Thursday, May 31, 2007

326 and other stuff

{Tune of farmer and the dell}

This is my 326th post...

This is my 326th post...

Hi ho the dairy oh...

This is my 326th post...

Ok... now that I've taken the focus off of my last two posts I have something to say. No really me have something to talk about?? I know... you're shocked.

It seems to me that the way that I say things in my posts is misinterpreted by the same people that I thought would be able to know how I speak but apparently they don't. I was going to take the post down but I have spoken to everyone and seem to have cleared everything up so I'm leaving it up. However, to all the people who I have talked to on the phone or in e-mails I hope what you misunderstood has been ironed out and that you understand that I love all of my friends for different reasons.

As for the question from the anonymous poster who didn't want to have any knives thrown their way. I don' t know who you are but I wish that I did. E-mail me and let me know. But I will answer your question.

How do I view Jake's addiction? Is it a conscious decision on his part? A biological illness? Or a little of both?

I believe that it is a biological illness. I have friends who will say that I am making excuses for him, but I'm not. I think that my husband is sick. I think that he wanted to get better, as most addicts do, but he could not get himself there. I think there are parts of the things he did that were decisions he made but for the most part I believe that the addiction called the shots.

That is why I have been so forgiving of him and so willing to help him as long as he is willing to help himself. Because I don't think he hurt us intentionally. I think we were casualties of war so to speak. The war against his addiction. So, I really hope that he is getting the tools that he needs to be able to fight that war on the home front and this time win. Anyone else have any questions? I like questions.

Tripping Over My Own Two Feet

Well my last post hasn't even been up for two hours and already I'm offending people. Believe me when I tell you that was NOT my intention. I was not out to say one friendship was better than another simply to say that I have had and still do have all types of friends.

Both of the people that have been over at my house helping me clean have been WONDERFUL!! They have put their hands into some pretty questionable items and still they continued with their mission. My friend has come back night after night, week after week and this weekend we have FINALLY completed 95% of the cleaning of my house.

It has been messy. We have found some paraphernalia items that Jake hid throughout the house and also cleaned up some messes that my cats left that really should have been taken care of months ago. I have no excuses for my lack of house cleaning skills I can only say that I greatly appreciate her effort and her resolve to make my house a much cleaner and more organized environment.

I also didn't mean to make it sound as if she has no reasons for not hanging out with Jake. She does. He has been mean to her in more ways than one. There have been incidents in restaurants where playful banter has turned into angry words. If I were to make excuses I could say that people on drugs do mean things but I don't need to make excuses for him any more.

The anonymous commenter had it right when they said that my friends are looking out for my best interests and I am aware of that. There is a part of me that is sad because all of this happened and there is a part of me that is sad that I can't just go back to a "normal" life but that is not my friends fault. That is something that has happened in our lives and we have to deal with it.

If Jake is serious about his recovery than he will come out of this place with both feet firmly on the ground and he will take as many steps as is necessary to win back the trust and respect of all of the people around him. If he is not serious I will see it in the faces of those who I hold as my dearest friends and I will lean on them for support as I close the book on that chapter of my life.


(Please note that all things said in this post about my friends are how I feel about what is going on. They may not necessarily be what they feel or think or even how they would react.. it's mostly how I think they will react or why I think they reacted a certain way.)

When someone is in a situation like Jake is there comes a point in time when you have to reevaluate the company that you keep and decide if they are your friends because of the addiction or your friends no matter what. Unfortunately for Jake 99.9% of the "friends" that he had were only so because they used together. I have had his phone for the past 2 1/2 months. No one has called to check on him. Some of these people knew my number or the house number yet no one has called to see how he is.

The strange part is some of the people whom I thought I would put in that 0.1% of real friends have not called either. I'm not sure if they feel uncomfortable with the situation or if they just figure when he gets out and wants to talk to them he will call.

Oddly enough, on the outside, I find myself in a similar situation with some of my friends. Tracy Lawrence has a song out now called "You find out Who Your Friends Are." (Or something like that) and that song describes a lot of what I've found myself going through these last couple of months and even to a certain extent before Jake left.

I once heard that sometimes your friends are only your friends for a reason or for a season and I believe that is definitely true. In college I had a friend who was my friend for a season. We were in classes together and I was able to help her with her homework and we could hang out sometimes. However once college was over, or really just that semester, she sort of just drifted off into the wind. I still think about her sometimes but I'm sure I will probably never see her again.

At that point in my life I also had a friend for a reason. We were roommates. We talked and hung out because he was there. We knew everything about each others lives because we lived in such close quarters it was convenient to share everything. Then I graduated and he moved away. I still chat with him every once in a while but I couldn't tell you who he's dating now, if anyone, and he wouldn't be able to tell you how Jake is doing.

When Jake and I moved to our house he was really the only friend I had. Then slowly I acquired some friends and he acquired some "friends." I was never allowed to hang out with his "friends", for obvious reasons, and so we started doing some things with my friends. The more we hung out with these people the less I shared with them about Jake and I and our relationship.

With every new couple that we would hang out with I shared less and less until from the outside they would only see a normal couple with the occasional disagreement. Every aspect of our relationship was censored. These people knew all about me and my life but very little truth about Jake's and my life together. This was not their fault really. They believed the truth that I gave them.

If we got into an argument on the phone and they were there I told them the parts that I wanted them to know. I was very careful to change facts or circumstances so that they would know we weren't perfect but also not know the "extent" to which we weren't so. I did this because I wanted to be normal. For so long now that is all I have wanted.

Most people have goals for their relationships. Things they want from them. They want their husbands/wives to do x or they want to be able to get to a place in their relationship where y happens. For me I never really had those goals. All I ever wanted was to be normal to argue about the things that other people do and to never again have to have an argument because I found what looked like drug paraphernalia or because he would get mad and disappear for hours on end.

Then March 20, 2007 happened and this whole little world that I had created came crashing down. In some ways it was a relief. I could finally stop censoring everything and could just tell 100% of the truth. The same thing that I had always told Jake "Tell me the truth and let me decide how I deal with it" I could finally start doing myself.

I like not having to hide anything any more. I like being able to tell my friends everything. I don't like what it has done to some of my relationships.

I have one friend who has really stepped it up. Her and her husband have been there for anything I have needed during this last 2 1/2 months. They have devoted weekends, evenings, money, time, sweat and an occasional hand in something unmentionable while cleaning some part of my previously disgusting house that should really have been cleaned MONTHS sooner!! She always calls and asks if I need anything and she always asks me to go out and do things.

However, I can't help but feel like when Jake gets home, all of that will change. It feels very much to me like in her and her husbands eyes I am no longer normal. I feel like they know all of the things that I hid from them and they are not able to forgive Jake for those nor are they willing to hang out with him. This makes me more sad than you can imagine. I have loved hanging out with them but when Jake gets home I can't just leave him home and go hang out with them. As much as I love these people I can't help but feel like our relationship is going to change a lot when he get back. Like I could come hang out with them when I'm alone but not with him and I won't be alone forever.

I have another friend who has also been a great help to me and my son. She also calls and asks how things are going and is consistently checking on me and wanting to make sure I'm ok. I do not see her and her husband a lot because of distance but they have made me feel as if they would be willing to over look Jake's past and move forward with us as friends. I appreciate this more than she will ever know and I hope that we are still able to be as close as we have become these last few months once Jake comes home.

Then there is the friend whom I used to be closer to than all of the others. She is hurt by my "charade" and our friendship as sort of fallen apart because of it. She feels as if I "lied" to her in a way by not telling her of the troubles that I was having when I told another friend of mine. I can't say that I blame her. Some people do not fully understand how important it is to appear normal. I hope one day that I can fully convey to her that I did not keep everything from her because I didn't trust her, I kept it from her because I didn't want her to see me as different.

The friend that I told happened to catch me on a bad day about a month before everything fell apart and it all just sort of pored out. She asked what was wrong and I needed an ear to babble to so I babbled away. I knew at the time she was not incredibly fond of Jake so telling her was not going to destroy any image that she had of him nor was it really going to tarnish her opinion of him. (Which wasn't that great at the time.)

However to my other friend, I didn't want to be the wife of a drug addict I just wanted to be Heather. Or at times HeatherJake. I was afraid that if she knew his history (she knew the past she didn't know the recent past) or what I had fears that he was still doing she would not want him around her or her children. Again, I can't say that I would blame her if that was the case.

Now don't put words in my mouth here when I say this. I have NEVER gotten any indication from her that this would be the case. Everything I did was solely based on the fears that I had of how things would go.

Now all the cards are on the table. For the most part I think she has moved on from the initial hurt of me not telling her what was going on. However I'm unsure if our friendship will ever be the same. Her and her husband don't call me any more. I wonder if it isn't somewhat like Jake's "friends" that I mentioned up above. Maybe she thinks that I will call her if I want something or want to do something.

That is where she doesn't fully understand the mind set I am in. I don't want to be the 3rd wheel if I'm not wanted and I don't want to make her and her husband uncomfortable. When I have seen them sometimes they ask about Jake sometimes the conversation seems to make them uncomfortable (more so her husband than her). Sometimes I feel like they would rather just gloss over it and go back to things being normal.

So I don't call. I figure they will call me if they want me to "tag along" when they go somewhere. And since they are not calling me and I am not calling them you can only imagine what a cluster f*** our relationship has become.

From the outside to a lot of my other friends it seems as if she is being insensitive, not calling me to see how things are going. However, I see the other side of things. Perhaps she is just giving me some space and waiting for me to call her. Well dear friend, that is probably not going to happen any time soon. I can barely keep track of where I left my son let alone a social calendar. If you want to see me please call. If I'm busy... call again, and again, and again.

And really that goes for all of my friends. I am sorry that I have not been the best friend that I can be lately. I'm sorry if I forgot your birthday or if I have arrived 20 minutes late to something or spaced it off entirely. I never planned on being a single mother with a husband in rehab and adjusting to it has not gone as smoothly as I would have hoped.

Right now my life is about taking care of my son and preparing myself and him for the eventual return of my husband. I hope when that happens that my friends turn out to be real friends and not just friends for a reason or a season. I hope that they can eventually see past the things that Jake has done and understand that addiction makes people do things that do not always have a logical explanation.

I keep coming back to that song about finding out who my friends are. Friends that I thought were friends who have gone away and friends that I wasn't so sure about who have really stepped it up and become big parts of my life. I really hope that they can understand that someday I would love to be normal and I would love them to continue to be a part of my life as I strive to get there.

Thursday, May 17, 2007


I started this yesterday and then my computer sh*t on me and it all went away. I was so discouraged I gave up but have decided to attempt it again today. Someone asked in one of the comments how we were doing so I thought I would give you a little update on all of us. I'll start with youngest and move to oldest. Yes that means I will be last... please don't remind me!! :-)

Zack -

Still adorable. (No really, there are new pictures up on his site if you don't believe me.) Is there anymore update that is needed?

Okay, I'll give you a little more. He's spoiled AND adorable!!

He has absolutely no interest in rolling over or doing tummy time. If you lay him on his back he will happily kick his feet and babble to himself but he has absolutely no interest in reaching for that toy I put just out of reach (like they tell you to do).

If I put him on his stomach he happily lays there and chews on his fist. I have seen him lift his head up from this position a grand total of one time. Other than that... not happening. And as for putting him laying over the boppy, don't even think about it unless you want to hear the wrath of Zackary!!

He has been sleeping through the night for about a month now but he does so in bed beside me. At first he was in the boppy in bed beside me and then in his bassinet and now for the past two weeks he has started out in his own crib. However the end result is always the same.

Sometime in the middle of the night he wakes up and can't find his binkie so he begins to cry. I go in to retrieve said binkie but am tired and disoriented. In theory if I would stand there for 5 minutes or so he would probably go back to sleep and I could go back to bed but did I mention I'm TIRED and I like my sleep?? So into my bed he goes.

I'll let you know if this is still going on when he is 18, until then as someone said on my last post on this topic sometimes I need him more than he needs me and that is so true. I love waking up and being able to kiss his head and hug him.


He made it to his long-term treatment program on May 4th. We went one week without talking to each other because that is their rule. In that time, he wrote me a letter. I about fainted from shock when I saw it in the mailbox. Jake does NOT write letters. In fact any time I have asked him to write in one of my cards it has consisted of love ya lots Jake.

Once I did get to talk to him it was obvious that this place is unlike any he has ever been in. His attitude is great. He is very positive about everything and says he really feels so much calmer now that he doesn't have to worry about hiding his addiction or worrying about getting his next fix.

They go to two AA and two NA meetings per week and they also have group sessions as well as one on one's with a counselor. He has to write 100 interference statements (I interfered in so and so's life when I did) and he also has to write his life story (one page for each year he's been alive).

Both of these things require him to take a pretty deep look at his life and how he got where he is. These two things are what hold a lot of people up. It takes them a few months to even begin writing them and so the longer they take to start the longer they take to finish and they can't graduate until they finish. Jake has started his interference statements but not his life story.

On top of the treatment aspects they are also trying to teach them how to be responsible and to live a drug and alcohol free life. Every Saturday they have a car was to raise money for the community (that's how they refer to themselves as a community instead of a treatment facility). They have also helped someone move, babysat puppies, etc. All of this to make money that these people never see.

For addicts this is a big step. Addicts by nature are very selfish people and usually only want to make money if it is going into their pockets. So they are trying to teach them that when you live in a community it takes money to buy food and to go and do fun things so they have to make this money so that they can do those things.

And that is the final step that they are working on. They take them out into the community to go to baseball games and go bowling, fishing, volleyball, etc. All of this is to teach them that they can have fun without drugs and alcohol.

For the most part the facility is run very much like a community. They give them the freedom to mess up if they are not serious about their recovery but at the same time they monitor them for screw ups. They are all given a breathalyzer when they return from any outing and they have to take random UA's while they are there. Eventually he will be able to earn weekend passes and then he will also have to do both when he returns from that.

We visited him on Sunday and I was pretty impressed with the laid back atmosphere. We sat outside under a shade tree with a road 100 feet in front of us never once feeling like he wanted to run away or like there would be anyone there to stop him if he did. It was just a very relaxed community feel.

We are going again this weekend to celebrate his 60 days of sobriety but then after that we will be limiting our visits to every other weekend. Both because of gas prices and also because that is a long time in the car for my little guy (two and a half hours down there and two and a half hours back).

Overall I feel very lucky that we were able to find a program that seems to be such a great fit for Jake and where he finally seems to be taking his recovery seriously.

Me -

Amazingly enough here is where I draw a blank. I seem to be able to go on and on about everyone else but can't think of how I'm doing. I guess in the grand scheme of things I'm surviving. That is sort of how I've been doing it for the last two months. Yeah, you read that right, on Sunday it will be two months since Jake was committed.

I guess if I think about it too much I get overwhelmed so I try to just take it one day at a time. My friend Jess has really been helping me to get organized. Her philosophy is that if you get rid of the clutter your life will feel less hectic. For the most part it seems to be working.

There are days when she is pushing me to get "projects" done and I just want to scream at her but then once it is done I look back and I think wow, this is so nice. Like right now my bathroom and kitchen are organized and everything is put away. It is so nice not to have all the clutter lying around. If someone is coming over it takes me 10 minutes to tidy up those rooms as opposed to 10 hours.

Since Jake has been at the long term facility I have had a few moments of overwhelming stress and anxiety but I just write him letters or vent to friends and I seem to be able to deal with it quite well. My most recent thing has been a little bit of jealousy. (Actually I'm not really sure that's what it is but I don't know how else to describe it.)

Maybe it's more of a that's not fair attitude. You know, he doesn't have to work. He gets to go to baseball games and go bowling and play volleyball, etc. and I'm stuck here getting up at 5:00 in the morning and working all day and then going home and working there to try to get Jess's "projects" done. (Love ya Jess...)

However, once I really examined it I realized that those are things that he HAS to do to get better. If they don't teach him how to go out in public and not use he will just come back home and be tempted to use again. If they don't teach him to work at odd jobs and give the money to the community than that will be a battle that I have to fight.

As for how the rest of me is doing I would say alright. I don't really get lonely at night because I have a really cute man that keeps me company. He's a little demanding at times but he gives the best cuddles and the most wonderful kisses.

My mom has been helping me out with the money situation and so I don't feel like I'm drowning too badly yet. Although I had to begin tapping into my savings this week and that was sort of depressing. Once that runs out then I will really feel like I am treading water.

I try to stay strong for my son and also for myself. I've never been real good with falling apart. It's not really my style. So for now I'm just kind of hanging out.

Anything you want to know that I missed?

Monday, May 7, 2007


Friday night Zack and I had dinner with some friends. At the restaurant I saw a woman that I used to talk to quite a bit before she moved away. In fact at one point she used to read this website. This woman is married to a man who is was a recovering alcoholic/drug addict.

When I saw him with a drink in front of him at dinner my heart just sank. Then throughout dinner while I was trying to socialize I kept looking over and watching them and all of the memories just came flooding back. This man looked awful (at least to me). He was sweating profusely and I just kept thinking about the times when Jake and I had gone to dinner and he had looked like that.

I remembered being SO embarrassed as he was sweating but still felt like he HAD to order another drink and I kept looking at this man's face and seeing everything that I used to see in Jake's. It haunted me all night long. I don't know if what her husband is doing bothers her and if she still reads here I don't in ANY way want to make her feel bad. All I know is what I told my friend. My heart hurts for her, even if she doesn't know hers is hurting.

And then it dawned on me. I can NEVER go back there. I have been so bothered by this all weekend and even today it gives me chills. That is a part of my life that I have tried to forget but I can't and so I have to deal with it and move on. And part of my dealing with it is to promise myself that I will never re-live those moments.

I don't ever want to sit across the table from a man who I know is messed up and try to be okay with it. I don't ever want to be the bad guy because we don't have the money to buy a six pack of beer or to give him $20 for "food." I can never go back to where the addiction ran our lives instead of us running our lives.

I have now had forty seven days in which I have not had to wonder where he is or walk on eggshells to try to budget money to get him what he needs and still be able to pay our bills so that we don't have a huge fight. I've come too far to ever go back to that place again.

You know it's funny, you don't really realize how deep and dark the hole you are in is until you have begun to climb out of it and you look back. At this point I'm still climbing. I have a firm grip on the rope that is pulling me out and I will loose my fingers from gripping to hard before I will let go and fall back down.

Friday, May 4, 2007


Isn't it ironic that Jake is in a car on his way to the long-term treatment program on the same day that he was supposed to graduate from that half-ass MECCA program?

Isn't it also ironic that today I feel more scared than at any other moment in the last 41 days? I have put so much effort and faith into him going to this long-term program and I really feel like this is our last chance.

I want SOO much for it to work that the thought of him even starting terrifies me. If he never starts than he can't fail. However, we can't live our lives in limbo forever. All I can do now is just cross my fingers and pray.

My husband is a different person today than he was a month and a half ago. We laugh together and we have real conversations. I have faith that now that he has a clear head and a drive to succeed he will be just fine. He can do this and I can do this. (Excuse me while I go off and chant that over and over to myself.)

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

New Day, New Outlook

I went home last night and decided I needed to do something about my house so I started. I ran the Roomba in the kitchen and the bathroom. I did two loads of laundry and I actually put some laundry away. I also wrote about 15 thank yous for things I have received for Zack.

So today I feel much better. There are still lots of things I need to do but I am getting there. Maybe it took my one bad day yesterday to kick me in the ass who knows. As I told Jake's aunt I felt like it was all crumbling down on top of me yesterday.

I suppose in the grand scheme of things everyone is allowed to have days like that. In fact I even considered pulling down yesterdays post but then I decided against it. It is real and it is who I am and as much as I try to put on a happy face and act like a strong person there are inevitably days that I break and days that I don't feel so strong.

But today, so far, is a good day. Now if I could just figure out how to get to work on time my days could go from good to great!! :-)