A strange balance point

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by recoveringenabler, Feb 23, 2014.

  1. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I've been away for the weekend on the California coast............a peaceful, beautifully quiet and serene couple of days away from the fray........I was more alert to that sense of deep gratitude and that still point within...........it was a wonderful time..................SO and I landed on a really nice realization that now that granddaughter is more responsible, we can venture out on more excursions...............oh boy, that opens the doors for us to really start OUR adventure...........

    ................just returned an hour or so ago...........the first thing I hear is the beeping of the house phone indicating messages left..................the voice mail states there was a collect call from the detention facility in the next town..........immediately I knew my daughter was again arrested.

    That feeling in the pit of your stomach where it feels like it drops out.............my immediate response. You all know that one..........SO looks online and sure enough we can see she was arrested last night. Oddly, I had a dream about her last night, I couldn't recall the details, just that she was in it, it didn't feel dramatic. Those connections are there.......I'm sure she was sending out big vibes in my direction last night..........I would certainly be the first one she would call. I'm sure she will want money on her books, for me to run around getting her car out of impound, doing the usual crazy stuff mothers of difficult child's do.

    I sat with all of this for a few minutes. If she had lasted 18 months, the original sentence would have been lowered, this is the 18 month, so now there will be a lot more charges added to the already large probation bill. There will be bail, drama, blame, crying, all of which I've been through twice before with my daughter.......I used to mention this trajectory to her, trying to warn her, but it falls on deaf ears so I stopped that awhile ago. I initiate contact about once a week, always asking how she is. She rarely responds.

    I decided right now I don't want to know. I don't want to engage. I don't want to be the one who gets called anymore.

    I asked SO to disconnect the house phone so we don't know it rings.

    Then I read all of your posts since yesterday. Seems a lot is going on here............I want to respond, but I have that nice tired feeling you get when you've been on the ocean and the sun has been shining.........the salt air is so refreshing and always leaves me feeling good, balanced, alive. I may respond today.........maybe tomorrow..............

    I'm not going to allow all of those good feelings to dissipate while I join my daughter in her new drama. She is the star and I am resigning from being a lead character, or even a bit player.........I don't want to be in the movie at all.

    This feels like one of those weird life tests............can I maintain my sense of balance and that feeling of gratitude and wonder when my difficult child keeps falling into the same pot holes?

    Yeah, I can.

    SO said, "well, she's safe." And, then I thought of how sometimes our destiny carries us to a path which first appears pretty yucky but sometime later you say, "geez, that was what turned the tide." I can make this a crisis, or I can realize it is what it is..........it will all go in the direction it is supposed to go........with or without my interference. Whatever her actions were that precipitated this arrest, they were just that, HER ACTIONS. I am pretty far out of the circle of her life..........by my boundaries and her choices, so it seems somehow the appropriate place for me to stay right now.........outside of all of it.........

    And as I say all of that, I am realizing that I am okay. That pit of the stomach thing faded as I made the choice not to engage. Somehow I think my difficult child needs to be on this adventure on her own without me tagging along. That's what feels right now. Deep breath taken..........big let go...........
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  2. helpangel

    helpangel Active Member

    Oh wise warrior it amazes me that you have only been here a couple years, you are definitely one of the mountain top dwellers!

    Not sure how to rate this thread/post seriously??? like, agree, every thing you post is informative, it's a winner, brought a smiley to my face, had a lot of heart, deserves a rainbow, as always useful in my journey... hey runawaybunnyrabbit (can't remember exactly) can we get like a teddy bear added that means hugs + some or all of the others? just a thought...


    PS might want to throw a couple bucks on her commissary and leave the phone to go to voicemail, I think you are right about not taking that call.
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  3. Childofmine

    Childofmine trying to do this thing one day at a time Staff Member

    Oh RE I am so sorry. I am sorry that your precious daughter is going back 'round again. Arghhhhhhhh. So close, like you said.

    And I am so glad that you had a great getaway weekend. What a gift.

    This morning, in Al-Anon, two people talked about situations with their own adult kids that they heard about....AFTER. After the crisis had passed and it had been handled. And they talked about how glad they were and are that they didn't know it all when it was going on.

    That's what you are saying. You're saying: Daughter, I just don't need to know anymore. I love you, I wish you only good things in this world, and I just don't need to know the details.

    Of course, if and when your daughter and my son have some good things to talk about for a while, I DO want to know all the details. Just indulge me this one time---it's been so long---and then I will go back to detachment (lol!).

    Well, I will tell you, RE, just like I imagine you are telling me---feel the pain, for a while, but don't suffer. It is painful when our difficult children go back 'round again. We wish so much for them to be on a new, better path.

    To quote your wise words, you "can make this a crisis, or realize it is what it is..." It is like you said, her choice, her actions and now, her consequences.

    I ordered and started reading tonight, When the Servant Becomes the Master. I'm just on about page 50. Jason Powers (MD), a recovering addict himself, has gathered a lot of current research and knowledge about addiction. The book was written in 2012. He is talking about that delicate balance of disease and choice. It IS a disease, and there are also choices involved.

    He is pointing out our archaic thinking about the disease of addiction, nationally. One day, RE, perhaps there will be a different protocol regarding addiction. We don't know when, if or how---OR if it will be effective or not. Right now, here is what we DO know: Nothing we tried, out of our love and best intentions and common sense and with the support/guidance/counsel/direction of professionals, has worked. The disease marches on.

    Maybe there is a path not yet tried that doesn't wait for our precious loved ones to finally see themselves that the ONLY way to sanity is to admit their own powerlessness and let others come alongside them to help, and that they must not rely on their own understanding, but must submit to others their will and trust another way.

    Until then. Until then, we must detach with love, stand by with compassion and 'wait in the wings' for our precious adult children to discover their own paths in their own time on their own. If and when they do, and they ask for help, we will help, there is no doubt.

    And in the meantime, as we wait and hope and pray, let us go to California for long weekends and fish at a beautiful lake and enjoy our own lives. We only have this one day, this one night.

    Hugs and prayers and everything good tonight is coming from me to you. Rest in your weekend and know we are here for you when you can write.
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  4. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Thanks to you Nancy and thanks to you COM. I feel your support. Feels good too.

    Here is the weird thing, this all feels appropriate. As I went through the last couple of hours and let go, it occurred to me that my daughter has been hanging on this precipice for a long time.........and someone, used to be me, comes in and saves her. Her life has been held together with glue for awhile now and this may be the time where she cannot control anyone else to save her..........

    My daughter is not addicted COM, she has some kind of personality disorder, anti social, narcissist, I don't really know and really it doesn't matter, she is who she is. The situation is what it is. I am not feeling hurt or sad or really anything but this all just feels right. I can't even explain it. I am in my right place. She is in hers. I have no control over any of it. I am powerless. There is an enormous amount of freedom in that.

    Yup, we only have this one day, this one night.........and you know what COM? I don't even want to wait, hope or even pray anymore.............my heart is there with her, I love her, the love is there..........my waiting, hoping and praying is over. Somehow that is a connection I don't want to have right now........I have compassion for her and I am aware that she has work to do........or not...........but I am not a part of that.

    This definitely feels odd. I feel very disconnected from my daughter and yet it feels healthy for ME. As you said in your post COM, "I don't know what 'this' is................. but it feels like progress." This really feels like progress to me and here's the kicker..............I am having a normal, peaceful, enjoyable evening with SO.........just a regular kind of night. Now, that (for me) is major progress!
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2014
  5. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    I have to be out all day, so only have a minute to post to you, Recovering. I love it that you backed away from the habit of the FOG, of the stomach-tightening, of the sick feeling which, along with the other horrible emotions our troubled difficult children bring up, is why we enable to begin with.

    Oh, I am so happy for you that you were able to back out of it, Recovering.

    Now, you can think.

    Here is my think: Your daughter did this in the 18th month. There have been so many times Recovering, when husband and I would groan and rail at fate and rush in to help because one difficult child or the other had been "so close."

    A miss is as good as a mile.

    It is what it is.

    I don't know why they call us, either. Last winter, difficult child daughter would call from the jail in the middle of the night, drunk or drugged out or both. All we have here is a cell phone. NO WAY TO TAKE THE CALL WITHOUT A CREDIT CARD.

    The first time? I ran all over, half awake in the middle of the night, trying to find my purse and a credit card. By the time I found the credit card, the call was over.

    And I was awake.

    I did not call back.

    I never ran around with my heart in my mouth looking for my credit cards after a middle of the night phone call from jail, again.

    I was awake.

    Recovering, you know my heart is there with you.

    I think you will come through this just fine.

    Very happy for you, that you were able to step out of the FOG so easily.

    You may need those skills in the days to come.

    I wish things had been different for your daughter this time, Recovering. Like mine, she is reaching that point in her life where it is almost too late to come back from it.

    I'm sorry, Recovering.


    It sounds like a roaring, lovely weekend with SO. I love the still point. Always feel it as the sun is coming up. This morning it occurred to me that, just as I am watching the sun gather power at the horizon, someone on the other side of the Earth, at that same instant, is watching it set.
  6. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Thank you Cedar. Your words are soothing. I think somewhere in the last few months I have come to believe that it is too late for her to come back. I think I just let go at some point, realizing there was nothing else to do. Even now with her in jail, I feel that it won't make any difference what I do or don't do, she will return to the life she has chosen. I just gave up and in the giving up, the lack of hope, that true realization, it all got easier for me.

    When she was last in jail, 18 months ago, I was in hell, I was frantic, I was out of control, I was crying all the time, I was running all over the county to get her life together, to help her while she was incarcerated. This time? A tiny bump on the radar screen. That's how much one can change. This time it's about me, not about her. And, what I want is to be left out of this...........completely. She will likely call me at work today, collect, to fill me in on what needs to be done while she is in jail. That might be dicey, it's a tough one when she is crying.

    If you all can send some good vibes and prayers for she and I, that would be helpful as we now walk forward in our own lives, separately.
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    This thread made me cry. RE, you are so smart and I'm so glad you are here. You too, Scent and COM...so much wisdom from so much pain.
  8. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    You are in the right place, Recovering.

    As I started to read your post my heart just cracked open and started bleeding for you....it seemed so AWFUL to come home from that wonderful respite to those messages..I was halfway there ahead of you, gut clenching, shock, distress, "leap into action" needs...and then...I kept reading! I so get the feeling of letting it all go, and having that feel right. It is like reading something on the news, where you say...oh, that is too bad. And turn the page. You might read the follow up story when you feel like it, or you might not.

    It is not for you to run around after cars and money and fixits. You can decide whether to put money on her account (I did that for difficult child when he told me he didn't have clean socks or underwear...later it sounded sort of like he spent it on kitkats, if that is possible). Eventually I found a place where I could order specific clothes..that felt right to me. NOthing else. YOu may not want to go that far, or you may want to do more.

    REally really really good to disconnect the house phone. I widh I had done that at so many periods of my life, in so many ways, even in NON crisis! WE need the time to be whole in our own minds in our own selves, crisis time or no.

    I am glad you are in a good place. difficult child will be as she is, where she is. You can go about your day now.

    Hugs, heartfelt thoughts, full attention and support...whatever I can do from here in cyberspace!

  9. lovemysons

    lovemysons Well-Known Member

    Sending those good vibes and prayers for you both RE...and for your granddaughter as well. You are doing a good job of teaching her how to move on with life regardless of difficult child problems/behavior from mom.

    Stay well sweet friend,
  10. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member



    I'm home again. Spent the afternoon at the gallery. It was fantastic. I love it there. So good to get away, to interact those who have no clue about the secrets, about the pain.

    Each of us needs to walk these paths of the heart on her own. You know that already. However it feels right now, you have worked hard to develop the skills you need. You will see with clarity and respond from a position of strength and integrity.

    You have been so good to all of us, so generous and strong for each of us when we could not see our ways ourselves, Recovering. I hope you can feel us now, sending you strength and compassion and clarity.

    I came on tonight specifically to post to you.

    Holding you and your family in my thoughts and prayers, Recovering.

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  11. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Thank you LMS, MWM, Echo and Cedar, I do feel all of you.......and it is so good to know you all understand.

    I am okay. I had a bump yesterday when we decided to let her roommate know that she is in jail because of her 4 cats and also just so he knows. I didn't have his phone number so I wrote him a note and SO dropped it off at his home just a few blocks from us with SO's phone number. The roommate and SO texted and we found out that he is "done with her" because he said "he is tired of being lied to and used." That had an impact on me because now, when she gets out she will literally have no where to go, she will have nothing.

    This is the future I told her would happen if she continued down the road she is on. Now it is here. I imagine her car is in impound with her purse and everything she carries around with her, which is a lot. It all sits there and the bill gets larger and larger and someday when you want to get a license, or registration, you can't until that bill is paid. I found that all out the last time, when I paid it and got the car out.

    Whenever she gets out, tomorrow, or in a year, (it appears it is a second probation violation so how long she stays in jail is up to the judge) she gets out with the clothes on her back and that's it, no where to go, no car, no identification, no friends, nothing. At so many points along the way, she could have made some positive choices, however, she never did. We knew this was going to happen eventually and now it has.

    We plugged the phone back in yesterday afternoon. It rang a few times and I didn't answer it. She didn't call me yesterday at work. If she calls now, I will see how I feel and possibly take the call, I don't know, I am taking this one moment to the next. I am hoping she stays in jail and perhaps receives some counseling. The last time she was in for a month, she was in a group and the counselor told her she had serious anxiety issues, which is true and the groups seemed to help her............but whatever happens, to me, this feels like the bottom she has managed to avoid for 4 years. When I look back over that time, it all got to this point starting with the loss of her job and then the loss of her home...........from that point to this, it was a clear spiral down. I became involved 2 years ago, the first time she was put in jail, that is when the big slide began and all of my enabling stuff erupted full force.

    As I mentioned before, this all feels as if we are all in our "right" place. That is a very strong feeling which I haven't had before. It doesn't feel good necessarily, I feel sad for my daughter. I feel sad for myself too. For some reason the realization that I have no family behind me (my bio family all being pretty out there) and my daughter, (also, out there.........) brings a different kind of sadness now. Certainly understandable. As we've talked about, I just have to sit with this now. And, yet, that feeling of it all being somehow, right, that this was where we were all headed and had to go is so strong...........our collective fate seems to have hit the point at which a nova occurs............and when the pieces all settle again, I do think this is going to look quite different.

    In the meantime, if you could circle those wagons around us and say a prayer for all of us, I would so appreciate that..........thanks.
  12. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    No matter how much we already know it is so...it is hard to hear how others see our sons and daughters. I'm sorry for this, and for the fear for your daughter that it brings up.

    You are right...all steps on her part lead her exactly here. All interventions on your part only delayed the day. She was determined to get to this point, through whatever devil it is that works in our difficult children, and so she did. I totally get what you mean about feeling that all is in its right place.

    When my son was in jail the PD told me that they have caseworkers on staff, and that he would be welcome to use them upon release...that ideally he would make an appointment, but that if that were not possible they would accept walk ins...maybe something like that exists for your daughter.

    LIke Cedar's husband, you are going through the feeling of loss of the dream of family...that one comes around again and again and again. I can't get a happy childhood back for my kids, difficult child or easy child's. One of my easy child's hallucinates the sound of people yelling in another room whenever he has a fever, and sometimes when falling asleep. That stabs me to the heart to think of. I cannot make it go away. I have to sit with that...and as you have said, you can sit with the feeling of aloneness...sit with it will heal you over time.

    We are all here for you, checking in, hearing you, seeing you, holding you close.


    Even as I type that I see that I am trying in a little way to fix things for her, for you, for her through you. I am sure that the PD will let her know what if any resources are available to her.
  13. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Hugs Recovering,

    I am so very sorry your daughter is back in jail.....and that her roommate says, "No more". When it looks like our difficult child can get along with somebody else, it gives us hope. With my own gfg32, it was the lack of honesty that always seemed the final straw in other relationships. He was never honest with husband and me, either...but we stuck it out longer than the others. ugh

    Others have mentioned resources and I am hoping there is a halfway house, something. One time when my difficult child was let out of jail after a few days, it was with the clothes on his back and one shoe (because he only had one shoe when they arrested him). Within a few days he was back in jail - NOT because he only had one shoe, but that always bothered me....the image.

    When we vow we are through/done with the enabling, this is where it comes down to where the something meets the something, I guess. The impounded car and its fees....yet, we know it is the right thing to do. Put the responsibility on the difficult child to straighten out his/her life.

    I like it when folks on here say things that remind me, Is this the way you want to live when you are 80 years old and difficult child is 55? Because that is where you would be if you keep up the enabling.

    You have inspired me with such wonderful words, made some dark days so much better.

    I guarantee you my wagon IS in the circle!
  14. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    This is going to sound harsh, Recovering. The truth is, you are in a hard, harsh place.

    "When she gets out, she will...have nothing."

    That is simply the truth, Recovering. Strip it of its emotional components so you can see.

    You may already have done this. If not, call Social Services now and find out what is available, what will happen for your daughter when she is released, if you do nothing. This is not an end point, Recovering. It is a time of choice. Right now, you have time.

    You have the gift of time, Recovering.

    Use it to learn where you are.

    There was a time when I researched shelters where my daughter was. I called them myself, Recovering. That is how I learned true things about where I was. I was able to learn so little Recovering, just a sliver, the tiniest sliver, that I had not known, before. But that sliver of information was enough.

    I was able to see. So, I was able to begin to find landmarks familiar to me.

    And I made a decision, and I was out of the fog.

    Any smallest factual thing, Recovering.

    Breathing room. That is all you need to do, this morning. Find a space to breathe. Deep, clear breath.

    You are stronger, better prepared for this, than you know.

    It will be hard. You have done harder things.


    Something I did not tell you all about difficult child daughter's decision to return to the father of her 14 year old is that difficult child was afraid to do that without transportation out of there if it should be needed. To reinstate her license cost us $1000. There were other fees and shortages over the next week or two around the issue of license plates and etc.

    difficult child daughter lost her license again shortly thereafter.

    She needs fines paid and etc again, now.

    We said no.

    Her truck is in impound, as her van was, when we got home last Spring.

    Recovering, I'm so sorry...but this is not your problem. Unless I am wrong ~ and I could be ~ there is nothing you can do for your daughter that will not be undone in the blink of an eye.

    As it was undone, Recovering, last time.

    I'm sorry. I know what this feels like, and I'm sorry, Recovering.


    Please do not take the call until you know where you are.

    It has worked wonders for me to be able to say to my daughter:

    "You are not a beggar. I want you independent and healthy and strong. You don't need me, ex-husband, anyone. I love you."

    It was after the first few times I told her something like that that difficult child daughter related the story about panhandling. The one where the woman was going to give difficult child daughter a quarter. The man she was with reached over, covered the woman's hand, and said, "Don't encourage the beggars, dear."

    difficult child daughter and I had a good laugh over that one.

    Except for me.


    You haven't lost anything new, Recovering. You never had those things you fought so hard to have, those relationships you forged from the wreckage of what might have been, of what should have been.

    There is a kind of freedom in this thought, in this new understanding, Recovering.

    Do you see it?

    We never had those things, Recovering. Not in our families of origin, and not in the families we created. We have been fighting for the dream, for a dream.

    A chimera.

    We cannot lose something that never existed.

    So, we haven't lost anything real.

    All that is left, once we can see that so clearly...is our courage in having fought for those good things.


    A distillation of courage.


    I am so happy to give back to you, Recovering. You have given and given so much to me, to all of us here. So maybe we are creating the generosity, the appreciation, the sincerity of motive and purpose we sowed into our families...here.

    Nothing is lost Recovering, in the tapestry's creation.

    There is purpose, there is meaning.

    We just don't know what it is.

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  15. Childofmine

    Childofmine trying to do this thing one day at a time Staff Member

    RE, I know it is hard to hear that yet another person is done. I remember feeling that my ex-husband shouldn't let my son live with him but also somehow glad he had somewhere to be. And then he was done.

    It is so hard to know that they literally have nowhere to go and nobody to go to. The mommy inside us cries out against that. It's in our DNA.

    Last week, when I met difficult child for our 10-minute "come to Jesus" talk, I was struck by the sight of him fumbling in his backpack. I saw that package of peanut butter crackers there. I can almost cry right now seeing that again in my mind's eye. His life has come down to this. A backpack with shampoo and deodorant, an extra pair of jeans, a shirt or two. Peanut butter crackers.

    I had to walk away. RE, you have done it and done it and done it, and it didn't do anything but prolong this day, this time.

    I don't know why it has to be this way. I only know that it is. And if we keep on and on and on, they will just keep on and on and on.

    It is the saddest thing in this world. It is particularly sad because it could have been so different for so long.

    RE, you are feeling that where you are is right because it is. It isn't comfortable, but it is right. Maybe, right now, you will wrack your brain for just one....more....thing....you can do. Surely there must be. This is hard stuff, hearing all of this that you are hearing and thinking the things you are thinking. It is an end of the road.

    As we so painfully know, people can and do survive in circumstances that are incomprehensible to us. Yesterday, my son FB-messaged me and asked if I still have his resume I helped him with from 2011. I found it, and I have emailed it to him. He also asked about his w-2 form and about his car title/car key. I have responded about those things.

    The cynical me can paint a picture with all of that. The hopeful me can paint another picture. But I am still working hard on ME, on letting him be. On letting him go. If it is a hopeful picture, than Hallelujah! If it is another step down the wrong road, then he will again have to suffer the consequences. I am not going to send him to school on the dangers of title loans, etc. I'm not going to go there, RE.

    Your daughter will have to ask questions. She will have to find her own resources, her own shelter, her own halfway house, her own medical care, her own next meal. Her own next shower. She can, RE. If they can do all of these other things they are doing, they surely can open their mouths and ask. There is a lot of help out there. But first they have to ask.

    That is what I told my son as I stood there with him last Tuesday about this time. I said, either you will figure it out, or you will be standing here at this same spot with the same backpack this time next year.

    Did I believe everything I said, RE? I don't know if I did or not. I just know I had to do it. RE, I---and you---we have already done everything else. EVERYTHING ELSE IN THIS WORLD.

    We must somehow, someway find the strength, courage, support, energy and purpose to keep moving forward on this path.

    You always help me so, so very much with your words, RE. You encourage me so much and you have a gift of choosing the right words at the right time. I wish I could help you and say just the right thing. I don't know what that is right now, but please know this. I am feeling your pain right now, and I am right here with you. See my wagon? It's right here.
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  16. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    I really like Cedar's now twice repeated concept of...there is nothing here you didn't already know. Don't let something you already knew destroy you now.

    My mom always had trouble with word finding, and with her memory. As early as her 60's she wanted to be tested for alzheimer's disease. By her late 70's she was obviously severely impaired, living alone, failing to pay bills (electricity turned off more than once) accumulating dirty dishes, and (my favorite) hitchhiking. When she finally got the actually diagnosis of Alzheimer's my siblings and my mom totally fell apart...I was almost surprised...I said...she is exactly as she was yestarday, as she has been. Nothing has changed. All that has changed now is the label. She is the same.

    I feel that way about our difficult child's sometimes...your daughter's label has changed. Now it is "inmate." We parents of difficult child's are oddly accustomed to that label now. Nothing about your daughter has changed. YOu already know everything you need to know about her. You are on the same stable ground you have worked so hard to gain. You are OK.

  17. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    Ouch, Seeking.

    I'm so sorry this happened.

  18. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Well, guess we better cook up some grub for all of us on the wagon train! Thanks to all of you for your sweet support, it so helps. As soon as I wrote down my tale to you this morning, knowing it would be received in to all of your hearts, I felt pretty okay!

    It was a different feeling Echo, this sort of standing alone kind of thing. I realized that has always been the truth and that realization grabbed me in a different way............the stark reality of it all.............a deeper recognition of my aloneness. Not really a negative as much as a startling bit of a deeper truth. I feel okay with it right now. It's simply what is and what has always been.

    Yes, that was the bump for me.

    Thanks for that Cedar. Yes, I didn't step in, the truth was pretty evident, even to the "most casual observer" even me!

    That made my day Cedar, thank you.

    SS, thank you. I will not be that 80 year old, that was always enough to SCARE me into recovery!!

    You are absolutely correct Cedar, this is not my problem. I already paid all of that the first go round, I will not be paying for anything this time. In real life I am a very efficient, organized, practical kind of character and the idea that those impound costs will grow so enormously while she is in jail is so preposterous and unnecessary it is actually offensive to me. But, it is CLEARLY, her problem, not mine.

    I do. I do see it. When SO and I were talking this morning, that part became clear. I have always been on my own, since I was a little kid. I have had various insights about that over the years..................and this time I saw myself alone between the generations.........it felt sad...........I sat with that.............I talked to SO about it..............then when I arrived at work, I felt pretty good..............as you said, it is simply the truth. Then I realized that I kept my daughter from ever, ever feeling that aloneness, I was ALWAYS there. But for me, I became strong, independent, resourceful, courageous.............traits she never developed in herself. And, I thought, she will lose everything and she will have the opportunity to build a new life..............or not. The same opportunity I had, you had, most of us had.........to make a choice for life, to leave the past behind, to move ahead with courage and a commitment to ourselves..............seeing all of that felt empowering.

    Thank you COM. You are so right. It will all be up to her now, as it could have always been. She gets to start her own new..........or old life............and it will ALL be up to her.

    That is so true. I am still in the same place I was when I was in Mendocino...........nothing has changed, simply my daughter's address! HA. That made me laugh out loud!

    Thank you to each and every one of you. I am back in my center now.............(big deep breath just taken)
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2014
  19. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    This is huge. I thought about this the other day when Scent posted about past bad/sad holidays and plenty of other bad days because of difficult children. GFG32 has not spent Christmas with us in years, yet every Christmas I find myself wistfully wishing things were different....that my family had that picture book Christmas Day --where kids and grand kids gather for fun and laughter. It was the dream that made me sad.

    Amazing how long we can hold onto those wishes, knowing full well it ain't gonna happen.

    We do know about incarceration too much on this board. I am the only person I know, among my friends, who has a difficult child. I do know of one other person (former superintendent of our school district.) His youngest son is gfg32's age and has been in and out of jail because of meth. He was a CPA, two young daughters and I imagine his mom and dad feel much of what husband and I feel. But, we are not "friends" and do not speak of it when we run into each other.

    So, I have felt shame and embarrassment and this board has helped so much with that.

    But, I agree Recovering, that you can do this and you have faced this before. I hurt for you, though--because we are their mothers and it is just gonna hurt each and every time. Perhaps, down the road, it hurts less. But, we wanted something SO different for them and they deserve better IF they will work for it.
  20. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Yeah, me too SS.

    And, when the local paper comes out I will get to answer those questions "was that your daughter I saw in the police report, arrested last Saturday night?" The first time, I wanted to curl into a ball..............this time? SO said, "tell them you don't know who that is." I don't know why that tickled my funny bone. Maybe because I don't know who she is....really. And, I don't feel that shame anymore............if someone is going to judge me, seriously? They can't do it any better then I was judging myself. And, now that I am not judging myself, I don't care what anyone else thinks. (well, maybe if she were on the 6 o'clock news, that might spark a reaction!)

    There are always these adjustments to make, these shifts and changes with our difficult child's. I am reading this terrific book called Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change by Pema Chodron. It is the perfect book for me right now. Here is a quote which helped me through this last couple of days. "In My Stroke of Insight, the brain scientist Jill Bolte Taylor's book about her recovery from a massive stroke, (I read it, it's a wonderful book!) she explains the physiological mechanism behind emotion: an emotion like anger that's an automatic response lasts just ninety seconds from the moment it's triggered until it runs it's course. One and a half minutes, that's all. When it lasts any longer, which it usually does, it's because we've chosen to rekindle it. The fact of the shifting, changing nature of our emotions is something we could take advantage of. But do we? No. Instead, when an emotion comes up, we fuel it with our thoughts, and what should last one and a half minutes may be drawn out for ten or twenty years. We just keep recycling the story line. We keep strengthening our old habits."

    All of this information, new and old, is helping me to realize I have a choice to either suffer and invite misery in...........or look at this a different way. You've all helped to lift me back up.............I can walk directly into sorrow, or fear............or I could choose to feel differently. That one and a half minute thing really impacted me. I can see my own story line pretty effectively.............I really want to drop that and be an empty slate as each moment shows up. Practice, practice, practice................
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    Last edited: Feb 25, 2014