A couple years ago when fatigue and chronic pain first started to take over my life and body – one of the many things I couldn’t get out of my mind was how I felt that life was passing me by. Canceling invitations and plans, saying “no thank you” when I was asked on a date. Moving so slowly. I didn’t have the strength to shower, let alone drive my car and participate in a social situation. I knew something was horribly wrong with my intestine and I no longer had the energy to bring my own safe bland food – especially when asked well meaning questions. The brain-fog that I was once able to shake off was getting more and more difficult to overcome. I felt surprisingly toxic – every part of me ached. Yet, doctors giving me test after test just couldn’t figure out why any of this was happening so time and time again I was told “nothing is wrong”. I knew this was not true, so I’d drag myself to one more doctor. When I was finally unable to drive, I would feel so blessed and feel so humbled when a friend drove me.
As more weeks went by I’d never known such illness, isolation and depression – and in my case they went hand in hand. I was forced to become a hermit but some how I was able to hang on to my sobriety and my spiritual foundation that an alcoholic must find to stay sober.
Was I the active, happy, single mom who not so long ago used to live at the beach, go longboarding at sunrise and take my son to school before I even went to work for the day? Where did she go? I did not realize I always been a bullet proof Barbie until I started to morph into a Raggedy Ann doll. All I knew was that I was in survival mode. When I didn’t even have the energy to speak, I’d let my cell phone go to voice mail when I heard it ring. Then there were the times as soon as my cell phone stopped ringing, my land line would ring. That would be my son. I knew it was him because I had finally told him I hadn’t been feeling well for many months and it had gotten to be too much – my body was wiped out from fighting what ever was wrong. He said if I didn’t answer my cell, he would then immediatley call on my land line that was next to my bed. When it was my son, I’d answere.
You see – the best thing I’ve ever done in my whole life was when I was 28 and I became a mother. I quit drinking on my 30th birthday for my son. No child ever does anything to deserve a drunk mommy. Yes – I quit drinking for my son – but I’ve stayed sober for me. My son is my family. And my family is love. I honestly don’t know how I would have survived the darkest days with out his calling me every day as he drove home from work. I didn’t tell him of the deep level of dispair I hit – I just told him that it made my day every time he called since I was still so under the weather. . .
“I’m so glad to hear your voice Son – tell me what you did out in the world today. I love hearing all about it.”
And he would tell me all about it. And during one such call he said, “Mom, start writing down the things you need done around your house or anything you need at the store and I’ll take care of it when I drive up on Saturday.”
“You’re coming over on Saturday?”
He showed up with his girlfriend the following Saturday and I accepted their loving kindness when they asked for the list. Healing takes time – but the love carried me far and lifted me up. What a gift and a blessing to know that caring and kind (and smart and tall and good-looking) young man is my son. Perhaps, life is not passing me by after all.