig on a movie set, Strange Days for 2 ½ months and was starting the following week and needed to now take a bus 3 hours each way just to get to Downtown LA for night shoots every day. I was young and I wasn’t scared so I did what I had to do and it certainly wasn’t sitting at AA meetings. Plus, I could drink without the worries.
Years past and I got a second DUI, wow….I barely remember but the way I acted in the Hollywood Precinct jail was insane. I was trying to kill myself any way I could screaming and yelling and crying. I can only imagine what kind of pain I must have been feeling that night. Yeah Right! How embarrassing!
One night just above the Saddle Ranch Restaurant (it didn’t exist at the time) I can’t remember the club name across the street…oh god, the Leonardo De Caprio days…we went up to a party and did a lot of cocaine and drank all night long. I was working for Weider Publications at the time and I decided it was a good idea to show up to work after an all nighter that didn’t go very well at all ☹ Anyway, I had a moment of clarity. I jumped up and drove myself to Kaiser Permanente emergency room and they admitted me. At that moment, I knew I couldn’t’ do it anymore that this was just too much for me. I didn’t know anything about alcoholism just feel like a total loser. My insurance sucked. They gave me the microwave version of a few days of detox at Tarzana Treatment Center then 1 week of Cri-Help and then out patient. My parents had me living with a body guard name Zip (Charlie Sheen’s security was available because Charlie was in rehab too!) at the time to keep me under lock and key. It helped a lot because after 90 days no sponsor, moving a guy in from rehab and hanging with a tequila company owner I went out then never had a sober breath for another 13 years.
You missed a lot but the important part of this journey is when I came in…
It was September 11, 2006 and I had been out all night and I was all alone with no more friends, no more roommates, the first time in my life I sent a text to someone a week prior saying help which was never answered. It all happened. I was in the shower and I fell with pain as if I had been stabbed a few times but it didn’t stop. It wasn’t stopping, I got out of the shower on the floor and my hands were closing and my face was distorting which I thought I was having a stroke. I was in outrageous pain, convulsing as I am trying to dial 911. They came right away and so did my mother. My mother took me to Northridge hospital where it was packed and I was grey. I told my mother I was sorry I was going to die and it happened I screamed and screamed from pain and I couldn’t stop it…they got me in. Within minutes of the ultrasound I was in emergency surgery. I broke my stomach lining open and the bacteria was killing my organs and my body was septic and I was going to die because the stomach ripped open from all the toxins and poisons I put in it.
No visitors only my parents and they kicked me out after 5 days. My staples were gross and my guts were falling out and I had to tape them to hold them in, the doctor knew I was a alcoholic/drug addict. I wanted anything to help me not feel, I had not lived sober in 13 years! Not one single day, I had no idea how to live. I drove to the Pharmacy and asked the pharmacist, “I can’t smoke, drink or take pills…please can you give me something to go through my skin to make me feel better?” I had no fucking clue even after all that had just happened that I had a problem. I didn’t see it. How utterly sad is this right? The pharmacist told me to go next door to the AA meeting, so I did. And…I walked right out because the big old fat lady was crying. Oh, hell no, this place was not for me!
But, for some reason I picked up the phone and called up an old friend from high school, Amy who became my drug dealer but then I saw that she was sober on myspace and she answered! She said meet me here and I just drove and met her at an AA meeting at a bank in Agoura Hills, Ca. I saw all these pretty girls and didn’t want to go in because I had a soggy shirt with wet bandages underneath and dark circles under my eyes but here she came walking towards me. I walked in those doors and I felt more love in that room that day than I had ever felt any day of my life. I truly say that because I was open and ready for it (that’s the point!) and spiritual bankrupt. There was nothing left inside me and they gave me their love and they even took me out to dinner that night and listened to my bullshit all night. But, holy shit, get this…. I got calls the next day with girls asking how I was doing and if I wanted to meet for coffee.?? No one ever called me, no one gave a shit or would take time anymore for me I burned those bridges and here I was starting over or having some kind of HOPE at 32 years old after all the damage has been done?? This was different than any other feeling I had ever experienced in my life. With an open heart I was willing to honest and try this one more time.
Stay tuned and thanks for joining in my journey,
Xoxo Daniella Park