Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Mother's Instinct and a Mother's Love & God's Revenge

Thank you, to those of you have emailed me privately and those of you who are posting comments on my blog. They make me cry, make me smile-- but each of them reaches me like a warm and caring hug. Thank you.

My son is sleeping, as is my husband. I love this time of the morning-- the peace, the quiet, and the large windows where I am sitting and enjoying the morning spring sun that is showcasing all the spring blossoms.

I need to gather my thoughts and focus on how to bring all of you up-to-date:

From my point of view (mom), I have had a reality check-- my son is at a very fragile state, in his sobriety. I do believe that he really wants to stay sober... and I do believe that he is not using opiates. I can say this, because his doctor drug tested him on Thursday night for his suboxone prescription renewal. His test came out clean for opiates, dirty for THC. His doctor is only concerned about opiates. I tested B, the following day, and he came up clean.

My concern is that B does not appear to be committed (enough) to working "the program". I think he's trying to do this on his own, though he's admitted-- each time he relapsed-- that he failed because he needs the program.

He's running in circles with his sobriety.

I also think that B has placed his personal self-worth with his net-worth. He feels he is a success, when he has money in his pocket. He can't manage money. He spends it before he makes it.

Speaking from my own spiritual point of view-- my son, I pray, will learn to find that true joy and peace comes, from within ourselves, when we place Godly values before material values.

But, back to B's update (sorry, my thoughts are going everywhere)...

The root of B's anxiety is one of more drama. How much do I believe is true? Please don't jump to conclusions... listen... and know that I know my son very well. He's my own flesh and blood.
BIG goes:

B's anxiety comes from money problems. B tells me that his second paycheck (from his new job) was stolen from him. His story goes like this-- he cashed his paycheck at his job (I wish they wouldn't do this) and he was walking to his friend's apartment, after work. Someone he knew from "back in the day" spotted him. I will call him "W". B says that "W" asked him for $5.00, so B took out his wallet and money (if this is true, not too bright) and "W" snatched it and ran.

Is this a fairy tale? This isn't the first time that my son has been robbed. I just listened to him talk...

I asked him why he was carrying that much cash. He says he was going to pay back a loan to his friend, and then to bring the rest home.

Do I buy this? I can't say yes or no. I see such poor judgment, if this is true.

Why didn't you call the cops? I already knew his answer-- and I was right.

Because I've seen "W" shoot someone in the leg for disrespecting him!

I close my eyes (we're sitting in my car, in front of his work) and I exhale.

This is the crazy world of drugs and the area where I live. There is a code of honor... (honor??? this is honor??) between gang members and criminals that I cannot fathom.

B went on to say that is when he had to go to a cash advance place to borrow money.

Oh. Did I mention this? B told me this on Thursday night (reluctantly), but could not explain to me why he borrowed money. He figured I'd assume he was buying drugs. I went with B to the place and the dates check out. Friday was his payment due date. He owed $150.00 plus $25.00 for the advance.

I won't go into the long and drawn out conversation-- I'll cut to the chase.

I had exactly $150.00, reserved, from a monthly restitution check that is mailed to our family from my son being the victim of a crime (yep, he's had his share of drama). I use this money for my son's needs. I do not give it to him as cash. I had prayed about this, and I decided to use this to pay back the loan to the cash advance place. I made my son do this, as I parked outside the door.

My son was feeling to down on himself and discouraged. How I understand that! He has not listened to any of my advice on managing money. He has dug a financial hole for himself-- again. He was crying and upset and said he owed a LOT of money to people. I was thinking 4-figures worth of money. He handed me the list of debts and to whom. $20 here, $10.00 there. The grand total came to $270.00, including the cash advance place.

I sighed with relief. I thought he was going to say $1000.00 or more. But, $270.00 is a lot to a 20 year kid, with the maturity of a teenager.

B stammers, and starts to explain:

He says he has to give gas money to his friends, for rides home and around.

Some friends, I think to myself. But I keep listening...

I spend money to eat at (fast food places)...

Why, B? I pack a lunch for you, when I make mine.

I know, Mom...but I want to hang out with my friend (nice kid) and then I get hungry.

Yeah, kids need a social life.

He owes $58.00 to Hollywood Video.

Why???!! I am screaming inside. "You keep paying those bandits because you forget to return videos?!"

I shared with him my own experiences as a struggling divorced mom-- how my best friend had to pay the Board of Equalization for taxes and penalties on my business because I could not make ends I had to file an offer and compromise with the IRS because I could not pay my I had to borrow, against his inheritance, to pay my business rent and house rent...
I told him how I used to be on my knees, alone, begging God to set me free of financial debt.

I had to raise my son, keep my business going and to dig out of $56,000 in debt with no child support and no alimony. I do know the hopelessness and fear that comes with debt! Mine was on a much grander scale. Still, I can understand my son's anxiety.

B sat quietly. He was listening?

I also told him that it took me ten years to do become debt-free (and two jobs)-- with help from friends and my husband...but I paid them all back and I am now debt-free.

B looked at me, incredulously.

At that moment, I felt a connection.

He looked at me and said "I'm out of the house. I smoked weed. I broke my promise".

My heart ached.

I looked at my son and asked him "where would you go? You have no money. No car."

He sat, silently.

B, I said...look at me.

"You are not in jail. You are not in withdrawals. You have a loving home and have a mom and step dad who want to help you stay clean and sober."

His eyes filled with tears.

"I am so ashamed, mom."

"I know, Son. You feel like you are a failure in anything you do."

He nodded.

"Count your blessings."

He looked up, puzzled.

"When times are tough, count your blessings...that's what I was starting to do."

"Your blessings outweigh your sorrows."

B took the rest of his paycheck from wallet.

"Let's go pay bills, I said."

I taxied my son to the stores to pay his debts. Then I dropped him off at his friends, where he went to a meeting. That gave me time to talk to my husband, and bring him up to speed.

B came home 2 hours later, saying he was glad that he went to a meeting.

Please don't judge me, readers-- but here's how I feel:

My son is not using opiates, and that is what worries me the most.

I honestly believe that my son needs help in understanding how to survive in this world. He has no practical life skills.

His saving grace is that he is working full-time, he has given up his drug friends, he is taking a college class. He is respectful to me and his stepfather. He is helpful around the house. He is not stealing from us.

That he smoked weed was his crutch-- albeit one that is not okay with me.

I have made it very clear to him that our home as a ZERO drug tolerance. We are not throwing him out, but he must test completely clean. I am giving him one month, knowing that THC can linger. He cried with relief. No weed. No opiates. No illegal drugs. Period. Non-negotiable.

His paychecks can no longer be cashed. Either his stepdad or I will take him to the bank to deposit them. Each week, he works with me on a financial worksheet I will design for him...and simple and user-friendly one. He logs on to his bank, and I see what's going on.

I will show him how to list a debt-reduction and to make a plan to pay his friends back. I will not give him money to do it.

I will show him how to save money for things he enjoys-- golf, new clothes.

He will pay us rent, no exception. Period. The rent money is savings for when is ready to go out on his own-- one year, is what I am predicting. I will pay his first and last on a new place. He doesn't get that money in cash, or as a lump sum. He can't borrow against it.

B is feeling discouraged. He says he feels as though he goes to work (it's demanding and physical work, standing and walking all day) and he has no money left to do something fun.

Welcome to the world, son. I told him that he is like countless millions-- people who live paycheck to paycheck. At least he has a job.

My son is very fragile. I think that what I really need to do is to set our boundaries, but to be encouraging to him.

I don't want my son to feel that life isn't any fun. Isn't that what kind drive a person to use again?

I need to step up to the plate, and make my calendar more available to get B to meetings. He doesn't have a car. He asked me to go to a Monday night meeting with him-- it's an NA "open" meeting.

That's the night I really enjoy going to my swim exercise class-- I've missed it for four weeks due to illness, injuries or something to do with B. I'll miss it again. B is more important.

As for my husband-- he knows everything. I told him. He amazes me. His point of view is the same as mine. He is willing to give B another chance-- ONLY because he sees B trying. He's pleased that B got a job and is going to school.

He's going to talk to B today. One-on-one... man-to-man. C wants to tell my son how he feels, and that he is not going to tolerate drugs of ANY kind. Period.

So, there is the best synopsis that I can give. Oh! I almost forgot...

My son's heroin dealer... "T". He got arrested! The PD found four pounds of heroin, meth and lots of cash.

Thank you, Jesus! I have prayed that God would expose the truth and bring T down to pay for his crimes.


1 comment:

mother of drug addict said...

Good for You, I think you are the exact right thing! you are an inspiration! Good Luck!