Matt, The ride home was the longest hour and a half of my life. The silence between me and your grandmother was deafening. I couldn’t even try to start a conversation for fear that my carefully constructed dam would start to crack and my tears would turn to uncontrollable sobs. I kept staring out the window telling myself that once again I would figure out a way to fix this. Your grandmother knew something was terribly wrong but was wise enough to keep both her questions and comments to herself.
I was used to doing this drive alone and I used the time to clear my head and start to come up with different plans to fix whatever I happened to find broken on my visits. Alone, I could talk to myself out loud and cry if I needed to with no one to witness my falling apart. Just me, myself and I was my joke to myself as all three of us would plan the next stage of battle against your demons. Having your grandmother in the car robbed me of precious planning time. I would rehearse my speech to you preparing me for your angry phone calls choosing my words carefully to avoid a screaming match when you found that once again I’d taken your most precious possession and flushed them away.
Instead I sat and watched the scenery pass by trying to hold back the sobs that kept forming in my heart. How could you keep doing this to us. Why did those pills mean more to you than anything else. How did you not understand that it was because of that white poison that your life was so full of chaos. How much more did you have to lose before you got that ah ha moment. I guess I just didn’t understand how you could continue to hurt us both so badly. Carrying our secret was causing such havoc in my life. I was so consumed with keeping you safe that my own happiness always took a back seat to whatever you needed.
Finally we get home. I ask your grandmother if she wants to come in and I’m so thankful that she just wants to get herself out of her clothes and into the shower. Of course she had to let me know that your place was the dirtiest she’d been to in a while. Oh Mom, I thought you don’t even have a clue. His house is the least of my problems.
I let myself in and finally allow the tears to come. I’m so upset and frustrated with this whole situation. If only I didn’t break my wrist I tell myself I would have been there to keep a close eye on you. I constantly blame myself for you slipping back to your demons. As if I have the power to keep you away from your one true love. I sit and wait. watching the clock and rehearsing my speech, knowing that your hateful call will be coming soon. I say the words that I’ve so carefully chosen over and over again just so in the heat of the moment I can still be that cool Mom who stays rational while you are flipping out.
The phone rings and I jump telling myself to breath and willing my heart to slow down. For God sake I tell myself, calm down you can handle this. I answer expecting to hear your voice. Yes, this is she. Who is this. The mortgage company calling to inform me the payment hasn’t been made in six months. They have given up leaving you messages and found my name and number on your paperwork as I put the down payment on our little piece of heaven by the sea. Ok, now I’m pissed. The cool Mom left the building and the mad as hell Mom took her place.
The phone rings again. This time I’m ready. The hell with my pretty little speech. I want answers and I want them now. Hello. Mom, what the hell. Matt, what the hell. We both start yelling at the same time. You telling me I disrespected your privacy. Me telling you I came and cleaned just like you wanted before I was broken. What’s the matter Matt I ask. Thought you could just live however and do whatever and take whatever to make all your troubles go away. What the hell are you doing down there. What are you spending your money on. Oh wait, your spending your money on those little white pills I crushed and flushed. WTF you scream. That’s right buddy boy. I found them and they are gone. You hang up. I’m pacing and shaking. Ok God, can you fix this one. What am I going to do. I’m not working. I can’t pull extra shifts to get the mortgage caught up. How can this be happening. He lost his business, now our house is being put in jeopardy all for the love of demons. I sit and start to sob. This is the last straw. My spirit now broken. The dogs come and we sit as I try to pull myself together enough to once again come up with a plan to fix the mess your addiction keeps dropping into our lives.
You call again. The shouting starts. How dare you Mom. How dare you come here and take my pills. Who do you think you are. How dare I, I scream and who do I think I am I scream. I’m the one bailing your ass out of every mess your lovely Percs get you into. I’m the one paying your bills, and taking care of all the shit you throw my way. I’m the one cleaning your house and your vomit and ducking your punches when your high and coming down hard. I’m the one calling the rehabs begging to get you in when you are briefly aware that you need help. I’m the one and only one trying to save your life. I’m the one who hates the person you become when your demons have control but love the son I know you can be. You tell me go to hell and hang up. I’m already in hell I think, I’ve been in hell for years fighting your demons. Your addiction has turned my life into a living hell. I turn off the lights and sit in the dark trying to quiet my mind. Silence I just need silence. Stop laughing demons. This battle is not over…..