Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Mental vacation and training wheels

I have to confess, that reading blogs from other parents of addicts hit my heart and soul to the core. I know that this sounds a little melodramatic, but it really did!

What stuck out, to me, was how battered and angry so many of the blogs read. Reading between the lines, I felt as though so many parents were stolen from, lied to and manipulated by the addict in their family-- to the point that their hearts were turning cold (and I don't mean that as an insult... it's having zero trust that does this to us...it's a coping mechanism, if you will. As I continued to read deeper, I felt so much sorrow for addicts who have mental illness associated with their drug addiction. I could not even offer any kind of "way out" to these bloggers! I felt totally helpless and unable to offer any kind of solid wisdom.

In a way, their troubles make mine feel so superficial. Yes, my son is a drug addict. I don't take that lightly. Compounding the problem, my son is a Type I Diabetic who must use insulin-- every single day-- so that he can live. Mental illness has been ruled out, by two psychiatrists.

I still count my blessings that my son has not resorted to theft. I won't polish his halo too much, though. He has sold oxy to buy heroin. That's bad enough. I still count my blessings that the Lord has been merciful on my son. So far, my son has never been inside a jail-- small mercies.

I think that's been the cherry on my sundae with "mental anguish overload"-- so many addicts are in jail, and their parents are blogging about their sorrows. That frustrates me to no end!

I cannot imagine what I would do, and I don't want to think about it. At last, not now.

So, for today, I can say that my son is clean. He is starting his first full day of classes at our local junior college. His hopes are high. I told him to take easy classes, as his training wheels. He agrees, that he should take classes that won't put too much demand on him. He needs to get used to actually getting up and GOING to school. He has quit college twice, before. Let's hope that three's a charm.

He still procrastinates. He still forgets to lock his bedroom window before leaving the house. He still piles up his laundry and then decides to do 4 loads of laundry on my day off. He still sleeps in late, on the weekends. He still doesn't test his blood sugar as often as he should.

He has procrastinated, all of last week, in contacting his outpatient program...now that his insurance hurdle has finally been crossed.

I have to learn patience-- and this is not my strongest virtue. I keep reminding myself that my son's mind is still in a fog. He is still detoxing, but each day he looks much better.

I need to focus on one accomplishment at a time. Almost like having a toddler, I have to cheer him on when he completes something. "Great job!"

I was cranky last night. Really cranky. My job can, at times, demand lots of little deadlines from more than one person. I feel like "Cinderelly" on those days. I just want to go home and chill-- to watch a TV program or surf the net for food recipes (my hobby and passion). Last night, B was so excited about being enrolled and he was a Chatty Kathy (I'm dating myself, here).

I begged for quiet-- and that was just about the time my husband walked into the room chomping on chips. Crunch, crunch, crunch. Then B decides he's going to bang around in the kitchen.

"QUIET!!" I shrieked. My head was pounding with a headache. I had reached my meltdown point, and I can get ugly when that happens.

I could see the hurt look on my son's face. He left the room and I felt like the big bad Ogre. This morning, I apologized to him for acting that way. I really meant it.

I really need to take a mental break-- to do something for ME. I wish I could afford a massage (I did them for years as a profession), but that's not in the budget.

I have four -- maybe five-- days off work. I'm praying for a day devoted to "me time" and another day for "we" time. "We" is my husband and me-- being a married couple.

My son's addiction can take over our lives, if we aren't careful.

Please know, that while I haven't read every single recent blog entry to those I am following-- you are in my prayers.


Athena said...

And know, that it is refreshing to read the happy endings, the positive stories... they can and do happen.

I know I have been frustrated and amazed by things over the past year I never dreamt I would face as a parent - and the irony is the blessings that have come along also - a beautiful grandson, for example :-)

It's nice to have a community to express both the frustrations and joys of the random-ness of loving an addict with...

I hope your son stays on his positive path - what you two have been through isn't trivial

Fractalmom said...

at one point, i was actually out in the front yard, with the lights on, gardening at 3 a.m.

baths help, especially if you have one of those lovely soak tubs, and also 1/2 glass of a good merlot and a good book. That was my escape. When the bathroom door was closed, it was "meemaw time". Course, I had three little rugrats running around while I was trying to deal with the junkie daughter/mother of the rugrats, and working full time, and taking care of a disabled husband.

where DO we find the energy, the time, the patience?

Lou said...

Recovery happens all the time. You have to expose yourself to places where it is happening. That is why it's good to go to different meetings (open NA,AA & more than one AlAnon). The people you meet there have many positive stories to tell. Otherwise it becomes easy to believe the nightmare will never end.
Smiles & hugs to ya!