Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Wait

Court websites show my daughter and the boyfriend each pled "not guilty" yesterday. It's a process I do not understand, but apparently they are given an offer (example: 2 years digging ditches) in exchange for a guilty plea, and avoidance of a trial. They don't like the offer? They plead "not guilty" and everyone goes back to their respective corners to hang around and think a bit. I'm sure it's more involved and serious than that, but I don't understand it, and it makes no sense that they can plead not guilty considering their condition when brought in for violating probation. Wouldn't a simple drug test have solved that beyond the shadow of a doubt?

Normally it's a bit of time before they meet in the center of the ring again. Then they get a slightly better offer and the opportunity to plead guilty or not guilty again. Last night, the website showed she would be in court again on 12-31, he would be there again 12-23. They call it pre-trial, but it translates to "next better offer opportunity".

This morning, for some inexplicable reason, the web site shows they are both in superior court, different court rooms. I guess "next better offer" came sooner than they thought.

The last I heard from her was Sunday night, in which she told me if going to prison meant a shorter time away, she was going to prison. She has no idea what prison is really like. She thinks it has carpeted two person cells, classes to take, television and an exercise area. She has no idea that short-term inmates never get out of the A-yard, a pit that is filthy, crowded, and where if you don't know the rules and how to survive, you can easily miss getting fed for several days, you can get hurt badly, and you can't make calls, have money posted to your books etc, for up to eight weeks.

She also mentioned several times that "they were so close to having everything they wanted, a life together, etc" and that "she should just be dead, and she wished she was dead, it would be easier on everyone." I have no idea if the death wishes are genuine or attention-seeking.

I tried to remain calm on the phone. I only really got emotional once, when I told her I really didn't want to lose her. Other than that, I tried to encourage her to marshall all the stubbornness and drive and determination I know she has, that we've seen in her all her life, that made us nick-name her Spunky, and use it to get to the life she wanted.

I told her finally, "until you want sobriety even more than I as your mother want it for you, and until you want sobriety for yourself MORE than you want Boyfriend in your life..... it's probably not going to work." I tried to explain to her again, that until they are each WHOLE persons, healthy and able to stand on their own two feet, they don't stand a chance at succeeding together.

Until she is sober and wants a sober, healthy, honorable life more than she wants to be with anyone ELSE, she's not ready to be with any one else.

I told her I adore her boyfriend. I think they have something special. But I think they went for it all too soon, before they were strong enough to be together. She seemed to understand what I was trying to convey.

I only said those things AFTER she asked for my opinion, and I told her that ultimately, it's ALL UP TO HER. My opinion doesn't mean anything. It's her opinion, her goals, her desires for her own life that matter.

All I can do is wait, pray and love her from out here.

The next visiting day is Christmas. My husband is flatly refusing to go, ever, as usual, even if she's going to be transferred to a prison and even though he only works part-time and has more free time than anyone in this house. My oldest daughter has said she will visit "some" but she doesn't have it in her to go every week this time. I understand that from her, as she has school, a nanny job, and enough homework to choke a horse... I'm not going to concern myself with his decision, just my own. I think I will go, but likely not every week. I'm working way more than full time and I'm tired. Going Christmas day will kill me. Staying at home will kill me too.

I am so tired. I'm so grateful she's alive. But I am having a hard time digging up my "hope" today.

"One day at a time", is best done "an hour at a time" today. I am setting a timer and focusing on work for an hour and then taking a few minutes break to take out dogs, watch them cavort in the backyard, cry, stomp my foot, and then it's back to the timer for another hour of work! Works for me! :)


  1. I hope and pray that prison isn't on the offering plate. She's still looking for an easier, softer way. Dividing the day into hours is an excellent suggestion. Peace be with you today as you await some more news.

  2. It sures sounds like a 'serenity to accept' moment. I like your idea of setting a timer. I hope your Higher Power wraps you up in his hands and handles you with love over these next days. Take care of yourself.

  3. We got to where our sons actions and consequences were his actions and consequences.

    He had been in and out of jail many times with no real effect. In fact he told us "people" (other inmates) said prison was much easier than jail. So I think he had no real fear or felt intimidated.

    Of course he got himself into a jail situation again. Finally when he got to one month to go on his sentence they transferred him to real prison. His quote,"Prison is one thousand times worse than any jail." He spent one month in prison. He was released on the day before Thanksgiving. You can read the details of his time since on our blog. His time I am sure was intended to be shock time but it worked. Sometimes intense pain for all is the bitter medicicne that must be swallowed to begin the healing. Who Knows?

  4. I know from reading your blog that you already know what tools to reach out for to take care of you right now. You are doing them. This just sucks and I am sorry you have to even search for the tools to help get you through this time, but at least you know and have the tools, thank God. This too shall pass and I guess just try to stay present, it is the only place where we can find peace. Oh, BTW, from all I have read about your daughter, she is a fighter, she is bright and there is a purpose for this incarceration, she will make it through this and become stronger for it, I have hope for that, truly.

  5. Hugs. My nephew was in our custody for 8 months but he moved out and lived a life less than desirable. He will get out of prison in 2 years. Our hearts are still open for him, so is our home. Only time will tell what happens. He is loved but we do have a lot of long conversations about his choices.
    He is 5 hours away, I have never visited him. But I write him, e mail him, and he calls me twice a month.

  6. I think it's useless to speculate which is worse- prison, jail, the street-it all sucks. Being that deep in addiction and denial is what is the worst.

  7. I think you're doing a terrific job of letting go. And, you're giving each person in the family the right to figure out how they're going to deal with all this. You've let go, but God will never let go. I pray He keeps His arms around her, protects her, and uses every single situation to convince her that she needs to run from drugs and the boyfriend. There is a good life ahead for her. And for you too.

  8. Here's a prayer that you find your hope again in time to share a loving Christmas with your family, one that fills your heart with the peace that passes all understanding. What you told your daughter is the truth as we know it in AA. But she has to find the truth herself. And you have to allow her to do that. That's the painful part. May God ease your pain an hour at a time.

  9. Your description of the way the justice system works is so true...I had no clue it was like that till I got "acquainted" with it this year. It seems like such a waste of everyone's time going back and forth, back and forth.

    My son also says he would rather do prison (if he goes back) because you get out faster and he also heard its easier. Ugh. I think Lou is right, all of it sucks.

    I hope your girl gets the sentence that is best for her (to get her to where she needs to be). Sounds like you said (or didn't say) all the right things.

    One hour at a time....thinking of you.

  10. i'm with Lou. it all sucks, BUT...it is all THEIR CONSEQUENCES from THEIR ACTIONS.

    to minimize the consequences is to interfere with the process of their learning what happens when they do this.

    Allow her to find grace and hope through abandonment. Allow her to find what is within her to give HER the strength to overcome her addiction.

  11. Everyone's comments are so full of honesty and wisdom, as is your post. My only additional thought is that you should only visit her for Christmas if you do it for you and your well being. No other reason.

    Take care of yourself, and I am thinking and praying for you.

  12. Stay in the moment, take life one moment at a time. Let go of the past and don't worry about the future, the only time you have is now.

  13. Glad you're here telling your story. We all have this in common -- the understanding of watching, hoping, letting go... My son got out of jail (2nd time) two days before christmas and is in rehab. He's a little too happy and enthusiastic in his stories of recovery; I'm thinking he's lying again. Only time will tell. I will add you, your daughter, and your family to my prayer list. God bless.