This is a difficult post to write. The difficult part is not about addiction, rather the lows. It will come at the end.
This last week I spoke at a high school. The teacher sent me feedback from the students. From the way to sounds I made quite an impact. All the classes said I should be talking to every class. More people need to hear the story. He also sent me info about a student that is now in recovery and will celebrate 6 months clear and sober on Christmas. This student told the teacher more people need to hear that it is a choice to start using drugs but addiction is not a choice. It is good when students validate the message. Makes it more real to their friends.
Another good story for me is that I am at the lake trying to winterize some things. On Wednesday I went up to a local restaurant/bar to have some dinner and watch the World Series game. (Let's Go Royals!) I was sitting next to a gentleman that was telling me about losing his grandson that lived with him to a drug overdose. He admitted he was struggling with the grief but also with the drug concept. He told me he was getting counseling. I shared my story with him.
Tonight, Friday, I went back to the same place. A waitress stopped me as soon as I walked in. She said she overheard us talking on Monday about addicted sons and told me she had a son that is an addict and is just now 90 days clear and sober. She cared enough about me to invite me to a meeting some of the local mothers of addicts hold to talk about what they are experiencing. She said it is very informal and they don't know exactly what they are doing but it seems to help them if they meet and talk.
I told her that I wasn't a local but I would be happy to come to a meeting if I am in the area.
She said that they are just trying to help each other the best way they can and she wanted me to know their are others out there if I need help.
This gave me an opportunity to talk to her about the CRAFT model of support. I shared with her the books she needs, "Beyond Addiction" and "Get Your Loved One Sober". I also gave her one of my Partnership cards and I put my blog address on it. She said she is anxious to get online and learn more. I also gave her a couple of pointers. "Your son is in recovery, are you the same person/mom as you were when he was using?" We talked a minute about that and I related to her about the huge mistakes I made when my son first entered recovery, "I'm not perfect, so why do I expect y son in recovery to be perfect?" Her response was, "Oh my God I do that."
Next week I am scheduled to speak at another high school and I have been ask to speak to inmates at the Johnson County Detention Center.
The terrible low is we lost our dog today. Lexi was a Golden Retriever 12 years old. She was at the lake with me and today I accidentally ran over her in my truck. I rushed her to the hospital but she was too badly injured. We had her put to sleep to ease her pain and suffering. She could not get well. Tonight she is out of pain and her hips not longer ache. What pain she does not feel I feel inside my heart.
Goodbye my friend.