Thursday, March 19, 2009

Almost a year later... and a synopsis on my son

I haven't been posting much, lately. I think about it, everyday, but my job keeps me from being able to sit down and compose what I want to say. I have a lot of things to say, in my head. Now, here I sit, feeling...blank.

I'm just going to jump in and see where my fingers end up on the keyboard. My son is coming in to six weeks of sobriety. For those of you who are new to my blog-- I am coming up on my one year anniversary of starting this blog-- April 1st.

So much has happened-- April 2008, my son finally admitted that he was addicted to smoking heroin and agreed to check in for detox and treatment.

He lived one SLE and then had four different roomates in an 8 month period. All three times, the living arrangements (except for the SLE) didn't work out. The first roommate turned out to be a raging drunk, and my son feared for his life. The second roommmate turned out to be a good friend to B (he was old enough to be his dad), but he eventually started drinking again. That led to the roommate eventually flipping out at my son, and literally throwing him out. Two months later, B's roommate's body was found in the apartment. He had shot himself in the head.

The third roommate didn't mention to my son-- until AFTER he moved in-- that he was a convicted child molester (he had molested his own daughter). My son hardly slept there at all-- turns out B was driving 2 hours south (to where I live) to buy drugs. I didn't know he had relapsed. B's father let our son live with him, though he was renting a room from the child molester.

Then, in October, my son admitted that he was doing drugs again and off to rehab he went. A woman (old enough to be his mother) offered him a room to rent in the San Francisco area. I wasn't wild about it, but I wasn't going to let my son come home. It was a disaster, I later found out. "S" immediately relapsed into drinking and then started doing heroin with my son. I knew something wasn't right, but I knew I was powerless to make a difference. My son got robbed and lots of other craziness that comes with addiction. I used to dread the phone calls in the middle of the night.

Finally, at Christmas, my son came home. Money had run out, and he promised he was clean...yadda, yadda, yadda. Long story short, the truth came out around February that B had been using again. Stupid me, I didn't drug test, because he seemed to be doing just fine.

So, new readers-- there you have it-- a review on just a few things that have happened in the course of almost one year.

Today, I feel as though my son's addiction has become "manageable". I say this with great caution. I am random testing my son, now that I know better. B has a full-time job. He has given up all of his friends, save for one, who seems to be "safe". B hangs out at home, when he's not working-- unless he's with his sponsor and going to meetings. He's respectful, helpful and we have grown close again. He seems to feel he has a purpose in life. He's still lazy, but that's me. I guess I'm a go-getter, and I have to watch that I don't impose my own expectations on him. He's a kid, whose maturity has been stunted by six years of drug use.

I feel like I have my son back again-- the boy that I gave birth to, and a child I desperately wanted. The other night, I was watching my son, sprawled out on one of our couches with his long legs (he's 6'3). He was reading a book, and I was quietly surfing the net on my laptop.

It hit me... a feeling of pure love flowed right through me! It felt like God was filling every part of my body with his presence. I realized how much I loved my son!

I am sharing this, because my heart aches for other parents whose blogs I am following. Recently, I read some pretty heartless comments from someone, who was attacking the mom for seeming "cold" and "indifferent" towards her addict child. Wow. Been there, done that. I've had some pretty cold comments sent to me.

People cannot understand what it's like to be the parent of an addict, unless you are one. You just can't understand. I used to defend myself, to the commentors. But, now, I realize...they just don't know me.

Here's my 2 cents on what I've learned:

I no longer blame the parents if their child uses drugs. Trust me, when I say that I was there for my son . I gave up working longer hours (and I was broke) so that I never missed a baseball practice. Sure, I lost it, during the times my son was an obnoxious middle schooler. I made mistakes, and I've apologized to my son. It's is not my fault that my son is a drug addict.

I also learned that your child can be a functioning drug addict. I never knew what oxycontin was. I never knew you could smoke heroin. I never imagined that my son was deep into the world of drugs and dealing them to stay alive. I never saw it coming. I missed a lot of signs, and I still wonder if my son is "loaded" when he looks tired or acts a little to energetic. Yes, I have some residual paranoia...and I might, for a long time.

I've also learned that there is no cure for addiction. I was reading my earlier entries, where I refer to my son "getting better". Ha! Drug addiction is not an illness. There is no cure.

I have learned what it really means to live life one day at a time. How is my son? My answer is, today is a good day.

I have also learned that an addict cannot begin to find sobriety unless they are ready to. Addicts must want to become sober for themselves. My son says that he did it, the first two times, for us. This time, my son says he is tired of the emptiness his life of addiction left him with. He says that he sold everything he ever owned, to buy his next fix. His flat screen TV, guitar, electronic games, laptop, clothes....anything he could pawn for money.

At least my son never stole. The moral values I tried to instill in him, seem to stick in that department. Praise God.

I received a comment from an addict-- she said that my blog gives her hope. Thank you. I pray that is what I am doing. BUT... I told my son that you cannot tell your mother that you are using again.

I encourage you to tell her. But my son said something to me, he wants to tell you. He says that if you can't afford suboxone, then you can't afford to use. He says that instead of buying your drugs, buy suboxone.

Do I agree with that? The whole thing breaks my heart. I feel for addicts who cannot find a way to get professional treatment. But, I see my son's point. Suboxone, for him, is keeping him sober.

B has a long road ahead. I know that he could start using again, at any time. The devil is nipping at his heels and I pray, every day, that God will give my son the strength he needs to resist the temptation.

I am faithfully praying for families of addicts. Though my son's addiction seems to be in a calm stage, I know that I could be blogging like so many other people-- there just might come a day when I would have to throw my son out of my house. I cannot imagine how painful that must be.

I pray for parents who have been depleted of patience with their addicts who have robbed them blind...lied to them and have caused the financial strain.

I do not judge any of you! I feel for you. I thank God, that today is a good day.




Dad and Mom said...

All I know to say is, Thank You for your honesty

mother of drug addict said...

Your blog gives me hope, Please tell your son that we who read your blog are very proud of him.
I pray that my daughter does as well as your son and realizes that she has to give up the "friends" she used to have.

Kat said...

Thank you for responding to my comment. :) Tell B I said thank you also, I happened to do just that yesterday, and it is working pretty well so far.

Fractalmom said...

six weeks is a good start. One day at a time is all we can do. both as junkies and as parents.