Wednesday, May 16, 2018


As usual, I write when I'm in a bad mood.  I am just tired of taking care of everyone else.  I am taking care of me too, but so many people impact my life and I don't know how to change it.

I think I may have to take care of my son for the rest of his life.  He's not normal.  He may never be.  Peter says he understands, but it would have a great impact on our relationship and I really don't want that to happen.

Stress.  I need to work on lessening it.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Sad Mother's Day

I'm sad.  Not because of my mom, or Anthony, because of Keven.  The other day my credit cards went missing.  I found the little pouch I carry them in in his room.  But - the four important ones were missing.  He swore up and down for days that he did not take them.  Of course I knew, and he knew, he was lying.  Its just what he does.  He lies.  He steals and he lies. 

Yesterday I had $10 in my wallet.  Its gone.  The only reason I keep any cash on me is so I can give it to him when he needs it.

I knew he had a bunch of our stuff locked in the trunk of his car so I spent my Mother's Day morning going through it and putting most things back where they belong.  Hidden in a little slot in a watch box were my credit cards - the ones he didn't steal, except one was still missing.  Also found my sister's checkbook.
This doesn't show all the plates (some gold plated), etc. that I had already put away.

I haven't even seen him yet today.  I know he hates himself for the things he does, but he can't seem to stop doing them.  I know I've been saying this for years, but the time is come for me to turn my back on him and let him figure out life on his own.  I may call his parole officer tomorrow to ask if they have a plan and inform them that he won't be living here much longer.

I'm not even mad.  I'm just plain sad.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Friday, April 20, 2018

I'll Take That As A Compliment

Here's what I wrote on FB today:

"Here's one definition of "Acceptance", "willingness to tolerate a difficult or unpleasant situation". Acceptance has the frame of mind that keeps me sane. I've been dealing with my son's illness for over 10 years now, and have tried fixing, avoiding, denying, acting like a crazy woman, isolating and hiding from life, etc. etc. Nothing has helped him, or me. So a few years ago realized that I had a shift in my thinking and had accepted the situation. I may lose him. He may never be well. There is nothing more I can do, I've done my part. Now I just love him and hope that he can learn to love himself, that he can find the right help. "The System" has caused him so much more harm than good and they are at it again trying to force him into his 14th rehab. If rehab worked, don't you think it would have by now? I wise man I know, Mark, says that it doesn't happen until you come to believe in a Higher Power and work the Steps. Another wise person I know things that some people need to stay on Suboxone/Methadone long term to survive. For whatever asinine reason rehabs are 12 Step based and are against Medically Assisted Treatment (Suboxone/Methadone). What if a person needs BOTH? I believe that's what my son needs. I am beyond frustrated with the parole dept. Yet, acceptance has to be daily choice or I will not be able to get out of bed in the mornings. Thanks for listening."

What I didn't say is how hard it is to be in that mindset.  It doesn't come easy.  Its like letting go of control and being ready for the outcome, which in some cases would be death.  Last night he talked about suicide (again) but every time he doesn't do it reminds me that there may be a time that he will.

Anyhow, the title of this post.  Yesterday Keven said to me "a bunch of my friends have asked me over the years if you were an addict".  I asked why (but I sort of knew) and he said "because you know so much about it and understand it from our perspective".  That really touched me.  I did my homework, not just by reading but by getting to know (and love in some cases) quite a few addicts over the last ten plus years.  I care, I can't help it.  I don't judge others that think the only answer is kicking their kid out and moving on, that's called self preservation and I've done that too.  But I do think it helps both the loved one and the addict if you really GET IT.  If you get why they keep using, if you understand what it does for them, how it controls them, how they are willing to take serious risks (physically, relationally and legally) to get it, and how it feels to be dope sick...which is horrendous to put it lightly.

So, I feel complimented by that.  I have a ton of compassion for people that are in the same "boat" as Keven.

I hate that I only have TWO pics of Keven and Anthony together.  I have to use the same ones over and over.  Look at those SMILES.  They were both not using that Thanksgiving.  A great day.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Friday, October 27, 2017

I'm Getting Married for the first time at age 58!

For once I have some great news to share here.  I know not a lot of people read here these days, and I already shared on FB, but wanted to share my joy.

Peter and I met because both of our children are heroin addicts.  A mutual friend introduced us (over the phone - he lives 7 hours north of me) because she thought it would help him to have someone to talk to about his daughter.  We hit it off.

After 3 months we met in person and from there things just blossomed.  On August 15th, as we were walking on the beach, he found a rock for me to sit on then dropped to one knee and proposed.  It wasn't my first proposal but it was the only one that I felt 100% sure about!

We celebrated one year of knowing each other on October 11.  We plan to marry in May/June 2018 and he will move here for a year then we will move out of state after that.

I've never been happier and have never known true love until now!  Sadly, we still have our children to deal with and that is the one dark cloud hanging over with, but we will make it work.

Right after he asked me he looked down and found a heart shaped rock!  This is extra significant because we find heart-shaped rocks for each other all the time.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Lost Faith, Losing Hope

I don't cry much anymore, I ran out of tears after Anthony died. But yesterday I couldn't seem to get through an hour without at least one cry. I'm very lucky to have Peter, he's very understanding and supportive, but like all men - he hates to see (hear) his woman cry.

I cried because I don't think the Keven I once knew still exists. He's a shell of who he once was. He lives in his head - which is a dark and scary place. He uses Klonopin (prescribed) and/or heroin to feel normal for as long as the high lasts, then he plummets back to the depths of his despair in the form of self-hatred, depression, fear and debilitating anxiety.

He was bad off before he went to prison, and ten times worse than that when he came home. He was made to do things in there that he doesn't want to talk about (and this kid tells me everything - he always has since a child - I know things I wish I didn't know but it helps him to talk to me so I listen).

Is another rehab the answer? He's been to at least ten (not counting detoxes and sober livings, hospital stays and jail/prison time).

I am enabling him to keep using by letting him stay here with a roof over his head, all his needs met, and no consequences for his drug use (other than what he inflicts upon himself).

In the past I've found him places to live (sober living, hotels, an apartment in another county). A few times I had him arrested. A few times I just kicked him to curb with all his stuff packed in trash bags. Once I even stopped my car on the way to a detox (in Garden Grove) and kicked him out right then and there because he said "I'm not sure I want to do this" and pushed me over the edge.

I've sold his stuff to pay for his drug debts. I've paid to get back items he pawned. I've depleted my savings more than once. I wracked up my credit cards more than once. I am once again broke and in debt.

He's been to psychiatrists (mostly that give him whatever he wants and don't bother to try and diagnose him) and therapists and tried different modalities of treatment.

He's seen friends die, one died in bed next to him and he woke up to find her. He's almost died three times (officially) and who knows how many times I don't know about. He's had sepsis, MRSA, sever abscesses. He had a positive HIV test and refused to be treated. I lived thinking he was dying for two years until he was retested and it was negative. He has Hep C. 

So here we are 10 years in as of this month.  I will never forget the night he woke me around 2 am.  He and his girlfriend at the time (who is now a nurse, we are still in touch) sat on my bed and told me he'd been using heroin but was going to stop because if not, she would leave him.  He was 17, she was 16.  She hung around for several more months and was with him when he attempted suicide (cry for help) and I'd take her to the mental hospital to visit him.  She finally gave up on him as did all future girlfriends, and guy friends.

I'll never give up on him.  But I don't have much hope left.  I just can't seem to muster it.  I lost my faith in "God" a long time ago after being a faithful and committed Christian for about 18 years.  But that's another story for another time.

I desperately tried to save Anthony, but couldn't.  I've been desperately trying to save Keven - will I be able to?  No.  I can't, it doesn't work like that.  Somewhere deep inside himself he has to find the will to live and to stop using, but can he?  I don't think he can.  I think I may lose him one way or another.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Prison Changed My Son

Keven has been out for four months.  He is not the same person who was arrested that awful day in June 2015.  He's bitter, angry, depressed and it kills me to say this - but says he's a National Socialist.  His ideology is so warped.  This is coming from a person who grew up being so loving and open toward everyone, kind, thoughtful, generous, funny, smart.  Now he's a shell of that person and has accomplished nothing since coming home except relapsing and hiding in the house because he's so paranoid and full of anxiety.

Thanks a lot California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation - you really need to remove that "R" word from your title, or change it to "Ruining".

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Staying Positive While Surrounded by Negativity

Life has its ups and downs but lately I refuse to say things like "Life is hard" or "I hate my job" or "I'm broke".  I'm staying positive most of the time and catching myself when I'm not.

With that said, I need to get some stuff out.

I noticed that several FB friends have left FB because of the negativity related to the Presidential Election and the Pres. Elect.  And then there are all the other things on there that are sad - I am totally guilty of sharing articles about addiction and have decided to be very picky about which ones I share because frankly - does anyone read them anyhow?  I don't want to give up FB - NO WAY.  I've got several cute babies (and one on the way) that make my day on a daily basis, plus grandkids and pets of friends.  I LIKE BABY, CAT AND DOG POSTS ~ I'm one of those people, LOL (did you know LOL is out and hahaha is in, only old folks use LOL now, so I've been told).

Anyhow I scroll on by the Trump Bashers and Hilary Haters (I did not vote Trump, just for the record) and I scroll by things that won't have any positive affect in my life.  But I CARE about my FB friends and hope they keep writing.

I know a lot of people still blog.  I simply don't have the time to read blog posts like I used to.  I had a job in 2012 where that's all I did all day!  I opened the mail, answered the phone and blogged!  Loved it!  But didn't love the low pay.

So here is my sad stuff of late:

1.  Anthony's grandma, who is one of my closest friends, Dottie, has cancer.  Its ab aggressive form and there are complications.  She has a heart condition so that can't risk the type of surgery that would probably save her life.  She's kind of like a surrogate mom to me and I'm that for her as a daughter.  I love her so much, we've been through so much together.  I think if she were to die her husband Nick would not be long behind her.

2.  In the last five months 2 people I know (they go to a weekly group I go to) have both lost their ONLY CHILD to heroin OD.  Each son had long term sobriety, one was working in recovery, the other had just gotten out of a long jail term.  One was just this week and next week we will see this precious mom at our group.  I am grateful Keven is still alive and doing well.

3.  My nature is to care, to be compassionate, to nurture and encourage and seek solutions and look for answers.  Working at a drug rehab hasn't changed that, but it makes me sad/mad that so many of the addicts that work in my office have so little patience or empathy toward our clients.  I hear shit they say and then think "that kid's parents are paying big bucks to send their kid here...if they only knew".    I've noticed that a lot of alcoholics think they are superior to drug addicts.  And I've noticed that its all about the money.  I get that, I really do, its a business and has to be run like one, but they are so closed minded to any new research findings on different approaches to recovery.  Its 12 Steps and Tough Love all the way because that's how they all did it.  Its fantastic that it worked for them - but how many of their peers ended up dead because that approach did NOT work?  We all know you can't love someone into recovery, but there has to be a balance (IMO).

4.  There is no four.  I think I'm done.

On a happy note - after being single for my entire life because I never met "The Right Guy" I may have met him.  I'll keep you posted, its way too new to know for sure but it feels like nothing either of us have experienced before and have always wanted.

My biggest concern in life is Keven finding a J O B.  Someone out there needs to give him a chance, but the facts are he has things going against him, some are not his fault, some are.  Prison changed him.  The sweetness that hid beneath his surface is gone.  There's an angry bitterness in its place along with more paranoia and anxiety than he had before he went in.  He's not like some meanie - he's helfpul around the house, he loves playing with his little cousin (age 2) when we see her, he babies all our pets...but he's different.  Last night we watched a movie together and I saw him smile and heard him laugh a few times, it melted my heart...and now I have a tear in my eye thinking of it.  Those moments shouldn't be so rare that they cause me tremendous joy.  But they are.

Thanks to whoever reads this.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara