Monday, October 6, 2008

Three Pecans

I just spoke with my son's father. I had not heard from Ryan for a couple of weeks and I was so afraid to call thinking the news would not be good. I was pleasantly surprised though. He is still living in the same little motel in town and has been working every day with his father. What a relief. I had thoughts of him being on the street or back with his enabling and using girlfriend. Imagine my happiness in hearing he is actually acting a bit normal.

Ryan really is a good guy. That is, when he is not abusing drugs and/or drinking. He regularly does both which is not good. But I feel better knowing he has a roof over his head, money in his pocket and food to eat.

I drove by his house last week to find a for sale sign out front and everything inside gone. You see, my son bought a really cute house about 3 miles from mine in the same little town 2 years ago. The problem was he only made about 6-7 mortgage payments and he just stopped. He lived there for a while after that off and on but has not been there in many months. The problem was he was and is addicted to pain pills and instead of paying his bills he decided to spend his money on booze and pills. It is very saddening to think that my firstborn could have lived so close to me and he just threw it all away. He stopped being the responsible person he had been. Therefore the house was seized by the leinholder and is now being sold. He didn't even care enough to get his belongings out of the house. So now all he has, literally, are the clothes on his back and what little bit he was able to take with him when he broke up with his girlfriend.

While I was at his house I picked up three pecans from the ground in front of his house. I simply put them in my pocket and thought of all the hopes and dreams that I had had for him. It was important to me that he live close. Now, don't get me wrong, I had no influence on him buying this particular house, it just happened to be close to mine. I had thought of the future and how my husband won't be around forever and that one day I would need my son to help me with things. You know how it is, little old ladies that have their boys come over and dig a hole or get the Christmas tree out of the attic. Not to mention the comfort of knowing that someone that loves you more than life itself can be there in a heartbeat.

Some of you know the situation with my son, some don't. I know that some of you also have similar situations that you are dealing with yourselves. I decided several months ago that I could no longer worry on a daily, hourly basis about Ryan. My husband and I did everything we knew of to help him. We offered help to deal with his drug and alcohol problem. We bailed him out of jail. We even paid some of his bills including his mortgage for a while. He always said thank you and all of that crap but he really never cared. All he cared about was his next "fix." His next "drink." At least the addict Ryan didn't care. The real and sober Ryan cares but it has been a very long time since I have seen that Ryan.

Finally I had had enough and turned it completely over to God. I pray for my son every night. I trust in God to watch over him and keep him safe. I find such comfort in knowing that He truly does watch over him. Whatever happens happens. I know that I have done everything humanly possible to help this child. But the addiction wins every time.

I plan on taking the three pecans I brought home and attempting to start a seedling. I want to plant that seedling next spring in my yard and watch it grow. I want so much more but I have to realize that I can only do what I can do. And that is to turn him over to God and watch, hopefully, a Paper Pecan tree grow.


MichelleSG said...

Put it in the hands of God and leave it there. As a parent it's just about the hardest thing you can do but at this point it's also the only thing. Good luck to the both of you.
I have a friend who had to make that same decision, it took her almost 15 years of riding that same enabler ride before she finally got off of it but she did. She had this stone face look about her every time she explained it to a person, like she was expecting to be judged badly or something. You can't help someone that won't help themselves, it just won't work.

Dan and Betty Cooksey said...

TB, MichelleSG said it very well. And, you did too. One of the things that's hard for all of us to learn is there is a point where we have to stop being 'parents' and just be a mother and/or father. We still love our kids, but we can no longer guide, correct or teach them (except by our example).

If you can find it, there's a great book called, "Addiction and Grace" by Gerald May. He's a Christian psychologist (or psychiatrist, I can't remember). The first half of the book is understanding what addictions really are and how they work. The second half is understanding God's grace and how it works.

Warmest regards,


Kim said...

Your post brought tears to my eyes. I so agree with what you have done, but I know that doesn't make it any easier. That adult kid thing is a new stage for me--I have a married daughter and while some of the decisions she and her husband have made concern me--(not nearly as serious or heartbreaking as your situation)--I have been trying to find that point in me where I am just mom, but not in the role of parent/guide anymore. It is hard, and nothing about child rearing in the past has prepared me for this stage!
I so hope your pecans will seed for you--and I hope you have a wonderful week!

Syd said...

Your post echoed where I am. I need to put it all in the hands of my HP and leave it there. Dwelling on the past or what might happen is a useless thing.

Jan Blawat said...

My 22-year old son does things that annoy me to no end, but it takes stories like yours to remind me that leaving dirty dishes in his bedroom is not on the same level as serious things that could affect his life. By talking straight-out about your situation, you put things into perspective for me. Thank you. I'll give my kid an extra hug today and hope you can soon do the same. Hugs to you, too. XOX

Anonymous said...

I hope your tree grows.

Lou said...

I think it was hard for you to put it in writing, but I'm glad you did. I know where you're heart is. You always remember them at about 8years old, and they loved you & bicycles & swimming pools & rice krispie treats.
You are doing the right thing. And
God has his back.

Karen said...

Thank you for sharing your heart with us. I pray that Ryan will find his path again. You're doing the right thing, Lisa. As a mom, you'll never let go of him, but you've learned that holding him in prayer is the best thing you can do. God will take care of him.

Scott W said...

I have a hard time picturing you as a little old lady, just as I have a hard time picturing Ryan as a grown man. I just remember that little boy that just wanted to be loved.

The way you handle this stuff amazes me and makes me so grateful.

coffeypot said...

A wise outlook and decission. You can only do so much. The rest is up to him - and God.

Zanejabbers said...

Hope the pecan tree grows and you and a sober son can one day enjoy its shade.

Daniela said...

Bless your heart. You are such a good mom. all you can do is pray and be there for him when he finally gets help for his addiction. I can't imagine what you go through on a daily basis. Being a mom myself, I'm not so sure I would be as strong. We will be praying for you and your family.

Pam said...

Oh how I wish we could change them. sigh.

Paige said...

That is so the only thing you can do --give it to God.

Hang in there