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Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Standing Still

Weird title right?
Standing still is something I do when the stress gets close to Mach 10. I do it physically and mentally. Basically I shut down. It doesn't happen very often, maybe a few times in my adult life. I learned to do this as a child being raised in an extremely dysfunctional and abusive home. Mom was/is an alcoholic and physically abusive to my sister and myself. Parents divorced at a very early age, yada, yada. It's unfortunately not an uncommon story in this world. It could have been worse. Anywho...I'm all grown up now and can't seem to shake this habit. The physical part I can handle, it's the mental part that's causes me problems. I'm at that point right now. Why you ask? Well I haven't spoken to Susan (mom) in over 10 years. When my kids were getting to the age of asking what was wrong with Grandma Susan is when she was given an ultimatum. Stop drinking or we can't be a part of your life anymore. Harsh? Nope. Several threats, interventions, stints at rehab both in and out patient, letters and crying. It's a pretty wicked disease. I don't want my children to look at people like my mom and NOT think something is wrong. I'm breaking the cycle as it were.  She chose to continue drinking. So be it. The other members of my family would not follow suit with me so I did the same to them. No contact. They are more than welcome to watch her kill herself, but my children and I will not.

About a month ago I received a call from my Uncle, Susan's brother. Susan has Small Cell Lung Cancer and is dying. She has no money, can't work and her house is in foreclosure. She has chosen not to get treatment.  And......the nice little box that I had put her in, in my mind has once again been opened. "Please convince her to get treatment" he says. You're a grown up now Leslie. Put it behind you and help your mother I tell myself. Simple. So I make the call, go to see her and try to see if I can get her straight. (A lot of crying going on) First visit and low and behold, Susan is drunk/drinking and smoking away. Shocking. Not. Several conversations and getting her affairs in order and she has decided to try treatment. It makes her terribly sick and she thinks she should probably not have anything to drink before her next cycle. Brilliant.

Now is the time I stand still. I can't work, sleep, eat, don't want to talk to anyone and can't seem to be the crazy mom that my kids love. My mind races with nothing. My husband is upset because I don't want to do anything. My business is dropping and causing my bank account to drop, which upsets the husband more.  Time for Plan B. Go the the psychiatrist I saw many, many years ago and get some help. It's only been a week so not much change but I am able to sleep with a little help. So here I remain, standing still. And there is Susan. Drinking and dying.


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