Chasing the dragon

This post is a metaphor. The metaphor was going to be around the longest relationship I’ve ever had in my life, other than with my family. The relationship that is the pole vault. I started writing it, but I couldn’t finish, nothing about me could fathom why I would continue in a relationship so one-sided, where I was giving so much and receiving so little, a relationship that could be referred to as abusive at times. I could even go as far as to say its a relationship where I was told what to wear and which negatively affected my social life. So clearly this is not a relationship, or at least not a healthy one.

Sometimes theres nothing more poetic than quoting directly from wikipedia:

“Chasing the dragon” is a slang phrase of Cantonese origin from Hong Kong referring to inhaling the vapor from heated morphine, heroin, oxycodone or opium. The “chasing” occurs as the user gingerly keeps the liquid moving in order to keep it from coalescing into a single, unmanageable mass.[1] Another more metaphorical use of the term “chasing the dragon” refers to the elusive pursuit of the ultimate high in the usage of some particular drug.

I find the metaphorical meaning of this the most powerful. The first time you use an elicit substance the newness of the response really blowing your socks off, then each subsequent dose after that you’re “chasing” to re-claim those heights. This leads to higher dosages and more elaborate techniques in order to replicate that initial experience.

When I was a kid, I basically just had to turn up at the track to jump a personal best. Each week things just improved with minimal effort. It was great Now, 15 years later, my body has built up a tolerance to this and I have to go to more and more extreme lengths to eke out that extra centimetre, sometimes not even reaching the heights I did years ago. But I keep trying, I want that high, I chase the dragon.

There is no rehab for athletics. You can go cold turkey, or swap it out for a habit with fewer negative consequences methadone-style.

Turns out I’m a pole vault junkie.

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