Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Facebook Quotes

I figure I am no different than anyone else that has a Facebook page, most of the updates I see posted from many friend seem to be quotations and funny cat videos. Quite frankly friends, I usually blow by them and do a quick scan to see what's going on and never give a second thought to all of those "inspirational" sayings. By the way I hated those Successory and inspirational posters every business had hanging on their walls for a decade too.

However, a quote posted over a big lion picture showed up today on my Facebook page that really struck home for me and I feel for anyone that has reason to read this blog. I am going to repeat it here for you all.

"You never know how strong you are, until being strong is your only choice."  Bob Marley

Monday, January 20, 2014

5 Year Anniversary

On January 20, 1999 I began writing this blog. Never when I began did I think it would become what it has and last this long. At this point it has become an old friend and it keeps me connected to friends all over.

Prior to writing there had been a lot of water under the bridge, most of it very turbulent. I was finding it increasingly more difficult to navigate those waters and at times to even stay afloat. Writing on here did not calm the waters, it just seemed I had many experienced friends that were helping to guide me.

In the last five years so much has happened it is difficult to capture it in one post. Fortunately there are 540 posts that do that for me. However, I am going to try and recall some of the highlights of those five years that basically shook me to the core, some in good ways and some not so good.

Three grandchildren and a son in recovery. What more can I say about how good life can be. There were many smiles and quiet moments of appreciation.

However, every day there are times I relive the horrors. I drive past a courthouse or hospital and I feel a quiver in my body. Jail and overdoses haunt me. Every single day I drive by the cemetery where Darlene and I sat in the car and planned our son's funeral because at that time we felt we had lost him to the monster.

Every day I still feel the frustration that I didn't see this, couldn't stop this, and even though I know better, I couldn't fix this. Lot's of guilt still in dad that doesn't seem to go away.

But this blog helps. Each day I can write or I can simply just go back in time and read. I find comfort many days in the wise words many of you left for me as comments.

Each day I keep at this to try and offer hope or help to other parents just like me that feel hopeless and alone. We aren't alone, unless we choose to be. I talk about this at schools in hopes that when those grandchildren of mine grow up it won't be "cool" to try this stuff.

Just like five years ago, I had no idea what I was doing or what this blog would become. I have no idea where this is headed. My only hope is that I have helped as many of you by sharing my story as you have helped me.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Another Mother's Son

Here is another mother writing. Please give her a visit. No one is alone in this.

Hands Full of Tears

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Podcast of Radio Interview

Here is a link to the radio interview I did last night.

I want to thank Debra, Chamara, Robbin and all of the staff of "For The in plain language" for having me on this show. We need more people like you that are willing to tackle this tough subject in the public. It is time we bring the disease of addiction out of the shadows and closet.

The first 30 minutes of the show the hosts spoke of their own experiences with drugs. I was then introduced and we spent another 45 minutes speaking with callers and answering questions.

Thank you for this opportunity.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Radio Interview

I have been asked to be interviewed live on a radio program located in Philadelphia, PA. It can be heard live on Tuesday 1/14 at 8:30 pm EST at The title of the show is For The People…Law in Plain Language. I told them I am not a lawyer but they are looking for someone to talk about what a family goes through when they have an addicted love one and some of the legal stuff the family gets caught up in while addiction is controlling a loved one. 

If you are interested and miss the live broadcast the podcast will be available on Podomatic and Itunes.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year

Happy New Year to all. Every year this is a day that hope and promise seems to fill us all. Even for parents of addicts still trapped in that vicious circle of a lost child.

Last night Darlene and I went to bed after toasting the new year, tired and sore, with our kids still playing board games on the dining room table. Whispering our hopes for the new year, not even mentioning anything about drugs, addiction, rehab or jail.

I can still vividly remember when our wishes included things like we hoped this would not be the year Alex died. How at times we couldn't even think about recovery, we simply were focused on his survival. Eventually we would fall asleep with no peace. We just knew we had to rest so we could survive another day. No one knew what horror was in store the next hour, day or week.

Last year a few days after the new year a dear friend called saying her son was found dead from an overdose of heroin. The monster is real, it feeds on our children and it is stalking our loved ones every day.

It saddens me that as we enter 2014 there is still no cure for addiction and nothing seems to stop desire and the flow of drugs to our children. However, there are many people doing good work to help us. There are chemical based treatments that help many. The new "evidence based therapies" show great promise with you people that do not find what they need in 12 step programs. 12 step meetings comprised of younger people that can relate to each other and know how to face and help them in their special lives.

Although it has been a few years since the monster has left our family it is not so long ago that we have forgotten the horror and terror we felt. In fact it hasn't even been too long to forget what it was like when the monster first entered our family. I believe that I'll never in my life forget those times.

My new years message to those parents just entering this world is to listen, learn and never ever forgot that you are not alone. We are not alone in this no matter if you are just discovering the terrible truth or have know for years. The monster will feed on your silence and fear. There are people that understand and can help, seek them out. If one person doesn't understand then find someone else. You don't have to suffer privately. Accept the truths of this life and survive.

And, as always to those parents that have endured this for years and years. Where there is life there is hope, just be cautious and do not misplace your hope. Many of you long time readers know how bad it got for us and Alex before he sought recovery in July, 2010.

None of our children are unlovable. It just takes special people to see past the addiction and to know there is still a person inside there. Work to find the answer that works for YOU. You can't fix them so it makes no sense to have two broken people because of the drugs. Work on yourself and when the time is right you will be healthy enough to do what is needed for your child.

I'll end with one question that I have ask many people that are struggling to fix and help their child. Every single day in this world thousands of people stop using and enter recovery that lasts the rest of their lives............If your child walked in the door today and today was the day for your child, do you know what to do and are you healthy enough to help them do what they need to do?