Saturday, March 15, 2014

Keeping the focus on myself.

So in the spirit of sharing my own story here, I am going to share a bit about my response and my feelings with this relapse.

Hattie was so right in her comment in that we become weary. I am. I am weary and tired. The first few days that I carried around this knowledge, I didn't share it with anyone. I didn't want to hear everyone's opinions. I particularly didn't want to hear anything about if she was going to live with us or not. I didn't want to hear speculation about if she was being honest or not...

"How do you know if an addict is lying to you ? If their lips are moving."

 I hate that joke. I find it so hurtful

So the first few days I carried my little bit of information and I accepted it for what it was. Its disappointing, scary, I am concerned and sad. But it is also her journey to travel. I may have my own personal decisions to make along the way but for today it is her life to figure out.

Today has been more of a struggle. For her and for me. She is in a battle, mentally and physically. Today I have had my own battle....its a common one that I waffle around in often. I usually find my way, but I always seem to need to re-visit this place, these questions, for at least a minute. That battle is the idea of a mom not helping her sick child. How does a mother turn away, not reach out, not help, not make phone calls that seem impossible to my girl to make, not enforce a routine, not throw out directions....get up, shower, get dressed, find a meeting, come home, rest, eat, take your meds... how do I do nothing? Then I waffle over to the idea that her journey is none of my business. It is HER journey. It is not MINE. I have my own path to navigate and she has her's. I rob her when I take over and don't let her figure her stuff out. I rob her of feeling empowered when I treat her like she is incapable, like she is 12 years old again. And if I am going to be honest.....I feel the need to step in and take over because I am afraid. Because I am afraid of so many things. That she won't rally back. I am afraid of going back to those dark dark places. I am afraid of the time frame....I am impatient and want everything to be put into order right now. I am afraid of feeling any more pain and fear.

I spoke to an Alanon friend today and she said, "You are not the answer for her." For anything really. Her mental health, her addiction. HER Higher Power can and will and has placed people into her path that can be part of the answer for her though. People who have lived through many of the same things she has lived through. People who are recovering from many of the same things she is in need of recovering from. I can step back and let God be in charge. Because I only know her issues from the perspective of being her parent. They aren't my issues.....I have plenty of my own, but I have not had to do the same sort of work she is needing to do. So it makes sense that I am not the best suited to direct her journey. I am not her Higher Power.

So while I am unsettled and afraid to a certain extent...I am also choosing to gently step back. To not tell her what to do or what my ideas are. I am choosing to keep quiet and let her find her own path....whatever that may be. My friend said, "Its a risk." Yep, but I have had to let go many many times in the past and trust that whatever lay ahead was part of a bigger plan orchestrated by God. So tonight I am choosing that again.

Thanks for listening (reading)


Birdie said...

Annette, choosing to let go is something I need to do everyday. It seems I let things go only to snatch them back again. It is funny because every night I read the 12 steps before bed and every night I get to step 3, "Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him." and I think, Oh right, I was going to do that!

You can do it with this beautiful program. Do you have Al Anon literature? I have found a good resource for al anon literature. They are 2nd hand and the prices are reasonable.

Just For Today.

Anonymous said...

I woke up at 5o'clock this morning, and started feeling that familiar confusion in my head. How does a Mother abandon her child, because this morning that's what it feels like. After a few minutes of prayer I said, Lord let me read something that helps for today.
And He did! I'm choosing to live my life, but doesn't mean I'm abandoning my child. My grown up child has all he needs, especially His Higher Power. I so easily forget that!
You and your sweet girl are in my prayers.

notmyboy said...

It is interesting the corundum we find ourselves in. I believe that our child's higher power is in charge. I also believe He will put the people in place to make his will known. Sometimes that person is me. I know it with every fiber of my being. Sometimes it takes a compromise of self will. I too like to jump in a fix things. I have learned to sit back and listen to that voice. You know the one. The voice that says do the research and find some numbers. The voice that says hand those numbers to your child and let him make the calls, or not.

I'm praying.

Sandi said...

Dear Annette, I am fighting the same battle with my son...25 and living here. I see signs that worry me about his recovery and I am fighting that urge to check on his going to meetings,check on his bank account,etc.And when I use my Alanon tools and interpret my feelings they are just like yours...fear..fear of the downhill road and wanting to put up a roadblock to stop the car crashing...Today I too will trust in Gods bigger plan and I will pray for your child and mine...blessings...

Mrs. Dubose said...

My heart is with you. I have been struggling the last few days with very similar issues.

It's so hard. I am choosing to step back, too. It didn't happen gently but it happened. I am hoping the gently part comes.

God bless us all.

Anonymous said...

It is so hard to step back and do nothing! We dont want to lose them and we dont want anymore of the terrible fear, etc., that we feel when they are using. I feel for you! What a terrible thing addiction is!!!

Grace-WorkinProgress said...

If love could keep someone sober or straight there would be no addiction. We love them sometimes too much to really help them. They need people that think like them to help them and we need people like us to help us.

When they lie to us it is because they are lying to themselves first. They want to be different but they are not running the show the substance is. When they say something they mean it and when they break those promises they hate themselves and the substance says what it the point.

We all do our best all the time but sometimes it isn't good enough but it is all we have at that moment.

We each have to find our own way and no one can do the work for us.

Love and prayers.

Anonymous said...

Oh Annette, We hurt with our kids, we hurt for our kids, we just hurt sometimes. I believe God understands that hurt and hurts for us also. I pray she finds her way - being honest about it is a good first step for her. You and she will be in my prayers. Patricia

mary christine said...

Please find a way that works for YOU, not for her. She will do what she will do. If YOU need to be involved, be involved. If YOU need to step back, step back.

If she is done, she is done. If she is not, she is not.

You are not in that equation.

Please take care of yourself sweet Annette.

Anonymous said...

I've never commented here before but read your blog always. When I didn't see you for a short while I got a bad feeling. Isn't it a shame that I would jump to fear instead of " maybe she won the lottery" but that's what living with addiction does to us. Daily I have to choose where to put my focus and I am thankful that Alanon has given me the awareness to see that. Dig deep,pray hard and hold on.....your God loves you and wants what is best for you. You are an amazing woman and I so appreciate your sharing your and yours are in my prayers

Syd said...

I tried to love my wife to death by constantly trying to fix her. I can't fix her depression now either. I know that the only way an alcoholic or addict can be helped is by another alcoholic or addict. I can and will make a mess of things if I start trying to control what another person does. All I can offer is my love and compassion. Thanks for being here and sharing your journey.

Hattie Heaton said...

It's a risk to get involved too. One of the things that helps me is to think that when I'm involved I'm slowing down the process that needs to happen, whatever that is. I also realize that with my weight loss it only happens when something within me clicks so I try to apply that to his situation. When I get in God's way I truly believe that I am slowing down the process. If I can reframe it to look like my "help" is actually hurting his healing, I can relax. My boy is not well either. I am really trying to get my tunnel vision on about what I need to do for me and what God has intended. Praying for you my friend. We are like field trip mom's on the worst field trip ever! But, we will keep watching from a distance and doing as my mom used to say..."watch them when you can and pray for them when you can't" Praying.

Erin said...

"How do you know if an addict is lying to you ? If their lips are moving." - I too HATE that line!!!!! I find it very hurtful as well.

I'm sorry to hear about the relapse and I understand why you didn't want to hear comments as to whether she should live with you or not. I felt at times that people would literally shove that down my throat when my son was active that he HAD to leave. I also find in my Nar-Anon group which I absolutely love that when a newcomer shares about their addicted loved one that many point them in the direction of "kicking them out." Every single situation is different no one can tell anyone what they should or shouldn't do.

We all want to help it's normal but we know we can only love and support. We all do the best we can on any given day.

You and your daughter are in my prayers and I'm believing that she is turning it around, a relapse doesn't have to mean that they are starting back at square one again.