Much of the last two years spent with my son the addict, has been a perpetual state of observation and evaluation. Is he using? Is he sober? If he's sober, is this brain damage? Is he mentally ill? Could this be withdraw? (In Al Anon this would fall under the category of "my life had become unmanageable" in step one.)
Wikipedia defines naivete as the state of being naive; having or showing a lack of understanding, experience or sophistication, often in a context where one neglects pragmatism in favor of moral idealism.
Yep, I guess that about sums it up.
Last Sunday hubby and I drove a little over a hundred miles to a ninety nine acre property that is home to men working the twelve steps of AA. Our son had been locked up in a psychiatric hospital detoxing for five days and then was taken from there to this property quite literally in the middle of nowhere and had been there for four days when we saw him.
Guess what??....we saw HIM. Nine days......and we saw him. I didn't expect it this soon. I know....I know....no sermons please.....I know that this is but a baby step on the long road HE has to travel ALONE.
He didn't have a car. He was laid off from work. He was living in my house. And, after two years of AlAnon, he was using under my very nose....AGAIN.
Let's review the last part of that definition of naivete...."a lack of understanding, experience or sophistication, often in a context where one NEGLECTS pragmatism in favor of moral idealism."
When we visited with him, we began conversations that will need time to finish and process. Hubby did say to him a number of times, in response to things he'd say regarding his future, " I know you will figure this out." You see if he didn't have a car or a job and he was able to do what he was able to do.........he should have no problem figuring out how to dig himself out of this.
Perhaps there is mental illness or brain damage.....he is still a pretty sharp fellow. I think the rub will be in channeling that resourcefullness into good.
Hubby and I are learning so much. We now know that he can NEVER live with us again. We are too easy. We want so desperately what is not to be, to be......and it's not. That boat has sailed. Our son is a drug addict. He will live this life and die a drug addict. In active addiction or in recovery....he is still and will always be an addict.
Those facts don't necessarily make me sad anymore, they are just hard for parents to accept. It is not of the natural order. When I saw my son on Sunday, my thoughts were, 'oh wow, look at him......Thanks be to God.....he's still in there."
But, my thoughts remind me..."don't get too close....this may not last....Drug addiction is my cross to carry. And, as one of my favorite Dominican sisters says, " pick it up and quit draggin' it for heaven's sake."
And so I will, with God's help and the strength He provides. My prayer for today is one of thanksgiving for His closeness during this time. I am thankful for all of the support we are receiving from family, friends and even strangers. I pray for the strength to look squarely into the face of addiction leaving idealistic notions aside, and live with the reality of it. I pray for strength in recovery for my son and yours. And, I say a prayer for Henry.