My Difficult Child came home for Thanksgiving . He is on the lam, with warrants out for his arrest. He called my house, my phone, my boyfriend, and my ex in a frantic flurry on Wednesday night, leaving messages everywhere asking if he could come for Thanksgiving. He was always the most family oriented of my 4 kids..he loved his grandparents and his aunts and uncles and all holidays. In classic Difficult Child fashion he would get so excited about upcoming holidays that he would work himself into a lather, sometimes throwing up or getting a migraine (cyclic vomiting syndrome, who knew). He hasn't been home for a holiday in years, probably 5 years. But I digress. After some hesitation I let everyone know that if he reached them, they could tell him to come over in the mornign in time to shower and he was invited to Thanksgiving. Who else would be there? My siblings and their kids. My ex husband and his new wife and their three kids...his stepsiblings, whom he has never met. He wasn't invited to their wedding two years ago. My boyfriend's 16 month old granddaughter, whom he had never met. And miscellaneous others. He didn't call anyone in the morning. At about noon he called from a few blocks away and I invited him over..he was thrilled. Then he called about 10 minutes later and said he didn't think he would come after all, he just wasn't up for seeing everyone..."I'm not doing very well, mom." I assured him that we all knew that, that he was welcome anyway, and that everyone knew he was coming. So he came. (my ex asked if we were harboring a felon. I said yes.) He actually didn't smell, but he wanted the shower anyway. He was quiet, subdued, but engaged. He posed for pictures. Later when we went for our ritual "after the meal before the dessert" family walk, he said he would peel off at the park, and he did. It was a very poignant, sweet day. His younger brothers are freshmen in college..they haven't seen him in at least two years. His sister is living with me but just got a job in NY and is preparing to move...she has seen him once in four years. He has never met his stepsiblings. He has missed a lot. We have missed a lot. And clearly, he is not able, right now, to do better or differently than he is doing. So no change in sight. The next day he joined his dad and siblings for a movie, where apparently he was loud, obnoxious, and inappropriate. This was a good reminder that there are reasons that we haven't seen him in years! Last night he called, sobbing. He had been arrested in the neighborhood where they deal heroin, and they had uncovered his warrants. Of course. So back to jail he goes. Today he called full of shame and guilt and grief and regret. And I told him to stop it. He said "I feel pathetic" and I said, go ahead and feel that way...for 24 hours. Then get it together. Because all the help the courts gave you is over now...they said that was the last placement, and you walked away. You are on your own, and, amazingly, you are strong enough to manage. I said "don't call me when you are crying, I am done with that." And then...I got off the phone and cried too. I think I move through my life pretty well given the endless sorrow of my son. This place , this board has helped immeasurably with that. Sometimes, though, I feel like my heart is a closed pressure cooker...all looks fine on the surface, but there will be some awful mess and explosion if I lift the lid. Most times, though, I try to allow my grief. I feel very in touch with myself, with the fragile sweetness of life, with the sorrow and the beauty of it all, when I allow myself to feel my love and grief for him. I'm posting because I feel better in the company of all of you. Because not many people can understand how relieved I was when he called to say he'd been arrested Because it is lonely cleaning up after Thanksgiving and having my son, whom I genuinely believe is shamed and regretful, spending the first of many many days in jail again, with no idea how he will face his own future. I don't really have any questions. I am just seeking the company of my good and wise friends here.