Our son was a bright light, a beautiful boy, a huge personality! Just plain funny! He is our son who we love so very much and would do anything for! Maybe that was part of the problem. Being parents, we should be able to fix things, little did we know!
But let’s back track, Jack was handsome, popular, but for the most part struggled academically. As he entered Jr. high, I believe that’s where he first smoked weed and that opened a door to experiencing a substance that could help with his insecurities.
Then came High School, and eventually hanging with a much different crowd and boy could he tell you about weed and all the good qualities it offered! He was enthralled with it and the fact that society in general had come to accept it as a benign part of life certainly didn’t help (but that’s another subject). We often found it in our home, hidden in strange places, along with the weed were his monstrous bongs! I was so sick and tired of this plant and the hold it had on my son! Of course, with high school, came the parties and with that drinking. Our son was the life of the party and it actually was better if he didn’t come home, which he ended up doing most of the time but when he did come home, the next day was usually not started till the mid- afternoon, yes, we allowed that! According to Jack everyday there seemed to be an unavoidable reason for a party and sleep over. It became a joke, “Is Jack up yet”? It was ridiculous and embarrassing! We still kept hoping things would change and that as Jack kept telling us he was just a typical high school kid.
Fast forward, NAU, Jack was accepted. Dick and I were so happy for him and I have to admit, for us as well he was out of our house! But NAU was the beginning of end. Jack lived by himself in a studio apartment where he didn’t have to answer to anyone and his pot smoking and drinking continued unabridged and other heavier drugs were thrown in the mix. We would continue to have these unbelievable discussions / arguments that would go in circles andlast forever, where Jack would be in tears and lash out violently. Basically, Jack was depressed, yet we kept thinking he would figure it out on his own! Well, that never happened, it continued to get worse before it got better, more discussions, debates, heated moments, no job, school is a joke! As far as we can see, Jack needs to stop smoking, stop drinking, get a job, not as simple as that, there was a lot more to Jack’s addiction than we knew!
Our next challenge, is Jack’s DUI and totaling his car and thank God just that! I remember that evening so clearly, Jack was out and Dick and I were actually enjoying a beautiful dinner together, when the phone rings and the recording mentions the word inmate! That spoiled the mood quickly! Well, Jack spent the night in jail and as we know now, on his way home the next morning, he decides to swing by his dealer first for his now drug of choice Xanax. We did enable, yes, I honestly knew my son was going to get through this, but it put a giant wedge in my family/marriage. Not until an arrest for assault did, we finally exhibit some back bone. We did not bail our son out and he spent a week in jail which gave us time to plot our course and come to an agreement that we would give Jack a choice, go to New Life or you are on your own without ANY help from your family and you can figure yourself out on your own.
Jack begrudgingly made a wise decision, New Life it was. We had our last supper together down the street form NLH and dropped off Jack’s ass! The best decision ever! We were done, done with the lying, done with the disruption, done with our lives being controlled by our son’s addictions. It was Jack’s turn to figure it out and it was his life to do what he chooses; we couldn’t fix Jack.
We turned it over to New Life with God in charge! What a breath of fresh air New Life brought us. For the first time in years my husband was able to get some sleep with the knowledge that Jack was safe and sober. We were able to detach and New Life turned our addicted, insecure, lazy, manipulative, depressed son into a sober, responsible, honest, respectful, loving young man. Jack is back in a fantastic way; we have our son again and we couldn’t be more grateful! Most importantly, Jack did the work, he put in the time, energy and work into becoming the wonderful young man he is today! He was ready to make the change, take responsibility of his actions and take charge of his life, we couldn’t be prouder! New Life provided just that a new life!
Dick and I and Jack’s sisters couldn’t be more appreciative to the amazing staff, the counselors, the managers, and of course the wonderful young men who became family to Jack and ourselves. The program is tough, truthful and very raw and it works! The plaque on the wall resonated with me when I first saw it but has so much more meaning now “Pulling Covers Saves Lives”. Thank you, New Life!