hope Tag

My previous holiday experiences over the last few years have been inadequate to say the least. Growing up I had viewed the holidays as time for family to come together and for traditions to be started.

July 19th 2014, after an enjoyable day with my friends at the lake, I arrive home to be greeted by two cops, an ambulance, and a fire emergency vehicle. The first thoughts to emerge in my head were that my brother, Tyler, was dead or he had hurt my mother. As I urgently ran up the sidewalk, I passed my uncle who sadly stated, “It’s your brother and its bad, find your mom.”

So, my son had to come home for court. This was big. He hadn’t been home yet. The last time he saw our small airport, he was seeing through the eyes of an active addict/alcoholic.  I was a little bit worried, but not much.  After all, since leaving home for rehab in May of 2014, I knew he embraced sobriety and had a very full tool chest that held everything he needed to maintain sobriety.

By the age of 24 years old, I was willing to do very little to help myself or others.  I was put in a place where my self-will was no longer working for me. I had relied on my determination and ambition to succeed without anyone else’s help for a long time, and it had worked up until recently. 

     I found marijuana in my son's room when he was seventeen. This was following odd behavior, like offering to walk the dog. Mom's look for those signs of maturing and being helpful and considerate, but in our son's case this was not maturing. It was just one of the many ways he would find to get away and medicate. 

Expectations. We all have them, particularly for our kids. I grew up keenly aware of my father’s expectations of me: college, maybe a graduate degree, then onto a promising career; perhaps even taking over his business. Nothing wrong with expectations as long as they don’t become oppressive and don’t give a boy the space to grow up and do what his inner voice calls him to do as a man.