Sunday, May 15, 2011

Answering Comments

In my "Excitement" post a couple of comments ask the question how do you know this it it?

The first thing this is how I chose to feel. I heard and bought into the promises before. Each time I was disappointed and hurt when the path was the same. Every time I looked at myself and ask the questions of "Why?" and "What did I learn?" Of course I was only able to seriously consider those questions after the anger and hurt subsided. My hope was each time of hurt and disappointment not only did I learn and become one step closer avoiding the hurt and anger but Alex also became one step closer to his time.

What do I see different? The actions match the words. There is no constant promises of sobriety, there are actions that demonstrate change, done privately and without announcement.

I am letting go of the past. Nothing I can do to change the sidewalk behind me. I can only shape today and tomorrow. Holding on to past hurts and disappointments is not healthy for me but I believe if I don't let it go and keep "reminding" Alex of his past disappointments it would be easier for him to live down to my disappointments. I've always been a believer in setting high expectations and getting out of the way because most people will surpass anything you can imagine. Of course if a person has an active disease such as addiction all those bets are off.

I guess the best answer to the comments is this learning. In the past I often let circumstances control my temper and emotions. My son's addiction has taught me a very valuable lesson. I don't have to go where I do not choose to go. I can choose to be sad or happy, I can accept hurt or put into place shields the mitigate the pain. I am not responsible for others actions or words, my responsibility is controlling how their actions and words affect me.

If Alex relapses, I've been there before. I am smarter about addiction and myself than I was yesterday. I am making a conscious choice to live today and accept him in his sobriety, for as long as it lasts, tomorrow or forever. Today he gets every bit of love, confidence and help that his sisters get. In my mind I am not willing to punish him because of his disease.

15 comments:

Annette said...

Omg, that last paragraph is so beautiful and I wish EVERY single child ever born could experience that kind of unconditional hope and love. Thank you Ron..this is one of those posts that I need to print and hang near my bathroom mirror so I can read it everyday for awhile. Especially that last paragraph. So much love wrapped up in those words.

Lou said...

I agree completely, every person gets a fresh chance. If they relapse, like you said, we've been there before. The boundaries and consequences will kick in immediately. In the meantime, we live in today, and as long as the addict is continually working at repairing the damage and moving forward, they have my unconditional support.

beachteacher said...

beautiful Ron, beautiful...loved this post :)

Tori said...

Love this Ron. The one thing I noticed about B a few days ago when we spoke about his drug use was he didn't promise he would stay clean - he always did before. He promised me that he was clean that day and that he was hoping to continue to stay that way.

Alex has a lot also to look forward too. I am sure he has learned a lot with his time in jail. We siimply never know the turning point for our addicts.

Syd said...

You are living proof of your own recovery. I am glad because changing your way of living with an addict has no doubt changed the addict as well.

Momma said...

Loved this post, Ron. Wish you and your family the best!

Dawn said...

Nicely expressed. It Will be good in that book you plan to publish some day! ;-)

yaya said...

Wise words!

I am having difficulty dealing with my daughter who is four/five weeks out of rehab. I don't trust her, I know she is still lying, etc. But she is clean today. Thanks for reminding me to focus on that.

Barbara said...

Love this! I think you've got this thing down, its true, there can be a relapse in a month, a year, ten years. But why live like that? There may NOT be one EVER so celebrate the NOW :)

PeaPod said...

This is such a challenge: to see things this way, to hang onto these values and attitudes and to practise this in behaviours. Sometimes I find, in similar situations, that the feelings don't always keep up.

I admire your courage.

Her Big Sad said...

Love this, Ron.... And the last paragraph pretty much summarizes how I live my life today. I love my daughter so much; and always will. If she relapses, I will deal with it then. I will, however, focus on the fact that today, she is clean. Today, she is working. Today she is rebuilding her life. And it is beautiful to see. Blessings to you and your family!

SOBERINFO said...

Ron, your bravery and commitment to victory over addiction is an inspiration to us all. SOBERINFO.com would like to support you and others like you in any way we can by offering blogs (like yours) and resources to help others find freedom like you have. We understand this journey is not made alone and we would like to contribute in any way we can.

Nicole said...

You've brought tears to my eyes because you get it! You are truly what an effective, yet a compassionate parent should be. Your children are so lucky to have you. Your road has not been easy. I was brought to this website through a search on google as I too have a child that is an addict. The tough part is he does not live with me. He lives with his Dad and his step mom. His step mother and I are on the same page(after many years) of how things need to be, setting boundaries, etc. His father is still caught up in feeling guilty for what he feels is punishment. I see my son fail time and time again and I see no resolution. Can I ask you one question, how does a child that has ADHD come to realize that drugs are not the answer when the community that he lives in has a user rate among teenagers as high as 80-90%? My son has so many lessons to learn as he associates love with people saying Yes to him. So, he feels the world is against when told NO. His Dad spoiled him by not setting boundaries and not making him responsible. He has spoiled him with things and in my eyes does not know how to parent. So, not only is he letting his child fail, but his marriage is on the brink as well. How do I help a child in the middle of all of this?

Dad and Mom said...

Dear Nicole,

It is very hard as other parents on blogs can attest when there is a dual diagnosis, addiction and ADHD.

To a tee each one of them have said the addiction must be treated before any treatment for the ADHD can begin. There is a lot of info on the internet dealing with this subject.

I can't relate to separate parenting issue becaue Mom and I have been married over 35 years but I would give you the same advice as I give parents together or single parents. You have to find a way to communicate. There are no clear right and wrongs. But their is something more important than individual opinions and position, a young life is at stake. Agree to put aside indiviual differences and seek learning about addiction and its ramifications. Develop plans and directions knowing full well there will be many times of change. Look at common boundaries because even though you cannot live together you do have a common denominator in your life that WILL exploit all parties involved including step parents at every opportunity. The war on the disease cannot be allowed to manifest itself into a war within the family, easier said than done.

Lots of easy things to say and a few cliches but this is truy how it works. Good Luck and feel free to e-mail me any time and if ex-hubby/dad needs another mans ear, feel free.

Erin said...

Great post Ron.