Friday, May 31, 2013

Letting Go

      I remember the first time I heard those words "letting Go"....
It was 3 years ago, at a course I was taking at an Addiction Services Center for Parents. My son's Addiction had reached a major crisis point, I had reached a point that I, was also in crisis. I couldn't eat or sleep..I am an emotional eater, so the fact that I couldn't eat really scared me!! I was in trouble..I reached for help..It was hard..I was always the strong one..I was the work..That was my Job ! I made the call..I needed help in dealing with addiction..I needed to understand it better..I needed to know why my love and nurturing..Threats & ultimatums weren't working!

    I met with the counsellor the first time, It happened to be a man I knew, A man I had worked with for many years in my work in the Health Care System. Immediately I was at ease,I was in Good hands ! He listened..He understood..The same story..Just a different Storyteller. He thought I would benefit greatly from the course for parents given at the Center. Sign me up!!

  I was soo scared that first night, like a child going to school for the first time. It was a small class, Limited to about 20 people. I live in a small city, so I immediately recognized a few faces,who quickly turned their faces away when they realized they also knew me..Yikes the dirty little secret was out..We had children with addiction Issues.
I was relieved I knew somebody..we could reach out to each we took this course..share our each other..Did not happen..They weren't there to make friends..Where I was of the belief that no one could understand what we go thro like another parent going the same thing...Obviously we were not on the same line of thinking or at the same stage in our journey's. But I kept going back..listening..learning..asking questions. ( The only crazy parent that did)
  I did learn that addiction was a disease. I knew this ,however actually seeing the scientific proof just hammered this home, even more. Genetics also played a role..I knew that also...Both my parents had addiction issues..One to alcohol..One to prescription drugs. I made the conscience decision not to put my children thro what I had endured growing up. Therefore, my children would have a good role model..I also educated them about the dangers..the genetic factor... etc. Well One son got it..One did not..No one can predict who will be affected by this disease, but the numbers do not lie and predisposition to addiction certainly raises the bar. Was it my decision not to become what I lived with growing up...Or...Was I just darn lucky!!

  When we got to the"Letting go" night, I was stumped..Brain dead..Did not buy into this at all!! I just could not get how putting my son out on the street..could ever help him heal... Help me. How could a mother do that !!  How could I live with myself..How could I sleep..Function !!  No, this was not going to happen.
 Well it happened. It was a process..A steep learning Curve...And Is.. the hardest thing I ever did in my Life!!! I finally got it..But it took a few years to embrace this decision. It is still a daily struggle..But Letting go does not mean I love my son any less..That I can't still be his Mamma...It Just means I got desperate when everything else I did wasn't working..It was time to let go and give him back the responsibilty of his actions. Start to help him reach his rock bottom rather than being his safety net!!! Reading the book " Don't let your Kids Kill you " By Charles Rubin
really helped me understand. It helped that he is a father of an addicted Child. It is definitely a good read for anyone struggling with this. It was a long road to get here..Many forced exists..and letting him back in..I've learned not to be too hard myself If I falter..But find it gets a wee bit easier with time...Not really.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Fork in Road

It has been a full week since I started this blog.My purpose in starting it was to help myself deal with my son's addiction,by journaling,writing down my feelings,getting them out of my mind.In hopes I would have a better understanding,better coping skills,become stronger,Try and heal...I,We were at point in this journey that seemed so very, Dark and Bleak..hopeless..And I was so disappointed in myself for feeling this way because that is NOT who I am...It was time to, as my Grampa used to say " take back the reins" !
As I reread my Blog I noticed how it is more about my son and his demons rather than ours as Parents...I dove full force into reading blogs about addiction...It helped immensely to know we were not alone and although our Journey's are different in many ways...And so similar in others...The One common thread is always the same...To help our children whether they are 14 or 40 !

I have visited many sites about addiction offered by professionals..Doctors..addiction specialists..Addicts them selves..etc etc etc..

 I researched 24 hour facility's,As we do not have one in our area that my son can the criteria for admission...Their Misson statements...Philosophys'..Was there a medical component..Do they treat the whole person..and so on..

I have read the stats..followed links that lead to me to some excellent information, All in an attempt to help fill my mind with knowledge to help with my son's Addiction, instead of sorrow... and the occasional Pity party!!

So I came to realize My blog has kinda veered off the path...Taken the wrong road for what I meant it be..A blog about our Journey with Addiction..Our missteps and triumphs..Our feelings..Our Knowledge about this disease..

I know the Young man that we love so much is somehow lost, in this nightmare of Addiction..I also know the choice was his to start down this road..But I learned that once that first choice was made..The Addiction took control and it is making the choices now..My hope is that my precious son can emerge from It's tentacles and start on the road to recovery ! That is my Hope.

So I will attempt to go back to that fork in road and take another path..The path of Our Recovery, with an update from time to time on how my son is doing on his Path.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

For An Addict

Last night was a bad one...A call from his ex-girlfriend...worried about him...Friends telling her he looks like death...Asking If I had heard from him...No we have not...She found out he was finally offered a bed at detox...he refused it !!!! That was last Thursday....6 days later he is spinning out of control...The urge to call him & ask him to put his name back on the list..Beg him to get help was sooo great and I was hurting so bad thinking about how sick he is..and the thoughts of losing him.This was my first real test since deciding I was not going to be an enabler anymore..Did I pass..Kinda..I would say it was a C..But I scraped by..Barely...His Dad did the calling( with my support)..He took his call..He told him he was in bad shape..Then he told him he would call us back as he had to clean his room ??? He never called back..Hubby said he sounded shaky & very sick...We never called him back either..After a good cry..second guessing our decision...I reached for a book I often gravitate to when life throws for me a loop.As I stated before I am kind of a wee bit spiritual...And while researching my Irish roots I found out I come by it naturally, as the Celtic's are a spiritual Clan ! It was here I came across an Author I fell in love with "John O' Donahue"..and his book of Blessings " To Bless the space between Us "...I automatically opened up to the well worn page and the poem " For an Addict " I am sure I am not the first nor be the last to share ...For my Son..XOXO

                                       For An Addict

On its way through the innocent night
the moth is ambushed by the light,
becomes glued to a window 
where a candle burns
its whole self, its dreams of flight 
and all desire 
trapped in one glazed gaze.
Now nothing else can satisfy
but the deadly beauty of the flame.
When you lose the feel 
for all other belonging
and what is truly near 
becomes distant and ghostly,
you are visited and claimed 
by a simplicity
sinister in its singularity.
No longer yourself, 
your mind will be owned
and steered from elsewhere now.
You will sacrifice anything 
to dance once more 
to the haunted music
with your fatal beloved
who owns the eyes to your heart.
These words of blessings cannot reach,
even as echos, to the shore of where you are.
Yet, may they walk without you
to soften some slight line, 
through to the white cave 
where you soul is captive.
May some glimmer of outside light 
reach your eyes
to help you recognize how you have fallen
for a vampire.
May you crash hard and soon
onto real ground again
where this fundamentalist shell
might start to crack
for you to hear again
your own echo.
That your lost lonesome heart 
might learn to cry out
for the true intimacy of love
that waits to take you home
to where you are known and seen
and where your life is treasured
beyond every frontier
of despair you have crossed.
However today I am going to go see him...ask..maybe beg... him to reach out again for help...Is this enabling ? ...I like to call it a wellness check...We have learned sooo Much on this journey..and we  have sooo much more TO learn !!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Methadone Maze

Day 6 and nothing....As his best enablers in the past, perhaps, he's got it, that we can no longer assist him in his journey down the rabbit hole...It does not however stop us from loving him or worrying ourselves sick about him...

 He is in the methadone program..Has been for 3 years now..It did save his life I feel, at the time he entered it...He reached for help and was taken into the program through our family Doctor...It did give him part of his life back... It Allowed him to "see" life more clearly.."live" life more fully..But... without the rest of the skills he needed to deal with his addiction it was doomed to fail...His Dad & I agreed to help him by paying for his methadone...He has no medical benefits...It was not covered through the Detox Center, as he never went through their program( 3 month waiting period)..He was not eligible for social services..So what's a parent to do..We pay for it..A whopping sum of over 600.00 dollars a month!! It did not start out this way..It was much more affordable..Until..Yes..The government decided to cash in on our Children's Addiction...
  I could not believe my eyes when the first Bill arrived after the increase..from 3 dollars a over 25 dollars a day!!! The Rise was due to the dispensing fee,which been waived in the past for methadone..The only way to get it cheaper was by the Dr. prescribing Carry's..Carry's are Methadone, premixed in little brown bottles, which allows my son to get a weeks' supply at a time and be responsible for his own Dispensing...It is to be kept in a locked box in a safe place...Sounds good in theory right??? Yes it saved Money..Yes it gave him back some dignity,by him not having to stand in line at the pharmacy everyday, to wait his turn...Hiding behind a frosted glass door as the pharmacist watched him take his daily dose, walking out to see others sitting in the waiting room knowing what he was doing in there,knowing he was an Addict!

It did not take us long to learn the downfalls of this Mode of transportation!! First we learned he could use it as he wished...a sip here..a sip there..Works better this way Mamma..unh hunh..Of course it doesn't !! It is meant to be taken as prescribed..It is premixed to be time released !!! The Biggie is it can sold on the streets for big Bucks!! Needless to say the carry's stopped !! He would have to learn the power of humility..And go back to getting it daily and we went back to paying..Lesson learned...

So he picks up his methadone daily...and uses drugs daily..great combination!! Well.. just take him off the methadone!!...Does not work that way. He cannot stop methadone cold turkey...he has to be weaned off..if not he could go into convulsions and die..The weaning has begun..The reason I know he is still alive?? he has not missed getting his daily dose of methadone...A small blessing.
*** I should have mentioned his dosage of methadone is on the high end 100mg.

Monday, May 27, 2013


The Shore has always been my place of contentment...solitude..reflection..A place to share my most inner thoughts...get things answers. My own little piece of world.

So after another day of no contact with my son, I packed up my hubby and off we went to the cottage..He loves to sit on the deck..I love to walk the for seaglass..driftwood..answers. As I sat in my favorite spot on the rocks watching my friend, the eagle soar overhead searching out lunch I reflected on this past week...on my son..what brought us to where we are today...The conclusions : I have no Idea!!
He has a loving family..extended family..Good friends..The fact that he also has ADHD,I have no doubt played a role in this..his struggles academically because of the ADHD...which I am sure led to him having self esteem problems...confidence problems..we can analyze this to death, as to the why's, but it does not help where we are today...In the clutches of Addiction !!

My Dad had a special connection with my son...I think he saw a wee bit of himself in his grandson...As he also had addiction issues in his younger years with Alcohol.My son loved nothing more than spending time with him..I lost my dad less than a year ago to cancer..He lost his grandfather..I thought I could save both of them !! Who did I think I was ??? It was a big loss..he was my hero..I could do nothing wrong in his eyes..My biggest supporter..The first Man I loved..I could sure use his feedback now..

My son stayed clean throughout the last months of my dad's Life....he kept him company..he took him for drives..Ice Cream..He took him for sleepovers with us at the cottage..This is my son!!..caring..Compassionate..Always sticking up for underdog even it was to his own determent!!

In a way it was my Dad's last gift to me..I got my son back..If only for a short time..So it has been a tough year mourning both my Dad...and My son..So I talked to them both yesterday on that rock..I just hope they heard me.....

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Sunday's Child

My youngest son...Was born on a Sunday...Should have been a good sign...Although I am catholic...raised in the church...believe in God...I am more spiritual than Religious,thus I have a problem with giving my son's addiction to God and praying...It is just not how his Dad & I are built....I wish I could find comfort in doing that...but I can't...I do not think there is any comfort in any of this journey!!
I do so appreciate friends & family saying they will keep us in their prayers...I want to believe it will help..It is just not our way coping with this disease of addiction. I'd rather they offer a respite of sorts to us..If only for 30 minutes...Give us positive feedback " you WILL get thro this".."you ARE good parents".."This is NOT your fault".."YOU are strong".."WE are here for you"..Tell us a funny joke...make us laugh..instead of cry...sometimes a prayer just does not cut it!!

It has been 3 long days since we have heard from him...Since I told him he can't come home...I know he is in a motel room...I know his money is about to run out...I do not know what happens then...does he go to detox...does he reach out for help or does he reach out to the himself to feed his habit...How do I stop my mind spinning from this constant tug of war with my heart !!! One day at a time...

Saturday, May 25, 2013

The Writing Was Not In Ink !

                                                        It was in tears..and lots of them..At first I could not figure out what I was looking at...

Perhaps we should go back to the first..Well the beginning of that day. The day my 25 year old son moved out and into an apt.with his girlfriend.There had been many days like this over the years,cleaning his room after his departure for work,gone months at a time.But this time was different..Not in what I knew what I was going to find...But what I found And the impact it had on a mother!

I knew I was going to find drug paraphernalia..garbage..dirty clothes..maybe even drugs..But nothing prepared me for what I actually saw!! I had heard the sounds coming from his room ... a flick of the lighter..losing spoons by the handful..We had been to hell & back with his addiction over the years..lies..stealing..jail time..fines..drug dealers at our door..clean times???? There were a few..And that is what gives you hope..keeps you going...Trying to save my son who does not want to save himself..Yes we were enablers..We thought love was enough..It wasn't..It isn't..

Back to the room...something new had invaded our home..his life..his body...along with a new mode of delivery... As horrendous as it sounds it was the one thing that finally opened my eyes...I couldn't..can't save him...That was 6 months ago..Today he is out of his girlfriends..due to his drug use...Looking again at jail time... telling us he will get help...he needs to be home..he can't do it alone...I take his calls..I listen to his pleads..I get off the phone & cry..I pace..I struggle with the choice I made..But I do not..will not... take him home again...I have to let him go...He has all the tools..He knows what he has to do...It is his choice...As this is Our choice...