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Welcome to my blog. I hope we can help each other endure the pain of the addiction of a daughter or son.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I"ll Give You My Kidney IF YOU NEED IT DAD

      I took Beth to the Spine specialist today. He told us that three vertabrae were cracked. He showed us the xrays and cautioned her to keep the brace on and quit smoking. Not healing correctly would result in the need for a spinal fusion.

     She told me in the car that we would all be better of if she had died in the accident. She is remorseful for the pain she has caused us but needs her heroine and crack to cope with the emotional and physical pain that she feels.

     She also offered to give her Dad one of her kidneys and revealed her plans to move to Florida with a former boyfriend who is buying her a car and an apartment. She gets irritated that he calls her so much but thinks they will be happy together in Florida where she will be able to kick her drug habit.

     It seems she dissapreared last night along with her care givers money.She had no idea what happened to his money except that he lost it as he is so disorganized.  She looked like death warmed over and frequently cried in pain. The friend/caregiver was upset that she stole his money and told me he would never come back to that house. By the end of the day he was calling her asking to come back. It looked to me like she was going to let him eventhough she was well pissed that he had told me she was out using last night.

   It was a very draining day for me. I felt so much pity for her on the one hand and revulsion for her actions on the other. I told her that all of this could be so much better without the drugs. I pointed out how she has helped a number of her friends at death's door when no one else would. I said that there is no wrong that can not be attoned for by living an honorable Ipurposeful life from now on. She seemed to think about it with interest and then just let the idea go.

I took her because I do not want her to be permanently disabled with this terrible back injury. There is not much hope that she will recover from this addiction but if she does and even if she does not I do not want her to be disabled in yet another way.I had to listen to about an hours worth of guided meditations and calming music to sleep last night. It is just very painful for me to see her like this.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Storm Was Gentle on Us

We were prepared for a hard time but have come through the tempest unscathed. All we experienced was a lot of rain and some high winds. Just north of us there was a lot of flooding. South of us and west there were tornados. We were told twice to seek shelter from tornados but none appeared on land just some swirling in the sky.

My husband and I were home alone with the two dogs. I think the newscasters went a little overboard telling us to get in the basement when there were no actual tornados on the ground but better safe than sorry. This was one time when I noticed that our kids were more alarmed than we were. They had never been thrugh a hurricane watch that they could remember. They were not at home but attending a family wedding in Connecticut. They kept calling to see how we were.

Beth went through the storm about 6 blocks from the river. She had a friend stay with her and did not want to come home. Yes, I said she could come home during a hurricane! Nothing scares her except nothing. By that I mean that she does sometimes get panic attacks out of the blue but dangerous situations seem to leave her unperturbed.

Anyhow, she had gathered supplies as directed by our emergency management people. She knew she could call if things got worse. Thankfully, they did not get worse and all is well on the otherside of the storm. Thanks for your concern.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Hurricane Watch, Flood Watch, Tornado Watch

We are hunkered down waiting for the weather to come. All the coastal areas have been evacuated but we are far enough inland not to be under that edict. The storm is not supposed to hit until the middle of the night. We are most concerned about flooding as we have already taken a lot of rain lately.

Candles, water, meds and food are ready. We have lots of flashlights. We put the lawn furniture in the shed so now we wait.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My Crack Addicted Daughter and the Earth Quake

I broke down and texted Beth after the Earth Quake. She texted back that she got shook up pretty good but that it did not scare her. Nothing does scare her which is a big big problem.

She has been getting to Dr. Appointments and to the grocery store on her own. She gets rides. She can now walk without a walker.

None of the social service people that I called got back to me. That includes a medicaid case worker, PACT coordinator, the coordinator's supervisor and adult protective services.....????????????

I liked what a blogger wrote saying that we love who we love but sometimes we need some distance.
I have not been able to sleep since taking this position with Beth. I know I can not save her that is up to  Beth and her own higher power. On the other hand, I do not want to add to her pain. Nor do I want her to add to mine. So, for now, I answer her texts but not so rapidly as to encourage 86 per day nor an overdependence on me which leads to my exhaustion and brittle nerves.

I will continue to try to find a case manager to work with her and someone else to be rep payee.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Moving On From Crack

DH wrote a letter to Beth today. It gave her many resources of community organizations that would help her. He told her that she can text but not call him. We will not make her phone calls and live our lives consumed with hers. We have not found another rep payee yet. Any sugestions there?

However, we did agree to put her money in her account bi-weekly. The rent and utilities are withdrawn from her ssi account automatically.

I did make a phone call today to find out how to refer her to the local PACT team. This is a special team for severely mentally ill clients who are resistent to treatment and at risk for homelessness. The director was out of town but I left a message. Her medicaid paperwork came in today and I will do that tommorrow.

For the rest of the day, I took a nice walk in the neighborhood and then started to catch up on paperwork. I took out a pretty large term life insurance policy on myself. In the event that I predecease DH he will not have medical insurance so this protects him. It was necessary as I took the maximum benefit on my pension which means the pension will die with me.

My other daughter who is studying speech and language pathology and audiology brought home a new suitor. He was a very personable and humorous physics major. They hung around our house cooking and laughing. They made me a healthy and beautiful home made pizza for lunch.

DH and I bought two new beautiful comforters for about 60 dollars. They will do a lot to brighten up the bedrooms. We both stuck to our diets and exercise today. The local sweet corn and tomatoes are fabulous right now. So were the peaches for dessert.

I cried for my mother and I cried for Beth early in the afternoon but most of this good day was spent with the living going on  with an otherwise reasonably good life.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Crack Chaos

I turned off my phone today and started deleting the texts before I read them after the first five texts from Beth. She had a ride to the Dr. but did not have gas money. She wanted me to wake her up so she could make the appointment on time. Later she made her way to her Dad's office. The secretary let her use the phone and she got me on the line as I thought it was DH. I hung up when I heard her voice. All of this is nonsense.

So, she did not hang herself last night. She has attempted suicide four times. Those times there was no warning. She has threatened me with suicide for not doing her bidding many many times. Last night was the only time I felt angry. My reply was that she is killing herself anyway with crack, heroine and her lifestyle. I left and called 911. I am glad that I did not lash out at her. I actually know a woman who told her son to go ahead and do it under similar circumstances. He whipped out a stupid little pocket knife and jammed it into his body. He actually died right in front of her.

There was also a nice boy in the school where I taught. He was addicted to crack and had a hidden gun. His mother stood in front of the door and said he would have to go through her to get the crack. He shot her dead. Oh my, he was so remorseful afterwards but she was dead.

I do not know how other addicts are but my daughter scares the hell out of me on crack. All day long today I was jumpy thinking she might try to break into our house. I will give her one warning if she shows up here and then call the police for a restraining order.

There was so much good advice on my last post. I really liked the quote that Syd gave about how it does not matter and Fractal  Mom's advice on grief counselling. I am going to sign up for that, exercise every day and stick to my diet. I will get well weather or not she does. I might not ever get over this but I am confident that I can do a whole lot better than I have been lately.

My son sat with me today and told me about a girl he really likes. ( He cleaned his room, his car, cut the grass and contemplated cutting his hair!) Is that what women do for men?

My husband needs to get on a list for a kidney transplant. I am going to see if I am a match. My sister is waiting the results of her thyroid byopsy but the heart and esophogus spams have stopped. Dad never did get his prostrate biopsy. He took the meds wrong and had to reschedule.

Wow......... we were a completely normal even boring family for about 20 years then all hell broke out about 10 years ago as you know. At 55 I really do not know how many more good years I will have with all of my loved ones. Of course, we never know that but circumstances have made me think about this long and hard.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Shocked Again by Crack

Many unspeakable things have happened and I am burned out. To make a long and excrutiating story short Beth has been using crack since the very first day she got out of the hospital. She has been leaving the apartment for hours at a time in her body cast .  She threw me and her caretaker out because we would not give her money for the crack. She refused to see a Dr. and threatened to hang herself. I called 911. They came and found her walking the streets in her body cast. She refused to go with them and they let her refuse.  I knew that would happen but I had to try. (All they have to say is ...."I don't feel that way anymore."

I do not want her to die but she is definately killing herself with these drugs.She had plenty enough morphine and percoset and clonoprin to just sleep but that was not enough she wanted crack. She is wild abusive and down right dangerous to herself and others when she is on crack.

I had pains in my chest after my latest tour of the bowels of hell. I am so sorry but I have come to the point where I have to save myself. I fear for my sanity and my health. There is more to this than I can bring myself to write. I am fearful, disgusted but more than that just burned out.

There comes a point in all illness where there is no more quality of life. She is there. I want her to live so much but everything I do only prolongs her suffering. I can not make her change or even slow her down one iota. She was able to get crack in her body cast without any cash. She clearly wants crack more than life, more than pain relief, more than anything. YEars ago, her sister asked her how could you destroy our familly. We were happy. We had love and fun and all the good things in life. Beth said, " that is true but none of that comes even close to what I get from crack.

I did not believe her then but I believe it now. I am going to save myself if I still can.

I told her to stop calling me. I gave her numbers for social services, etc. If she can arrange for rides, clients and try to black mail her cargiver into letting her sell her perscription opiates for crack then I do believe she can get herself to the Dr. or arrange for rehab. I have been through rehab with her 8 times already. I have no intention of participating again. I told her that she needs 90 days clean with tests to document before I will take a call from her. I called the crisis center. I called 911.

She will have to find someone else to be her rep payee for SSI. I am done. This was my bottom. When I get near her I get beat up emotionally and it does her no good. I could take the abuse if it did some good for her but it does not.

This is where my thousand and one ideas on how to help her have led. I said I would tell you the truth and there it is.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Progress Not Perfection

Beth did not leave the hospital against medical advice. The nurses had told her to get dressed to leave. A friend of hers helped her get dressed. She waited for two hours but then left feeling not too much pain because of the intervenous delautid.

Anyhow, I got a real friend to stay with her. We cleaned the apartment and got a referral from the hospital social worker for some in home care. My GP wrote a script for her meds in the meantime which I dole out one day at a time. I got her an appointment with a spinal specialist from the Rothman clinic and gave my number to the neighbors. I go out every day to make sure that her needs are met. She is cooperating with the pscyh meds and let me make a key to her apartment.

I talked to the hospital social worker, administrator and head nurse. No one said she left ama which is kind of a surprise. I was also surprised that there weree no drugs or alcohol in her blood. She was detoxing for a suboxone induction.

I thought she left with the sugar daddy to get her own drugs but I am not sure of that either as she was in screaming pain during the night. Why didn't the neighbors call 911?  Why dIidn't she call me?  I asked her and she said it only hurt that bad when she tried to get up so she did not try to get up more than a couple of times.

She is mentally ill but not legally insane which I think makes the system pretty crazy but there you have it. There are very few beds for the mentally ill. If the person is not a clear and present danger to others even if they were 5 minutes ago they are usually not allowed inpatient. She actually had a pscyh eval at my request as the hospital she was in had a mica ward. The shrink said that she had to want to help herself and did not meet criteria for involuntary commitment.

This would not have happened pre Ronald Reagan. We used to have psychiatric facilities in each county. Now we do not. Most of the mentally ill only do physical harm  to themselves. That is the only reason we do not have more virginia tech type trajedies. I know that there were abuses in mental hospitals but they have not been replaced with other community supports. The families do what they can until they burn out.

Thanks for all your help on my last post.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Pain Returns Full Force

I drove out to Beth's apartment this morning where her sugar daddy was supposed to be taking care of her. The neighbors ran out to greet me saying that they heard her screaming in pain. They wanted to know why she was there without a nurse.

She had no perscriptions and no dischcarge papers. Only the preliminary reports that I fought so hard to get 2 days earlier. The apartment was in such squalor that it is hard to describe. There was a crack pipe and heroin needles along with lots of blood spots in the bathroom. She got out of bed to answer the door. She had the neck brace off but the body cast on. She was gasping for breath and throwing up. She had tried to use the walker to help her get up out of bed but the wheels rolled and she fell down.

Is this the part where I was supposed to let her deal with the consequences of her own actions?

 In a way I wanted to but I was afraid it could result in paralysis. I had to get the place clean enough for a health care worker to take the case. I knew that the addiction had her by the throat and that the mental illness was not being treated for months.

 Would you have left any human being much less a child of your own in these conditions to fend for herself? She lost 10 % of her height due to the crushing down of her vertabrae.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Rock Bottom or.........

Tuesday Morning:  Beth is helicoptered to the trauma center. She has crushed down they call them compression fractures 6 thorasic vertabrae. I missed the part about her splitting the pole in two, rolling over the car and climbing out the window because it was on fire. ( I guess she said that when I was throwing up and crying.) She was flat on her back, writhing in pain and having difficulty breathing but still talking and crying. " I am so sorry. Thank you for coming. I am so so sorry." she kept saying.

Tuesday night:  We went home and tried to figure out how to make our house handicapped accessable, how to get a hospital bed and what other equipment we would need for her recovery. My husband, daughter and I were by her side most of the day. When we left, her friend Mike got there by bus. He had to borrow the money for bus fare and had none left over to eat but he was there.

Wed:  My sister and I arrive at the hospital in the morning to find that Beth has given the nurses a hard time during the night. She could not urinate and they would not bring her a catheter so she screamed and threw the bed pan. Finally a nurse brought a temporary catheter and helped her urinate. The next time she had to go no one came and she got out of bed on her own. They were very upset that she had done that and they told me she would be discharged in a few minutes. They also told me she was a heroine addict.

I asked to see the social worker and the patient advocate. I also asked for a psych eval for Beth. The pshychiatrist told me that she had offered Beth 3 to 5 days in the psychiatric drug rehab and Beth refused. The social worker never came and we were denied access to Beth's records. She could not walk safely on her own so I did not see how I could take her home. I wanted a few more days in the hospital or a physical rehab. The nurses thought that she would be fine once they snapped on her body cast but it looked gruesome to me. They threatened that if I did not take her home, they would discharge her to the homeless shelter.

I told Beth, that I did not believe they would really do such a thing but that if they did I would come and get her. I left to get away from the badgering.

Thursday:  I stayed away from the hospital all morning and went to see about the wrecked car. It looked apalling. The roof was caved in. The engine was in the passenger seat and the front hood was basically gone.

The social worker talked to me on the phone and said that yesterday should not have happened. She would arrange for whatever physical therapy thought was appropriate including rehab or home health care and durable equipmnent.

My husband and I went to see her at about 6:30 pm.  Just before we got there we got a phone call from Mike. He said she had been to physical therapy once and was able to take baby steps with a body cast and a walker. He said they were going to discharge her now. He had helped her dress. The nurses had told her to be ready. What?

When we entered the room, Beth was sitting up on the side of the bed with the walker in front of her. She had a glint in her eye and looked exited. She said she was ready to go home to her apartment. She wanted to try it on her own and she was going to ride there with her friend John. ( older, polite man who works as a janitor and lives in his daughter's basement.} I looked at Mike who had been with her the whole time and promised to help take care of her. He was visibly shaken and saying but you need help.

Beth said, " I am going hom with John. Then, John walked in and I left with my husband and Mike. My head was spinning and I was astounded. Mike said as we got in the elevator.....I know that old guy. She wants to go with him cause he will buy her drugs. He won't stay to help her. I will help her anyway when he is gone.

Rock Bottom for the whole family. We thought this was a terrible accident but a golden opportunity to nurse her back to life and keep her away from drugs. She had other plans. Amazing, sad and true.

Wednesday morning: 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

6 fractured vertabrae

Beth was in a bad accident. Only she was hurt. She split a pole in half and rolled the car. She is in a lot of pain in spite of all the drugs the hospital is giving her. She kept thanking us for coming to the hospital.
I cried and threw up when I saw her. I was actually grateful for her pain. It meant that she was not paralyzed. I got a phone call from a fireman this morning that she was helicoptered to the trauma unit. He did not know her status and had the wrong hospital. Fractures are from L6 to L12. I am so glad that she lived through this and did not kill anyone else.