Peace after chaos. Peace at the holidays. It has been years since our family felt peace and the excitement of looking forward to family time at the holidays. This year with both of my boys embracing sobriety, we have peace and it feels amazing.
Between both of my sons, my family spent years of overlapping and alternating chaos battling addiction. In the past as the holidays approached, I braced for the inevitable storm that always took place. There was the phone call from my older son in the middle of the night going into Christmas Eve calling for help because he had flipped the car and didn’t know where he was. Although he had been driving, he ended up in the back seat of an upside down car on a dark and wet road. He was under the influence traveling at over 100 mph with no seatbelt until he skidded out of control taking out 5 trees in a solo spin out. I am grateful my son survived and that no one else was in the car. At the time, I felt sure my younger son would understand how traumatic the accident was and stop using because he was scared for his brother and he saw our pain as we rushed out in the middle of the night not knowing what condition our older son was in. Incredibly, this accident was not bottom for my older son. My younger son didn’t stop either. The chaos continued. There were calls from school, calls from the police, holiday nights spent in County Detox, and raging scenes in the middle of the night outside of our home all the while Christmas lights glowed on, representative of a peace we did not have.
We had an army of professional help and there were periods where my sons embraced sobriety, but the times were short lived and on different cycles. What I did not understand at the beginning of our chaotic journey is that peace was not going to happen until everyone in our family was really ready. Each son took a different path. My older son worked AA. My younger son needed more structure including life skills and he has found this through New Life House. For my part, I moved out of the way and stopped trying to control the process. Change has brought peace after chaos and peace for the holidays.