My Son Is Seeing The Light! – Guest Post by Joan Harvest

Hey, I’m Joan Harvest from “Whatever I Think.” Annie asked me to do a guest post for her and I was honored and thrilled. This is my second guest post here. The first time was a little different. Annie offered me the use of her blog so I could write about my son who is a heroin/crack addict. I had never wanted to write about him on my own blog for one reason: he reads my blog on occasion and I didn’t exactly have permission to write about him but I really needed to.

My dilemma was what to write about as a guest bloggelist this time: another depressing story about my son? or maybe continue on with my saga about dumbasses? or maybe incorporate the two? I even carry around a video camera looking for them(dumbasses) and their antics though I have yet to actually catch any on video. It’s like stalking Bigfoot. He’s never around for a photo op. But have no fear, I will be interviewing my wasband soon so that will take care of that.

I just can’t seem to get myself to stop posting about dumbasses. They are everywhere, around every corner, on every highway, in every parking lot. You can’t get away from them especially if you look in the mirror. I don’t always see a dumbass in the mirror but sometimes I do. Just goes to show you there is a little dumbassness in each of us.

I didn’t exactly want to come right out and call my son a dumbass. I am his mother and have never called him names. Even when he was little I always said to him that he had done a bad thing but I never called him bad. I called him other names when he was little like “alien piggy”, “buzzard breath”, “Damundo”, and countless others but they were all in fun.

He stayed away from heroin for 3 1/2 years and I found out he started using again recently. He admitted it to both me and his girlfriend. Heroin is an opiate like percocet, vicoden, demerol and oxycontin . So now he has bought suboxone off the streets. Suboxone is used by doctors to help addicts get off opiates. It is an opiate in itself but doesn’t get you high. It takes away the craving for opiates and the withdrawal symptoms. It can also be misused if you take enough of it. His girlfriend is doling it out to him in small amounts and he’s weaning off of it. They are in Alaska right now in Denali State park camping out. She got him out of Buffalo and away from the drug dealers. She’s no dumbass.

He called me last night at 1:45 AM in the morning. As soon as I saw his name on caller ID I almost didn’t answer the phone. I’m always afraid it’s going to be one of the bad calls. But again I am his mom and felt an obligation and a need to know. I answered the phone and now I am going to do some thing I have never done before. I am going to call my own flesh and blood, my only son, my sweet pea, a freakin’ dumbass. He forgot there was a four hour time difference and he wanted to tell me how they went white water rafting and how much fun it was. He wanted to tell me about the grizzly bears and wolves they saw.

I was relieved to hear he wasn’t in some alley dead of an overdose (a fear I live with) and I actually sat and listened to his stories. He sounded so happy. He sounded like the Damon I love and cherish and not the Damon wasted on drugs. I didn’t really want to hear about the grizzly bears because now I have it in my head that grizzly bears will be converging on him en masse but of course I patiently listened. I am his mom. I imagined every grizzly bear in Alaska looking for him.

But last night’s call left me with hope. The hope that my son will someday find his way in this life. They are in Alaska with not much money and a tent. But they are happy. I always sleep better knowing my son is happy.

The photo is actually of my son seeing the light, hopefully, one day.

(Joanie, I hope that day is soon. Thanks for this – hugs & jugs)

THE ENABLER- guest post by Joan Harvest

Writer Chick has been kind enough to let me post some stuff I have been
holding in a long time about my son. I’ve needed to get it out but I didn’t
want him or the family reading it. I feel I can share all of it with you and
even if no one reads it at least it will have helped me to better understand
what happened and what is still happening.

Even now when my cell phone rings and I see it is him calling, my stomach
feels queasy because most times he is calling to tell me something bad has
happened to him. But I’m his mother. I can’t just ignore the call even
though I know whatever he tells me will worry me and I will have a
stomachache for hours until I can talk myself down.

He’s been in Buffalo since last September. At first he was so happy being
there but as winter set in you could hear the depression in his voice. He
got a job as a valet driver. He loved the job but like every job he ever
had he got fired. Of course, it’s never his fault. He always has some excuse
as to why he got fired. I think it was in March that things started to
really go downhill for him. He managed to find a part time valet job but his
girlfriend was getting tired of paying for everything for him. That’s when
he relapsed and did cocaine. I don’t know how many times he did it. He said
just once but he never tells the truth. I have found that even recovering
drug addicts lie. He’s been lying for so long I don’t think he remembers
how to tell the truth or why people should tell the truth.

There is so much to our story I believe I could write a whole book about it
and someday I may. You remember that book “A Million Little Pieces” by James
Frey? Come to find out it was a book he wrote as non fiction but most of it
turned out to be fiction about his so called drug addiction. Everything I
write here happened for real. It includes his addiction to heroin,
prescription drugs, cocaine, crack, and pot. It includes my enabling him to
do these things. It includes temper tantrums, smashed walls, calls to the
police, threats of suicide, two deaths, almost losing my family because I
couldn’t let him go. It includes our house being broken into 4 times. It
includes my son going outside to get in my car to pick me up at work and
being approached by his ex drug dealer, with a gun, looking for money. It
includes my son going cold turkey from heroin and oxycontin at home and
watching him suffer through the worst withdrawals you could imagine, not
once but twice. It includes coming home and finding him sitting on the
bathroom floor surrounded by a million little pieces of his bedroom door.

And I still blame myself. That’s all I can write at the moment. The
memories are too vivid and frightening. I hope to be able to write more
because there is so much to this story. Maybe it will touch just one person
and help them whether they are an addict or a relative or friend of an
addict.

Note from Writer Chick: I greatly admire Joan’s courage in writing this post and I encourage you, if you haven’t already, to visit her wonderful site here.