Matt,  I must say I really enjoyed just being able to have fun and not constantly watching and worrying about what you were up to.  I kept thinking this is how everyone else lives.  No constant worry, no chaos, no addiction sucking the fun out of life.   Wow, I could get used to this.  I did think about you at times, but I did not obsess about you like I normally did.  I never realized just how much your addiction had taken over my life too.   The chaos that consumed your life had seeped into mine.  This weekend was a much needed break.  I actually surprised myself at times when I realized that I hadn’t thought about you for hours.  Holy crap, I really can do this.  Laugh and feel joy.  I had so forgotten how life could be.  I was so used to being consumed with fear about where your addiction would take us next that I forgot how to live with pure joy.  Oh don’t be fooled I told myself, this is just a break.  Your life will never be normal.  Your son is an addict.

Ray was great.  I think he knew that something was up between you and me.  I did call you to do my checks especially knowing you were having a party on Saturday.  You did a great job keeping my worries at bay.  Every time we spoke you sounded clear, normal, like it should be. A friendly conversation between a mother and her son.  Not the Mom police going through her mental check list while listening to your voice and scrutinizing your choice of words.  I know Ray was probably wondering why I had to check in with my grown son everyday. Our secret was still ours.  I didn’t trust him enough to spill the beans on our real struggle.  We still had a separation to our lives giving me the luxury of keeping our dirty little secret just between us.  I often wondered how you did it.  Living with Lisa.  I often wondered how you kept your addiction under wraps.   Then I remembered how sly you had become with your behavior.  You would become so mellow and loving when you were living in that happy place you craved.  She probably though you were just such a mellow guy.  Happy and carefree as the pills took you away from reality and kept you  from everything that made you uncomfortable.   No arguments or anxiety as long as you were floating in your blissful place.

Ok, stop my brain would tell me.  Stay where you are. This is your break.  What happens with Matt and Lisa is between them.  I had to keep bringing my drifting brain back to the present to what I was doing.  I really had forgotten how to enjoy the moment.  Your addiction kept me from smelling the roses.  I was trained to be on constant watch, trying to control what was to come.   I put you out of my mind and concentrated on how great this new normal could be.  I wondered what life would be like if your demons would let you go.   I allowed myself to dream of the life I wanted for us both.  Peace and happiness.  A normal relationship that didn’t include detox and drugs.  Just a mother and her son enjoying normal.

Before I knew it Sunday was here.  The weekend of peace coming to an end.  I felt saddened and a little guilty.  I really enjoyed just being me and not having to fix anything you might have broken.   Ray wanting to spend more time together.  Getting close, letting him in and wondering if he could handle what I knew would come again.  This normal would be washed away by that crashing wave when you lost control again and I would run to catch you before you were sucked away by the currant you could no longer control throwing you the rope, praying you would hold on long enough for me to pull you back to safety.   Oh God, Matt.  I really liked normal.  Maybe we could try harder.  Maybe together we could have more normal.  You and me, just a mother and her son living life replacing the demons with peace and beauty.

I called you late Sunday night,  holding my breath and silently praying.  Please sound like I need you to sound.  This weekend gave me a tease at a life I so badly craved.  I needed your demons to give us both a break.    Your addiction had taken away so much from both of us.  Being with Ray gave me a taste of having someone else to think about.  Feelings I had no time for were pushing me to take a chance at a life that was not constantly about saving you.  The phone rang several times before you answered.   Hey Mama.   I felt my heart brake in my chest.  No, No, No,  Matt.  I closed my eyes and felt my breath being sucked out of my body.  The wave crashed and pushed me to my knees.  No normal for you shouted your demons.  Hey Mama , are you there.  Yes Matt, I replied as my mind started putting together my plan to save you again.  Normal once again replaced with chaos, your demons laughing.