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Life Goes On (was Oh Well?) Part 3

Old 12-09-2020, 07:25 PM
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yes, Dropsie and Hawkeye, me, too.
though i knew then that i was not a “normal” drinker, for sure.
when i was going to AA meetings, my eventual homegroup was full of very young people, mostly late twenties. one person, who had been sober 8 years, had doubt creep in because they had quit when they were 17. took 8 years fir the doubt to manifest, or at least for it to be vocalized, but then it was:” how could i possibly have known at 17 if i really am an alcoholic???”

O, you could boil the whole speech down to a non-speech and lessen the chances of any of it being perceived about you and your fears: “i love, you, kid, y’know, and if you’d ever like to hear more about my experiences, i’d be more than happy to tell.”
sure can be challenging to support when in your heart you are unsure.
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Old 12-10-2020, 06:04 AM
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I do like what everyone has had to say in regards to O talking to her daughter. Good thoughts.

This is a very tricky situation, O.

I do hope you will be able to have some internal resolve regarding your daughter and the choice she makes to go home after rehab. She truly has to want to go to a sober living home and there will be no amount of talking to her that will change that. Of course you already know this.

Your daughter may need a few times of "trying" and a few bumps and bruises. We just don't really know what will happen once she goes home and resumes her life? All of the information and tools are available to her to maintain her sober life. What she does with those tools and information is up to her.

I think for your own sanity it would be good to check out Al Anon or some other tools that help a person with understanding how to implement boundaries. This complex dynamic can send a person into being emotionally and mentally unwell. No one wants that for you.

Thinking of you, O

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Old 12-10-2020, 11:33 AM
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You guys have no idea how bad it's been for her, and I'm not going to publish it for all the world to see (even this little corner of it) because it's not mine to tell. This is a dire situation. Mine was dire at the same age, but I didn't have the sheer volume and horror of the events that have happened to this young woman due to or resultant of her substance use. There's no comparison. But of course there is.

I can't save her, I know.

So I will pick her up on Monday, she will go home, and it will be whatever it will be.
And that's going to have to suffice.

Thanks you guys
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Old 12-10-2020, 07:25 PM
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you’re right, of course, about us having no idea. and you’re right about not telling here.
i do know that turnarounds are possible.
as you know.
she’s blessed to have you in her corner, even if she refuses your offerings.
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Old 12-11-2020, 03:34 PM
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Its really hard to watch someone we love fall apart by addiction.

I know you are scared for her. You love her. Its understandable.

Lets see how she does.
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Old 12-15-2020, 07:38 AM
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How is it going my friend?
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Old 12-15-2020, 09:42 AM
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I was also thinking of O, Dropsie.
How are you, Obladi?
Check in when you have the bandwidth to do so.
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Old 12-16-2020, 08:59 AM
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Just submitted final grades this morning so my bandwidth should be returning soon Mizz et al

O, hope things are going well with eldest and in general.

Gonna rest a little and will check in for a chat later
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Old 12-16-2020, 09:16 AM
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Things with eldest are "ok," as reported via text message yesterday.
Make of that what you will - I choose to acknowledge there are things over which I have no control.
Don't have to like it to accept it.

I'm doing fine, overall - just very busy with a work deadline.

At home, I became very irritated with the lax ways of my house guests last night. Namely a pile of STUFF left in the living room (including 8 boxes of floor tiles that I'd said, "Where are you going to put them?" - more than once - and been assured they'd go in the basement). Middlest was helping a friend move, which is lovely, but she really pushed it over the top by leaving that stuff there AND phoning to ask me to please walk the dog. I'll definitely share my dismay with said guests at some point today. Gently, using "I" statements.
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Old 12-20-2020, 06:19 AM
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Hi O

I hope that eldest is doing ok. Yes, there is so much we don't have control over. I know in order to protect myself and my own sobriety I have to detach. But so much harder done than said. Very challenging.

Ok so I can never figure out if middlest is still living there or not. Obviously she is. That's what one gets when one is so behind on all the news. I DREAD the day my daughter moves back. I hate to say that (well no I don't) and we are going to have a very tough talk. I'm going to suggest she live with her dad, which I know will go over like a pregnant pole vaulter. I CANNOT have the same tired irritations day in, day out anymore. I can't. I won't. I swear she is going to sign a contract. In blood. My blood. Lol. Ok a bit over the top. But I can't tell you how much more serene my life it now that she is out. And she has a nice boyfriend. I mean, I am soooo proud of her and happy for her. But my gosh the daily bs (clean your room, get a job, get up before 2pm....be an adult yadda yadda) makes me nuts. Is it all on me? Well, yes actually. And that's even more frustrating. Grrrrr. But that is months in the future soooo....back burner it goes.

Well here's some news: I am cancer FREE! Not sure if mentioned that but yes folks it appears to have skulked away again. Yay. I needed that. And, drum roll, I think I have a JOB. An actual job. Ok it isn't the greatest but it is something. Assuming I pass the background check, which I have some concerns about (a minor glitch on my driving record....but it isn't a driving job?) I should be working mid January. I started delivering groceries, sticking to my philosophy "do something and something happens. Do nothing and nothing happens" (a tried and true belief system) and 'things' are just falling into place. Now I passed the background check for 2 driving jobs so one would think I'll be ok. But it is my own car and insurance, but still. Should be ok.....right right? Blah. I know no one can answer that question. I have no criminal record or anything, great credit (believe it or not. haha). Ugh. Don't worry Flipsie, don't worry.

And I went off seroquel. Which I already mentioned. But am actually, kinda, mostly sleeping, sometimes. So I'm happy about that too.

Covid invaded the parents home. 5 have had it and have recovered (the news makes one think that everyone over 80 drops dead...apparently not true). Parents are still negative and with some luck will receive the vaccine at the end of the month. Oh my gosh I hope that all goes well. I hope it works. I just don't want to see them die of a darn virus. Stupid plague.

So OMG guys I may actually be working. Fast forward to March 2021 "I hate my job....this sucks". Haha. Wait for it.....

O, my friend, I hope your eldest is ok. Or as ok as she can be. Oh addiction. You know, I hate it. I hate it. The challenge of being supportive but not too much so is one I have no idea how to handle. I mean, I do have similar challenges with my daughter, just not quite as impactful. And then we have our sobriety to protect. I mean, seriously. It does boil down to that. What good can I be to my kid if I'm drunk? And my gosh when she is hurting it rips my guts out. That separation, that healthy detachment feels so unnatural....but I think it is the only way. Of course I have no idea how to do it. But I have to learn. Stat. I'm not a praying gal but I will keep you guys in my thoughts and my heart. It sounds counter intuitive but I guess you must care for you first. Ugh. Feels wrong just typing it....but I think it is a truth.

xoxoxo
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Old 12-20-2020, 09:04 AM
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oh such good news, E!!
very happy to hear you are cancer free, and icing-on-the-cake probable job!
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Old 12-23-2020, 06:14 PM
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You ok O? I donít post much but follow your thread.
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Old 12-23-2020, 06:54 PM
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Very very glad to hear that Ent

Merry Xmas/Happy Holidays everyone

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Old 12-23-2020, 07:19 PM
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same to you, Dee, very much.
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Old 12-24-2020, 06:58 AM
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Yep, Della, I'm here and doing fine. Just needed to shut up for awhile because I was feeling that I was being "too much" with some of my posts. The jury is still out, but I'm going to chalk it up to trying to be helpful to others and being ultra sensitive because, well - I am. I'm quite certain I'm not the only person around these climes that struggles with self-consciousness and inordinate fear about doing or saying the wrong thing. I'm learning and will likely continue to do so for the rest of my life - at least I hope so. Thank you so much for asking. I really appreciate it.

Flips!!! What the heck. It sounds like an amazing end to 2020 for you. I'm so glad to hear you're officially free of cancer. What a lovely result to - I can't even imagine the tenterhooks you must have been on while waiting to hear. Do continue to keep us updated on the job situation - and of course your moat-digging progress to keep your kid out of the house.

Eldest... I dunno how she is. I last heard from her on Sunday when she was hemming and hawing about maybe not doing IOP after all. Sleep meds, work, it's not going to do any good, blah blah. I know that whole song by heart. Said, "Hey, you don't need to justify what you do or don't do to me - it's your recovery. I was just pushing for the sober home because I was worried for you." She was scheduled to start IOP and go back to work Monday. As I haven't heard a peep from her, I fear the worst, but that does no good so I'm trying to mostly disregard that self-centered indulgence. I'll text her today to ask about her plans for celebrating with us.

Middlest is indeed living here, along with her boyfriend. They were to be here only for "a few months," but those plans have changed as the pandemic (USA-demic?) shows no sign of letting up. I'm ok with that, mostly - the staying here part. I'm very glad they are out of California, and things are overall ok mixed with minor roommate annoyances. I did speak with them the other day about getting too lax , reminding middlest that I'd told her in advance that tidiness was very important to me. They acknowledged that and promised to do better. They have also started to honor their agreement to paint the interior of the house and replace the floors to boot. The "spare room" and my office are mostly done and I think the upstairs hallway and my bedroom are next. Very nice.

I did not go with middlest to buy the tree - first time ever. So she came home with the "fat" tree she's always wanted. Which was fine, but then it turned into an obligation because it was clear that I was obliged to hang the ornaments. Oh how I do dislike obligation. I actually had to leave the house for a couple of hours at the end of a very long day of procrastinating because it was making me so anxious. The next day, I spent the necessary 10 hours decorating, and I'm glad I did. Because this is something that's important to the girls and Christmas preparation is at least one thing that I've always been reliable about.

My manager got snippy with me a couple of times over the past week. In each case, I was just being light-hearted with our team or with our customers. Nothing out of line, I promise. When she cuts me off like that, I feel embarrassed and offended and unjustly chastened. Knowing that is helpful, but it doesn't make the sting go away any sooner. I'm working on it. I've got five days off work now, so hopefully the both of us will come back rejuvenated.

Chump change.
I don't drink anymore.
That's the primary thing still.

Happy Christmas to all, and please do check in to let us know how you are faring, good or bad, chipper or dreary. There's room at the virtual fireside for everyone.
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Old 12-24-2020, 07:31 PM
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Merry Merry to you and all!
lovely song here for the season:


https://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&rct=j...ulA7KKFRzFG3Z6

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Old 12-24-2020, 07:43 PM
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Lovely Fini thank you

D
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Old 12-27-2020, 06:44 AM
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Well now fini, I went to give another listen (really lovely) and find you've left me a Christmas gift. I never heard of bandcamp before. Seems right up my alley. Reminds me that once upon a time I spent hours making my own soundtrack using free songs from amazon.com - each one of them were named "Africa." That might be a great endeavor to undertake on my long weekend. Thank you!

(note to self: when down in the doldrums, remember that music always makes life better.)

That parenthetical note is a good one. One for the sticky note board, wall, I think. Had I listened to music yesterday, it may have turned out differently. Not that I'm complaining - I'm definitely not. But spending an entire day in an anxiety hangover is just about 23 hours and 55 minutes too long.

On Christmas day, I woke at my usual time and attended my usual meeting. Middlest intended to get up at 8am - this did not happen. Eldest had arrived sometime in the dark of the night and I had no expectation she'd wake up spontaneously anytime before noon. I had plenty of time to make a huge batch of fried potatoes (diced and crispy) and the requisite "ham thing." (a glorious decadent concoction consisting of those half-baked rolls, ham, swiss cheese, brown sugar and butter) Then I had plenty more time to put presents under the tree and read the bulk of those first 164 pages again - this time in my pocket version which suffered from a dearth of highlighting; now rectified.

The kids woke up eventually, youngest and her beau arrived, we sat down for breakfast, and I said "I'm going to eat separately from the rest of you." (you know, covid) The first (?) correction of the day came from eldest, "Mom, come over here." "No, hon, I'm going to sit over here." "Mom!" "No, I'm a 58 years old and have respiratory issues. I will eat with you, just not at the table." It was delicious if I do say so myself. And I love hearing the kids chatter. Meals together was something I did well for the family until the girls started getting too finicky in their teenage years - then I gave up.

Gift time! The appearance of youngest's boyfriend was a surprise to me, so I apologized there were no gifts for him and added, "So could you do me a favor and play Santa?" I thought that would be a fun way to involve him in the mayhem. Middlest snapped at me, "Mom, NO. Don't make him do that." Eldest jumped in with her own "Mom, no." I asked why not? Middlest said, "That's cruel; I'll do it." Second correction. Ok, hmmm. I never really noticed this before. Or I did but I'd put it out of my mind.

Gifts are coming at me faster than I can open them or relish the opening of their gifts. Anxiety kicked in. Tight chest, overall feeling of "not well," shallow breathing... I stopped. And just sat, breathing. Eldest and middlest asked at different points, "Are you ok?" "Yup, I'm just anxious, so I'm taking a break." Memories of Christmases past were interwoven - of course they'd been interwoven for days, maybe weeks now. The primary memory I had was of my older brother opening his gift from me each year and each year saying flatly, "Thanks, O do you have the receipt?" Then came the Christmases when the girls were young and my then-husband would bark at me, "Why aren't you taking pictures?" (Because I just want to enjoy this time?) And the years when my anxiety was sky-high because the girls' tastes had gotten so expensive and my budget couldn't really afford their wishes. And the year my younger brother chastised me for getting inexpensive gifts for his kids... I could go on, but you get the drift. It wasn't a morose meandering or even deliberate thinking, it was just an underlying refrain that I chose to counter with, "It's Christmas - today is today and you needn't be or do anything other than this." Gifts done, I retreated to my bedroom for an hour or so, then popped in on the crowd from time to time, mask on. As the day went on, youngest's mask and that of her boyfriend came off. I kept my (polite) distance, mask on.

Youngest had asked me when she arrived if I still had her keyboard. I responded that I had "a" keyboard somewhere, but I'd also sent one home with eldest not long ago. She said, "That's ok, we can figure it out later." I told her there was probably one in the basement and middlest's boyfriend was the most likely one to know if it was there (because he'd been storing things, moving things, and storing more things until the point I've no idea where anything is). Sometime later, she asked, and I volunteered again that I'd sent one home with eldest recently. Middlest: "E, you need to stop taking things that aren't yours." Me: "I sent it home with her! I don't know whose things these are that have been in my house for years and years." Middlest: "Well, you should ask before you give people things that belong to other people." (Huhn, well would you look at that. Now I know a correction needs to be made. Well, not today of course. And also of course she is carrying her own pain from all of the *&%^# she had to deal with during the not-so-distant bad old days. She parented me for a good long time, so may not even be aware of what she's doing here. Or why that's not ok.)

There were a few other incidents, but you get the gist. I rode along with the day being what it was going to be, and it was nice. The kids enjoyed themselves.

So much more - hosted a Zoom and my mom didn't like that I insisted we play a game, my older brother was clearly drunk, my middle sister insisted I hadn't invited her (I did) - it went ok, I guess? Attended several meetings. At one of them, the host asked if I was the speaker and I denied being her, then shortly thereafter was recruited by the (late) speaker-seeker via private chat to be the speaker. I was to share on Step 9 - Making amends to those we'd harmed. Apropos.

And yesterday? Yesterday I did virtually nothing. I returned to bed a couple of times and thought how reminiscent this was of the drinking days. It was utterly miserable to be up and down all day and night, drinking and passing out and wishing for nothing more than time to stand still or stop entirely. But there were moments - only moments - of something akin to joy (or relief or something that lightened me) when I'd come to consciousness again and it was still daylight, so I still had lots and lots of time to continue the cycle. Yesterday, there was nothing pleasant at all about the nothingness. I eventually determined it was an anxiety hangover. Looking back from today, I see clearly I was in a state of depression. Not as bad as it ever got, for sure, but not good. No appetite, no desire to communicate with anyone, extreme sloth combined with restlessness. Late in the afternoon, I realized I hadn't taken my meds since the previous morning. Oh, duh. Took the missing doses for the day.

And today I am out of bed writing to you. One more "now" sober. Ready to do laundry - including the bedding - once the kids wake up (if their stuff isn't already sitting in the washer and dryer, or maybe even if it is). Just a wee bit more confident that I truly am who I am and need not take others' disapproval or corrections or silent censure as evidence that I should not be who I am.

That was actually a big part of my surprise share on Step 9 - "To Thine Own Self Be True."
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Old 12-27-2020, 09:34 AM
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O, this sounds all rather dreadful to me, actually. except for this:"I truly am who I am and need not take others' disapproval or corrections or silent censure as evidence that I should not be who I am."
yes, for sure.
when i read some of the things you write about how your daughters speak to you, i feel it in my gut. because my oldest at times comes close to that, and what gets me most about it is that i have some kind of fear about standing up.
i usually do, but with trepidation. seems like somewhere i learned that confronting or calling out will likely end in irremediable damage to relationships. i lack trust that the relationship itself is sound enough to carry on through difficulties. or some such thing.
don't know if that is part of what happens with you and your kids?
it does sound to me like you swallow a lot, and then have it inside, eating away.
for what it's worth, i think a lot of what you're experiencing/accepting is not only rude but verges on being abusive. certainly dismissive, criticizing and condescending. in your own space, where you have invited them and cooked for them a feast.
ooof!!
the view from here only; "reality" may be quire different, of course.
hope you do something just for you today. in fact, do LOTS just for you today.

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Old 12-27-2020, 10:29 AM
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Oh yes, for sure, fini. I do have fear about calling them out. It sounds like it's very similar to yours - a deep dread that if I stand up for myself they will "fight back" and it will be too painful to bear. Not that I'd fight, you understand, but it feels like that's what I would elicit. Does that make sense? I think I fear the content of their imagined retorts - "Yeah, well, you suck as a mom and as a person in general, so why don't you just go drown yourself in ethanol and leave us alone again? You were never there when we needed you and we sure as hell don't need you now. We're only nice to you because you do things for us."

This correcting, criticizing, othering is the main ingredient that used to go in that simmering cauldron of "stuff it" stuff that I used to stuff. This is why why it's distressing when my manager cuts me off when I'm just being my delightful self. This is why I had such difficulty recognizing that some of my previous allies in AA were busy taking my inventory. This is really at the root of so much pain throughout my life... I believe that my girls know this on some level - how deeply it cuts. But I don't think it's meant to wound that viciously; not consciously anyhow. I will speak my piece, or my peace, when I'm ready. It probably won't take me too long, but I need to let it rattle around in the back of my head for awhile before I can speak to it. I'm not paralyzed by that fear anymore. It doesn't "drive me to drink," anyhow - and that's a gift in and of itself.

It is tremendously affirming that you recognize this, fini.
I'm going to have a little cry out of gratitude for your compassion. Then I'll start the laundry.

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