Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Albatross, Mar 2, 2016.

  1. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    I have not been contributing much lately, though I read along regularly.

    The last I checked in, D.C. moved out due to his drunken arguments, stealing from us, and refusal to find a job. He told us he couch-surfed for a couple of weeks, then found a job and enrolled in classes. Life sucked, his job sucked, he had no friends, his roommate was crazy, school was a hassle, he was getting evicted...the usual stuff we hear when he moves out.

    One day I was scrolling through FB and there was D.C., on a plane...to a tropical locale...for a few months...with a new girlfriend...

    Still not sure what the story is, but he really is in a lovely beachfront condo with someone he apparently met in detox. He posted a few pictures. Once in awhile we get cryptic messages; "gonna stay, looking for an apartment," "this woman is crazy and you need to get me out of here," etc. No response to our followup calls and texts. Last night it was "in the emergency room," no response when I asked why, but this morning "met some cool people, got a car, it will be alright"

    It's pretty crazy-making if I let it. So I don't.

    If he was seriously hurt he would let me know the details, or someone would. If he wants to stay, great! And there are worse places to be stranded, right? It seems he has found the ultimate couch surfing adventure.

    My gut feeling is that he's drinking himself into oblivion, because he's not making any sense and not following up on anything he says or does. But truly there's nothing, NOTHING, I can do about it, so I am just going to let it go...
  2. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Well, it could be worse. He is safe, it sounds. Who knows where the money is coming from. Do you? This is the stuff of which lives are made. One way or another.. He could just as well find himself. Is he in a place where he could actually make a life, or is it mainly a tropical paradise?

    I lived in a subtropical nation for several years. I wanted to live there forever. I got residency and the right to work. He may too. Maybe he will learn the language and start a business. Learn to dance? Find another girl? Who knows?

    From one who is suffering because my son returned to my town, how great it is he is not on your doorstep like mine is. At least that is the way I feel.

    I am afraid to hope for more. But I will try.

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  3. Kalahou

    Kalahou Active Member

    You got it. It's really powerful, Alb, when we realize and admit our "powerlessness." There is a lot of freedom and peace that comes when we can begin to just say or pray with thankfulness that "there is nothing I need to do." It doesn't mean we are giving up but that we know there is nothing we can do to make anything better right now.

    Take care. Breathe in the new day. Ka la hou
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  4. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    I too will get those cryptic messages, just enough info to make you worry and wonder. I have come to look at them as bait and I, like you have learned not to bite. My son like yours and many others always manage to work things out.

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  5. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Dear Alb, thanks for the update. Sounds .... well...typical, right? Up and down, back and forth, crazy-making for us. The more we know, the more we don't want to know.

    People have a right to make their own way, and who am I to say whether it's right or wrong? I hope he finds a good life on this tropical beach with this new girlfriend. Maybe something good will happen for him there. Maybe it already is.

    Who the heck knows??? The main thing is---how are YOU? Can you regain your equilibrium and go "back to where you were" before all of this back and forth, up and down that recently happened?

    He is somewhere good today. Rest, lean way back, in that knowledge and breathe.

    Warm hugs for you friend!
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  6. Hopeful97

    Hopeful97 Active Member


    You are right there is nothing you can do. It is something I think I have come a long way with accepting. I say the Serenity Prayer a lot it really helps.

    You sound like you are doing good with this that is my hope and prayer. Stay strong Warrior Mom!

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  7. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Albie you are doing well.
    How did you choose your name, if you don't mind me asking.
    The Laysan Albatross breed and frequent the Northwest Hawaiian islands, so it is pretty symbolic your " chick" ended up in the tropics.
    Who can even begin to figure out what these kids are up to, the where's and whys of it. I am sorry about the random, crazy making texts, with limited response.
    To your credit you are not letting it get to you.

    I must tell you, I admire your strength and appreciate your posts. Your words have helped me in my efforts to get to that place of what is, is.

    Thank you for sharing Albatross. I pray that your son finds his way.

  8. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Sadly, Copa, I think this is true, that my peace of mind is inversely proportional to his distance from us.

    Sometimes it is so hard for me, to not fall into cynicism or hopelessness. There is great peace in resting in that; there is nothing *I* can do, but that doesn't mean there is nothing being done.

    They DO, don't they?!? If the world goes to hell in a hand-basket, these are the guys to call.

    Thank you for this, and for the warm hugs, my friend. Remembering your son coming through the other side on what started with his arm injury has helped me so much in coping. Grace and awakening can indeed come from the most unlikely of events.

    I sound stronger than I read, apparently! This place helps us all keep our armor intact, I think.

    I chose the name because my relationship with d.c. had become such an overwhelming spiritual burden. An albatross around my neck, like the Ancient Mariner. It is an attempt to remind myself to let it go...and hope it flies.

    Thank you, Leafy! I am so glad that my posts have been of help. Thank you for your prayers.

  9. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    You know, for me, the site allows me to divest some of my armor. I do not want to define myself or be defined in my relationship with my son, by my armor, but by my love.

    I have been trying to find another way to love, that allows me to be more permeable, less defended. So far, not so good.

    I am seeing that the love itself is not the problem. It is other things: like fear, like guilt, like obligation, enmeshment that are the problem and that must be why it is so much harder when he is near.

    Back to the drawing board.

    How to let go of the burdens of should, of future-thinking, that seems to be the key for me.

    It has been so good to hear from you Albatross. I hope you will keep us posted. I am glad to know you are here. And well.

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    Last edited: Apr 21, 2016
  10. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    Hi, Albatross.


    It's so nice to see you.

    That is the battle for us I think. Not to write the end of the story and then, forget that we don't know any smallest thing about what is really happening, or about what is coming next. We fall into believing our interpretation of what is happening to our kids and to ourselves and extend what little we know, and whatever we've gotten wrong, into the ending or the meaning of the story we then write in our hearts.

    Then, we believe that feeling, those feelings, are something real. And we become sad, and resigned, and hopelessness is just a breath away from us, then.

    We are learning to come into balance around not knowing. This is so hard, because everything that matters about ourselves and our lives and our self concepts and our children (!) hangs in that balance somewhere. Like a star or something so beautiful to us.

    And we are in the rabbit hole, where nothing makes sense.

    I remember your having posted that phrase about the rabbit hole for us once, Albatross. I have never forgotten it, and have been able to take some comfort there many times.

    Very nice to see you again, Alby.

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  11. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    A quick update:

    Son has been back from his "tropical vacation" for about a month. He has not asked us for any help, other than a ride from the airport to his friend's house. He looked good when we picked him up.

    He got a job at a day labor sort of place and pooled his money with a few friends to buy a van, with the goal of seeing some sights out west. There is only 1 friend and our son who are still in on the plan, but the two did save up enough money to pay for food and gas to a job waiting for them a few states over.

    He stopped by about 2 weeks ago, very drunk and disheveled, picking arguments. NOT driving the van, thank goodness. He said he just wanted to pick up some old sports equipment he had in storage, so he could sell it for his trip. We figured he was probably selling it for alcohol.

    A few days later he texted to apologize and said he shouldn't have shown up like that. He told us he was leaving for his trip in a few days and wanted to stop by and see us before he left.

    When he and his friend stopped by last week he looked really good -- clean with clean clothes, sober, eyes bright once again. Van packed and ready to go.

    As he was leaving, he gave us both hugs and said, "I'm really gonna miss you. I'm sorry for all the drama I've caused you."

    I didn't know what to say (despite having imagined this sentence in my head roughly 6 billion times) and knew I was going to make a big ol' bawling mess of things, so I just gave him another hug and told him maybe we could come see him once he found a place to stay for awhile. He said he'd really like that. Then we handed him a card with a little money inside and he left. THEN I turned into a big ol' bawling mess.

    The last we heard he and his friend made it to the first destination and are hoping to work and save a little money and move on.

    It's hard not to put "stuff" onto any thoughts I have about this, good or bad. It's hard not to try to make this a permanent thing in my mind. I want to just accept it as what it is, accept today for what it is. Just have no expectations.

    But it was SO good to see him that way. I am going to at least have that be who he "is" in my mind and my memory until I see him again.

    I am very happy that he is off on an adventure. He is happiest when he is on the road. And I am happiest too (and feel certain he is as well) when there is some physical distance in our relationship. We get along much better that way.
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  12. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Alb, what a great post, and it looks like he is making real progress. I know it's not perfect, and that makes you nervous and I so get that. But it is...progress. Progress, not perfection (one of the best Al-Anon slogans I think!).

    Just wait and see what happens next. So so glad you had this experience! Keep us posted. Hugs!
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  13. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    This is huge. Awareness of the impact of his choices on others and prepared to own the problem.

    I'm old enough to remember the days when lots of kids did their maturing this way!
  14. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    What a great post.

    Your son really stepped up to the plate. My son has been living in a house we own. It has been a step forward, and then back. Yesterday was a blow out. Marijuana, laziness, disrespect, etc. We went to the brink. Again.

    And today, too. When it had quieted down and he seemed tranquil I told him, "there is no desire to control you or to take away anything. We want you to live well and to have the kind of life so that you can thrive. Everything we expect from you comes from that place. We love you."

    "I know that! And I never doubt it."

    To hear these kinds of words, these words makes up for so much. You heard them, Albatross, and with them came a series of constructive and forward-seeking actions that to me, show that your son is seeking a different and better future and future-self.
  15. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Me too. A road trip!!!
  16. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Fantastic growth!!!!! I see he is only 21. This sounds like a good turning point for a young man. I love his apology. Your son is growing up and he is still young Very good news. Wonderful morning news.
  17. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Oops, guess it's time to update my signature! He's 23 now, but still very young. Hopefully making some changes.

    Hard to believe how long I've been on these boards!
  18. so ready to live

    so ready to live Active Member

    Hi Alb. thank you for your posts, they always encourage me.
    I so pray to use this someday, hoping to have a visit when he is sober and remember him that way. I can't foresee a time when he would be cognizant enough to apologize for the alcohol/drug fueled encounters, but you never know. And that is truly "the rabbit hole"... we just never know...There is so much comfort in feeling that you all "get it" Prayers.