Tuesday, October 22, 2013
It's amazing how much easier I can breathe now that I have taken the steps to detach myself from my mother's addiction. I believe the two dark weeks I recently went through feeling sad and a bit sorry for myself was because I was trying to break down the barriers that have kept me from detaching... the guilt, shame, fear, all those "great things" that has kept me stuck in the web of my mother's addiction. Those two weeks of depression were caused by change and I've never been one to handle change well. I'm very comfortable unhappy but comfortable) being the victim of addiction and being a crutch for my mom. I'm her go to when she needs someone to feel sorry for her and even those times I have attempted tough love I never actually change my position, it was all just words instead of me taking action. I have always protected my children from her addiction, she is welcome around them but has never and will NEVER babysit them. My sister and I used to drug test her randomly then it got to the point where the test would show she was using, she'd go into a recovery center, we'd fight & cry and promise we will never allow her to be around us or our children again then after a few months of her being sober things went right back to "normal" with her being an active member of our family. It was a cycle so I stopped the drug testing since it felt pointless. I never left her unattended with my children so even if she's high my kids love her and I wouldn't want to have them miss out on time with their Grandma. What the hell have I been thinking?!?! Who choses "ignorance is bliss" when it comes to their children?!?! I would never invite a person to come over and play with my children who I know is an addict so why is my mom an exception? I'm done. She supposedly has 7 months of sobriety but one can never be sure so the next time she comes over she will be given a drug test and if negative, great, if positive she will need to leave immediately. I feel the distance growing between us and at times I've been sad but I also have a sense of relief, like a the weight being lifted! Before this journey, and before my recent dark two weeks, mom would call me 5+ times a day, all day! Never thinking about the time she was calling like early morning as I'm trying to get the kids ready for school or dinner time or putting the kids to bed, she just needed to talk. She dominated the majority of our conversation discussing the drama within her recovery friends and talk about her life and I would just listen. I answered every time she called. I'd interrupt reading my kids a bedtime story to answer her call, I'd stop helping my son with his homework to answer her call. Nothing could get in my way of picking up the phone because "what if she needs me?" I was afraid of what would happen if I didn't answer. Is she on the verge of using and needs to talk? Did she just OD and changed her mind so she needs me to call 911? Is she stranded somewhere because she ran out of gas? All of these things have happened so it's not paranoia, it's my reality. The thought of her being lonely has haunted me my entire life. She put that on me as a child and it's been there with me ever since. Through this journey I FINALLY realized that her happiness is not my responsibility. If I don't answer the phone and she then decides to go take some pills well that's her problem. I have to understand that her life choices are hers and if she is lonely she can go to an AA/NA meeting, she can call her sponsor, she can walk her dog... whatever she does it does not have anything to do with me. I'm not cutting her out of my life but I'm changing my priorities. It's liberating to take control over my life. I haven't had her over to my house in a few weeks and I will talk to her over the phone when it's a convenient time for me to do so. I have decided that for me to live a healthy life I have to detach from her, she is her addiction at least that is how I see her, that's all she's really shown me. She's been an addict my entire life with moments of sobriety. I'm tired of questioning everything she says, I'm tired of trying to force her to want to be a better person, I'm just f#$%ing tired of it all. There's a saying that an addict will stop maturing at the time they begin their addiction and that's certainly the case with my mom. She is a teenager, self involved, financially dependent on her parents, fun yet dramatic, and loud. People seem to love to be around her, she's just a big kid. For my sanity I had to come to terms with the fact she will not change because I ask her to so at this point "it is what it is" and I'm making the conscious decision to walk away from the dream that one day she will wake up and be the mom I always wanted her to be. I have to understand that detachment doesn't mean I don't love her, it means I love me more! As the saying goes "one day at a time" and today I chose my life over hers!