Friday, October 23, 2009

What did we do wrong?

My son (Numbah Two) has effectively shot himself in the foot.

He's 15. He's medicated for bi-polar disorder, and when he takes his meds he's relatively stable. However, he's become a master of NOT taking them, and when he's not on them, it shows.

He doesn't deal with his dad being gone very well, so when The Hubs has to leave we try to be prepared for what we consider to be the worst. 2 days ago, however, the worst was surpassed in a spectacular way.

We've all had the flu. Numbah Two had been particularly restless on Wednesday and said he was going to his room to try and sleep about 1700. When I hadn't heard anything out of him by 1930, I went to check on him.

The door was locked, and there was no answer when I knocked. Alarm bells started ringing for me, so I popped the lock and opened the door. The room was empty, and freezing cold because the window was wide open.

He had snuck out.

I texted him to see where he was. He claimed to be in his room, and when I told him I knew that was a lie he said 'uh oh'. Yeah. Uh-fucking-oh, kid.

It took me 10 minutes to figure out where he was, and I had to threaten him with the local civilian PD (he was off base, in an apartment in a local township) to get him to agree to meet me. I thought he might be high, but it wasn't until I picked him up that I realized how loaded he really was.

I took his sister with me, and it was a good thing I did. As soon as he got in the car, he started threatening me – and her. He kicked the back of my seat, told me he was going to stab me in my sleep and then blow my head off with a shotgun. He threatened to strangle his sister and was cussing, screaming and generally being abusive.

It didn't get any better when we got home. I was on the phone with his dad when he attacked me. He threw my phone across the room, and when I tried to retrieve it he starting pushing and grabbing me. I tried to defend myself and get my phone (I wanted to call the police because I knew this wasn't going to end well) , and that just made it worse, so I starting yelling for help. His sister called 911, and his brother called his dad. I don't recall screaming, but both the 911 dispatcher and his dad say that I was; that I was yelling 'I am your mother! Don't you dare touch me!!" and "get your hands off me!! Why are you doing this?!!!?!!". The Hubs said it was one of the hardest things he ever had to hear, and I believe him.

When he realized that his sister was on the phone with the 911 dispatcher, he stopped, told me I was a fucking bitch and that he hated me, and walked out the front door…..right into the police, who had their hands on their weapons.

One searched him, cuffed in, and made him sit in the back of the patrol car whilst three more came into my house and asked me what happened. When I told them he was high, they asked permission to search his room…and they found paraphernalia with cannabis residue on it.

We live in military housing. Having illegal drugs on base is reason enough to kick us out – and it's also enough reason to take The Hubs rank away from him. Numbah Two's actions could have fucked ALL of us.

The county Sheriff had to come out and I declined to press domestic battery charges against my son because I didn't feel it would benefit him OR us in the long run. Instead, I'm trying to get him into a residential drug rehab facility. When the Deputies asked him how often he was getting high and what he was using, he told them that he was high every day and that the list of things he HADN'T done was shorter than the list of things he had. Apparently, the only things he hasn't tried yet are heroin and meth. Everything else, he's used – sometimes on a regular basis. He has lied to his father and I, he has stolen from us, he has blamed everyone else for his problems…

…my son is a junkie. A bi-polar, violent junkie. I wish I could convey to you how much it hurts my heart to see that in black and white.

His dad had to drop what he was doing and come home early. We have taken Numbah Two's cell phone, T.V., Mp3 player and PSP away from him. We took the door to his room off its hinges, so he has no privacy there. He's not allowed to play Xbox or use the laptop for anything other than homework, and he cannot accept calls on the landline from anyone that we do not know – or approve of. Apparently some of the kids he hangs around with were present Wednesday evening and were also using. They are now persona non grata in our home and I have given their names to the base police and the deputies. They're on law enforcement radar now, and I am unapologetic and even glad about it.

He did the intake interview with a residential treatment facility yesterday afternoon and we're waiting to hear whether they'll accept him this morning. I hope they do; I don't think the outpatient route will work for him. He needs to go and learn a new way to live away from all of the kids he used with; away from me and his dad and his siblings. He needs inpatient, not outpatient. If they accept him, we'll drive to Alabama this afternoon. If not…well, we'll have more decisions to make.

I know that at the end of the day, I cannot control my son's actions…but that hasn't stopped his father and I asking ourselves what I am sure every parent in this situation asks themselves:

Where did we go wrong?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

It’s more than a want

I don't know of anyone in the medical field who is in it for the money – because, to be honest, there isn't much to be had.

I think, in general, we are all in this because we feel it is our calling. It's our dharma, it's something that we are meant to do.

I think that part of my dharma is to go work for Medecins Sans Frontieres – aka Doctors Without Borders.

Most of you don't know this, but I speak enough French to be able to hold a decent conversation. MSF is always looking for medical personnel (doctors, Pas, nurses, NPs etc) who speak conversational French. Right now they need people to go to Haiti, Niger, The Democratic Republic of Congo and Ivory Coast.

My husband thinks I am absolutely crazy for wanting to do this. So does my brother. We had a conversation over lunch on Saturday…my big brother is a corporate private investigator and is a pretty big deal in his profession. He works for some very big companies and he investigates fraudulent and counterfeit products and has been all over the world. Anyway, he, my husband and I got to talking about my desires to work for MSF and the countries I could potentially go to. They both got very quiet, looked at each other, and then turned to me and calmly explained that it would not be in my best interests to go to those countries. Haiti is ridiculously dangerous, they said, as is the Congo. Niger is less unstable, but is really not safe either. In other words, they wanted to put the kibosh on my plans.

I realize that these places are unstable, and I realize that I could be in danger if I go there….but I could just as easily get shot in East St Louis (a woman got shot in the parking lot of the hospital earlier this week, and there have been multiple shooting and homicides in the vicinity of Kenneth Hall this year). I would have been in more danger if I had been able to enlist in the Army…and yeah, I would have had the power of the flag behind me, but MSF is a big deal too. When was the last time you heard of a medical professional working for MSF being abducted or killed?

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I realize there is potentially a great risk to this, but it's something that I feel I need to do. It's my dharma, my path, my way of being. It's in my nature to do this, despite the danger. I had hoped that my husband would understand; his career puts him into some pretty risky places and he's not always harmed.

I don't want to do this for the money, because there really isn't any, and I don't want to do it for the fame or the prestige because there isn't any of that, either. I want to do it because I feel I HAVE to. I NEED to.

We'll see what happens when I qualify, I guess.

Ravaged by a stranger

He swept me off my feet on Tuesday…..he must have known my husband was gone and decided to make his move when I was alone.

By Tuesday night we had become intimately acquainted; he shared my body and my bed and had me moaning and groaning and sweating all night long.

He's using and abusing me and I don't even know his first name….I just know him as Mr Influenza.


Seriously, y'all. I feel like I ran a marathon and then got hit by a truck the next day. I ache, I have a fever, my chest hurts and I have no strength at all.


Get your flu shots. Please. You don't want this flu, trust me. It really, truly sucks.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The difference between new and used car salesmen

Dear Used Car Salesman,

I will never step foot on your lot or buy from your dealership ever again. EVER. I was just browsing; I saw a Jeep that I liked the look of and was in the process of looking at the interior when you descended on me and started your poorly executed hard pressure sale tactics.

You didn't seem to understand why I'm not willing to drop over $25 grand on a used car when I can go down the street and get what I want BRAND NEW for less, and with a better financing deal. You also don't seem to understand that the more you push me, the more I'm going to dig my heels in and counter every argument you come up with. Both of those tactics were mistakes on your part, but your fatal mistake was treating me like I was some ignorant little girl who knew not much about the world of finance and vehicles.

For the record, I might be little and female, but I am far from ignorant. This is not my first time buying a car, jackass. I know how you motherfuckers work.

Introducing me to your floor manager was a bad move on your part, but his attitude smacked of desperation. When he asked me "what can I do to put you in that car today?" my response of "Not a damn thing" wasn't metaphorical, it was literal.

I'm sorry if you think I'm rude for walking away when you were both talking to me, but I just couldn't stand any more bullshit. It was starting to stink out there, and the water reclamation plant next door had nothing to do with it.

You'll never see me again.

Love (not really, but 'disdain' doesn't really work),



Dear New Car Salesman,


Thank you for not pressuring me. Thank you for helping me to decide how to get the most car for the price I want to pay. Thank you for NOT trying to talk me into the super duper deluxe model and being content to let me tell you what I want and working with that. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Call me when you get a manual transmission model in. I'll come down and test drive it, and if I like it…..well, Mr. New Car Salesman, we're more than likely to have us a deal.

Love (and I mean that)