Holidays were such a traumatic experience while our son was using.
His abhorrent behavior never seemed to end. No matter if they were or weren't talking we imagined all the horrible things the relatives were saying. We took it all personal. We were the parents of the drug addict.
During the holiday while everyone was visiting we would notice our son disappear. We never knew how long he would be missing. Even if all it was that he went upstairs we knew it was for bad. Didn't matter if it was for drugs or if he just needed to go to the bathroom.
It was personal. Why did he ruin EVERY holiday or special occasion? Couldn't he just stop for ONE day and be normal? Why couldn't we be relaxed and enjoy just ONE day?
Our son was a drug addict. It wasn't personal. He was doing what drug addicts do, he used drugs. It wasn't about the holiday, it was about the drugs. Why does it take so much for us parents to understand that reality when all we want is one day?
When you are caught up in the personal drama it is impossible to see the reality. Looking back we struggled every holiday. We wondered aloud, "Why us?"
Today I understand that those feelings of hurt and disappointment belonged to us. We could hope but we chose to ignore reality. We set unrealistic expectations.
This holiday season we do not live in fear. We look forward to a thankful and joyous holiday season.
My thoughts for all of you that are not in that place where a dry turkey or cookie crumbs left around the tree from a messy Santa are your only concerns. This holiday season think of yourself and feel the love of those around you that deserve the person you want to be. Choose to feel happy. That doesn't mean you must ignore or be angry with your child or loved one that is addicted. It just means look to yourself too. Just like any other day of the year you can't fix them so you must make the best of your situation.