Sorry, Boss- I had a Flat Tire

I was late to work today.

It threw me off all day long.

I mentioned to my boss some lame excuse.

What was I really to say?

“See, my son is in jail, & I’m glad but I still am wrenched with worry all night that he will get out in the night & in the day I hate when he asks for money for the phone or for actual real food or a bit of candy that we all crave but especially them when they are coming off heroin because I don’t want him trading it for drugs or calling his cronies to bail him out. After all, even though- he detoxed last weekend and became so suicidal and depressed that they put him on suicide watch and when I called the nurse she said they might pink slip him to the hospital so then I worried that he wouldn’t have a guard when I should be more worried that he’ll harm himself- he still has the mental obsession and cravings to use”………breath…


I can see the blank stare of “What am I supposed to do with that?” Look which I’m so accustomed to.

There was a time I prayed that none of my kids would go to jail.

Then there’s tonight.

I find myself on my knees praying that my son will stay in.

It’s a crazy world. One that I never imagined while sitting in my little small-town Americana cottage-type adobe home, 40 years ago.

I was 12 years old, mourning the death of my favorite person in the world. My brother, the wizard. I had never experienced such odd confusion and scorching pain, piercing so deeply into my soul that I could barely breathe for days. It would take me almost 10 years to even talk about my brother’s death.

Now here we are. Or here I am.

Feeling like I’m on a deserted island, waving to the 1000’s of other islands of hurting moms.

We all stay paralyzed in our turmoil. Afraid to help too much. Afraid to not do enough. Waiting in heightened anxiety for our ship (our child’s ship) to come in.

Tonight, my island has a storm brewing. It’s a category 4. Winds of up to 156 miles per hour. We’ve already had pretty close calls before. But this is the big one. This has the potential to do a lot of damage. As if our souls weren’t tossed up enough, to need more rain, and sleet, and objects thrown at us at 156 mph. Literally and figuratively.

I can hear my Mom’s voice, “Time to hunker down!” Like she did when the first snowstorm was brewing for the winter.

“Let it go” I hear the Anon’ers chanting with their Sesh book dangling out of their “Give it to God” cloth stitched bag. Followed by: “Live your life! you didn’t cause it, can’t control it, and can’t cure it!”

“Ok, but the storm is coming, my son is in a canoe being hunted by sharks and he has no food. Plus, I’m kind of the only one here with a rope”! I can hear the pleading in my voice to please understand. “If you were a cat lover, you would never leave your cat to battle the storm alone”. “Yes but, my cat would WANT to be saved …….and the argument goes on and on…

Tonight, on my island, after begging & pleading with God to wipe my son’s name from all bail bondsmen’s computers, I then try to virtually & energetically erase his name and number from all his contact’s phones. There. Now there are no avenues for a jailbreak to happen.

I fear for his life when he’s out.

I fear for his safety when he’s in.

It’s a rough jail.

This is a rough life.

Thursday is D day.
Sentencing or something to that end….
I’m scared. He’s really scared. He wants to run. I know it.
He must be protected from himself. How to do that is the struggle.

Do I call all the bondsmen and warn them that he’s a flight risk? Or stay in my lane. If it means the difference between a 4+ year prison sentence no matter what and him getting a chance to want to recover, without a harsh sentence hanging over him, isn’t it worth being called an enabler? After all, I’m going to be the one to pay for phone calls and a few treats every week which will add up over the years to 1000’s of dollars, Not them…
Time is so precious, yet I’m acting just like my son and wanting to buy more of it. I want his time in jail to last just long enough so that he wants recovery, but not in the form of a sentence, lasting for years.

It’s so convoluted.

The anon-ers just might be right, on this one…..

"Give it to God, you're no longer in control".

And what a relief because I don’t know how to explain it to my boss anyway.

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Samantha Waters

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.

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