Marahu Falcon George / Real Life
Rehab / Week 2 / Fall
Before my husband went in I gave him a date. By that date, he had to get the Vivitrol shot, go into treatment, or leave. That date was 10/10/2016. The week before that, we had the conversation in which he would surrender to the idea that rehab would be a relief. That was followed by detox, a battle with the demon, and a fight to get into treatment. I would like to think that I have been a positive force in my husband’s entry into recovery by arming myself with knowledge, taking a compassionate stance, and supporting him from a place of connection. Connection with boundaries. To be honest, I am not sure I would have put him out on the street if he couldn’t meet the terms of my ultimatum (I hate that word), I doubt I would have. I guess that doesn’t matter now. He ended up going into a partial hospitalization program on 10/20/2016.
I often feel I have no idea what I’m doing, if it’s right or wrong, if it harms or helps, if I am enabling or supporting, if I should detach or connect. No one prepares you for this and I certainly did not receive enough education about it. Writing about my experience started with loving myself, finding my way back to me. That I didn’t feel as ill-equipped for. I’m still working on that and it has actually taken me back to a loving place with my husband, a loving place with newly forming boundaries. Now as I process everything, I look back and realize how little I know and that I used to know even less. I know I didn’t see the addiction when he first started using.
It started as a spinning atom, barely perceivable.
Then a molecule creating a single drop of mysterious water, the moisture dampening my fingertips.
Then a small ripple waving through my life’s ocean, easy to wade through.
Then came the rolling waves, I floated in this sea. I watched the white foamy tops form, feeling the uncontrollable force of the undercurrents moving below me.
Then the tsunami waves came crashing. I gulped air, gasping to take breaths.
Then the vast and violent motion, reeling through the universe. It was only then that I began to grasp the significance of the addiction.
By then the disconnect between us was so profound, all he could think of was obliteration and all I could think of was recovery.
And now stillness. Reflection as I gaze upon the glass water of the fresh water lake, remembering what brought us here, tasting the salt from the waves on my lips and running my hands through my matted salty hair.
Standing at the edge of a chasm, looking up.
Then looking down.
Ultimately realizing what happened and how we arrived at this place, finally knowing why we are here, and wondering what’s next.
I am still contemplating why I missed it for so long. Was it denial? Was I naive? Was it because I have grown up surrounded by drug use? Am I desensitized to it? Was it my ignorance about addiction? Was it my own recreational drug use in the past? Once again I am just not sure. I wish I had been better educated. I am not sure what difference it would have made, but I imagine it would have helped. My husband says he “saw” (not hit) his rock bottom. For some, rock bottom is death. No matter the signs I missed or what mistakes I have made, I remind myself that right now we are lucky.
Today I spoke with my husband. He told me at the end, before he entered treatment, he felt nothing but emptiness, “raw emptiness," and that he felt his life had no worth. He is now preparing to leave his current treatment facility in a week to enter a 30-day rehab in Florida. He asked me how I felt about it. I told him I fully support it. Research shows the longer someone is in treatment, the better the chances at long term sobriety. (Now if only the insurance companies would read the research, oh but that wouldn’t be profitable). So back to Florida, yeah I support it. Because his life is worth it. And he agreed. He can finally see what I have seen all along, that his life is worth all of it.
Tomorrow, December 16: Part 4
My name is Marahu Falcon George and I live in Massachusetts with my husband, dog, and 2 cats. I recently came out of anonymity on my blog because I refuse to live in stigma’s cold shadow any longer. I am not ashamed that I love a very newly recovering dope addict. Writing has been integral in my survival as I battle addiction at home. I hope that by sharing my story I can be a positive force in breaking down the stigma that surrounds addiction and empower the brave people and families who are fighting for their lives. You can read more at my blog, Real Life: One Wife's Journey Back from Addiction and Rediscovery of Self