Sometimes we need perspective

Lately I’ve been angry. Every day it’s been this way. Things just haven’t been going my way. But earlier this evening I went to an NA meeting for the first time since 2014. I went there to share that I’m six years clean, but also to share my feelings and frustration with others who might understand. And by pure chance, the topic of the meeting was perspective.

Sometimes life is shit. It has been for me, what with the death of my mother, the only person who stood by me in my years of struggling with addiction, and it’s been difficult to cope with my financial issues. Plus there’s that feeling that she who shall not be named has left me in the lurch once too often, such that I am often caring for two children on my own while having to endure the most pressure I’ve ever faced at work.

Add to that… today at around lunch time, someone I know showed up at my work claiming to have received a call from Child Welfare, after an email to Child Welfare sent from my son’s school alleged that I am back on drugs again. (There is no conceivable reason anyone at my son’s school would claim that I am back on drugs. I drop him off there in the morning and collect him in the afternoon. No one there has any context to make such a bizarre claim, so this implies that somebody who has an issue with me “pulled some strings” at the school to make such an email happen. Or the whole thing is a fabrication.) In shock, I took the allegations at face value, and complied with his absurd request for a drug test. So I went to the toilet with him, and pissed in a cup, taking extra care to shake off hard enough afterwards to get some piss on him. (Oops!) Test me all you want… I’m clean so it doesn’t matter… It only occurred to me much later that, if I am accused of using drugs, why didn’t anyone call me and request a formal meeting, or do an official test? Anyway, this is all very strange and pointless because I have been clean since September 2013 and will remain so for the rest of my life. Still, it made a shitty year even shittier.

By the way, this isn’t the first time such a false accusation has been made. Someone made such an accusation when I was two years clean as well. I suffer from rosacea, a chronic skin condition that causes inflammation on my face, including redness, sometimes pustules, and a burning sensation. At face value (pardon the stupid pun) it vaguely resembles the type of marks one can get from “picking” on meth, but only vaguely. The pustules in particular are small, yellow, and hard, unlike pimples. This is not a characteristic of meth sores, which are a result of picking at dry, itchy skin and typically include obvious scars, open wounds, and infections. So someone made such an allegation back then for this reason, and I have a recent flare-up of this skin condition again, so this is a possible reason for the accusation. Yet I’ve had the condition since my twenties, ten years before my meth addiction, and I’ll be 48 next month. (The condition was only correctly diagnosed around two years ago. Before that, doctors prescribed various cortisone concoctions that only gave temporary relief.) Unfortunately the medication I have for rosacea is 300mg of tetracycline every day, on a six month repeat prescription. It’s expensive and I have skipped it for a couple of months because my finances are tight. My point is, I am not convinced that anyone believes I’m using… more like they’re making deliberate false accusations for other malicious reasons.

But you know what? I have what is important to me. We all die. It’s inevitable. But we are not gone. We may live on in the memories of those whom we loved. I have Josh and Aishah, and at the end of the day, nothing else matters. I’m not going to let anger get the better of me any more. This family member, among other things, said that I think emotionally, like a child, not an adult… Yes, I do think emotionally. And I am proud to do so. It is why I am clean and alive today. I chose to stop using meth even though I didn’t really want to for me, for something greater than myself, for Josh and Aishah, for those whom I love. And then only after I had already stopped, being clean and sober became something I enjoy, but as a side-effect, a pleasant surprise.

We can be like some people and choose to value money over everything else. But the money you accumulate means nothing in the end if you are not loved, and do not love. I don’t give a fuck about money really, although it would be nice not being so broke all the time. I’d prefer to be more financially secure, but at the end, that’s not my priority. My priority is to be the best father to one child and father figure to the other, to love them and help them and build memories with them. Fuck everyone else and fuck anyone who makes ridiculous false accusations against me. (No really… I will comply with a request for a drug test any time, because I don’t use drugs.) I care about what is important, and that is… love. If that makes me childish, then so be it. Judge me if you want. I don’t give a fuck.

2 thoughts on “Sometimes we need perspective

  1. Jeome, you wrote: No one there [at school] has any context to make such a bizarre claim [that I’m on drugs again], so this implies that somebody who has an issue with me “pulled some strings” at the school to make such an email happen.

    My comment: I disagree. If you’ve got a well-paid job and your child tells his school teachers there is a lack of money at home, and if the school principal knows since long time the child’s father once was an drug addict, then it’s totally normal that the principal suspects the child’s father maybe is back on drugs once more.

    Or: If you’ve got a well-paid job and your child tells your brother, while visiiting him, that there is a constant lack of money at home, then it’s totally normal that your brother suspects that the child’s father is back on drugs.

    The best you can do, Jerome, is to accept a drug test without protesting. Of course it’s denigrating. But you’ll have to accept it. That’s the way it is for an ex-addict. It’s the same if you were an athlete. They can’t protest either when demanded to leave a drug test.

    The big problem here is, maybe, that your brother, or the school principal, doesn’t know – nor can they understand – that you have, somehow, decided to provide for the well-being of three more persons without complaining – until now – to one of these three persons that this is a very unfair solution. In fact, it’s hard to believe that you can be so naïve, Jerome.

    The problem seems to be that you for a long time have had three children to support, and one of these children is a grown-up middle-aged individual who should be able to support at least herself. But instead she is costing you a lot of money. You are supposed, by her, to give her more than free board and lodging.

    How can that be a surprise for her to hear you complaining thereover? I guess at least 95 out of 100 persons are able to understand that by themselves.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s possible but I don’t know. My brother was the one who brought the test, but he insists it must have been his ex who made the allegation. Problem is, she knows the real situation and was halping me out last month, with lifts and such. So it’s more the case that he wants it to be her so that he can use it against her. He is insisting that I go to the school and demand who made the allegation – because it will help him somehow if it was her.

      Maybe I should go to the school, but not to make demands…

      Like

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