Let #Gratitude2014 Continue!

Midwestern Mama recaps the past week of #Gratitude2014 posts. 

At this time last year, our son was in desperate shape, and it was getting worse.  At age 21, he was several years into drug addiction, and he was homeless, penniless and jobless.  He was, however, softening to the idea of treating his depression and anxiety, and a wise, young counselor directed him toward in-patient dual-diagnosis treatment as the first course of action. Fortunately, when funding became available and a bed opened up, our son went and this time he stuck it out for the recommended time.  While a terrible relapse occurred a few months after that, he got back to treatment and recovery this summer.  As you can imagine, the transformation and positive possibilities ahead fill us with gratitude.

Here are some of the things I’ve identified this past week as part of Our Young Addicts “30 Days of Gratitude.”

Day 13: I am grateful that my son is starting to open up with us about his feelings and experiences.

Day 14: I am grateful for the opportunity to share my story with you.

Day 15: I am grateful that my son has nutritious food, a warm bed, a clean shower and fresh clothes these days.

Day 16: I am grateful that we recognized our son’s struggle and did everything we could to get him help, even though he resisted.

Day 17: I am grateful that my son’s siblings are a strong support system for him.

Day 18: I am grateful that my son is building a sober network of friends even though social anxiety makes it difficult.

Day 19: I am grateful that we are part of our son’s recovery, now and forever.

Day 20: I am grateful for all the stories that others have shared with me and the encouragement offered.

Please join us in looking for gratitude even in the darkest days.  Keep hoping and praying, and know that there is a community that cares.

Midwestern Mama


Progress is Progres – an Update on Rehab and Recovery

Tomorrow marks two weeks in at rehab.  We attended a family session with our son’s counselor over the weekend.  Many of our suspicions were confirmed as he came clean on more details of the recent years.  Their approach is Health Realization, which seems a good fit for him.  They’ve got him on Wellbutrin for depression and Naltrexone for his Heroin/opiate use (one of those confirmed suspicions – he’s more than a Pothead as we always figured).  He’ll wrap up there the first week of January and then do 90 days at a MICD halfway house followed by up to six months at a sober-living house.  We are so proud of him for starting this and hopeful he will stick with it; I believe he has a long and difficult recovery ahead for himself.  We knew he was in pain, and he is, but it’s lifting and his spirits are good. 

There will be a visiting day on Christmas Eve.  Although I’m sad that he will not be with us for our family activities at home, I know he’s where he needs to be and that we are all receiving the gift of recovery.

Throughout this journey of addiction, I have continued to seek information and support.  Learning has helped keep things in perspective.  Communing with others has helped us feel less alone.  Some of the things we have learned have been hard and ugly, but knowledge is empowering.  Many of the relationships we have formed have been the difference between our own sanity and serenity.  We are grateful and know we will progress along with our son on the difficult path ahead.

Wishing you all guidance and support on the path along with Our Young Addicts.

Midwestern Mama


So far, so good

Yesterday I visited my son at treatment – what a positive experience.  First off, he looked the best I’ve seen him in a very long time.  He was smiling, his eyes sparkled and he even seemed to be standing a bit taller.  A warm bed, sleep, and regular meals all seem to be agreeing with him.  He spoke about the Health Realization model that this center takes for mental health and addiction.  He was hopeful and grateful.

It could be the new-car smell, but for now that’s OK.  It’s the best foundation for the hard work ahead.  As some point this week, my husband and I will meet with our son and his counselor to learn more about the treatment plan.

Midwestern Mama

The Journey Continues – Treatment Day 2

Yesterday morning my son entered a 28-day residential treatment program for dual diagnosis – MICD (mental illness & chemical dependency). He was deemed “highly appropriate ” for the program. We hope he will embrace this gift of time to commit to understanding his challenges, feelings, actions and addiction. We pray he is ready and willing for recovery.

Although he is not happy about going to treatment, he realized he no longer has any other options.  He did not put up nearly as much fight as he has previously.  Perhaps his resign will rally as relief once he begins the hard, but insightful work ahead.

Midwestern Mama