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Saturday, August 30, 2014

Insanity - Fear

Well we are doing the same thing over and over and over.  Out of sober living, into detox, back into sober living and outpatient.  I have very little faith in his desire to stay clean, I just don't see it in his eyes, it looks to me like he's given up.

For my personal sanity I have to have him out of my house.

You know how it is when people are always telling you what a great kid you have?  From the time he was little all the way up to yesterday people have told me Keven is "a sweetheart", a great kid, a this and a that, that he was special.  Well, he is very special, as all our children are, but he doesn't believe it.

Whatever pain and hurt he is avoiding has to be dealt with.  This is an issue of the mind, soul and body - I want him to tackle those demons and be able to move forward without running to drugs.  Yes, part of it is that he just loves to get high - but he's told me he knows all of his problems stem from using.  ALL of them (at least all the ones that matter).

Wish I felt something other than fear, but for today, that's all I got.



Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Two Schools of Thought

This blog post was inspired by a comment left by a blog reader that I care about and admire. What she shares in the comment is one school of thought, basically that addicts use because they love their DOC and stop using when they reach a point that using is not longer working and they are sick and tired of it enough to start working on getting their lives back.

The other school of thought (which has aslo been shared to me recently by someone I admire who has 20 years in the “business” of recovery) is that there is an underlying issue to be addressed before the addict can recover or they will keep going back to the drugs again and again to numb themselves from their _____________ (depression, bipolar, anxiety, etc.). She believes that in order for this type of person to stop using they need counseling, medication or both.

So who is right? Is there a right?

Twelve Step Programs say recovery starts when we have a spiritual awakening and follow the steps. Does that fall into category one or two?

Here is what my blog friend wrote, and I admit I have also heard something very similar from addicts so I have to lean toward this answer, even though I think my son needs additional help.

Its all so confusing. I’ve pretty much stopped trying to figure it out and am just working on myself, but I am still curious to hear other thoughts on this.

Comment left here:

My son would tell you (now that he has gotten honest with himself) that he used drugs because he LOVED drugs, LOVED getting, being, staying high and because he could. It was just what he did. There was no underlying reason...no depression, anxiety or whatnot. His anxiety came form worrying about his next fix. His depression came when his eyes snapped open each morning and he realized he hadn't managed to kill himself overnight. The pain was in the cycle. Using always sounded like the right decision. Staying high became a survival instinct. Breaking the cycle happened when he decided that life outside the cycle was worth working towards. Recovery happened when he met God.


Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Chronic Relapser

Some people say "they won't stop using until they are ready".  But what if they are never ready?  What defines "ready"? Is "ready" the same for everyone?

Today someone who cares about my son took time out of her very busy day to meet with us.  When Keven was in Recovery Court she was our attorney, and also the attorney of a very special friend of ours who recently lost his battle with addiction.

She wanted to look Keven in the eye and tell him that she believed in him, that he could do it.  And that by doing it he would be honoring his friend's memory.
She asked him one simple question, "why do you use"?  When he said he honestly didn't know, she said "the question is simple, the answer is very complex".  She shared with us that very few addicts have an answer right away but when they think about it, most of them come up with the same things:  they are medicating themselves from some type of emotional pain or mental health issue like depression and anxiety (the top two).  She pleaded with Keven to get help by seeing a therapist and a medical doctor that could put him on the correct medication.  (he HATES both these things, he says he doesn't like the side effects of the meds - what a joke right?  What about the side affects of his addiction?  Like, death, for example).

She asked if she could talk to him alone and after about 20 minutes she came out and told me that Keven was going to detox from her office!  She had discussed it with him, arranged for it and had someone she trusted that works with her often, on his way to drive Keven up to LA.

Soon after that I went back in the room and the three of us talked and then I left.  I don't even know the name of the place he is, all I know is that THIS TIME there is a much better chance at getting to the real issues that underlie his constant relapsing.

I can only hope so.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Friday, August 8, 2014

Time to Work on My Addiction

Keven is back in sober living.  Will he stay?  No one knows, I'm sure he doesn't even know.  But for today that's where he is.  The only thing I know for sure is that he will not, under any circumstances, be moving back into this house for a very long time, if ever.

So during the last 7 years I have gained about 50 lbs.  I am a very healthy eater, a typical day for me is a kale/blueberry shake for breakfast, some type of salad for lunch, and stir fried or steamed veggies for dinner. But then there's the ice cream, chocolate and other sugar/fat laden goodies I stuff myself with mindlessly because they are my DOC.

I am going to quit sugar cold turkey as of today.  If you read about sugar, you have to agree its an addictive drug for a lot of people.  Wish me luck, I can't fully enjoy having my life back if I am not healthy enough to enjoy it!

Here are some new pics of the little person in my life that makes me so happy, that that I miss so much.



She's almost five months and looks so much like her brother did at this age.  Miss you, Lexi!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Today is the Day

Things I've said over and over ring empty in other's ears.  Sort of like the boy who cried wolf.

Today is the deadline I gave Keven to move.  He's has 72 hours without using so he has two choices:

1) go to sober living

2) hit the street

I will have him in my car, packed and ready to go and he will tell me where to drop him off.  Last night he said he wanted to go to the Greyhound Bus Station in Santa Ana.  I said that was fine and didn't bother to ask if he planned on going somewhere or if he just wanted to be in the heart of drug territory.

Yes, this is really hard to do, no denying that.  But its absolutely necessary.

My hope and prayer is that I can actually physically get him out of the house.  The police told me there was nothing they could do to help me unless I had an eviction order.  But if worse comes to worse, I will call and ask if they can just come over and talk to him.  This Sucks.

The good old days:


Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Resisting Al-Anon Was A Six Year Detour Back to My Life

First, I apologize to those who tried to read my blog and saw that it went private.  I am back after a long (less than 24 hour) break from writing.  I suddenly feel like writing is essential and I plan to keep going.

In August 2007 my son and his girlfriend woke me around 1 am to tell me that Keven had been using heroin for a few months and his girlfriend gave him an ultimatum:  stop or I leave, AND, tell your mom.  She was a sweet, well meaning girl and I was a naive mother.  She and I both thought that was that and moved on.

I don't remember if I was in denial for the next few months or if I honestly had no clue.  Either way in December, right after he turned 18, he had his first suicide attempt and psychiatric hospital stay.  Heroin took over his life and changed my life.  Now I want it back.  Finally

From that point on he was in and out of:

  • Jail
  • Rehabs*
  • Sober Living
  • Hotel rooms
  • Hospitals (twice on life support)
  • Living with me, my sister and my mom causing hell in our lives.
Here is a list of rehabs he's been to:  
  • Phoenix House
  • Cornerstone (twice)
  • Unidos (twice)
  • Pat Moore Foundation
  • Able to Change
  • Ten Acre Ranch
  • Above it All
  • Solid Landing

Drug treatment centers are helpful.  They educate and give tools, they provide a place for an addict to live and be surrounded by other like-minded people.  Lots of people benefit from reahb and they all have one thing in common:  they want recovery.  Then there are those that sort of want recovery, or don't want it. You can lead a horse to water.....

During all this time some of you were right here with me, and I with you.  My blog friends were my number one support group and I have made some life long friends and grown to sincerely love and care about not only many of you - but your addicted loved one as well.

There were several  people that I considered to be my "leaders".   Ron, Lou,  Annette and Syd.  Between the four of them I gleaned so much information, encouragement and a few kicks in the ass.  My only regret now that I look back is that I didn't give Al-Anon a serious chance.  I decided I was not one of "those" people after going to a few meetings here and there.  I thought Alanon was a crazy cult that chanted weird things while holding hands in a circle.  They kicked their kids out, they seemed to have zero compassion.

I thought I could LOVE MY SON OUT OF ADDICTION.  So I enabled him all the while telling myself that he was different, he was "special" in some way and needed me.  It now breaks my heart that I robbed him of the chance to find our for himself that he was capable.  It may not have got him to stop using, but at least he would have more self worth than he does today.  I won't allow msyelf to think about this too much because the reality is TODAY.

Today I go to my 8 am Saturday morning meetings.  Today I have a sponsor.  Today I listen and learn because I want to change MYSELF and get what the people in my meetings have:  Peace, Serenity, A Life beyond the horrific chaos of parenting ad addict.

Al-Anon is not for everyone, but I've decided its for me.

So last night I had Keven arrested.  I'll share on that later.  For now I just wanted to say I am changing.  I am stronger.  I was always wise - but just didn't apply my wisdom to my self.  I am accepting and courageous and will not give up the rest of my life to cater to my only child - because he has to want his recovery more than I do and he has to take charge of his own 23 year old self.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara