Welcome to Junkbox Diaries.
What is a junkbox?
A person who is just so all consumed by addiction and drugs that they do not care about what goes into their body. They don't shower, they barely eat, and the only sleep they get is a result from a high dose shot of some "high quality" heroin.
Herb Stepherson was born in Jonesboro, Georgia. He is the middle child of three boys. He is thirty-one years old and spent his youth like most young boys in central Georgia, riding bikes and playing sports—baseball in particular.
Since 2002, he has been involved in the fight for his life. He has been battling the nightmares of addiction for the past fourteen years. His first drug use was at fifteen, which was alcohol and from there quickly progressed to prescription pain medication and ultimately cocaine and heroin.
Heroin and cocaine took him to the absolute edges of humanity. He ended up homeless, eating food out of dumpsters, and strung out in some of the roughest neighborhoods in Chicago, in the dead of winter. The winter months are brutal in the Midwest. Herb slept in abandon buildings, airport terminals, and under bridges clinging to two basic needs: more heroin and to be numbed from the wreckage that this drug was creating in his life. All the while trying his best to keep hope alive that maybe one day he would finally be able to conquer this demon of addiction and recover.
Today, Herb celebrates life as a young man in recovery! He is an intervention coordinator, a budding young writer, a loving and active father to his five-year-old son, Lucas, and speaks on behalf of numerous agencies in his community hoping to shed some light on the true battles with heroin addiction.
So, why are you doing this, Herb? Why are you displaying all these horribly intimate pieces of your life for all the world to see? Don't you know that the world looks down on the whole addiction thing?
I am doing this because I hate the disease. I'm displaying all these things because someone has to. The silence, the taboo, and the shame have to end. Don't hate the addict. Hate the disease. I'm writing all this to expose what this thing is doing to people. To our brothers, sisters, moms, and dads. I'm doing this because I want everyone to know that I have indeed suffered from this thing. I'm doing this because there is too much focus on the problem and not enough on the solution. I know that the world looks down on the whole addiction thing, which is another reason I am doing this.