Z’s Wonderland


I Don’t Want to Be a Vampire By Z Zoccolante Anyone who knows me, knows I’m interested in magic and fairytale. For much of my life I’ve said that I’d love to be a vampire – being able to live forever and have magic powers, feeling like nothing in the world could touch me. I could roam the streets at any hour with the ability to wander anywhere I chose without fear of anything. Feeling like the most powerful creature around. But today...

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What You Should Know About Preventing An Opiate RelapseGuest Post by Camille Johnson It’s no secret that the U.S. is in the midst of an opioid crisis. Recent news suggests that more than 9.5 million Americans have become dependent on — or abused — some form of opioids, including legal, doctor-prescribed painkillers like hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine, and illegal drugs like heroin. Treatment for such an addiction is a...

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The Important ThingBy Z Zoccolante My first day of a new job and I’m on my way to drop my dog off. I woke up at the morning crack of dawn, which not my jam. My dog and I pile in the car.  On the 405, traffic comes to a dead stop and for the next 45 minutes my car moves exactly 10 feet. Annoyance and anxiety drip through my skin like water. My dog sits in the passenger’s seat, furrow along her brow, as I raise my voice a few times...

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This Fire FuneralBy Z Zoccolante When I was a kid, I used to tell people I wanted a Vikings funeral – lay your body on a boat and push you out into the water where archers shoot fire arrows and watch you burn from the shore.  The bible uses fire (and water) as metaphors for God’s cleansing and purification. Take these two:  And I will put this third into the fire, and refine them as one refines silver, and test them as...

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How You Know That You’re RecoveredBy Z Zoccolante Addiction is multifaceted and so is recovery. Recovery can mean something different for each person. At a group I led, in a drug/alcohol treatment facility, there was a man who was adamant about identifying as an addict. “Whenever I don’t,” he said, “I give myself little permissions and pretty soon I’m out doing meth again.”  For another person, he didn’t want to identify with being an...

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Things We Save from Dying By Z Zoccolante I’ve walked up the white marble like steps probably 600 times and today is the first day I see them. Tiny gray segmented bodies upside down with a furl of lacey legs in the air. I reach down on the step and gently touch them with my finger as they curl their bodies into a gray bowling ball the size of a small pea. Roly polys as my client called them. Pill bugs, scientific name,...

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