I Relapse

January 19,2010
Talia's Blog
Talia Rivera( )

Talia Rivera is a 33-year-old mother of two. As Executive Director of Villages without Walls, she works with high-risk gang members in Boston. [Read more]

Lukewarm air blew through a half-opened window. I lay on the couch covered by a blanket. The air smelled like spring, although leftover snow lingered on the streets. It reminded of my first relapse. A guy rode by on a bike. I called him, "Yo!" He rode to my steps. "You got any weed?" I asked. "I'm a ride around the corner," he said, "I'll be back." Standing against the railing I scuffled and squirmed. I was split. My body begged for a bag of weed. But my spirit pleaded to be Christ-like. With my eyes closed, I contemplated both. Someone called my name. I opened my eyes. It was Rick. "Hey Talia," he said. "How's everything going?" "I’m good. You?" Everyone in the projects was perplexed about my conversion. When they saw me in a skirt, they couldn't believe their eyes. What could turn around a hard-core thug like Talia? Rick talked and talked. I hurried the conversation along. "Yeah, yeah," I said. I knew the guy on the bike would be back at any moment. "God, please don't let that guy come back while Rick is here." But as I ended my prayer the guy came from around the corner. He stopped. He handed me a bag of weed. I handed him ten dollars. Rick's mouth dropped. "T," he said. I quickly responded, "I'm stressed." "When my mother's stressed, she prays." Embarrassed, I lowered my head and walked into our building. I rolled the blunt. I went into the bathroom and closed the door. I lit the blunt. While I smoked, the old me surfaced, suppressing my new spirit.