Tuesday, February 28, 2012

He made it to rehab yesterday..an emotionally exhausting day

My son entered the 6 month residential rehab yesterday. Yeah. Whew. I drove him. Then I spent the day crying. I don't even know why.

I invited him home Sunday and decided to let him stay the night to take him to check in in the morning, he was grateful. I cooked a nice meal and our immediate family was there to support him. His clean and sober girlfriend joined us as well and I let her stay the night. It all went very well. He was somber. It wasn't some joyous celebration. Just some close time together to let my son know he is loved and supported when it comes to recovery.

His clothes were so dirty and yet he didn't wash them - he just didn't care. As if the filth would remind him of his nightmare as he entered rehab. His dad had me give him a few pairs of his clean socks to take and I gave him a few packs of smokes. He was appreciative. His hand was swollen from an injection site gone wrong. He looked bad. He smelled really bad. Even after a shower the smell wouldn't go away. I drove him to the city with the windows down for 2 hours. I reminded him he promised to give consent for me to get information this time and again how hard it was for me last time went he went missing. He agreed again and assured me he would. He also assured me he wasn't leaving this time. We said little on the way. I mentioned his 29th Birthday would be next week before his 14 day no contact period is up and I guess I wouldn't get to call him on his bday. He responded so down that - yeap 29 years old and look where he is. Heroin has him so beaten down.

I walked him in, hugged him goodbye and he reassured me again he would be calling me in 14 days when he has earned his phone privileges and he is not leaving, he is ready. I choked out the words - I never stopped believing in you. I got in my car and drove away and that is when the tears started.

I cried for the relief I wanted so bad to feel - yet wouldn't let myself feel it completely.

I cried for the hope I want to feel - yet I'm so afraid to hope.

I cried for how bad he smelled, how bad he looks. I cried for the loss of the son I had imagined he'd grow up to be. I cried for the hope that maybe he could still be that son.

All day images were flashing through my mind endlessly..back and forth. The little boy on the skateboard. The junkie on the street. Back and forth. The little boy in the little league uniform. The long stringy hair. The little boy with the Lego cities, the swollen hand.

It's been a long time since I have had a day like that. I came home from work and lay down on my bed exhausted and cried some more. I don't think I'm done yet. I can still feel the choking of the tears as if the past 24 hours has created some sort of post traumatic stress disorder.

Maybe it was time I let the tears come. And today I think I will allow myself to hope a little. After all - my son has entered rehab yesterday and that is an amazing thing to be hopeful for. And maybe there is a chance he will make it this time...

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Hope without insanity

I'm not sure it's possible for me but I'm going to give it my best shot!

The long term (6 months) residential rehab bed came through!
(Thank you God and all my readers for your prayers).

His date is Monday..4 days to go.

He is going to come out Sunday to hang with us, BBQ and visit before he goes in. I invited his clean and sober girlfriend over to visit as well. She is doing great, at home with her parents, going to meetings and hoping my son finds his way while not being with him.

I am wrestling with keeping him Sunday night and driving him there Monday morning..I may need to do it to keep myself sane. I feel a renewed hope but don't want to make myself crazy EXPECTING him to actually do this. Praying it is really time. Praying he is really ready. Trying not to get caught on that roller coaster of hope and tragic disappointment.

His past record for detoxes and his one attempt at this same rehab is only 4 short days. I am hopeful he makes it this time.

Monday, February 20, 2012

We visited him..

We stopped in the city over the weekend and arranged to see my son. He called me in the morning very down, lonely, hungry, tired. He tried to get in the detox and they wouldn't accept him as a walk in. He needs to go through his case manager and the community center where he gets his referrals is out until Tuesday.

He is believing he will be admitted on Tuesday and hanging on day by day. He seems sure they will open the long term bed for him since his situation is pretty dire at this point. He is staying off heroin and dosing on methadone daily. He is trying to avoid the areas of the city that are full of his drug buddies. He says no matter how hungry he gets he won't allow himself to steal even a bag of chips because he is so afraid of getting arrested and getting another case.

He looked...okay...not as bad as I expected.  Skinny, tired and a bit dirty. I asked him how he showers and he said he doesn't but he tries to keep washed up in public bathrooms to the best of his ability.

He asked if we could get burgers and he ate a lot..I added a milkshake and fries for him and he ate every bite.

I got up the courage to ask him something that has been weighing on me for sometime. That when he gets in to the rehab if he would please sign a consent for them to provide me information. I explained that it was incredibly difficult last time because to protect his privacy, they wouldn't even tell me he was there or that he left. It spiraled me into a 2 month search that I thought he was dead.

He agreed he would and seemed to understand it was hard for me but I don't think he really has any concept of how hard it was.

Prayers for tomorrow that a miracle happens and that bed opens. Leaving him there on the street is again one of the hardest things I had to do but I know in my heart it is the right thing to do. The constant battle of head and heart is one a parent of an addict learns to live with over time. At least I can do what I know is right now even when it tears at my heart.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Holding strong

I have spoke to my son a few times..he got a phone charger, I reloaded the phone. No explanation was offered in regards to super bowl Sunday other then he had a really bad day.

He had orientation at the long term residential rehab yesterday, he continues to wait on the bed to open. He is continuing on the methadone and says it is going well. Dosing is the only thing he has to look forward to each day. He continues to make his needed court appearances and case manager appointments. The court is still not mandating the residential treatment due to him beginning the methadone outpatient. He says he wants residential treatment for himself because he knows he needs it.

My daughter bought him lunch twice this week already. He is not staying in shelters - he says they are worse then the street. He is a mess. He is dirty. He smells bad. He rides trains and buses around and sleeps on them.

I will not bring him home to wait for the bed this time.

It is a lingering regret that I brought him home last time to wait although at the time it seemed like the right thing to do. After the month long wait last time he stayed only 4 short days. I kept asking myself if because he was home waiting, he was fed, clean, had a comfortable bed to sleep in that it contributed to his short term memory loss of how bad it is out there.

I won't do it again..but I have to keep reinforcing the idea in my mind all day because the mom in me wants to throw him in the shower and give him a home cooked meal and a bed. He needs to want it bad this time. And being dirty, hungry, tired all will contribute to his desire to change his life. They are the consequences of the life he is living and he has to want for it for it to change and for recovery to stick more then his 4 day record.

Monday, February 6, 2012

No idea what went wrong..

My son called me at 2pm from a borrowed phone and said he was getting on the train to head out our way in 20 minutes. He had been in the midst of another crisis - fallen asleep on a bus, woke up and his bag with all his stuff was gone. His phone was dead and his charger and wallet was in his bag. He didn't want to make a bad day worse by not coming out. He asked if the girlfriend could come too that her parents would bring her over and I said sure. He said he would borrow a phone when he arrived at the station so I could come and pay the train fare at the gate.

Backtracking, my daughter had also invited to her house for Superbowl as her in-laws were coming also. But once I told her I had invited her brother over she did not want to include him in the invitation. So we decided we would stay home so I could spend the afternoon with my son, and they would have their own gathering.

I calculated the time it would have took my son to arrive and decided to head to the station to wait for him. Big mistake #1. I waited until 5pm as one train after another arrived from the city and he was never on any of them. He should have been there by 3:30. I kept thinking he would be on the next one as them came in 20 minute increments.

Big mistake #2 - I should have went to my daughters house to enjoy the game and gathering. Now the game is over half done, and instead of enjoying a nice day I have wasted it in sitting at a train station feeling disappointment after disappointment when each train arrived and he never appeared.

I have no idea what happened to him. More then likely he is just so incapable of putting one foot in front of the other. He also has a knack for getting arrested - a lot - these days. Perhaps he got picked up on his way. He never called and I am just left wondering.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Phone is back and my tearful weak moment

He has the phone back, although I have no idea about how it really doesn't matter. Yesterday I spoke with him and my heart broke. It was one of those moments many parents of addicts have felt..

He has been on methadone for about a week or two (this is a first for him and I support it completely - finally!) and I believe he is not using heroin at the moment but has no recovery yet and I believe he continues to use every other drug on the planet. He is waiting for a bed again in a long term residential facility while remaining homeless. His girlfriend has remained home with her parents so he is alone.

His texts have hinted to the loneliness and isolation he feels. He told me how glad he is to have the phone as it is his connection to us and how much that means to him. He keeps telling me how much he misses us. How much he loves us. How much he misses his girlfriend. How hard it is to be alone now. Although I am very aware of potential addict manipulation, however this felt very raw and very real.

I felt my heart tearing to shreds - that horrid heart breaking feeling addiction has inflicted on this mom that only other moms or dads would understand.

..I wanted so bad to invite him over but refrained so I could speak to my hubby first - something very important for keeping our family sane in the insanity. I hung up the phone and literally dumped it on my hubby who was watching TV and totally unprepared for me to burst in the room with my overwhelming need to see my son..I want to invite him to come over for the Superbowl, I miss him, I can't take it, he is alone and isolated and lonely - even if it is self inflicted it still hurt to hear the pain in his voice. I cried and sobbed for a long time,  the first time in a long time. I felt my heart breaking, I want to hold him, hug him. I want to feed him a homemade meal, enjoy some closeness and send him back to the city. I could feel my husbands heart breaking for me. Hubby reluctantly agreed if I want to invite him over for the day it's okay but I know it was for his love for me that he agreed. I told him I would honor not bringing him here and I could arrange to just go see him in the city. I meant it. I have learned we all are in different places at different times with this and I try so hard to honor my where my other family members are at any given moment. He assured me it is alright to invite him if I want to.

I promptly called and text to invite him. He called me hours later to tell me he would love to come today. Now I have put myself in the situation of worry of how this will all go today, if he will make it over at all. I assured my husband this isn't about letting him stay while waiting for that bed as we all know how that turned out last time. I just want a day, an afternoon, a hug. My heart is slightly comforted as it aches for my son. And hopefully today it will be just a little less broken.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

My electronic leash broken again

The one little thing I've allowed myself to do is give my son a phone. It's really way more for me then him. After he was missing for almost two months, I decided the silence was too much to handle so I got him a $9 "go phone". I figured I could decide each time his balance was low if I wanted to reload in two week increments. I have lost count of how many phones between myself and his sister we have given him over the last few years but my best guess would be around 6 or 7.

Yesterday morning I left him a voice mail - love you, thinking of you. Call me. About 5 mins later a girl called me from his phone. She had met him the night before and borrowed his phone and forgot to give it back. She wanted to return it but had no idea how to get in touch with him. Well that makes two of us since you are calling me from the only way I had to reach him. We agreed she would return it to the pizza place they met in the night before. My daughter emailed him to let him know it is there but his getting on a computer can possibly not happen for weeks as his only way is at the library or the Apple store. Who know if and when he will get the email and if the phone will be there.

I'm thinking that this is yet another phone gone and now I am again left with no way to contact him.