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Guilt parenting

20 Oct

I’m a mean mom again tonight. I won’t get up and fetch him some juice or a chair to put his feet on. I’m making him take care of his dinner dishes. I made him make his own toast in the toaster oven.

I did make him cheesy eggs to go with the toast for dinner. I made the juice and put it in the fridge. I did the dishes he ate off of. I made him ramen popcorn(crunched up dry ramen with the seasoning sprinkled over it) as an after school snack.

I’m not trying to make this about “I do this much for you, so I’m not doing any more”. But I am trying to teach him that he CAN get things done on his own if he just gets up to do it.

So why do I feel guilty about the whole situation? Why do I feel that because I was such a rotten mom the first half of his life, I need to take care of everything for him to make up for it. I know he can do these things. But it’s so hard for me to just sit here and wait. And to not jump up and get what he wants. I guess that’s what being a good mom is all about. Letting our children grow up and do things they would rather I do for them.

  • I’m grateful to know I don’t need to always “guilt parent”. I’m grateful to be doing less “guilt parenting than I used to. I’m grateful that he got his stubbornness from me. I know I can sit him out.

Night all. LOVES

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Effects of addiction

18 Oct

I am an addict in recovery. I don’t hide that fact. Not because I’m proud I used drugs and alcohol to change my thoughts, feelings, and behavior, but because I am proud that I have been NOT using for over 8 years.

I feel if I hide who I was and who I am now from the world, the people who know me will only see the “look good” part of me. But I am also the parts of me that are not pretty and the broken. And even though I have time being clean, some things will always be broken and ugly.

My drug of choice was Meth. We have all heard about the outward ravages of what using it can do. The sores, the skeleton looks, the bad teeth, and looking old before your time. And there are internal effects also. Kidney and liver disease, changes in metabolism, physical and mental changes in your brain. Sometimes with recovery, these changes can correct themselves but sometimes they don’t.

And as I am finding out, sometimes it takes a really long time for those changes to be noticed. See, I didn’t lose the weight and become a walking skeleton. I kept my teeth and I didn’t have the wrinkles. I was never arrested and I don’t have a criminal record. In other words, I didn’t look like the typical poster child of an addict. I used as much, if not more than anyone else I knew, but because I had the “look good”, I was able to hide it longer.

In fact, I thought I would be able to go on with my life as I got clean and I could just forget about all those years of abusing my body. But it was not to be. I have kidney and liver disease. My brain doesn’t work like it used to. I have diabetes and arthritis. And a host of other internal issues going on.

And now, I’m starting to have other things that are happening. My hair is thinning and I’m getting bad skin and wrinkles. I broken 4 teeth in the past year, 1 just last night. Some might say it’s just because I’m getting old, but I know better. You can’t put that poison in your body for so many years and not have it affect you. You don’t see many old tweakers.

But I will continue and keep moving forward. And I will slowly learn to accept my new normal. All while fighting tooth and nail every step of the way.

  • I’m grateful to be clean today. I can imagine where I would be if I hadn’t stopped. I’m grateful to have medical professionals who are working with me in my recovery. I’m grateful to those that stepped in and convinced me I wasn’t immune to what I was doing and helped me quit.

Night all. LOVES

 

ALONE

14 Oct

Have you ever been in a room full of people but still felt all alone? You question why you even bothered to attend a function because you really don’t know many of the people there. And the ones you do know, know a whole bunch of other people besides you?

I felt like that today. I feel like that lots! It sucks. And I have a really hard time going to things because of it. I don’t people well. The only times I did, I was drunk or high. And now that I’m not…, I’ll just say again,  I don’t people well. But I’ll keep trying. Sooner or later I’ll figure it out. Right?

  • I’m grateful I went. I’m grateful to see some old friends. I’m grateful to get a ride home.

Night all. LOVES

No longer numb

10 Oct

I’ve had some really tough times in my life. I’ve had some great times too. I will admit that I used all those years because when you are high, you don’t feel. Why not be numb instead of feeling all the bad things that happened. Even when good things happened and you were numb and couldn’t feel, it was okay because deep down you knew that it was a trade-off for not hurting.

I’ve been clean for over 8 years now. And good or bad, I have feelings again. Sometimes really big feelings. Sometimes little feelings. And sometimes those feelings feel like they are too big or too little for the time and place I’m in.

See, because of all those years of not feeling, I never had to learn to regulate myself. I never had to know how I should act or feel in a certain situation because I didn’t feel at all. So now I get to learn how. Here I am over 50 years old and dealing with things like an eight year old would. Because I AM 8!

But even if I cry at sappy commercials and feel good stories, or feel really upset when bad things happen and take forever to get a grip, I am so very glad to have feelings today. And I’m so happy to not deaden my feelings anymore.

  • I’m grateful to feel today. I’m grateful to have to opportunity to learn to deal with my feelings. I’m grateful to know that even if I’m feeling really rotten at this moment, I will feel better soon.

Night all. LOVES

When you do something different

16 Sep

I went to a lecture today called Facetime: Life, Family, & Parenting in an age of a Digital Attachments by Dr. Doreen Dodgen-Magee. I went thinking to learn how to curb my son’s reliance on his electronic devices and how I, as his parent, could help him turn off occasionally. I actually learned so much more than that.

Yes, I did learn some alternatives for digital devices for my child and how to limit his reliance. One of the biggest ways is to turn MINE off first. To add mindfulness and meditation into our lives and to also to add boredom. Boredom is when you get to learn to just sit with yourself with no distractions. Meditation is learning to be quiet in your body and mind.

But one of the biggest things I learned is to speak up and say hello to someone new. Even when I’m scared witless! I actually talked to Dr Dodgen-Magee about finding a way to bring my son to her lecture and then being able to have a both of us have the information to come home to discuss as a family. Instead of me coming home tonight and trying to tell my son what I learned. That actually lasted about 5 minutes tonight before he was off on a completely different tangent. It reminded me of the Charlie Brown teacher and I’m the teacher.

I also was being creepy and eavesdropping on a conversation afterwards while these 2 ladies talked about therapies and school and special needs and accessing them. I ended up in the middle of the conversation and it continued on the way home because one gave me a ride. And her contact information. I now have another resource to help my child grow and thrive.

And all because I didn’t do my normal thing of sitting in the edge of the room. OK, I still did that. Slinking in and out of the room without saying anything to anyone and just trying to be invisible. Just so you know how hard it was, I came home and fell asleep because my brain was overwhelmed with information and anxiety. But I have papers, notes, pictures, websites, emails and social media contacts to revisit the information all weekend. And beyond.

  • I’m grateful that I didn’t “call in sick” today and stay home and hide from the world. I’m grateful I said hello to two people and didn’t hide on the edges if the room. I’m grateful to get more knowledge to help me and my son become the happy, healthy, well-adjusted people I know we can be.

Night all. LOVES

Thinking of the past

6 Sep

This is a difficult day. It’s been a difficult day for 26 years. Most years I used and drank to forget. Or got so wasted the night before so I could sleep through to the next day. This year is the 8th year I’ve been sober. It’s still difficult. But I try really hard to not sleep through the day. I so want a nap right now.

Why is this day difficult? 26 years ago I had a baby girl. She had red hair and green eyes. She was sick from the time she was pulled from me screaming bloody murder. She couldn’t eat without throwing it up again. She was inconsolable. I thought I was the worst mother ever. By the middle of October, the doctors figured out she was allergic to cow’s milk. We started her on a goat’s milk and soy mixture that was helping her gain weight. She was becoming a happy joyful baby. She was here for three months and 15 days before she left. A very short time that has had a huge impact on my life.

I can’t say that time has healed my heart, but it has changed it. And occasionally I stretch the scar tissue a bit much and it tears and bleeds a little. But I keep going. Because I’ve learned that staying stuck never helps. Sometimes admitting to myself that I hurt and I’m not perfect releases the tension I’m feeling. So I take a deep breath and carry on.  I remember and accept the past and make a determined effort to not return and live there.

  • Today I’m grateful that I am still here. That I’m still clean and sober. And that I’ve chosen a different way to live.

Night all. LOVES

What is self-sufficiency

24 Aug

I did an interview for a research project for housing improvement today. They are looking for ways to get more people housed and self-sufficient.

I spent 2 hours talking to this woman about my hopes and dreams, my barriers and difficulties. What would be in my perfect world and most importantly, when would I be able to say that I was self-sufficient.

I talked about how everything hinges on finding safe, affordable housing. Think about it. How would a criminal stay out of jail if he needed to do crime to find a place to sleep. How would someone trying to be clean and sober stay that way when they need to stay at the dopehouse or on the streets. What about those with mental health issues that can’t function so they are on the streets. And without lots of supports, the odds of these people losing housing is high. If they can get it in the first place.

If someone on the streets has a criminal record, drug and alcohol issues, and has mental health issues, right there they have 3 strikes. And 3 strikes you’re out.

I have thought about this subject so much in the last 8 years since I’ve gotten clean. I WANT to be self-sufficient. I WANT to be considered a winner and not a drain on society. I WANT to be able to walk down the street with my head held high and not hiding in the corners because of where and how I live. And I WANT my children to be better than me.

My youngest son had his issues and the odds of him living independently are not high at this time. So when I think about where he will be when he’s 40, I stress and worry. When he’s 40, I will be 75. I want him to be taken care of and not dumped somewhere because he has nowhere to go.

So to answer the question, What do I consider being self-sufficient? I will consider myself to be self-sufficient when I know that by the time he is 40, he will be in safe supportive housing. I don’t mean I want it to take me 20 years to be self-sufficient either. The sooner the better is my wish.

The other thing about that question is that it can be suggestive. The answer is fluid and always changing. And it’s not the same answer for everyone. I hope the 2 hours I spent today with help change the future in some small way for someone. It will be awesome if it’s for me or my offspring.

  • Today, I’m grateful to get a gift card to talk about myself and my thoughts for 2 hours. I’m grateful to be home because talking about myself for 2 hours is tiring. I’m grateful to stop for an ice cream sandwich on the way home. It’s in the freezer for later.

Night all. LOVES