Letting go for both our sakes

 

For the first time ever I believed he and his girlfriend were sober together at the same time. I probably didn’t question it as much as I should have.

I revelled in having sober conversations with Faith, he seemed to be enjoying it also even though he was in pain. He reconnected with his sister living in Australia. he asked for help to get to AA meetings. I told him to enjoy all the positives of being sober.  I delivered food.  And a tumble dryer, my mums, up until then he had not been able to think straight enough to work out where he could put it.

I thought, really thought, this time, he cannot get alcohol, so he will have no choice but to stay sober, at least for a while.

I am not stupid, I think I know my son well enough by now, well I thought I did, to know when he has had a drink, be it only 1 ( well it never is only one is it) . I would deny it to myself sometimes, but in my heart I knew.

So how the f… did I miss this one, I just don’t understand, I can’t understand. So….

Yesterday Faith had an appointment the hospital fracture clinic due to his last escapade. I thought it strange it wasn’t as the hospital he was admitted to but didn’t really think too much into it. It turned out they were actually more concerned about his liver than his broken bones. But he was fitted with better fitting “boots” and as far as I could make out, sent on his way.

Today his girlfriend called me at work to tell me he had been admitted to hospital.

What? Why? what has he done now?

He had 4 fits during the night then another big one this morning, he didn’t want to me to call an ambulance but I had to.

Why? Has he been drinking? Yes. What? For how long? Since he came out of hospital last time? Yes. How can that be, he has been sober when I spoke to him, this doesn’t add up.

How the hell has he got alcohol? He can’t walk? He got 3 bottles of cider at the shop.

None of this is adding up in my mind. I can’t talk to him his phone is off, only his girlfriend to give me information. They an doing ECG on him, they are not concerned about his mental state. From what she was telling me he will be discharged tonight.

I did eventually get to speak to him, I asked what the hell was going on, he just wanted to tell me he was going to be discharged but didn’t know how he would get home.

I told him that was his problem, if he could get out to get alcohol he could get home.

Once again I am feeling so disappointed, my fault, I should have learnt by now.

But I couldn’t help but just call him. He’s home, so I could ask him the question, how and when did you start drinking. I didn’t  want to, that’s why I went cold turkey last time, yes, so why and how did you start drinking again.? The only way is if she bought you alcohol? If she loved you and wasn’t drinking herself she wouldn’t do that? She wants you to drink so she can.

I have left him with that, telling him, he has to make some decisions. I’m angry, so angry with her, not with Faith although he has again chosen to drink. I thought this was a chance for both of them, I was so ready to support them.

Now I just feel empty, sad, he’s going to die, and she’s helping him along the way.

I have tried so many times to walk away from this.

Maybe this is the time I need to do it again for him and for me.

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Laughter in the face of adversity

IMG_6895Well not a lot has changed since I last wrote, but a fair bit has happened.

I’m going to share with you what I think has been Faiths most ummmm most traumatic, strange, sad yet funny moment yet. This has to be anonymous, otherwise I could not share, you will understand why.

He has been drinking, no shock there! But wanting to stop. I’m sure you will know by now there is no where you can go and say OK I want to stop drinking , can you help me. It doesn’t work like that.

So he went cold turkey. Thank god I didn’t know, he didn’t tell me and as he had been drinking I hadn’t been in regular contact with him, I try to step back when he is.

So when he phoned me last week to “catch up” I was surprised to hear him sober and even more surprised when he told me he had been sober for a week.  I was like “what? How did that happen? When? How did I miss this? He thought I knew.

The even more surprising (OK I didn’t believed him) news was that his partner was also sober. How on earth did I miss this?

Where have I been? Normally if he was detoxing on his own I would be going through it with him, the sickness, everything else that is so awful when someone addicted to alcohol just stops drinking. What no fits and paramedics?

Anyway, somehow he got through it and I didn’t have to go through the pain with him. Bloody wonderful and wonderous.

Isnt that just great? Yes to good to be true. Thursday last week he called me, I was at work.

Hang on a moment Faith let me get somewhere more private

“This is my goodbye call mum, I’m going to die”

Sorry Faith, what did you say?

“I am going to die mum, my veins are joining up, they told me I am going to die, my skin is falling off, they are crawling out of my skin”

OK Faith, don’t panic, do you remember when you detox your brain does odd things, you see things that aren’t real, please believe me, I am your mum, this is your brain playing tricks on you, you are fine. None of this is real even though you think it is.

“you don’t believe me , I will send you a video, you will see all these creatures on my skin”

Faith sent me a video of a very shaky but plain hand.

Its fine, I can’t see anything, please believe me.

I noticed from the video that he was down the beach, I was concerned he would go into the water to wash off the creatures. So I told him to go home, I thought he would be safer.

He agreed he would go home, I went back to work but kept trying to call him, but he didn’t answer.

5pm, I’m about to leave work , I get a call from his girlfriend.

“Please I need your help, Faith has jumped from the bathroom window, the first responders are here, I need to go to hospital with him but I have no money to get home on the bus, can you help me”

OK, here we go again……

It appears he jumped naked from the bathroom window, after stripping off, because his clothes were full of these creature

Of course, I sent money, if she goes it means I don’t have to.

So he was in hospital for a few days, not many, the Psych team were supposed to see him but they were busy, obviously jumping naked from your bathroom window is not a major trauma.

So now he is back home with “boots” on both feet as he has broken, bruised or whatever to his feet.

You know what that means? He can’t walk to the shop and buy alcohol? Hallel bloody ujah. Sorry if I offend anyone.

And I can laugh with him, about the fact that he could have been stuck, half in, half out, completely naked, of his bathroom window.

I can laugh with him about the fact that he was completely naked on a Thursday afternoon outside his flat refusing to put his pants on because they were full of creatures..

I can laugh with him because today he is sober and that is all that matters.

And you can understand why this has to be completely unanimous.

His dignity, the little he has, needs to be protected .

So hopefully this is a spell of sobriety, but I know isolation and depression will set in, I will try to help him, when he is sober I will do whatever I can to support him.

Sober and depressed is to me a million times better than him being under the influence.

Bye for now….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New day, it was true, this too shall pass…..

IMG_1664How can 24 hours  make so much difference? Yesterday I was at war with the world.

Today I woke up, same old, off to work, nothing much has changed. Home late as I’m still doing holiday cover. My oven is broken and now it appears so is my front door lock, But, hey, the sun is shining and it’s warm.

I spoke to Faith, he has it seems finally got his act together and sorted his benefits out. Such a worry lifted, his rent will get paid, he won’t be out on the street.

How could I have complained about caring for my elderly parents, if my brothers don’t help that’s their problem not mine. I am blessed to still have them alive.

Tonight my partner and I found the energy to go for a walk. I had forgotten how very lucky we are in where we live. This is all is within 10 minutes walk from our home…

Tonight I feel gratitude for my family, my home, my job. And love ❤️ for one very trying person in my life. Today I received this…..

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This actually was last night, but I was too exhausted to publish

 

 

 

Rant coming up either move on, or forgive

IMG_1641.JPGOh, I am so tired tonight.

Faith is sober, but of course now dealing with his not so sober times. He has been sent a letter saying he is in arrears with his rent. Now this is for a mixture of reasons, being so out of it he was unable to comprehend the letter I forwarded saying his sick note was running out. Then sending his sick note twice but it wasn’t received, (wrong address? God knows) Then filling out forms only to be returned to him as his date of birth was wrong (it wasn’t) . Now if this was me I would be on the phone calling every number I had until it was resolved. But he doesn’t have the what? What do you call it? Get up and go? Fight for survival, just no fight in him I guess. I’ve told him I won’t help him out, if he doesn’t sort this out he will be homeless. So will he sort it.? Or will he be homeless?

I’m stepping back, I will at the last minute step in if needed, I so don’t want to, I’m so sick of doing this.

I don’t want to work full time, I had a cousin ask if I could meet for coffee today. What? Wouldn’t I just love to. No I’m covering wages, a job so difficult to pick up just 4 times a year, I have to get it right, people need their money. I only get 30 minutes lunch break anyway.

I’m feeling very much the victim, I’m 58 now, caring for my elderly parents alone, because my brothers won’t help, my daughter is in Australia, my eldest son an alcoholic, my youngest just starting to make his way I want to shout and scream “I don’t want to do this anymore”

But there is no one to listen, because my screams are silent.

OK rant over, this too will pass…….. please let it be soon

Birthday? What birthday? How very dare I?

IMG_1492I I had a bit of a meltdown last weekend.

I knew my birthday was looming,  the last few birthdays I’ve felt the loss of not having my daughter around on my birthday.  I don’t have a sister.  My friends who have sisters always seem to have such lovely birthdays,  it’s something women do isn’t it?

So I basically was feeling sorry for myself.  My partner stepped in and booked a meal somewhere special.

I am so lucky to live in an amazing and beautiful part of the country. The hotel where he booked the table has amazing sunset views over the sea. It’s always been bit of a joke between us, we once went in just for a drink and he walked out as he wouldn’t pay the prices.  So this really was a special treat.

Now,  if you have been reading my blog you will know Faith is in hospital.

He called me while I was at work.  I knew straight away his mind had gone again.  So I listened to his talk of all sorts of imaginary events.  I know he has no idea it’s my birthday so I don’t wait for, or be disappointed when he doesn’t wish me a happy birthday.

It’s a manic day at work. I’m covering colleagues who are on holiday. Whilst juggling my work,  trying to get the important things done, in the back of my mind I’m thinking I should call his girlfriend and the hospital.

In my lunch break I call Hope,  she doesn’t answer.  Mmmm that’s odd she hasn’t returned any of my calls since Monday when Faith went into hospital.

Aaahhh but he did say he had the phone charger.  Still odd. I thought she would have gone out and bought a new one.

I call the hospital twice. Can’t speak to anyone.

Back to the madness of work and I have no time to think about them.

When I eventually finish work,  I worked late to try and catch up, I don’t have a lot of time before we need to go out, and we need to vote also, I call Faith.  He is still totally out of it still. I can hear a nurse in the background telling another patient off. I ask if his girlfriend Hope is there, yes she’s here. “Can I speak to her, oh yes hang on, Oh I’m attached to a drip, I need to go and get her, He laughs “Ha ha, can you hear her? She is really loud and bossy, she’s trying to order everyone about” I know instantly she is not there. I tell him not to worry I will speak to her later. My house phone starts to ring. I tell Faith I will call him back.

When I pick up my house phone and hear Hopes mothers voice on the other end my heart sinks. She only ever calls when there is a problem, I know she’s going to say “have you heard anything from Hope” She does, and I want to cry. I know my evening has just gone how shall I say “tits up” .

Yes she’s concerned, she’s heard nothing from her since Monday, my heart is in free fall, I’ve been here before, then when she tells me they are in Wales on holiday I know this is going to be all down to me again. I am the only one with a key to their flat. The fact she has not been in to see Faith is extremely concerning, she just wouldn’t do that, for some crazy reason she seems to love him. My mind is working overtime, I can see her laying dead in their bed. I call the hospitals, last time she disappeared like this she was in hospital. No, she’s not been admitted anywhere. I feel sick, I call her mother back and tell her the news.

I also tell her it’s my birthday, I was just about to go out for my birthday meal, I will have to cancel it, there is no way in a million years I could go and eat my meal and enjoy it whilst thinking she could be laying unconscious or dead, this not being in contact with anyone for days is so out of character, she would have normally been keeping me updated with Faiths progress in hospital.

As you can understand she is devastated that I have to cancel my plans, And obviously very, very concerned about her daughter.

I tell my partner we will have to cancel the meal. He looks at me and shrugs. Here we are again, our lives being impacted again by the selfish alcoholics, I know that’s what he thinks. He’s right.

The journey takes 25 minutes. I ask my partner to please come in with me, I am so worried by what I might find.

As I walk into their room, there was no polite knocking, I am met by a very disheveled Hope. My immediate reaction is to hug her. Then, oh boy, does she get it. Like two barrels straight between the eyes, I am uncontrollable.

I get her mum on my phone so she can talk to her. I know the feeling of not knowing if they are OK.

She explains that she bought a cheap charger but it didn’t work, we try to get it working but I think she was right, we don’t manage to get the phone to turn on.

But I don’t stop, “you’ve had four days to get this working, you haven’t been to see Faith, what the hell have you been doing for four days?” The answer is obvious. The bed is stripped, she is shaking and slurring, uncomprehending, she offers a sorry… woah! Red rag to a bull, “sorry? Oh the explitatives that come out of my mouth, I tell her so many things that before I’ve not said. I don’t hold back.

We eventually leave, leaving her with strict instructions. I am yet again exhausted.

Now for my positive thoughts, yes I can find one. The birthday meal that was booked has amazing views when the weather is good. It was lashing down.

We found a really lovely authentic Greek restaurant that served us up the most amazing meal. The other restaurant can wait for a sunny day. So I get two birthday meals.

 

 

My heart ♥ is in your hands

I lie awake in the debths of night

A pain as raw as the pain I felt when I gave birth to you

Fills my body

My heart ♥ a weight so heavy in my chest

My heart ♥ as strong as a lions

Or as delicate as butterfly wings

I endure the pain

I have no choice

There is no pain relief that will take this pain away

I wait

You can continue to drink your alcohol, your pain relief, until the day

You break my fragile as a butterfly wings heart ♥

Or you can reach out to the many hands outstretched to you

And make my heart ♥ whole and strong again

My heart ♥ is in your hands

If only you knew

Feelings of guilt

IMG_0987Why oh why am I feeling guilty?

I have had two very short phone calls with Faith over the last few days.

He is sober, how I wish I could feel excited and happy about this. I should do, it’s what I want more than anything in the world isn’t it?

I guess it’s because I know it won’t last and I don’t want to feel the pain of disappointment when he drinks again.

But when I have spoken to him I have been very negative and ended up raising my voice. It’s not what he needs and I don’t know why I’m doing it.

Well I do know why. He is now having to deal with the financial problems caused by his drinking. His benefits have been stopped. He has had no money coming in for 6 weeks now. The reason I sent him money to cover his rent.

The confusion of his alcoholic life means sick notes have not arrived on time and where they should. He has been unable to sort things out because he has been either in hospital or drinking and incapable. He has been told he now has to start again. Put in a new claim. Which asked questions such as can you walk 10 yards unaided? Well that’s a joke, it depends if he is drinking and how much. I know if he completes these forms himself he will not get benefits. He will need to start looking for work or get nothing.

I am totally against people claiming money and not working. I work full time and have worked most of my life. I also would love for Faith to be working. I also know at the moment he is not capable of holding down a job. If he gets a job and gets sacked for drinking or not turning up, which will happen, he will again lose the right to any benefits. He will end up homeless.

I have suggested both days he contacts citizens advice bureau. But he won’t listen. I know there are people there who can help him. Today’s excuse was OK I will do but then I can’t go and sort my housing benefit at the council and I can’t…….. the list goes on. Why can’t you do all those things? I juggle my time every day. I have had a particularly busy stressful day trying to fit too much into too short a time. But I gave it my best!.

But after the call I realise I am being negative, probably controlling, I never thought of myself like that before. I am telling him what to do instead of letting him make his own decisions and mistakes. But I know he needs this help, I know how difficult it is to get the benefits that he does need. I know who picks up the mess when it doesn’t work.

How do I shut up,  stop this interfering. Let him just do it his way.

My problem is my fear of him dying.

I know if he doesn’t sort this out it could send him spiralling  into a black hole. If he loses his room he will be on the streets without his girlfriend, I know she would go back to her family. I won’t have him back here.

I don’t think he would survive being on the streets and losing her.

So that is why my frustration with him for not just trying my advice, boiled over.

After our conversation I felt stressed and he felt upset, and I realise he is obviously trying to stay sober and my conversation hasn’t helped him.

I did say it was lovely to speak to him sober.

I just know how important it is to get this benefit situation sorted and quickly, not at his “this time next year pace”

So that is why I am feeling guilty. I pray I haven’t pushed him to drink again. I just find it frustrating seeing how naive he is about things but he won’t accept help.

This has been a change, we have not been like this before. Maybe it’s a good thing, he’s being more assertive. If he stays sober , he can work and it won’t be a problem. The trouble is I have no belief in him anymore.

Maybe I do need to get out of his life.

 

 

 

Day 4

Day 4 of not knowing how Faith is doing.

How I wish it was him counting. Day 4 of being sober.

I have sent a message today.  He promised to repay me money I lent him to pay his rent as he had problems with his benefits.  I hate to think he might be using that money to buy alcohol. Why do I say “might”?

Angry with myself that I paid his rent anyway,  I just couldn’t deal with the thought of him being homeless again.

And now angry with him for not paying me back as he promised.

I kept it simple.

“I see you have not transfered my money into my account”

That’s it,  nothing else.  I don’t even know if he will see it.

I hate you alcohol!!!!

I feel an overwhelming sadness

IMG_0803It’s day 2 of no contact.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t heard from Faith, it means I haven’t responded.

I am starting to feel a terrible sadness inside. Do I really have to stop contact for him to find his way? Will it help him? Is this what I must do?

There are no guides  –

If  A doesn’t work then resort to B. If all else fails switch off and re-boot.

It has given me some much needed peace. And I am important, I work bloody hard, full time, elderly parents that also need and deserve my time and attention.

He has called twice, first time I’m at work and it’s easy to ignore, still more accusations left on my answerphone. Then again when he knows I am home and he sounds more sober. This is the first one that starts I love you mum, I want us to have a relationship, please call me. That’s harder to ignore, but I have, and I will today.

Maybe tomorrow I will send him a message telling him I will only speak to him when he is sober. I will not answer his calls until I can hear in his voice he is.

I’m really not sure if this is protection for me, or as I have read, what I must do for him to be at that place where he wants recovery beyond all else.

I always thought having children was a learning curve that you learn as you go. I didn’t realise that it went on into their adulthood. One thing I have learnt and I am absolutely certain about is, there are no rules, ever! You do what you think is right at the time, maybe you will fuck up occasionally, but one message I would always pass on to my children is “go by your gut feeling, and if you are told that it is wrong, and you still feel your way is the right way then just do it” Don’t be afraid….

As I am tonight.

Thats why I am thinking tomorrow I will send a message to him.

“I will speak to you again, but only when you are sober”

I would love a few responses from you peeps that have found sobriety, how would you feel receiving this message? how did you feel?

Sending out love

 

 

 

A continuation of the madness and chaos, but enough is enough

After my last post “exhausted with chaos” things have been calmer. It has been wonderful to talk to my sober son, it feels like I have him back again, but I know it’s only temporary as he is doing none of the things he needs to do to stay sober. The fact he has no access to cash after his girlfriend froze his card is probably the reason he has stayed sober this long.

Today he got his  bank card back, today the police decided to check he was OK.  Today everything went into total chaos again.

I had a dentist appointment, the short time I was in the chair I had a 2 missed calls. One from Faith, the other from number withheld. I call Faith when I’m out.

I wish I hadn’t. “Why have you called the police about me? Why have you told them about x (his girlfriends son who she is not seeing because of her drinking) and more accusations and swearing. I cut him off. I then listen to the answerphone message left by the unknown number, the police.

” I have just checked on Faith, he appears less under the influence of alcohol than he did last time I spoke to him, his girlfriend tells me he has seen the doctor so we have no concerns over him, I hope this puts your mind at rest”.

Well, I don’t know, obviously last time my point that “he may sound like he’s drunk but he’s not, he is sick and needs to be in hospital” just didn’t get through. And now your visit to him has just caused more chaos and confusion.

I call Faith again to reassure him that the police were only checking on him to see that he was safe. All I get is more abuse and accusations, apparently they “interrogated” his girlfriend. I decide there is no point carrying on the conversation and drive on to work.

Lunchtime I look at my phone , that was a mistake. This is something new I have not talked about on here, my brother is estranged from his son. I think that’s the right word to describe it. I have been the piggy in the middle between him and his x wife trying to sort contact. My brother is very difficult to deal with, and things have broken down. Today is the day he announces that he wants nothing to do with the negative people in his life which starts with me and “my parents”

Just breath just breath and return to the office and work. My elderly parents will be traumatised, he has done this so many times to them but they are getting so old and frail, my dad is 90 this year. This could kill my mum, because she is like me, a mum, no matter what, you love your kids.

When I leave work I call Faith. More accusations, his girlfriend Hope has been interrogated by the police about her son who doesn’t live with her. I try to say I never mentioned his girlfriend or her son, I was just concerned for his safety. Where has this all come from, just the police checking Faith was Ok? I finally tell Faith I cannot deal with this anymore,  I can’t speak to him again until he is sober, enough is enough, I need to protect myself from the global amnesia I suffered in the past  when my brain actually says “enough is enough”

But it doesn’t stop. I turn my phone off. They both call the landline, I ignore it. I decide to make it clearer to him. I message to say I want the money I lent him for rent back (another story) I send my bank details. I reject calls but listen to answerphone messages left by both of them. It appears Faith is going to get cash out to pay me back. That’s a disaster about to happen so I call him to tell him not to get cash, to transfer the money. But, yeah it’s too late. He’s just got money out and some woman spun him a story and disappeared with the cash. I believe him, I know how vulnerable he is. His girlfriend doesn’t, she goes to the shop to check, it’s true.

I have a real heart to heart with his girlfriend, I pull no punches, I tell her straight how it is, why these things keep happening to them, I cannot deal with it anymore, she makes excuses, I will have none of it, I tell her everything, including the fact, she cannot see her son is down to alcohol. She won’t listen.

Then her mother calls, they called her by mistake now she wants to know what’s going on, I tell her everything, I cry.

Tonight I have taken to my bed. I can deal with no more. Tonight my other family has suffered, I haven’t cooked, my younger son quietly does household jobs to help me, I know he’s concerned about me. I cry, I can’t eat, tonight their alcoholism has consumed me. I know I need to step back, for my sanity I have too.

Tonight I have no pretty pictures to add, no spell check, tonight I just had to get my thoughts out, try and soothe my brain.

Thats it. My day, my evening, once again taken over by this addiction and its consequences.

Tomorrow I will go to work and smile, no-one will know, it’s not something to talk about.