What if ? …..and EVEN If…..

My friend Joanne Richards has taught me so much about how to just BE. Her work with Byron Katie and our mutual study of Matt Kahn’s teachings, all lead me to the same conclusion: it’s ok to NOT KNOW. It’s ok to wonder. It’s ok to be curious and not have all the answers.

Here’s some of her priceless words regarding a loved one.

“What if his (soul’s) path is to be addicted? For what purpose? I know he’s touched other people’s lives and hearts. He is teaching me to learn to love without my wants, needs, and shoulds that place conditions on my deepest capacity to be love itself. And I don’t have to reach an ideal goal, and either does he. And we can if we do. If I want him to change with even the smallest desire that finally I’ll feel better too, that he will meet the ideal goal of being healed according to my version that that is the highest divine plan, that is a condition. And it gets in the way of me being totally present with him. I am wasting precious time, these opportunities are few and far between. And it gets really confusing and painful when I am playing God, and I am imposing what I think is the right path onto my son’s life.

I can know nothing of Gods plans and paths. I don’t have that power. From this place, he never has to change. Of course if he does, and he’s happier that way, great! Psychotic in addiction, or healed, I do my work and it leads me to love, and I don’t need him to change or get healed. I love him if he does, and I love him if he doesn’t. Maybe he will, maybe he won’t. I can not know. All that matters is this moment and how I’m serving Love. I serve him better and our relationship much better from this place. And it takes as much and more of my own healing work to show up for him this way. And if I do, the connection grows, the relationship grows, love grows, he changes or not, and I do. It changes every thing.

Without a past, without a future, without thinking I know what his journey should be, that he should want to heal, that he should heal, etc, I see him as love, I sit in the presence of love, silently, and am grateful to him, I am grateful and compassionate with him and with me, the mother that yearns to connect with her son in love and aware that the only time she loses him is with a story of a future that I impose my assumptions about how it should look. Maybe healing and recovery isn’t his path. Maybe it is, don’t know. Now what?

It sure does simplify it. I can not know any of it. And by doing my own work to get clear, to get present, to return to love without the wanting and needing and conditions that I’ll be happier when he’s healed, etc, boom! I am present and more able to listen, and be honest. I love you Kevin. It’s so good to hear your voice. Tell me your stories. You’re so resourceful. I trust your path (because it’s not mine), and if I can be part of it, I’d like to be, but I don’t know a lot. I’m here for you. I love you. He can hang up, or stay on the phone. Either way, love called and answered. Moment complete. Still breathing. Love remains.”
Joanne Richards
May 2021

Photo by The positive Mom

Another precious pearl of wisdom:

“Dearest Parent,

Please notice where your fear takes you. You have me dead already waiting for that call. You see images of me dead. But I’m not there. Even if my physical body has passed or if I’m homeless and can’t be reached, please remember my goodness and my life.

I live elsewhere, and always in your heart. 💘

Look for me there. Look for me in the good, in the living.

Look for me and honor me with your life. I can not do this for you.

Please tell me you love me, and what you’re willing to tolerate, or not. I eventually hear you say no. And just repeat it or don’t answer the phone.

This is helping me.
When you repeat what’s not working for either of us, it just keeps not working. Just be clear with your love and your boundaries. I need this. It helps me with my own fear, and helps you take care of your own. I can not do this for you.

I actually want your love.

I want you to love me as I am whether I live or die.*

Trying to fix me is beyond your control and obsessing on this will kill your chance at any peace.

It’s your fear that makes you do that. And you make me responsible for it.

I’m under the influence of drugs. Drugs have their way.

a different way when I can not.
I love you and I can not express it right now. Just trust in that love, even though it’s silent and difficult to see.

Please remove this pressure from me that I have to get fixed and take care of your happiness.

I really can not handle it. Please seek your own recovery. I can not do this for you.

Live your life so I don’t have to feel the shame of taking it from you. I did not take your life from you.

I don’t have that power.
So please don’t give it to me, or to drugs for that matter. I don’t want that for you either. God gave me a life and a death, same for you. If and when I can choose differently, I will. Will you? Show me the way. If I ever recover, I’ll need you to be clear and strong. Healing is possible for me, and for you. You be the one. I can’t do this for you either, and please please don’t wait for me. God has plans for me, and God has plans for you. Staying in pain is not His plan for you. I know it’s not God’s plan to have me addicted but God is going to use my life in ways we both can not imagine. Find every way to live and inspire peace and joy in this life. I can not do this for you.

I know you love me very much. I love you back. Nothing can destroy that. I will be with you always. God created me as love, and you are too. It is indestructible. Remember this and you will remember me well. And this love can break through your fears. Know I love you even when it doesn’t look or sound like that. Know this, but I can’t do this for you.


Your Child, and God’s.

  • Joanne Richards

I’m not sure where I got this quote but it’s so helpful and true with our addicted loved ones:

For the record.
Drug addicts aren’t getting high because they are having a good time. They don’t wake up & say “I had a great time lying to friends & family yesterday & injecting a deadly poison into my arm I think I’ll do it again today “ . They don’t choose to live like this. Whether or not they chose to do drugs in the beginning has nothing to do with when they are in active addiction. If I choose to smoke & got cancer I wouldn’t be choosing to have cancer in fact I’d wish I didn’t have to live with it just like an addict wishes they didn’t have to get high everyday. If you ask any addict who’s past the point of no return if they are enjoying themselves they will all say “ NO I HATE LIVING LIKE THIS” and yet they don’t know how to stop.
I understand that addiction is a strange thing & that it’s hard to wrap your head around but that doesn’t make your opinion of it factual. If people spent as much time learning about addiction as they did telling everyone who’s addicted that they choose to live like this we’d be getting somewhere. We would have so many more people helping addicts instead of saying things like “It’s natural selection” or “Let them kill them selves off”
If you’re someone who hates addicts so bad that you feel the need to let everyone on FB know about it then at least think of the families of those addicts who are grieving for someone who’s still alive ! Or the ones who are grieving for someone who isn’t. At least have the decency & the common courtesy to keep your false & ignorant remarks or opinions to yourself so that Mother’s & fathers, children, wives, & husbands who don’t know how to make it Day to day because their loved one is dying in front of them or has already died doesn’t have to feel anymore pain then they already do.

Staying connected to your son is loving him in spite of his struggle. Our children couldn’t need us more than while they’re behaving unlovable. They are screaming “Please love me when I don’t even know how to love myself.” Once they realize that they are worthy and loved, they will begin to seek help. It’s when they don’t feel worthy or loved or connected to their people, is when they are in so much danger. I’m pretty doubtful that you telling him that he needs to go to detox is not going to be effective, but telling him that when he’s ready, you will support that with everything in you, and have some resources ready to help. Prayers for you, your husband, and your son. This is a difficult task that we’ve been handed, but God will see you through it.❣️🙏🏻❣️

Published by


A unique perspective on the world from a small town girl turned big city nurse. Now a grandmother to 6 gregarious, resplendent boys and 5 endearing, magical girls, she strives the make the world a more understanding, pleasant place to experience this intense thing called life.

One thought on “What if ? …..and EVEN If…..”

Leave a Reply