Saturday, April 23, 2011

Good Friday

Son2 gave me permission to post some of his art work.  I don't know if I mentioned, he is an art major in college.  A lot of his work has to do with his recovery.  Above is a hand made book of his which he was proud to say was recently included in a show.  The cover came from a print he made from the early days, it's pretty dark, I don't know if you can see it's a guy without a head.  Yeah, much of his early work is dark, those were black days for him.  Anyway, the rest of the pages contain print images of "drug" stuff, representing the lost years.  It's powerful, and hard for his dad and I to look at, really.

Son2 was here this week again for Group on Friday and a one-on-one appointment with his drug counselor.  I was off work for the holiday so I tagged along to check with the Center regarding insurance.  I met a few of his group members, and then he invited me to sit in on his one-on-one.  I wasn't expecting that, after all that was "his" time and I knew he needed to talk through some stuff.  I'm so glad I had that opportunity.  I have to say I am so thankful for this counselor, I'll call him "D".  30 years of experience, and the guy surely knows how to get to the meat of it.  He doesn't let my son get away with anything.  He cuts to the chase, and puts reality right in front of him.  The greatest thing is that Son2 is receiving all of that very well.  He is open to change, and advice and has a great deal of respect for D.  He says he can't BS D, can't fool him, and he likes that.  WOW, I think he is growing up... growing... evolving...

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Kids... they WILL surprise you

I had a long phone conversation with Son2 a few days ago, and he said that he and K were working through some things.  They sat down and each made a list of what they want, and came to find out that they had so much more in common on their lists than not.  They still love each other, and still want to maintain the relationship.  So, what is the problem then?  Well... it sounds like they are realizing that they jumped into things a bit too quickly a couple years back, and missed that normal relationship building, dating, etc.  Uhhhh... when I told my husband, he actually burst out laughing.  This would be in the "I tried to tell you" category.  We certainly felt that at the time.  When they first got together, I felt so uneasy about it.  It was a terrible time in his life, confessing his addiction to us, and then starting a relationship with someone at the same time?

So, they are trying to back up, not an easy thing to do, and it will take a lot of work and commitment from both of them.  She is going to move out for a month, they will "date", they will keep the apartment, the third roommate will move out for good, and K will move back in after a month.  At that time, they plan to each have their own "space" in the apartment.  They will each have the opportunity to have their own room, so that is probably a good thing.

They seem to think it is worth all of this, and I have to give them credit for trying.  I suggested counseling, and Son2 liked the idea.  He is a little skeptical about how things will be when she comes back, but I told him there are never any guarantees, and to take it as it comes.

So... K is NOT out of the picture.  Personally, I am glad.  I hope things work out.

Monday, April 11, 2011


Well, Son2 took the engagement ring back.  Just happened on Saturday, and then he came home to stay with us overnight.  He went back Sunday to talk to K... thought they should decide what to do.  Their lease is up in a few weeks, so now is the time to make some hard choices.

I had a brief text exchange with him today... he said he was ok, but no decisions had been made yet.

I am so sad... for Son2, and for our family.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Something is going on with K...

Son2 made his weekly trip home last night for Group.  He talked a lot about how frustrated he is with how things are going with K.  He is angry, and doesn't think he is being treated very well.

I'm not sure, but I suspect K wants her old life back.  She says she is trying to re-establish friendships that she has let flounder during the last couple of years she has been with Son2.  She misses her old friends, and  wants to spend time with them.  Yes, she has started partying again.  I'm not sure how much, but she is drinking.  So... she's been spending a lot of time with friends, and excluding Son2.

Son2 is a bit of a loner.  He needs to have his own friends.  Needs to make new friends.  He needs to have some kind of a life apart from her.  I suspect that's maybe what she is trying to pursue... but Son2 is having a hard time, and he's pretty upset with her.  I don't know if they can overcome this.

Yes, I know it is their problem to solve, it's really between them to figure this out.  But, I can't help but feel bad.  I adore her, I love her like the daughter I never had.  She is a wonderful person and has so many endearing qualities.  I just don't know what she is thinking, and I am so afraid she wants out.  It's personal for me.  Of course, there is that underlying fear of how will Son2 react if they break up.  You all know what I'm thinking...

Why did she do it?  Why did she even start to date him more than two years ago when she knew he was using heroin?  Why did she stay with him when he relapsed?  Why didn't she dump him when she had so many opportunities in the past?  Why now, when he has made so much good progress, does she well..., change?   Hmmmmmm.... this girl is a complex cookie.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

How I've changed...

Ron, your post was amazing, made me think a lot.

I haven't been sleeping well lately.  My body, and my mind are restless.  Feels like something is going to happen, with my dad, my grandma, Son2, or something...

I have to tell you about my mother, my role model, in order to explain how Son2's addiction has changed me.  Mom married my dad at 19, they started having kids right away.  She never worked except for 1 year as an accounting assistant after we were all out of the house.  Her job was, and still is, to take care of her family.  She always has been a worrier.  She has fussed over every drama, big and small, in my dad's family, our family, her kids, and now her grand kids.  I think over the years she has seen her role to worry about everyone in the family.  She also is the caretaker.  She feels responsible for the health of my dad, her mother, and of course herself.  My mother was my model for being a wife and mother.  I always felt if I could be half the woman she was, I would be successful.

When we found out about Son2's addiction, I didn't want to tell my parents.  They had already been through a lot with my niece and nephew.  Sometimes that was all Mom could talk about.  I did finally tell them after a couple of months.  I finally decided in their shoes, I would want to know.  Anyway, I tried to be "Mom", I reacted the only way I knew how... but it wasn't enough.

So, how have I changed?

I am not nearly as hard on other parents.  I was raised to believe kids are an extension of their parents.  I don't know how many times I heard my parents be very critical of the parents when their kids messed up.  They are probably doing that right now.

I can't fix this.  This has been a slow realization, but I am finally coming to terms with it.  Early on, I used to say I'm going to do everything I can, if it doesn't work it's not going to be for "my" lack of trying.  It's been hard to let go of the idea that Son2's recovery is my responsibility.  Now, I know I can't do it for him, but I can offer him support in his recovery.

Worrying doesn't help.  It certainly doesn't help my son, and it just makes me crazy, so why do it?  It's very difficult for me, hence the tossing and turning at night... but I'm trying.

Other things like it's not my fault, Addiction is a disease, I'm trying to embrace.  Logically these things make sense, but emotionally... I don't know.

I'm a stronger person than I was.  Maybe a bit more hardened, maybe a bit frustrated with parents who worry because their 23 year old just got a lip ring, or had a beer.

And sad... of course.  Sad that this has happened, that loss of a couple years he'll never get back. A changed person.