It’s been a year since I cried out to the Universe that I was lost. Lost in how to parent my son, Phoenix. Lost, because everything in my home was falling apart. Lost because I didn’t have a single clue what to do anymore.
A few days later my perspective changed. I had an answer, I found hope. And I was on an airplane to middle America where my son would be living in a Residential Treatment Center. It still makes me sick. Thinking about boarding that plane, terrified of the idea of him realizing what was really happening. Because if he knew he might run. If he knew he might hurt me. If he knew he might hurt himself.
I miss him.
There are days when life is so busy. Busy enough to keep my mind away from the mess that we have gone through. You can’t live everyday in the messy bits. It’s not practical. There is laundry to fold.
But there are other days. Days when I run into the woman I haven’t seen in 3 or 4 years. A person from my past. A person who knew me before I was undone in a million ways. And the woman asks so kindly, so gently, about Phoenix (because that has always been the story, since the day the kids came home). And my eyes fill so fast, I catch my breath. How can one woman saying his name take me back to the days where everything began to unravel for me? I take her hand and thank her for asking. About him. My son.
Or days when my dear friend, who was here for a visit, asks several days into the trip, ‘Isn’t it weird that we haven’t talked about P yet since I’ve been here?’ And my eyes are full again. Because it is the easiest way to say my heart is broken. Words don’t always fill in the parts the same way tears do. And I know if I start talking everything gets all fuzzy again for my heart.
And sometimes speaking is just too hard.
Phoenix recently completed the 8th grade and is officially entering the 9th grade.
This is so big for our family. It means Phoenix made a healthy choice. And I want to read into it. I want to read so far into it I’ll get lost because if I do, maybe that means he can come home. And if he comes home then he can still have a chance at a childhood, living with his family. Which is the only thing I really ever wanted for him.
But I shouldn’t read into things anymore. Just like speaking can be too hard sometimes, so can letting go of the things we want most.
It is still too hard for me to let go of the things I want most.
I want Phoenix at home. I want him to know his family. I want him to be strong. I want him to know he is lovely.
It is hard when the things we want most are out of our control. When all we can do is release our desires and fears and hopes and dreams and see what happens next.
A year later I am waiting to see what happens next.
To see what happens when hope remains, when broken hearts teeter out into healing.