Former NBA star Lamar Odom offers a first-person account in The Players’ Tribune about his fall from grace and into drug addiction that hit bottom when he nearly died after being found comatose in a Las Vegas brothel in October 2015.
Odom, who non-basketball fans may know through his former marriage to Khloe Kardashian, was woken by a doctor after a four-day coma.
“It’s a miracle that you’re here. We didn’t think you were going to make it,” Odom recalls the doctor telling him.
Odom’s drug of choice was cocaine, which he believes nearly killed him.
“I was in total shock,” Odom writes about waking from his coma. “Couldn’t say any clever shit back. Couldn’t ask questions. It was the first time in my life that I felt helpless. I felt like I was two inches tall. It was just … it was real.
“At that point in my life, I was doing coke every day. Pretty much every second of free time that I had, I was doing coke. I couldn’t control it. …
“Cocaine is a hell of a drug,” Odom adds, citing Rick James.
Odom also recounts the story of being holed up in a motel, snapping up lines with a random hookup, when Khloe busted up the party: “One of the darkest places I’ve ever been was when I was in a motel room, getting high with this chick, and my wife (at the time) walked in.”
Odom’s backstory goes much deeper and gets much sadder. He watched his mother die of colon cancer when he was 12. When he was 24, about the same time he started doing blow, his grandmother died. Most tragically of all, in 2006, he lost his six-year-old son Jayden to infant death syndrome.
“He was at home in his crib. I should’ve been at home with him. But I was out, doing whatever,” Odom laments.
After a seriously dark period of his life half a decade ago, when he says he was getting high constantly, Odom, now 37, seems to have his life back on the right track.
He writes, “I shook hands with death. But you know what? Ain’t no coming back from that. Even though my funeral would probably be a good funeral, and there’d probably be a lot of people who hadn’t seen each other in a long time. But it ain’t time for that yet.”
Definitely not, Lamar.