Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Drug/alcohol abuse

I am passionate about drug/alcohol abuse. I've seen first-hand the devastation it causes. I've seen a normal, functioning family become an addicted family. I've seen children get sucked into the sickness, even though they don't live at home anymore. I've seen grown men be silent about this disease, when they should be shouting from the roof tops and helping siblings overcome the terrible effects.

It is absolutely a family sickness. No one will step forward and confront the addicted person, they are too afraid of retribution if they do. They all turn a blind eye, when they know a call should be made to authorities about illegal activities being conducted.

One brother is gone due to the effects of alcoholism. He used to carry around a clear "water" bottle at deer camp, with his name on it, so the brothers wouldn't suspect what was really inside. The brothers never confronted him, but HE knew that THEY knew. He finally decided he had to quit, but by that time his body was beyond repair. He left behind 2 children and 2 grandchildren, and now has one more grandchild, a boy, named after his grandfathers.

The thing that I notice most about addictions is that the addicted person thinks everyone is against them. They do no wrong, everyone else picks on them. This gets worse as the addiction worsens. They justify what they do, and they truly believe that others don't see what they are doing. When in actuality we all know what goes on, but there again, I guess I'm even effected, no one does anything.

There have been cousins lost due to the same addictions. The tendency to become an alcoholic/drug abuser is inherited, not the actual disease. Some families are severely effected, with many family members suffering from the disease.

Over the years I've come to understand that I totally don't get the addiction (thank goodness), that I don't understand why the affected person can't quit. I'm just thankful that my personal, immediate experience ended many years ago. I'm thankful for a husband that is strong, who has good values and loves and cares for Justin and I.

I don't think our family addict will ever be healed, I'm afraid that he will end up spending time in prison, again. Sometimes I think this is the best solution, not just for him, but for his aging parents. His parents are the ones suffering the most because of his addiction. We are all affected by the actions of the addict, we all love him, we all worry about him. Most of all we all worry about his parents, about the possibility of abuse, the stress this places on his parents. We know that they are heart-sick, but don't know what to do that would help. This is truly a family addiction.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

We had a snowy day today. It was beautiful.

Most of this post was written just before Christmas. I left it as a draft, and after visiting with Lori Fillerup about our moms today, I finished it and posted it. It may be pretty personal, but these are things that I want recorded so they don't fade with time.

December 2011
This time of year there are so many things to be grateful for. I'm so grateful for a strong, loving family. I have the best husband, son, brothers, brother's-in-law, sister's-in-law, mother and father-in-law. I am truly blessed.

I've been looking forward to Christmas a lot this year, which I think is kind of funny, considering I lost my little mom just 4 1/2 months ago. What a ride that has been. I'm looking forward to a family Christmas, with new traditions starting - a new beginning.

The day my little mom passed away I wrote on Facebook that August 1st would be a good day for a new beginning. I think Collette and I both felt the anxiousness surrounding mom that day, and I believe that we both knew that would be the day. It was a grand new beginning for my little mom, she was able to return to our loving Father in Heaven and "her Max" and Terry, along with countless other family members and friends.

It was also a new beginning for our family. Whatever would we do without her to hold us together? What would I do with my time after work when I would usually go to her house and help her shower or help her with dinner. What would I do without her to call and laugh with and complain to, she always took my side even if I was at fault. I knew that I would never have a champion like her on my side again. No one loves you like your mother.

There have been so many tender mercies this past year, that I almost hate to see the year end. I say "almost" because it's been a pretty tough year also. It's been a year of enlightening for me, coming to the realization that my little mom was still with me in the early part of the year, but she wasn't the little mom that I had had for so many years. She couldn't go shopping with me or really do much outside of her home. I so enjoyed our lunches and after work times together. I so fought her getting "old". I knew she was getting older, but it wasn't until near the end that I finally admitted to myself that she really was a little old lady.

She has always had so much grace and a vitality of life that everyone noticed about her. Her most endearing quality was her humility. She truly had no idea of how special she was to everyone, that made her even more loveable. Although sometimes it drove me nuts that she would belittle herself, her abilities, etc.

I think one of the reasons that I'm excited for Christmas is that she is with me and helping me through this hard time. Between her and my Heavenly Father, I am able to endure my days without her here with me. Because of losing her I think that I truly love my family more, I cherish my time with them. That's all I want for Christmas - family time and good food.

February 2, 2012
Shower time with little mom was the absolute best. At first I resented the time it took, but as I gave in to the love and need I felt from mom I came to love our time, truly alone together. We had such fun and laughed. I'd tell her to lift up the boobs so we could clean under them, she'd chuckle. She loved me to rub her with lotion and was always so happy to be clean and have her garments back on. This is the time I got hooked on Hempz lotion that Collette supplied her with.

I miss our times together, a lot. When I allow myself to think of her passing away, I can't believe that she's really gone. I don't remember when I first realized she was a "little, old lady". In my mind she's still active and fun and I'm bringing her lunch and calling "hello my little mom", and she's answering "hello my little Wendy". Great memories and very sad to not be making more with her.