Wednesday, August 24, 2011

My f'd up roller coaster

Since Monday I have tried my best to let go. I am getting better. Turned him over to my higher power. Focus on my life. I am still riding the roller coaster but the peaks and valleys are not as high and low as they were last year when he attempted recovery.

Yesterday morning I got at text from him. It said - I'm at orientation for the long term rehab, I got in. Call me later, too much to text.

I immediately burst into tears of relief and went straight into my codependency role again. I text back - that's the best news ever..when do you go in? Do you have to wait for a bed? My mind was spinning out of control. Surely they wouldn't send a few day clean homeless heroin addict back to the street to call when a bed is available.

He text back - Whoa mom slow down! Not in yet, just accepted in. I'm eager too. I'll let you know when I know.

And yes - he spent the entire day there doing some orientation and he went back to the streets to wait. I still don't know when he will actually go. He told his sister it could be as soon as Monday next week. He has a case manager that is helping him navigate it all through some behavioral health center that he sought out himself. He was hoping to go to a shelter last night. He hadn't slept and wasn't able to get in a shelter the night before.

My head is still spinning. The mother in me wants to go get him and bring him here to protect him from the streets and the drug dealers until he can check into to the rehab. The recovery in me knows he has to figure it all out. I'm not going to get him. At least not yet.

Today I will wait and hope and do nothing. This is his to figure out. It is not good for me to think I should get involved - and not good for him either.

Monday, August 22, 2011

to be continued..

Yesterday afternoon my son called his little sister with the same resolve and determination he'd been expressing for the last few days. We have all been feeling so hopeful. He sounded really sick she said..this is a good thing as heroin withdrawal is horrible and being sick is the first miserable step to getting healthy.

Our family spent the afternoon gathering his personal mementos from our previous residence - something I had previously firmly decided I would not do, that it was his stuff and he needed to handle it. In light of the recent developments we all felt compelled to handle this for him.

We got home from another day of moving things (mostly his things), ate dinner and I decided I would call him at the detox and see how he is feeling, full of this renewed hope.

The call went like this - Me:  "Hi, may I speak to J please?" Voice on phone: "He left."

Shock, (why?) silence (speechless) Me: "huh?" Voice on phone: "He left"

Stunned I hung up. I called back again to find out what happened, my denial voice telling me it must be a mistake, he must be talking about the wrong person or something. No details - just "Yeah he left an hour ago. His time was up tomorrow anyway." My mind was reeling - his time was up tomorrow? what about that extension? The streets are no place for a 4 day clean heroin addict.

I called his phone - no answer. I text - you left? He called me back to explain in that familiar addict kind of way - there was someone saying her things were stolen so our whole block got kicked out. Huh? They told me you just left? blah blah blah addict speak blah a shelter, still going to intake for long term program tomorrow  blah blah, detox gave him certificate of completion so he's good to go for the other program, addict ramble, addict ramble.

He did not sound sick, he sounded...happy.

I hung up and pondered the day - how we all jumped into to help again with something we had decided we weren't going to do - moving his stuff that had been at my house for 2 years while he had little concern for any of it. At times I feel like I am like a little puppet on a string - how quickly I relapse into my codependent behaviour without even recognizing it for what it is.

I am disappointed in myself for allowing myself to go to such high levels of hope again. That I got back on that roller coaster of emotion of hope and disappointment. That I spent my afternoon doing for him what he should have been doing for himself when what I had wanted to do yesterday was drop a fishing pole off the dock in my backyard and relax after two straight weekends of moving.

I'm moving on and letting go again. Still harboring hope (denial?) that somehow this may all still work out. That they will miraculously take him in the program (if he used last night I doubt it), that maybe he was telling the truth (unlikely), that maybe he just wanted one last time before that long term commitment and today he will be ready.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

What a difference a year can make

One year of homelessness, running the streets, stealing for a living, being arrested constantly, getting the cops called on him daily when the daily hotel rent is due and having to relocate every day.

My son called yesterday us from detox. He is doing this. He is sick, he is tired and he is ready for recovery. He has been in for only two days and has arranged a van ride to a rehab for an intake appointment to a long term residential program on Monday. This would be a great time for his higher power to make that bed available!! Please God - a begging mom here : ) This is the first time he wants to go to rehab. He is at a detox ran by St. Vincent De Paul and is utilizing all the help they are providing.

He sounded humble. He sounded sick. He sounded confused but determined. He said he is too sick to figure it all out right now but the place he is in is helping him put a plan together.

We asked him how the food is there and he replied its a lot better then jail food.

He explained that one year ago, when he checked in this very same detox, everything seemed awful, dirty and it was a culture shock to be in a place like this. Today he is grateful for a bed, food and help after a year of hard living on the streets how he fits in there now. He laughed about scheduled smoke breaks and said last year he was annoyed that he couldn't smoke when he wanted, now he is glad he can smoke at all. Last year he argued he didn't want to be at any recovery center that is religious based - yesterday he sounded so grateful for their services.

He said he was so relieved that his girlfriend is going into inpatient, that they were so stuck together. If one of them wanted to stop using, and go for help, they felt they were abandoning the other - a cycle they couldn't figure out how to stop. He said they got very serious about making a change over the last weeks and knew they both had to do it. When she called her parents and he assured her he would get help too.

Unfortunately he found out this detox is only a 4 day detox and he thought it was 7 (I found that out myself when I looked it up online so I know he is being truthful) and he is already set to be released on Monday. His counselor or case manager is trying to get him an additional 4 day extension. He is due to be in court Friday and he is hoping to courts will let him go to rehab and that the residential program will have a spot for him.

I am asking myself if I should step in and "help" navigate all of this, or go to court with him etc, but I know this will work out best if HE figures it all out with the help of the people at the programs. I don't know what the next days will bring.

He did bring up the wedding and was so sorry that he probably will miss his little sisters wedding but he knows he has to get in the residential program - that is the way to a life of recovery. I quickly reminded him that his life and future is much more important and lets just not think about it today - one day at a time. His dad told him that him being in rehab is the best wedding gift he could give his sister.

I'm still keeping myself in today as best as I can, trying not to project and worry if it will all work out. Today I do have a renewed hope for my son and a situation that had felt so hopeless.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

He is IN, and my far fetched fantasy

I'm not sure my son ever actually went into detox after he called me Sunday evening - however he is IN detox at the moment. He called his sister and asked her to bring him ciggs to the detox, which she did last night. He is sick and making his attempt at getting clean. I know he has a rough road ahead if he stays and follows through. I cringe at the thought of him dope sick and know how hard it will be for him for the next few days. there is nothing nice about heroin withdrawal but if he really wants this he will make it through.

I am taking this one hour at a time, hopeful he makes it this time. I know he can walk out and go right back to the streets with one single desperate addict thought and just like that it can be over. A mothers heart never stops hoping and I do believe he can do this. And circumstances have changed with the separation from his girlfriend. I'm still staying out of it.

Girlfriend called me to tell me he is in two nights ago- she is waiting for her spot in a long term residential inpatient facility referred by the courts. She is safe at home with her parents, sounded determined to do this. She is dope sick but she says it's starting to get better. She will wait possibly a few days to a month for her spot - she really hopes its days and not a month but she sounded like she really wants this and wants recovery. She hopes they allow her a very long term residential program because she knows that what she needs. I love her and hope so much this all works out for her and she gets the help she needs.

Now here is my fantasy dream outcome - (I am trying not to want as bad as I do because I am so afraid I'm setting myself up for disappointment)  -That he makes it the full 10 days with a true desire for recovery - this would be 3 days from the wedding, Then I bring him home for the first time in 2 years, clean, sober, and have my son back for the wedding. That's as far as I'm letting my mind go and perhaps I shouldn't be going there at all but I can't stop it.

Please don't beat me up for my hopes and dreams - I know it may be unrealistic but it a dream I so desperately desire that I want to believe it is at least possible. This is the first time in a full year that anything is finally moving in the right direction.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


For the few of you wondering where I've been, my personal life has been filled with crazy major life changes over the last month. I have moved from my home and town of 15 years, my husband started a new job and I have been offered a new job. In addition, my daughter is getting married in two short weeks so I have tried to keep her wedding at the center of my thoughts and attention regardless of everything else going on. This has all kept me very distracted from what is happening with my addicted son. Anytime I am dealing with my own life and not obsessed with his is a good thing for me.

However there has been some waters being stirred with my son and his addicted girlfriend. Sunday evening my son called me from outside of a detox. I have waited over a year for this phone call. He informed me that he is done, can't do it anymore etc etc. He informed me he was checking in. He and girlfriend agreed it was time. She called her parents, who have been totally absent from her life, and they picked her up from the city. She has options through the court and they are trying to get her to inpatient treatment. The courts referred her yesterday and she has an intake appointment Friday. Pray for her that she will be getting the help she so desperately needs. The simple fact that she has now been removed from their situation and will be in rehab is huge! I know that together they are a lethal toxic combination of addiction and codependency. Also this is the first time detox was initiated by him - not us urging him, directing him and driving him there.

When he called, I wanted to cry this huge sobbing relief - this is it, it's over, I'm going to have my son back. I know through my recovery to stay in the moment. I was so afraid to hope to much - he never has made it past a few days in detox - they are typically 7-10 days and his pattern has been to walk out after 2-3. Because it has been a full year since his last attempt, and the girlfriend is out of the picture I hoped this time he would make it. Monday evening he called again and started rambling that he never got in last night but he checked in at 6am Monday morning. I could tell he was high and not sick at all but I figured he probably used heroin up until the moment he checked in. Red flags were flying everywhere in my mind. I only have a minute because I'm not supposed to have this phone. (breaking the rules the first day?) He wants to try to go to a different detox in the county where I live because he thinks the treatment options are better. (uh oh - the treatment options are abundant in the city he is in -not so much out here - and does this mean he is trying to rope me in somehow?? Please don't ask to stay with me while you wait for a bed!!)

My personal recovery around his addiction also has taught me this is his problem - he needs to figure it out. I can't dictate where he goes or what he does. I can only keep my boundaries in tact so I don't get sucked into addiction chaos and manipulation. So I listened to the addiction ramble of the addicted messed up mind of my son, and just said things like - oh, ok, good luck, I love you, keep me posted. I didn't tell him what to do, I didn't offer to do anything. I am letting him figure it out - if he really wants this he will and him wanting it is the only way it is going to happen anyway. I wanted to say call me in 7 days when the drugs are out of your body and your mind is clearer but I didn't. If he needs helps finding a bed at long term treatment at that point I will be here to help him if he asks for my help but I am not volunteering it and he isn't asking - yet.

The next day I began to have some very cautious and guarded hope - is he really doing this? Is there a chance he will make it and come out clean and begin a new life of recovery? I wonder if he could get a one day pass from rehab and make it to the wedding? Will I get to re-unite with the son I know is in there that I have been grieving for the last 2 years?

.... by 3pm my daughter saw him posting things on Facebook. Instantly we knew he was already out of detox..ugh. Did he even ever check in? She messaged him and asked him why is he on Facebook when he was just in detox. He informed her he had been kicked out because of having the phone. He is supposedly now waiting for a bed to open at the one in my county. He says went to a counseling resource center yesterday and they may be providing a bed while he waits for a detox bed to open in the other county. I am wondering if he is waiting for his girlfriend to be settled in for treatment before he gets serious himself. Addicts are so hard to figure out.

Time will tell...keep him in your thoughts that he navigates he way to treatment..and that I stay sane and out of day at a time, one hour at a time. Thanks for all of your support..prayers for all of our addicted children.