Life is not easy, by any means – and we all must go through things that we don’t understand, a storm of emotions in this case. As a writer, I am able to process events, especially the tough, gut wrenching ones, in a way that others don’t. My life hasn’t been easy lately. I’m not looking for sympathy, but only if my pain can ease someone else’s through shared understanding, that I am about to share something deeply personal. I won’t go into specific details due to the situation – but I want people to know…it’s not enough to have great kids and talk about the dangers of drugs…you have to do more! Trust your gut, don’t hesitate and most of all – love them each and every day. And so, here’s my open letter to my child regarding events of late:
Tears fall freely, unexpectedly even, at the thought of you. The heartbreak of you. The past, present and future of you. What I did, or didn’t do is of no relevance now – it’s all up to you and there is no guarantee of how your future will turn out. I see you everywhere and yet nowhere at all. Your clothes and shoes lay by your bed, an empty bag of chips and water bottle – all right where you left them. I know where you are at the moment and yet I don’t know all at the same time. You have gone down a deep dark rabbit hole, one which I don’t understand and can’t seem to retrieve you from no matter what I’ve tried to date. How could this have happened – that is an unanswerable question by anyone but you. People offer their sympathies and placations; none of which help – they mean well but unless they have “walked a mile” so to speak, there is no way to imagine the unimaginable guilt, fear and grief that occupy my every waking moment. And my precious few sleeping moments as well – if sleep is what you want to call what happens when I die from exhaustion every other day or three. Sitting at a friend’s sons birthday party, probably a very dumb undertaking on my part. Having lunch with my coworkers who talk about their kids accomplishments or reading their Facebook posts – torturous. Remembering your first steps, the sweet smell of you as a baby, or thinking how we should be filling out college applications and doing “senior stuff” – almost unbearable. Having two other kids who are “well adjusted” and one that has taken a different path…??? Embarrassment has turned to constant anxiety mixed with anger and confusion and so many other emotions I can’t begin to describe. I can’t talk about it but I need to talk about it…so I write. I probably should seek therapy as well…but to what end? Will that person truly be able to help me sort out this seemingly un-sortable mess? Long drives with uncountable lectures about the necessities of life – all to no avail. Or will there be a chance that somehow you heard me/us? Hope is what keeps me going, from unravelling. The edge of my sanity is very close, very sharp. My friends and family worry about me…so do I. It’s different this time, majorly different; but I have been down this path before (more than once) and all I can say is – I know my limits and know when to ask for help. I only pray that you will learn your limits, realize you need help and ask – for I am here waiting. I won’t give up hope. And to my friends and family the answer is NO – I am not ok, but I’m ok. I have to be.