From growing up in a home with an alcoholic father to facing her own battles as she tries to recover from her own addictions. This story will touch the hearts of so many. Cocaine and Champagne
It was New Year’s Eve and our parents were gone for the evening. Nicky was babysitting Tanya and me. Ramona was out with her boyfriend. I was about twelve years old, and I had waited for this night for a while now.
I knew mom and dad would not be home until at least 2 am and maybe not until four. They were attending a church social at a Ukrainian church across the river, about an hour away. I had timed my drinking escapade just right—so I wouldn’t get caught.
About a month before that night, I snuck a bottle of champagne out of my dad’s wine cellar and hid it. They had a whole case of the same brand…a inexpensive one. As I said before, I acquired a taste for alcohol and it wasn’t long before I educated myself enough to distinguish the difference between cheap and premium.
It was just Nicky, Tanya, and I home alone. Nicky had the fireplace going, and we were sitting around figuring out what to do. Play games, play cars, or watch TV. I knew what I wanted to do…bust open the champagne. I got up and went to the kitchen to get everything ready. After mom and dad left, I had put it in the fridge to chill. I was probably just a little more enthusiastic than I should have been…
“Nicky and Tanya do you want a nice cold glass of champagne?” Nicky said no, and Tanya wasn’t interested at all. “Come on Nicky. What do you mean no? It’s New Year’s Eve. I got out the nice champagne glasses and everything. Come on…we can sit by the fire and tell stories.”
“No” he said again. “I’m going downstairs to watch TV.”
To hell with them I thought. I grabbed the bottle and went outside. I took a few gulps and pushed it down into the snowbank to get it colder. I really don’t know what I thought I was doing. There I was standing around outside in the cold with my PJ’s on, taking swigs right from the bottle. It wasn’t a lot of fun drinking by myself so I went back into the house and asked again if they wanted a glass. They were like “No; you go ahead we don’t want any.”
So I kept going in and out of the house. Walking back and forth and stopping at the fireplace to warm up. All the while with the bottle in my hand. It was almost half-gone. I stopped and sat on the stool to call one of my friends. I told her how I was drinking champagne and about what a great New Year’s Eve I was having. I remember thinking I was so cool, telling her how bad I felt because no one wanted to drink with me.
I was feeling a little giddy and lightheaded, and I went upstairs. Then it hit me like a tidal wave…suddenly I was really drunk. I sat down on my bed and finished off the bottle… so this is what drinking is all about. It sure wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. I laid back on my bed, and the room started spinning. I pulled myself into a sitting position hoping it would stop, that’s when I knew I was going to get sick. I rolled off the bed and crawled across the hall to the bathroom. I just made it. I don’t remember much more about that night, but I do know I felt lucky that Mom and Dad never found out.
Photos included in Cocaine and Champagne