I spoke to two classes at the high school today. Along with the students four parents attended.
I really cannot find the words to describe what it is like to stand in front of these young people and parents and talk about what we have been through. I've given this talk for I really don't know how many times. There are parts for me that are very painful. It's like taking the scab off a wound that really needs the air and light. The process is healing for me but it is not without giving up a part of me too.
However much it hurts at times it is all worth it when I look at those young people listening to me. It tough when I recount how long it took me to learn what has to be done and how to be a father with a son addicted to drugs. Not sure but I might even scare some of the kids when I launch into my old worn out phrase that is used before I understood about addiction. "No lying, no stealing, no drugs, JUST WHAT THE HELL IS SO HARD ABOUT THAT!!!!" Of course I deliver that phrase at about one quarter the volume and zero percent of the anger I used when it was screamed at Alex.
The kids seem to be listening. Guess it is my training on recognizing Alex's condition. I look at their eyes. No pinpoint pupils. LOL. They are wide open. If you have seen the videos you know I can't stand still during these presentations. They follow me with their eyes. I think they hear me because I see it in their faces but mostly in their eyes.
One of the parents that attended today critiqued me at my asking. She said, "I pride myself on being a people watcher and I have never seen kids this age so focused. You touched some people today. I admit, at times I was fighting to hold back tears."
Hate to admit but there are times the speaker fights hard to hold back the tears too. This is so personal.
Two more classes tomorrow. I'll be ready, hope they are ready for me.