No Living in the Past

When was the last time you watched something so scary, cringe-worthy, or unbelievably tacky — in a movie, on TV, or in real life — you had to cover your eyes?

Don’t do scary movies or scary TV. Just don’t do it. My family absolutely loves them, I just choose not to watch. To each their own and we are good with it.

Why don’t I want to watch scary stuff? Mostly because all I have to do is close my eyes and remember how my life used to be if I want to be scared. My life revolved around fear, it lived for fear and fear was all that I knew.

Fear led me to do some crazy things, some sad things, some bad things, but mostly fear kept me away from the one thing that we all need in our lives, love. I chose a different path than what I could have when I was younger. I had everything I needed and yet that was not what I wanted, so I chose a darker path. One filled with sick people, with drugs, alcohol and sadness. It was there that I thought I felt complete for some reason. It was there that I belonged. It was where I deserved to be.

I once had a guy chase me around his backyard carrying an Uzi asking me if I was scared yet. We had just been on a drug induced binge and were discussing this very subject, scary movies, when he got up and said “So you wanna be scared?”. I once got back to my apartment after work one day to find all (or most) of my belongings being picked through by groups of people after the sheriff’s department had cleaned out my apartment (Ignoring eviction notices is not a good thing) because my priorities were in the gutter. So I lived in my car for a while because I was afraid to let anyone know or to ask for help.

I used to hang out in the crack houses in Evanston, IL, the only white guy around, getting frisked by gang bangers because they thought I was a narc, but I was only there to buy their stuff so they let me stay. And every morning that I made it out of there I swore that I would not go back, and then I was back the very next week. I was afraid to be there and I was afraid to not go.

Believe me, I am not trying to brag in any way about my past and there is a lot more to it, but I do not live in the past any more. I live in the here and the now and the here and now is pretty good. I am drug free and am working on my thinking process on a daily basis, that thinking process that always got me in trouble in the past.

I start out my About page with the following sentence, ‘Man in recovery from everything, looking for a little help, inspiration and direction’. And that is exactly what I am doing. Not sure exactly why I chose to share these stories on here, but am not ashamed of it. My past is my past, I can learn from and build a better today, or I can live the rest of my life in fear, in real fear.

So getting back to scary movies or TV shows, I understand why people watch them, it can be an adrenaline rush that gets the ol’ ticker going. But I choose not to watch them, give me a good animated film, Pixar, DreamWorks, any day. How To Train Your Dragon Part 2 is one of my personal favorites right now….:)

See Ya!

About joatmon14

Man in recovery from everything, looking for a little help, inspiration and direction.... Have spent the last 25 years working in big business, getting lost in all the chaos, not feeling like what I did mattered. By no means am I a professional writer nor do I even think I am that good, but it is something I love to do. Getting lost in a world of words, even for just a little while is why I started my blogs. In reality, at the age of 49 I am trying to find my voice. To find my passion. Maybe starting a little late, but better late than never. I write for me, I enjoy reading other's thoughts very much as well and look forward to the day that I can hold an extended, intelligent, meaningful conversation with YOU View all posts by joatmon14

2 responses to “No Living in the Past

  • Allison at

    I’m with you – no scary movies for me! I can’t shake the awful feelings and it’s not worth my energy.

    Your story is quite inspiring, Mark, thank you for sharing it. I can definitely see why you don’t want to go back to that fear filled life. Props to you for choosing a new way – that had to be extremely tough to do.

    Peace to you,



  • Joan Tatley

    Very honest and emotional, I was with you reading it. It’s great that you’re working through this stuff. I think it’s the only way to free yourself from fears.


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