Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Our son is home and seems to be working his way to a clean and sober life. He is sticking it, his term, and I don't know what exactly he is doing or if there is anything I can do to help. But he knows we are there if he needs us and I respect him to ask if he needs me. I believe he will one day if he needs too.
It's time for me to recognize everyone out there that reads this blog. I have an endless gratitude to all of you. Some of you that have been reading us for a while know we write for our own therapy. Mom and I get so much more out of this than we put in; we owe all of you a huge thank you. Without your words of counsel, your thoughts and all of you that prayed for our family it would have been an impossible journey. I am not trying to cut the journey short either, we know we still have a long way to go but right now we have found a very comforting inn and the rest is nice.
Sunday, February 21, 2010
February 21st, 2010 at 4:41 am
Here’s a true story for insight on the truth about “hitting bottom.”
In my second year of answering our local parent hot line a lady called and asked me if I was the same person who was answering this phone line last year. I said I was and she informed that I had spoken to her last year about her son; she then asked me if I would meet her in person, as she wanted to discuss her situation in person.
I have spoken to over two hundred parents and not one had ever asked me to meet with them so I hesitated to say yes. I thought to myself, was she angry about what I had told her? Was she holding me responsible for her “situation?” I attempted to get more information but she said she had to explain in person. I said yes and we greed to meet in the morning at a local restaurant. My curiosity was running wild and I didn’t sleep that night.
I arrived early and waited nervously. Shortly before
10:00 am she arrived. She sat down and thanked me for taking my time to meet with her. She began by telling me that I was one of the must understanding and helpful persons she has ever talked to regarding her son.
When we last spoke I knew everything you told me was what I needed to be doing but my husband and I decided we would wait as we wanted our son to graduate high school. He had a scholarship to a college in Texas. We didn’t want his use of drugs to be on his record and if the college found out he might lose his scholarship.
In March my son attended a fraternity party and they rented the third floor in a hotel. My son was high on LSD and I was told his last words were, “I can fly, I can fly” as he dove throw a third floor window to his death.
I wanted to meet with you in person and ask that you never stop taking parents calls. Please tell my story. Tell the parents not to wait. At this point she quit talking, she lowered her head. Her hair covered her face but I saw her tears fall on the table. Tears began to roll down my cheeks and I felt a sense of sadness I had never experienced before. Her head raised and she stared out the window. I waited; she turned and looked at me. I promised her I would never stop taking calls and her story will help many parents find the strength to take the necessary action to intervene on their child.
This experience made me focus on the fact that we, as parents, need to “raise” our children’s “bottom” by intervening early and often. No one knows what the bottom is or when it will occur. It is different with every child.
What does this say to me? As parents we try over and over to fix, intervene and sometimes do the wrong things, but the idea of giving up because it seems anything and everything we try to do is wrong, so I should just give up and completely detach. Some may want to employ this strategy but that strategy has consequences too. My advice, there is enabling and there is harm we as parents can do but I also believe in never letting our addict forget that they are loved. Tell your addict you love them and believe in them, those positive words may not mean anything today but you can never know the future.
Friday, February 19, 2010
Thursday, February 18, 2010
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
If you want to read it or comment it can be found at:
Monday, February 15, 2010
Previews of the segment are already on the ABC News website. http://abcnews.go.com/
Hi Ron and Darlene,
Hope all is well with both of you. I am hoping that our publicist did indeed mail a copy of our book out to you. Sorry I did not follow up sooner. I saw on your blog that you were contacted by ABC and will let others know when ABC will be airing segments on families and addiction. My daughter and I were contacted also in January and we taped the next day, but due to the Haiti crisis, it was all put on the shelf for awhile. We have heard that the segments will air this week starting tonight. I don't know if we made the cut or not but we will see. Just thought I would let you know so you can pass the word on through your blog.
Thanks again for the blog and your service to others.
They need your help and wisdom.
Sunday, February 14, 2010
"The Impossible Dream"
from MAN OF LA MANCHA (1972)
music by Mitch Leigh and lyrics by Joe Darion
|To dream the impossible dream|
To fight the unbeatable foe
To bear with unbearable sorrow
To run where the brave dare not go
To right the unrightable wrong
This is my quest
To fight for the right
And I know if I'll only be true
And the world will be better for this
Thursday, February 11, 2010
I know a big frustration for him and all of us is the job situation. The job outlook in the KC area is no different than anywhere else in the country, terrible. Realistically speaking I know every single day people get new jobs, there is someone hiring someplace. But is it a job you're qualified for? Is it a job that is realistic for your experience and knowledge? And finally do you have the wherewithal to actually get to and do the job? Add the extra weight of an employment gap of 3 years, a felony conviction for theft and a lack of a drivers license and transportation; what are realistic expectations? In all of my son's flaws being a hard worker and quick study is not one of his flaws. But that doesn't count until you get your foot in the door.
These are the immediate concerns. The important concerns are so much larger. I know this is outside the realm of dealing with a recovering addict but we still cannot let the urgent overshadow the important. We all could probably debate for pages on the actual meanings of important and urgent as it relates to an addict, and thinking through this post that would probably be a good idea. But for now the context of urgent and important is how it relates to dad's view of the world.
I've been unemployed before. What I would consider long term, 8 months. It is hard on your mental well being. Work and contribution is important to the human psyche. Do our leaders understand the impact this economy and their petty bickering is having on our our nations mental health? Dems and Repubs, pretend you are actually leaders and get your heads out of the snow in DC and grow up. Sorry, that's another post on another blog.
Patience with himself is not one of my son's virtues. It is difficult discussing patience and the economy with my son about jobs and independence and the need to keep his eye on the prize. All the while I know the real help for him in his recovery is a job.
Back to the title of this posting, tempering expectations. Is it possible for me to really change what I see in my son. Over twenty years of watching him grow, rocket through anything in school and seeing potential in him I could only dream of in myself. How do you let that go, or do you let it go or are you forced to let it go? For myself, I am not letting it go, it just has to stay inside for a bit longer. I just have to remember there are new dawns every day.
The down side, for every day there is a dawn, that bastard of addiction and those SOB's promoting it are prowling and destroying others. I'm taking another step front and center to fight the bastard. The second week of March I will be speaking to students and I hope parents will come too, at our local high school about the effect of addiction on a family.
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Another blog that I have fun reading is one I found quite by accident several months ago. He is a retired newspaper writer/editor and is now a free lance writer. Each morning he writes a short column some political, some random, some sports, pretty much whatever he feels like that morning. It's a change from all the addiction blogs I have on my reading list. I enjoy his writings hope you do too.
Friday, February 5, 2010
At Mom's job this week they laid off over 700 people. She has been sweating bullets and been a nervous wreck. But she made it through. She's a dedicated and hard worker but sometimes in this economy that isn't always enough. From what she said it has been quite traumatic at her office. This is a company that has not done this before.
Our son, as far as we know is staying clean. He is mainly staying with an old neighbor and school friend at his place. When he is at home he seems to be straight. He knows the consequences of not flying straight. He was very upset that his friend Josh relapsed. He actually took on some it because he felt if he hadn't been in Mexico he would have been able to talk to him and maybe keep it from happening. We told him ultimately he is responsible for ONLY himself and his recovery. He still doesn't have a job and some of the courts are asking him for money on outstanding fines. We spoke about his ultimate responsibility and that ignoring that responsibility will not cause it to go away.
I am learning to let go of his behavior and his recovery. I use to think if he wasn't working a program he wasn't in recovery but the truth is what I think only really matters to me. I am beginning to believe there is more than one way/my way out of this morass. He has his program and the way he describes it is; "I'm done with that stuff and I'm not going there any more." Hey, whatever works is fine with me. He is a headstrong person and if he sets his mind to it what's to say he can't make it work that way. Guess he's more like dad then either one of us want to admit.
Thursday, February 4, 2010
It has been a very hectic 4th quarter 2009 and 2010. Since Fall Festival 2009 it seems as if we have been going non-stop. everything just led right into the holidays and then into the wedding. We are ready for a rest.
Monday, February 1, 2010