A huge reason why I started this blog was to be a sort of warning to people, to spread the awareness of what addiction can do to a family. When left untreated, ignored, minimized, rationalized, or denied (by the addict or family members) it can rip a family apart and cause indescribable destruction and heartbreak.
I have that thought each time I step foot inside or outside the doors of the very nice, yet very expensive Care Center that my mom lives in. I have that thought each time my mom defiantly declares,
“I am NOT living in this one room apartment anymore…How COULD you do this to your own mother?”
I have that thought each time I then force the guilt to roll right off of my shoulders, even though it yearns to cling on for dear life.
I have that thought each time I try to rationalize and calmly explain why she is there, and why she is and was not safe at home.
I have that thought each time I feel the tide of anger well up inside of me, or when despair threatens to shadow my sunny day.
You see, it is not because I don’t love my mom that I have these thoughts. It is because I love her very much. Despite her desperate, manipulating, and demanding behaviors, she is still a very charming, loving, and nice person. And I will never stop honoring my mother and father, the way that I am called to do.
A part of me thinks I may write as a form of rebellion, because I could never reach my mom with the truth…and so, well, maybe I could have a chance with the rest of whoever will listen. Well, whoever you are, please listen.
Our choices that we make each and every day have ripple effects on those around us that can last a lifetime. So, if you tell yourself, “Oh, it’s just ‘one’ drink, just ‘one’ night stand, just ‘one’ relationship’, just ‘one’ lie, just ‘one’ test, just ‘one’ movie, just ‘one’ terminated clump of cells….it doesn’t even matter what the ‘one’ thing can be….
Just don’t think that those choices won’t keep following you…like a sinister ghost…they will keep haunting you, infesting your days and nights. And possibly the days and nights of your children.
Oh sure, most times you won’t see it at all…you will find reasons to explain it all away. Our consciences are experts at that. Especially if we think that we form our own conscience.
But, guess what? That still small voice inside, that whispers, “This just doesn’t feel right”, or keeps asking you those annoying questions and makes you feel just a teeny bit guilty….is there for a REASON. It’s there for you to listen, and to then do something about it.
If you know someone with an addiction problem, then help them get help. There are a plethora of amazing resources available today. I personally know of many of them. My mom went through treatment 4 times…to some of the best places in the country. And if you have tried, and have gone above and beyond to help your loved one, and you still struggle with the anger, the why’s, the what if’s, the would’ves, could’ves and should’ves…then go get help for yourself. There are amazing Adult Children of Alcoholics and Al-Anon groups out there, who give you fellowship, tools to cope, and spiritual healing. There are church communities, spiritual directors, prayer groups, prayer devotions and practices, etc…to give you the hope that you need.
I can say quite honestly that if it weren’t for all of the above throughtout my life….I WOULD NOT BE HERE WRITING THIS.
God’s grace has saved me many many times, and the beauty of that free gift, is that it will be here forever, no matter what road we choose to go down. God will still be there patiently waiting, like a loving dad who waits for his rebellious son or daughter to come home.
Don’t ever underestimate the power of God’s grace to see you through any trial or tribulation. Don’t ever give up hope!
Such a great song by Mat Kearney….
I can see that she’s screaming when she’s dreaming for her freedom
My girl America’s dying while she’s trying just to stop this fight
Don’t stop believing, my girl America……Faith like a child from your first birth
You left it in the dirt on your worst hurt
And I see each tear and every scar
The hands that have held you where you are
And I can see we’ve strayed so far
A king born under that morning star
As a crown of thorns was placed to earase
Each tear that’s touched your face
And his palms and sides were pierced with spears
He hung in love just to draw you near
My girl, out of this whole world
Can’t you see this is where we started?”