Wednesday, December 9, 2009

'Tis the Season for...?

I have been trying to find balance in my life. Right now the "to do" scale is heavier than the "Me time" side. I haven't even unpacked the Christmas ornaments or done any kind of decorating. I feel as though time is on fast forward, and my plate is too full.

I did't hear from my son for two days. When that happens, I can only assume that he's either "using" or -- on the hopeful side-- he's taking care of business on his own.

B got fired yesterday. My son sounded so upset, this morning. He kept saying how he busted his a** to do hard work, so his boss would be happy with him. As I told my son, it seemed as though his boss had already made a decision that he didn't like my son. The reasons could vary, but it was obvious to me that it wasn't "if" he'd get fired-- but "when". With a positive voice, I told my son that he has 30 days to figure out something (the next rent is due). He might have a new roommmate-- a friend he's known for a long time. Yes, he uses. No further comment from me. Supposedly "A" is not using, but I plead the 5th. It's none of my business.

Anyway, "A" has a car, so he's going to drive B around today. I told "B" to head straight to the unemployment office-- don't assume he can't collect. Just do the paperwork. Then, go apply for food stamps. My son's a tax payer, so this is what it's for. Go get his UA for his methadone treatment that should start tomorrow (more on that later). Last, go to that place his friend said has a job opening. Take advantage of not working by making finding a job his full-time job.

I tried to tell him to limit his goals each day, to be do-able. Stick to the three.

By the end of the phone conversation, I could hear my son's voice change to sound better.

I reminded my son that, should he lose his apartment, he can look into rehab or a one year program-- like Teen Challenge America or something similar. I also reminded him, that should he make that decision-- all it would take is one phone call to a dear friend of ours. If my son was sincere, the odds are good that this dear friend would get my son into a free one year program. But, my son has to want it enough and to convince our friend-- but, now for today....

I was reading Alex's blog "Trapped in Addiction". I find his writing to be intriguing, as I read the "other side" of how addicts must feel. Sometimes, I realize that I can easily fall into lecturing my son-- out of worry and love.  . My life is so blessed-- I have a lovely home, a warm bed, plenty of food to eat (I even blog and photograph it all). I have health insurance, an emergency savings account... I can see the answers before me.

I have to remind myself that my son's life is so unmanageable, that he is feeling overwhelmed. Alex has helped me to see how my "lectures" can overwhelm my son.

I think my son is trying-- but, it still breaks my heart that I can see the fear he has from the financial devastation that drugs have done to him.

I received an anonymous comment, this morning, from "Ryan". Yes, Ryan, I agree with you. For the record-- I am not supportive of my son's decision to use methadone. I say that, because I agree with Ron (Dad & Mom) that sobriety is hard work. It is my urgent prayer that my son will get through detox and find the path to sobriety, without the use of suboxone nor methadone.
Theres def some good input on here but Id like to add a few things.. With suboxone an addict must stop dosing for at least 2 or 3 days if he even wants a chance at getting high as its half life is about 37.5 hours. Even then it is still hard to get as high as you normal would unless you dose a lot heavier than normal which can be deadly. Hence this makes it more difficult for the addict to use as the relapse must be pre-meditated.

I dont have personal experience with methadone but from what I have read an addict can still get high during maitnence. Pretty much all they have to do is skip a dose or take their dose first thing in the morning so they can use later that evening. Granted it still binds to your opiate receptors, all you need to do is dose a little bigger than usual to get the desirable effects. A lot of addicts prefer this drug because they can easily binge and then go right back on the methadone without feeling much of anything.

An ideal setting would be for the addict to cold turkey with comforting meds to ease the hell of withdrawal and help keep the addict somewhat sane. All Methadone and Suboxone does is fill the void for the addicts opiate of choice which does not allow the brain to heal. It is basically like a cancer patient in remission. To truly beat this beast you must eliminate all opiates/opiods and allow your brain to recover. Yes it is extremely tough as I know from first hand experience but it can be done

As I see it-- my son doesn't love himself enough. That's why he doesn't take care of his diabetes. That's why he smokes, even though it's terrible for his diabetes (and overall health). I shudder to think the damage he has already done to his brain-- that brilliant mind of his, that can't cope with life.

I'm so filled with love and compassion for my son. I don't need to hear the usual "don't enable" him, today. Please. I get it! I'm blogging this to help others who are in my state of mind, and to let my family know how my son is doing.

He's struggling. I pray that my son will find that path to sobriety where he can be free of any kind of pills-- and that he will use his story to help others.


clean and crazy said...

if you took a moment to put your tree up, it would probably fill you with really good thoughts and memories. it does for me. i think you are an awesome mother.
you are doing a great job learning to let him lead his own life, something that is just not easy when your son is an addict. i love this time of year. i hope you can slow down for just a few hours to take the time to set up your tree, it really is fun, remember setting it up with the kids? we used to throw tons of tinsel on our tree!! it was horrible!! mom said she would wait until we were in bed and then 'fix' the tree so it would look right. i let my little ones decorate this year, it is so much fun. i hope you can have some holiday fun, if nothing else go for a drive and look at other peoples decor, it is awesome to look at. take care of you and happy holidays!!

LisaC said...

Debby, all I read when I read your blog is the love you have for B and how hard you work to be a good mom and make good decisions. I told my husband this year, that it could be so much worse (my B could be dead at this point based on the events of mid-October) so the fact that he is alive and well (relative) is worth taking a moment and celebrating over the holidays. Take care of yourself. I think you are an amazing Mom full of love for your Son and it brings tears to my eyes to think about it. Do what you can to bring a little joy into your own life; but don't beat yourself up if some things don't get done that you would usually do. Hugs to you and prayers to you and B.

Barbara aka Layla said...

What stood out here today is that B doesn't love himself. I know how much that hurts, how unfathomable it is, how can our boys (young men) not love themseleves? K tells me often how much he loathes himself. I wish we could just do a "Love transfusion" and give them some of our love for them, we have plenty to spare.

Hoping the best for B and that he gets a job that he LIKES soon!

Dad and Mom said...

The destruction these poisons wreck upon people is indescribable. As we struggle next to our children watching this first hand it is easy at times to fall into the abyss of hopelessness. I know that path well. It all seems so simple to us from the outside. Just stop doing what you are doing. I don't think any of our sons and daughters wouldn't jump at that simple solution if it was that simple. Of all people I must be the last person on earth to learn that simple truth. Stopping is not something they can do without help, be it God, NA, a HP or even sometimes people that love and support them and know how hard it is for them and the imposibility of going it alone.

ANYONE that reads your blog knows B is not going this alone. You are doing all you can, right or wrong and I can atest to being more on that wrong side than right, you are and will be there when it is time and he needs you.

I would agree B probably doesn't like himself, or maybe he doesn't like what he has become. When I see you write about B, I so often can substitute Alex for B. I see that in Alex he hates what he has become. Alex was a VERY sensitive child to others feelings. I know in my heart he did not do what he has done to us to purposely hurt us. I don't know B but I have to believe he is the same.

Keep showing B that he is capable of being loved. My belief is when people feel they are no longer capable of being loved the spark of love they have for themselves or others will be extinguished. Hope fades as a distant star. Only you and B know for sure but from your writing I can no way see that B is not without hope for himself and those around him.

Mom of Opiate Addict said...

I know when my mom and sis died within a year and 1/2 of each other, I did very little for Christmas. I started a few new little traditions like going to chinese food on Christmas Eve and then going and looking at lights. I went out and bought a 2 foot tree and put it together on my table, it looked beautiful and was easy. It can give more time to take care of ourselves and be with our loved ones. Also I have found baking and giving to the homeless has given me a little distraction and sense of purpose, so maybe find something you just really enjoy doing and do that right now. You and B are in my prayers as always.

Anonymous said...

You love your son. You're a good mom!

Cheri said...


Just a note to say that you and B remain in our prayers. We pray B finds a job he likes soon, and we pray that God will help him learn to love himself as much as He does.

Maybe you could choose one Christmas tradition in your family to participate in, something that will boost your spirits and refresh your countenance, rather than try to "do it all." Give yourself permission to shorten that "to do" list and bask in His love for you. Sometimes the worst expecations in our lives are the ones we place on ourselves!

I know when my son went to rehab, I did very little that year in the way of the "normal" routine for Christmas. I just didn't have it in me. My friends and family totally understood.

Love and prayers,

Angelo said...

Ryan is wrong. Some addicts need methadone or suboxone. They always have to have a opiate on there receptor site as the brain is use to that and when it is not there the dreppresion and anxiety etc. can lead to suicide or an overdose as the addict will do anything to take these feelings away.
Also suboxone does have a long half life 37 hours but if you do some good heroine at the 8mg dose sometimes does not block it all the way. On methadone the blocking dose is 60mg or better and most times that does not block the heroine. I hope B choses that year long program.