It is hard to believe that only around 40 hours have passed since everything started. And about 36 since my world fell apart, again. Feels a lot longer actually. I spent yesterday in a daze, today I am coherent and doing things.
She came to my door out of her mind. At first I thought it was just alcohol, fuck you could smell it on her. She stank. The weaving, incoherent speech, confusion and constant picking a fight just all spoke of abuse. Then the bombshell dropped – she had taken downers and muscle relaxants as well. Things fell into place then.
On the spare bed, crying one second, shouting the next and then looking for attention like a little child. I watched concerned and scared. Would I lose her this night? Trying hard to get him to come and help but he wouldn’t. I dealt with the worst of it alone. The emotional abuse. The words that were thrown and the barbs that sunk deep because she knows exactly which ones to choose.
The fuck you every time I tried to help when she fell and hurt herself. I am sure she woke up with a headache that had nothing to do with the alcohol! I dealt with the worst and when I had no more, when I was really at my end, I called you.
She ended up going back to his house. That’s a safer place for her and it is what she knows. When in a state like she is/was, what you have regularly is where you go back to because it helps you settle. She did settle within 45 minutes.
Now I come to you. You came when I asked to your credit, it’s what I saw afterwards that has me in a daze. Again I stand and wonder just why you give everyone else’s opinion credit when the relationship is between you and me? Does it really matter what everyone else thinks? And if so, why?
Yet there is something deeper that I saw on your face that night/morning, that I see on other people’s faces. I saw disgust, contempt and to a degree hatred. It is so easy to stand on the outside looking in. It is so easy to pass judgement on someone else’s life and go “hey, look at that sorry excuse for a human!“.
We all have triggers and things that make us recoil from others. Mine are legion. Empathy plays a big part in being able to talk to and deal with others, but so does one simple fact. Every of us has done something for which we feel ashamed. I won’t say regret because that’s a blog all for itself, but shame is something we all feel.
I hurt today because instead of standing with me, you ran away when life got messy. You ran away when you should have not been listening to the words but looking at the person and seeing the circumstance. You should have had more faith in me, in us.
My life is messy. Between work, study and two young adults under 25 things are going to be rough. It is going to be unbalanced. I wouldn’t change a damn thing.
For the philosophical part: It’s easy to watch other families deal with alcohol and drug abuse and blame the parent or the friends. It’s easy to blame circumstance or upbringing. The reality is that it is accessible and our doctors prescribe it – so easy to get prescriptions these days. We over medicate our children. Alcohol is readily available too – bottle stores are open from early to late 7 days a week. As adults we advocate the drink a night to help us “relax”. What are we teaching our kids?
It’s time to take a look at how we teach our children to relax. That’s one thing that struck me from the last 40 hours. She has no idea other than to use recreational methods. Somewhere I forgot to teach her that a bicycle ride or a walk in the park were better than a glass of wine.
More than that though, think twice before you throw that look of contempt at a mother/father desperately trying to hold onto her son/daughter as they sit in the hospital, or even in the back of a police van. That parent is doing the best they can in a set of circumstances they never received a manual for. They love their kids, just as you love yours. They don’t understand their kids choices, but they still love them. Turn the situation on yourself before you call the parents bad.
Life is messy. I just wish it didn’t hurt so much.