To Each Their Own "Stuff"


Well-Known Member
Well, this should be fairly short because, honestly, things are going pretty darned well here.

Our son -- He has been clean for nearly 2 months now and working a LOT of hours. He's enjoying his job (warehouse for sporting goods) and moves into clean and sober housing in a week or so (not sure which day yet). He's paying his fines, put on 25 lbs (even has muscles now), and generally enjoyable (with occasional exception when he's "amped"). we've ever seen in many ways. Makes us very happy to see him happy! This is his 3rd attempt at sobriety and, although he has had relapse (and may again....always at risk), we see clear improvement.

In short, he's working on his "stuff" all by himself (not even asking for assistance -- zippo, zilcho). Just doing it all himself. Outstanding!

Husband & Me -- We're feeling a breather and just loving it! We've been getting out a lot to fun events, seeing friends, etc. Through a series of events, I have become aware of some areas of my life which I want (and need) to work on and improve. And I have the energy and focus for it now, as things are smooth here.

In short, I'm working on my "stuff" and am in high learning mode. Always so much to learn. I have "blind spots" I didn't even know I had. Had a terrific lucid dream about that a few days ago that was stunningly clarifying and very pleasant for me in symbolism. Symbolism helps me make sense of.....well, everything.

Son & Me -- After all these years, we are finally finding our balance (of space and boundaries). We've discussed our boundaries at length and each declared our preferences. So far so good! (knock wood!) As we have sometimes lost him for 6 months at a time (recently, even), we have learned to cherish the good moments of connection when they come (as they are often fleeting).

We had him over for BBQ Saturday and had a "moment". Long story short, son and I were both standing (he's 6' tall and I'm, uh, 4'11") and I told him how proud of him I was. I started crying. Couldn't help it. We stared deeply into each other's eyes for a long time........a really long time. Like a full minute or more. No blinking or looking away. I hugged him and he hugged me. Then, also a minute or more later (long hugs), he hugged me TIGHTER and did not let go. I was ready to let to, but he was not. We stood there, just hugging tightly for minutes. Minutes. No words. I will never forget it.

So..... He's working on his "stuff" and I'm working on my "stuff".

And we all have gratitude for this time. Whether it remains long or not, we always have the "Now". And this particular "Now" is very good! (We haven't been able to say that often, so we're just runnin' with that ball and appreciating it!)


one day at a time
I am so glad to hear this.

In particular, a key part of what you wrote is this (to me): You are continuing to work on yourself regardless of his progress. You are putting yourself and your life first. You are staying on "your side of the street." You are respecting him and his boundaries.

What an accomplishment! What progress. It is so amazing that when we start better understanding who we are and who they are and how we are not the "same person" and their lives are their responsibility and our lives are our responsibility...that things continue to improve.

Not perfection. Not hearts and roses. Not a Cinderella story.

But real people, living real, messy, chaotic, wonderful, tough lives.

It is amazing to experience. And it's as much about us as it is about them.

What I have seen on this board and in my own experience is that when we start to realize that it IS as much about how we grow and change, as it is how they grow and change, then everything starts to get better. As long as we are sitting and waiting on "them to change," over-focusing on their lives, trying to control, manage, fix and "help" them, little may change.

Tanya M

Living with an attitude of gratitude
Staff member
HLM that is just wonderful. What a special moment for you and your son to share that loving embrace.

I too have found that I continue to work on "my stuff". It doesn't matter how much you've been and worked through there are always areas of our lives that need work, always something new to learn.

I'm glad that you and your husband are getting out and enjoying life.

But real people, living real, messy, chaotic, wonderful, tough lives.

It is amazing to experience. And it's as much about us as it is about them.

Love what COM says here, so very true!!

Thanks so much for sharing this beautifully optimistic post.



Well-Known Member
Thank you all for your very kind words. Yup......learning bunches and bunches lately. And it's all good. :) I send all best wishes for a beautiful week ahead for all of you.

A friend just shared this today and it reminded me of my long. tight hug last Saturday with our son. It may not have stuck all of my broken pieces back together, but it did stick a bunch of 'em back together......especially in relation to him!


Well-Known Member
I do not think that a parent of a typical kiddo could appreciate the sheer beauty of these moments. Perhaps this is one of the "gifts" that our troubled kiddos give us...........the knowledge of how fragile and miraculous the parent child bond truly is.