Matt, I tried to put your addiction out of my mind for a little while and just give myself a chance to breathe. I finally had someone else in my life to think about and I really wanted to not be so consumed with saving you. We continued to play our phone games, me still trying to catch you as you fell and you doing your best to be the son I needed you to be. Things seemed to be going ok with Lisa and I tried to forget the disorder of your home when I did my last sneak and search. I tried to remember that you were no Martha Stewart and could be a bit of a slob. Memories of you living at home started to give me a false comfort whenever I thought about our spats about you picking up after yourself. I was amazed at how easy it was becoming to be a somewhat normal person, my thought not consumed by your demons.
Life was becoming what it was supposed to be. Now I was starting to have a new focus, Me. Your addiction was also mine and I was so tired of the fight. Having a little normal was just the break I needed. Ray was giving me just what my weary heart needed. Joy, fun, something else to think about besides our dirty little secret. Some days I actually amazed myself. I didn’t think about your problems at all. Then, of course the Mom stuff would creep in and the guilt would come. How can I expect to have a normal life, to have fun when I knew deep down that your demons were not far behind.
As Ray and I grew in our relationship, we started to share more and more about ourselves. Funny to find out we grew up 5 minutes from each other and hung out with the same group of friends, somehow our paths never crossing. He had two daughters. Mel was 12 and Erin 15. I told him about you and Mike, how you lived at the beach and Mike being married with a beautiful daughter Madison. I tried to keep it light when I told him about you, your business, the boat and our precious house by the sea. Knowing that if we continued on this path the time would come to meet. I prayed that if and when our secret came out he would be the kind of guy to understand that I was not one to stand by and let my son destroy himself.
Time went by, you and Lisa, me and Ray all wrapped up in the living of life the way the way it was supposed to be. You and I were finally stretching that cord just a little further. Ray’s job required some travel, so off he went to Florida and I on a wim called and invited myself down to the sea.
You were caught off guard but recovered quickly. Sure Mom come on down. I miss you. You can stay with us at Lisa’s. Bing, bing, bing, warning bells going off in my brain. No Matt, I’m not comfortable enough to spend lots of time at Lisa’s. I’ll stay at our place. I could feel your hesitation through the phone, your wheels turning, shit, how do I get out of this one. Keep giving me excuses and I’d know for sure. Ok Mom, what time are you coming. Well, you know me Matt, I’ll show up when I show up. I’m not giving you a heads up so you can clean up whatever mess you were hiding. No way, what time do you finish working. Five, great said my sneaky little mind. I’ll be there by three. Ok Matt, see you about six!
Flashbacks flooding my mind from the last time I used my key to sneak in and do my drug sweep. This time feeling a little less guilty, after all you knew I was coming. Well what difference does it make if I just happen to show up a little early. Trying to stop all the clatter in my mind during the drive down, I started to pray. Please God, let him be ok this time. I don’t know how much more I can take fighting the demons that seem to follow him everywhere. Calm my mind, settle my heart and give me the strength and compassion to face whatever it was that I knew was coming. Life had been too good for too long. I could feel it in the air. Call it my trained mother of an addict instinct but my gut was telling me to get ready as the storm was churning and waiting for the right time to sweep us out to sea.
Well Matt, your smarter than I thought. You won this round. I pull onto your street and see your jeep. Damn, you beat me. You walk out with an enormous trash bag and a smile that let me know that you had become expert at our game, you hide I seek. Hey Mom, you’re early. The place was a little messy. I spend a lot of time at Lisa’s so this place get neglected some times. It’s all cleaned up now. I didn’t want you coming here thinking you had to clean up for me. Ok Matt, now I know you are playing the part to perfection. The addict in denial. Ok, Matt. I’ll play your game and do the dance as we pretend that things are the way they should be. You pretending, hiding and denying, me on the hunt, waiting and watching for the next ripple leading to the breaking of the dam we built so well.