August 14, 2020

The Road to Relapse

posted on: Thursday February 18, 2010

Daniel James ’11 / Portfolio Staff

Author’s Note: The following is an excerpt from the novel The Road to Relapse by Daniel JamesHe remembers refusing to go to sleep-away camp because the idea of being away from his room put his insides through a paper shredder. He couldn’t imagine the long nights without his own blanket and pillow, or the feeling of safety that came from knowing his mom and dad were in the next room. Even sleepovers were unappealing to him because he couldn’t stand the gut-wrenching feeling he’d get when he was without the familiarity he’d grown up with. The only way he could sleep at night was if he was curled up in his own blanket with the door cracked just enough to let the blue hue from his parent’s TV leak into his room as a reminder that even when the rest of the world is asleep he’s not alone.The more things change, the more things stay the same. When he grew into adolescence he would fight with his parents often, especially his father. There was no topic off limits in the verbal bouts that would leave the two of them red in the throat and blue in the face. But no matter how bad the war between them got, he could always retreat back to the sanctuary of his room. The bed acted as a bubble that would encase him and bring him away to a place where he could clear his head.Even after the addition to his house and the change of bedrooms Dominic still found peace in his room that seemed parallel to a Buddhist temple. It was the one place in the world where he had control over the environment and himself. Nothing happened in his room without his say. And now here he stands in the darkness of his room, just a quarter after three in the morning on Sunday. Everything was almost exactly as he

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