Hello Friends! I know I’ve been absent for so long. I am making an effort to return here regularly. I’ve mentioned before that I’ve stayed away from here because I realized that “Mother of Addict” had become too much of my identity.
Now I’m back because I know that “Mother of Addict” is not my identity. It describes one of the many roles I play in life – but it does not define me. I realize that while I don’t have control over many things in my life (or, even more so, in my children’s lives), I can have control over my own perspective about who I am.
One new identity I’ve added recently is Certified Christian Life Coach. Part of the reason I haven’t been here is that I’ve been building a new blog. I hope you’ll visit me there. My coaching blog (and my coaching business) is called Growing Your Beautiful Life. And we’ve just begun a journal project there. It runs for 10 weeks – and just started yesterday. So if any of you are interested in using my journaling prompts to explore who you are and where you’re going in this new year, please feel free to check out the blog and the project and jump in. You can formally register here (for a more personalized approach), or you can just use the journal prompts I’m posting each day. There’s no charge to register – it’s my gift to you!
In the meantime, I’m still OneMomTalking and continuing the journey. Know that I pray for you all (collectively and often individually), and send love across the cyber-miles.
Last week I was feeling so happy and filled with gratitude that my boys had birthdays and are doing well. How is it that a week later, I’m feeling despondent? I’m filled with grief. Stress. Worry. I don’t expect it to last. But at this moment, as I’m writing, I’m deep in it. I miss my boys so much. In a way, I still feel like I’ve lost them.
They are at the age when it’s right for young men to move on from their parents and make their own lives. That’s not quite how it happened though, is it? They didn’t graduate high school and go to college and get a job out of town. I want to go back two years and erase it all and re-write the script and replay it the way it was supposed to be.
I feel selfish even writing this. There are parents out there who’s children are on the street or in hospitals or who have died. My boys are in recovery and they send me birthday cards, give me a call now and then.
I miss them. I miss them so much. And I miss being able to hug my daughter who is right here in this house with me but stopped letting me hug her after the whole addiction mess played out. So the boys are now 20 and 22, and my daughter went to prom last night and will graduate high school in a couple of months and won’t let me hug her. And here I am.
I guess I can be sad and grieving and grateful and blessed all at the same time. That’s it then. That’s what I am right now – all of those things. Figuring out how to be “One Mom Talking” all on my own. But, oh yes, you all are here. Thanks for that. Thanks for listening. God bless you.
I only have a few minutes, but I did want to write about this: I had a knock-down, drag-’em-out, screamfest with my daughter two nights ago. I mean a cussing, yelling, door slamming, and crying kind of thing.
Finally, she opened up a bit. It hurt, but it was healthy. She told me, point blank, how I dropped the parenting-ball during the years when my boys were starting to party. She said that me and her dad both turned a blind eye to what was happening in our own homes – and in doing so, we failed her as parents. And we failed the boys too. She said that she raised herself during the years when it was worse. And then she said, “So check it out, Mom — this is me leaving the nest!!”
In the end though – like the story of grief I posted a couple of days ago – when it was all said and heard and understood – things were a little better. She gave me a real hug for the first time in a year. And we both agreed that if this type of interaction is necessary now and then for us to communicate honestly with each other about hard things, then it is. And we’ll get through it.
I’m sad for her, and for me, and for us. We’ve all lost a lot. And the truth is, she is right about what she’s saying. But she also has things to learn … about forgiveness, and the choice of love, and how families can heal. So we keep on walking.
One Mom Talking – signing off for today. Make it a good one!
My daughter is still struggling with our move. When we lived in Colorado, she had reasons why she wanted to leave that place and those circumstance. Now that we are in South Carolina, she has reasons why she believes Colorado was better, or why South Carolina is not the best place, or whatever. You get the idea.
I figure it’s time for her to learn something we all learn at some point or another: “Wherever you go, there you are.” Perhaps addicts learn this more clearly than the rest of us. Whether in our homes, motel rooms, or on the streets, they still are who they are. And sometimes the only way for them to learn that is for us to take that hard stand and draw those firm boundaries.
One blog friend has had to do this recently. It’s painful to read the stories from those who are just getting to that point with their addicts. I’m grateful to be past that right now; and yet clearly aware that I might end up there again someday. Relapse is the unforgiven friend you hope never shows up on caller i.d.
One of my favorite poets, Pablo Neruda, says it this way: “Someday, somewhere – anywhere, unfailingly, you’ll find yourself, and that, and only that, can be the happiest or bitterest hour of your life.” Dr. Wayne Dyer reminds us: “Heaven on Earth is a choice you must make, not a place we must find.”
It’s all about the journey. Wherever you go, there you are. My daughter will learn in her own time; as we all do. So be the blessing you want to see in the world. I love you all – God bless!
Posted in Addict Child, Addiction, addiction daughter, Healing, Heroin, Parent of addict, Parenting, Recovering Child, Siblings, Spiritual Growth, The Ongoing Story
I’m making a new commitment to this blog for 2011. It’s not a resolution exactly. Let’s call it a “Plan of Good Intention.” Here ‘s what you can expect from One Mom Talking over the coming months:
- Signs and Symptoms of heroin (and other drug) use by young people
- A parent’s plan of action (what to do once you know)
- Keeping siblings safe
- Hope for healing: A Spiritual Perspective
- Rehab options (private and public)
- Addiction and the Department of Corrections
- Speaking Engagements (I might develop a presentation to take to schools and parent groups)
- Getting us together (reponses to my initial survey showed that parents of addicts yearn for a chance to meet each other in an organized setting)
This year, you will be able to easily share your favorite OMT posts on facebook, twitter or by email (buttons should be easily visible with each post). One Mom Talking will be on facebook soon as well. Reaching in and reaching out. God bless!
I bring my daughter to a counselor awhile back, and we all talk together, and the counselor says, “It sounds like she’s exhibiting normal teen behavior. She just wants to be treated like a normal teen.” I say, “Her two older siblings both exhibited what I thought was ‘normal teen behavior’ — they both tried heroin and one is an addict. How am I supposed to have a clue about what is ‘normal’?” The counselor paused. She looked at me and nodded.
Technology alone has made my kids’ teen years very different from mine. But let’s think about it. Some level of isolation is normal for a teen. Moodiness, wanting to sleep late, wanting a lot of time with friends, becoming more private, less social with family … all “normal teen behavior.”
Honestly, at some point I knew my boys’ behaviors had breached the “normal” boundary. But I didn’t know when it happened. It snuck up on me. I don’t want that to happen with my daughter.
I’m moving her across the country to be near my family. Four weeks from now we hit the road. She wants this. She cried out for this. Her dad is furious. He says I’m ending his relationship with her. I said he had fifteen years to create a relationship with her. I’m trying to give her a couple of “normal teenage years” before it’s too late. It’s the best choice I see right now. And that’s all I can do — make the best choice that I see right now.