writing out loud

Why the hell am I writing this? shutterstock_122485786-1024x640

First, spare me and yourself the it’s so sad, how did this happen garbage.

Second, there is no shame, no blame, no hate, no embarrassment, no resentment that I bear my daughter.  On the contrary, my love for her is immeasurable, my respect for her immense, she is in my heart and soul, unconditionally.  She has a disease.  I am humbled at how she continues to endure what is a life-long hell on earth.  She is a beautiful, artistic, graceful, fragile creature of air and light who didn’t choose bi-polar, heroin addiction as a life path.  She has a disease, for which this country offers jail, institutions, or death as the treatments of choice.

Third, I, we, her family, finally have our backs against the wall;  the only way we can help her now is to deliberately, even callously,  leave her to her own devices.  And baby, that sucks every ounce of strength I have.  So I thought, write.  I know there are so many people out there in the same stinking boat, feeling the same stinking way, so I thought, write it out loud, write the truth, because it’s not just about me anymore.  And maybe, somewhere in these words, I’ll find some peace of mind, some piece of my mind. And maybe more people will realize that her disease is not a crime, not a choice, and that families are no more equipped to treat this disease on our own than we could cancer.

Fourth, and utterly essential to my survival, is because if she can suffer this, I can goddamn well be her mother through it, even if it’s from a self-imposed, soul-tearing distance, and I can goddamn well not pretend she doesn’t exist, or that everything’s peachy-keen, or that I have a clue how to keep it together.

My name is Lynne, I’m the mother of an addict…

At the many ‘meetings’ I’ve attended over the years, I’ve learned the proper introduction.  “My name is Lynne, I’m the mother of an addict”.  And the response greeting  “Hi Lynne”.  The benediction is “keep coming back”.  My only daughter is a mentally ill addict.  Years of world-class enabling, co-depending, tough love, therapy, medication, meetings, emergencies, in-patient, blood, sweat, and tears.  A spiral of hopeless to hopeful to numb..nothing goddamn comfortable about it.

Intellectually, I know I can’t control it, didn’t cause it, can’t cure it…yada yada yada.  Not bloody acceptable.  The life of an addict’s mother often mimics the life of the addict – the panic, the illnesses, the drama, the family issues, losing time from work and life issues, the self-medicating, the manipulating, the despair, the anxiety, the depression, the impassivity, the denial, the disruptions, the false fronts…the crash and burn.  My counselor says I’ve hit the wall at warp speed…every tragedy in my life has been aroused to join the
physical, emotional, and intellectual toll taking…it’s my own personal fucked up limbic system hit parade.  I can’t, won’t opt out of this relationship…I’m in it ’til one of us is gone, and beyond.

And I don’t need to be told “keep coming back”, because I’ve never left; I have no perspective, and  I’ve forgotten how to love and support myself…to protect myself.