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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Blood draws, X-rays, and brethalyzers...oh my!

So today was Gonzo's appointment with the endocrinologist.  I had forewarned him that he may have to have blood taken for testing.  his response was "all of it?!?!  How will I stand up!?!" to which I assured him that they only take a little bit and that his body will be able to make more.  So he was a little freaked out going into the appointment.  The endocrinologist was very personable, and if we end up needing to continue with her, I think it will be a good match.  Having doctors that you feel comfortable is imperative to proper health care.  I am hoping all of the tests come out fine and we don't have any more treatment needed, but at least it is good to know that you like the specialist.  So after the appointment, the doctor felt that testing was warranted, so Gonz DID have to have his blood drawn and she wanted an bone age density test done, which is an x-ray.  So as usually, anything having to do with needles is difficult for Gonz, so it was myself plus two nurses who needed to hang on to him and get the blood draw.  Poor little guy was just in such a panic.  But he is a trooper and came out okay.  He was still asking if his body will make more blood, and I reassured him that it was already making more to replace the little bit they took to test. 

After the blood draw, we went down to the radiology department, and had a quick x-ray of his hand.  He was still so upset from the blood testing that he could not remember his birthday when asked, and he asked me for help with it.  I love this boy so much, and my heart just goes out to him when he gets himself in such a high anxiety state.  It was an uneventful x-ray and we headed out to pick up Jos and go home (Jos was at my sister's house being watched by my two nieces with his other two cousins).  We were going to stop for lunch right away, but Gonz was so overwhelmed that by the time we got out of the hospital parking lot and on the right road, he was fast asleep. 

So I hopped on the highway and we stopped about an hour later when we were closer to home and had lunch at Friendly's--his favorite spot.  After lunch we drove the next 45 minutes and picked up Jos.  We did hang out for a bit with the cousins, but needed to get home to make dinner. Jos appeared to have fun with his cousins, though he did through one of his fits and scratched them when it was time to stop doing something he did not want to stop doing--when do they outgrow this tantrum phase?!?

Anyway, we got home, I put chicken in the oven, Jos took a short nap, and Gonz and I played and chatted for a bit.  I ran a couple of loads of laundry through, and packed up my broken computer to send to my friend who lives near the place that can repair it.  Then A came over after getting back from work.  And A had a ticket for no seat belt.  A proceeded to tell me it could have been a lot worse, as the cop asked "have you been drinking?" and asked about open containers (as in open alcohol containers).  A says it was because there was a bag of empty beer can on the passenger side floor that needed to be returned, but I am not buying it.  A's inspection is also way out of date and A has a tail light out.  So, yes it could have been worse (depending how you look at it).  A said the cop did do a breathalyzer test, which A passed.  And the cop only issues a ticket for lack of seat belt.  But my question is multi fold--why are there multiple containers (empty beer cans) enough to fill up three bags on the passenger seat and floor?  Why would the cop question A about drinking unless A's breath smelled like alcohol? and why would the cop run a breathalyzer if all the empties were at least 2 weeks old (when A claims to have stopped drinking).  Of course I did not voice all of this, as I am trying so hard to be supportive of A's new start to life.

But I am going out of my skull with A.  Both last night and tonight, we were talking along, and A said something that annoyed me, so I responded in an annoyed way.  And A launched into an all out bitch fest about how I am always implying that I am smarter or better, and that A is an idiot.  About how mean and rude I am and how A was in a good mood until coming to my house.  (which I have to say both evenings I was in a very good mood before A arrived as well).  And the tirade continued and continued.  Last night I got sucked into it and we argued for a while about NOTHING.  I apologised both evenings for hurting A's feelings and tried to explain that I was in no way saying that A was an idiot, I just did not agree with what A said.  Tonight I apologised for hurting A's feelings and tried for a few moments to explain why I was exasperated, but it was no use.  Once A gets mad, there is no turning it around.  Even if I accept the full blame and accept what A is saying about me and how what I said brought out bad feelings, A still won't stop.  A kept going on and on about how "for 7 years you have talked down to me and treated me like an idiot" and how "I am not going to take it anymore, what you say is abusive, just abusive".  Especially when I ask A to consider how much I have bent over backwards to be supportive and helpful and how much of an enabler I have turned out to be.  To which of course A starts in about how I have to rub that in, about how me and my family "came to the rescue" and how we "have had to help poor A"  and how horrible we are for it.  I am sick of it.

The way it started tonight was this:  A asked how a friend of mine was doing that is going through the end of a 15 year marriage.  And I had said that all in all my friend was doing okay, moving forward, and putting life back together.  A's response was "how can she be OKAY in just 6 weeks after 15 years of marriage?!?!" in a really snotty voice.  So I responded in my own snotty and exasperated voice "What the heck to  think okay means A?!?  She is doing okay for the circumstances!"  To which A replied "I am not even going to respond to that again, that put down.  You are NOT calling me stupid again tonight.  I am not going to respond."  and then for the next 45 minutes continued to harangue me about how I am always saying mean things and ruining a perfectly good evening, and all sorts of other crap.  (I know, I am whining and repeating myself--but that is how my last two evenings have gone.)  Tonight I tried to talk it through and accept blame and apologise if what I said and how I said it were upsetting.  But on and on it came, and that's when I mentioned that I have been trying to be supportive and helpful which did not jive with what A was saying, but that just made things worse.  I asked A to leave if it was so hard, and A refused.  So I ddisengaged myself from the insanity and started doing the dishes.  I told A that I was not going to discuss things like this in front of the kids.  IT upsets them as  much as it upsets us.  We were not yelling at each other or anything, or even talking in raised voices, but you can feel the tension in the air and kids are bright and know that we are not happy with each other. And we were obviously not saying "nice" things to each other.

Finally A decided that by ignoring or barely entering the "conversation" that this was being abusive as well, and finally A left, after giving the kids a hug and kiss and telling them that it was my fault and on me that this argument started.  I sat down with the kids and apologized again for their parents arguing, and not treating each other with respect.  I made THEM the promise that I would try harder to not say things that might upset or accidentally hurt A's feelings.  We chilled out snuggled in the chair together watching the iron man cartoon, and they relaxed and started being chatty again after about 10 minutes.  Then we got ready for bed, and they had some trouble falling asleep, but in the end it was alright.  I need A out of my house.  I need A to find an apartment, move out of my father's home, and stop "living" at my house (A sleeps at my father's but does everything else here --showers, leaves dirty clothes int eh hamper for stupid me to wash and fold, eats meals here, uses the phone here, checks email and other computer stuff here, is here whether I am or not, is here whether the kids are or not--essentially lives here).   I am to the point of feeling like if I never saw A's face again, it would be too soon.  I am praying for a miracle, praying for relief, praying that God will do something with this situation.  Short of calling the police when A refuses to leave or calling the courts and telling them that A is still drinking and has no place to take the kids when it is visitation time and so is ALWAYS at my house, I am not sure what to do. I am afraid of how going back to court would impact the kids, as it can be so stressful. I am blatantly honest about how I feel about a lot of things, which A then says is abusive.  I am not beating around the bush.  And I am such a push around that I would rather do things like wash clothes and deal with A's crap then be told I am a horrible person.  But this situation is making me BECOME a horrible person.  I don't even know myself anymore, and to think, this time last year I was finally getting to know myself again.  I wish A had never moved back up here in January.  Those 7 months without A (even though I met half way with the boys every other weekend (when A could take them, so not as often) and talked to A on the phone almost every night when A called to say hi to the boys), I was able to breathe.  I want to be able to breathe again..

The entrapment of alcoholism does not just enslave the alcoholic, it ensnares everyone who cares about the alcoholic and holds them prisoner, until, like the alcoholic, they can find a way to let go and walk away from those tangled vines.  I feel like I am still in the thick of the vines, and to get out maybe I have to do the one thing that will take the last part of the gentle, kind person I used to be away.  Maybe I need to hack the vines off, hurting the plant from which they spring.  But would I still be me if I did that?  Why is it that the idea of hurting A by pulling the plug and not helping makes me feel like I would lose the last shred of the me I used to be--the me that was gentle and kind, loving and compassionate, the good person that A fell in love with.  I feel like taking that last step to destroy the tangle of vines around me would not only destroy the one from which they emanate but would also destroy the last part of me worth saving?  What good would I be to my children if I no longer had that last bit of core kindness and gentleness towards their other parent?  What kind of example would that be setting for them?  And what kind of example am I setting for them now?  In some ways I am angry at God right now for NOT having that cop today give A a ticket for drinking while driving--not the intoxication ticket as obviously A passed the breathalyzer, but the open container, and such, something to give A the kick in the pants needed to take REAL steps towards recovery.  But it is never that easy is it....

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