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Category Archives: The Boy

“Relax” Part Whatever

Thankfully The Flood has abated. Who knew telling 900+ people all about the workings of my Lady Bits would shut the faucet off? Obviously I need to be telling y’all every little thing – maybe shit would start to happen 🙂

Before we get to my scheduled post, just let me relate one more work-related irritation. On Friday, the server went down at the office. No problem – I saved my drawings to my hard drive. When the problem hadn’t been fixed by 11:30 and my work was done, I left. I saw The Boss’ truck parked in front of the office on Sunday but didn’t have time to stop by to tell him the latest drawings were on my hard drive because I had somewhere more interesting to be. I don’t keep his cell phone number in my phone, so I didn’t bother to call, either. WTF he was doing at the office on a Sunday defies all logic anyway.

So I came in to work this morning and went immediately into his office (before the weekly staff/planning meeting I am no longer invited to) to ask if he’d changed the drawings and to explain the situation. Turns out he HAD made changes to the drawings and appeared a bit irritated that I hadn’t let him know I’d saved the files on my hard drive. BUT the architect changed his floor plan (again – surprise!) necessitating a bunch of changes that voided all the work I’d done on Friday. Of course, The Boss asked me what I’d done on Friday (your redlines, duh!) and was not happy about the situation, but in the end no harm, no foul.

No biggie, right? Well…no, it’s just fine with me to get paid to do the exact same work over and over again, but the $ doesn’t make up for the irritation and frustration my job makes me feel. I gotta get something more stimulating going on or I will lose my mind.

Ahem. Okay. Where was I? Oh, yes. The Thing I haven’t written about at all. For awhile there was A Boy. No, that’s not a misnomer – he turned out to be nothing more than a lying little child. No, he’s not the cause of any of my stress (which is considerably diminished thanks to getting it all out there on the blog) but now he’s gone I have a little less.

Let me explain. We met online. He seemed normal enough, a bit quirky, but in a good way. He gave off none of the Red Flag vibes I’m hyper aware of. I figured, why not have a fling? We’re all adults here and I can do what I want, right? So long as we’re both on the same page it’s all good, right?

He lives 90 minutes North of me, so I drove to see him. I never invited him to see me because Towanda is a Penis-Free Zone (until now, what with The Kid living there and all, but it’s different, right?) and I didn’t want to go there anyway.

I introduced myself to him as Sofia and somehow I neglected to tell him my real name until it became awkward to do so. He was a bit shocked, but by that time he’d been telling me little white lies for awhile and I refused to be upset by it. Even his mother said, “that boy was born with a Tall Tale on his lips!” And therein lies the reason I’m no longer seeing him – he’s a compulsive liar. About everything. Oh, it’s not all malicious, but we had agreed early on to be honest with each other, and I had been. Maybe even a little bit mean if he asked for my opinion.

Anyway. It was fun. Then it wasn’t. I was done in January after we went to Las Vegas to stay at one of his timeshares. I’d never been and he talked like we were going to have a great five days. It would be an adventure! I paid $250 for Sabu to go to Sleep-Away Camp and drove up to his place. When I arrived he was in bed. He had “thrown out [his] back” and needed to go to the chiropractor before we left for the airport. Fine. I drove. He was obviously in pain. I offered to cancel the trip but he insisted that he would be fine once his back was fixed – this had happened before.

We got to the chiropractor’s office. He did not have an appointment but they take walk-ins. The receptionist asked to see his insurance card. He claimed to have forgotten his wallet (I had seen him put it in his pocket) and told her he would call her with the info as soon as he got home. He also lied about where he worked (he was laid off at the time) and gave some other false info. Uh-huh. The Doc took him into another building and I got creeped out by the looks I was getting in the waiting room so I went to wait by the car. I kept an eye out so I could tell him I wasn’t in the waiting room when he came out and when he saw me, he came directly to the car and did not check back in with the receptionist. Since the info he gave her was false, he just got himself a free chiropractor appointment. I was livid, but he was in pain and pain can make people do odd things.

So. The trip should have been cancelled, but we went and he basically slept the whole time. When he was awake, he was a dick to everyone we encountered. We had a war over the thermostat in the room (he wanted it cranked all the way up with the tub filled with boiling hot water – it was like a sauna and I couldn’t breathe) he refused to go out for food but we did to the “Party Weekend” dinner and show* and he dragged me on the rides at the top of the Stratosphere (just to laugh at me, I’m convinced) but otherwise he was asleep. He hadn’t packed any clean clothes or underwear (who does that?!?) It was just awful. I understand he was not feeling well, but he should have cancelled the trip instead of being such a dick. He should have gone to a doctor like I asked, but he’s a grown man, right? I couldn’t force him to seek treatment so I kept my mouth shut.

Anyway. I didn’t hear much from him the following week and went up to see how he was feeling on the following Saturday. He was not awake. At 11:00 in the morning. He knew I was coming and he couldn’t be bothered to be awake? I figured he must be really ill and set off the house alarm so he’d be forced to get up. Long story about the alarm. He stumbled out, let me in and apologized about the mess. I won’t even go there. He was obviously drugged to the gills. He couldn’t stay awake and refused to go to the emergency room. He said all he needed was sleep. The house was a wreck and I was pissed, so I left. Sad texts from him later so I lied and said that he told me to leave. I told him to text me when he was feeling better and that, I thought, was that.

The following week I get a text from him saying that he’s in hospital and has been for five days. WTF? He didn’t seem that bad off when I saw him last. Or is this another lie to get sympathy? You see, the stories he told should have been verifiable online (they were that big) and they were not, so I questioned everything he’d ever said. I asked what hospital, etc. and called to make sure he was indeed there. He was. Well, crap. Now I felt bad. I promised to go up the next weekend and see him.

The next weekend arrived and I drove up. He was in the ICU – his bowels had quit working and they’d done emergency surgery the night before. I met his step-dad and got the whole sad story. I thought maybe having a near-death experience would change him. He said he felt like he was getting a second chance and that he wanted to be a better person, etc. etc. etc. So I visited regularly during his hospital stay and even drove three hours (each way) to visit him at his parent’s house. They are nice people, but not really my kind of people. I felt obligated, though.

He was finally cleared to go home and take care of himself and I went to see him. He was asleep when I got there. He slept most of the time I was there but I spent the night because it was too late to drive home (I don’t like driving in the dark for any long distance.) Next weekend, wash, rinse, repeat. I suffered through one more weekend so I could use his power tools to make a pair of sawhorses. Hey, I’m no dummy and he owed me, dammit!

He was cleared to start work and took a job for a “friend” who has an old house that needed some plumbing repairs. The Boy is a bit of a Jack-of-all-Trades and could not yet resume full time work. He told me that this guy, Jerry, has a 1920’s shower that needed a new faucet-gizmo. He gave The Boy $150 and instructions to order it from a specialty restoration company. The Boy went on eBay and found “the same part” for one third the price and pocketed the money. He was bragging when he told this story.

I was aghast. I said, “you’re cheating this guy and it’s gonna come back to bite you on the ass…”

“No, it won’t! I do this stuff all the time! If people are stupid enough to pay stupid-high prices when they could shop eBay, they deserve to lose their money.” He was proud of himself!

I was all done feeling bad for The Boy at this point, but curious to see how this little farce would play out, so I found reasons not to visit the next few weeks but stayed in touch via text. And then the lies came home to roost.

Via text –

Him: Once again I made a mistake and misread a person.

Me: What’s up?

Him: The guy I’m working for refused to pay me. Since it’s under the table I have no license, bond, insurance. I’m not the leg breaking kind of guy so he gets off scott free. I should have known better.

Me: Are you telling me the whole story? Surely there’s more to it than that?

Him: Nope. Everything was fine yesterday and now today he won’t pay me.

Me: Did he give a reason?

Him: No. He just kept saying ‘get off my property, you’re trespassing’ over and over again.

Me: Ah! Is this the plumbing job?

Him: Yes.

Me: Well…you cheated him. You went on eBay and found “the same part” and kept the extra money. Where else did you cut corners?

Him: True. Karma?

Me: Ah…yeah. You fucked this one up all by yourself.

Him: So I can’t play the victim part here, huh?

Me: No, not with me. Surely this has happened to you before?

Him: No. This is the first time.

Me: You’re splitting hairs. You’ve done this sort of shit before and been caught. You’re denying it to make yourself look good and I don’t buy it.

Him: True. Guess I need to get my head on straight…

And nothing else for a couple of days. Then I get a text saying he wants to tell me something but he can’t do it via text. It’s a phone conversation. Fine. Whatevs. I didn’t care and was still fuming over him thinking I’m gonna give him sympathy about his little cheating scam.

He scheduled the call three evenings in a row but failed to call at the appointed time. Always had an excuse via text. I really didn’t care.

Finally he called, late, but he did call. He started in about “misjudging people” and how something else had happend and OMG life is so hard, blah, blah, blah, again and I just lost it.

“I don’t even care about that,” I said. “I need to go back to the plumbing job. We need to talk about that.”

He was plainly not prepared to shower me with lies about that. “Uh…okay…”

I repeated the story as I knew it. “Is that right?” I asked.

“Well, yes, but you make it sound so bad…I don’t even know what to say here…”

“Right. That whole mess is a deal-breaker for me. I don’t have people in my life who think it’s okay to cheat people that way. Good bye.” And I hung up.

He didn’t even have the wits to apologize. For anything. It was fun for awhile, but damn am I glad I’m still single!

There were many more instances that should have ended it for me, but I was curious to see where he would go when I started to call him on his bullshit. I mean, honesty was our bargain in the beginning and I kept to my part no matter what, which felt really great, I have to say, but he couldn’t tell the truth about anything, even stupid stuff that doesn’t matter. I refuse to have that kind of crap in my life. Unless it’s related by blood, apparently, because The Kid is still on my couch.

So I gave The Kid his ultimatum on Thursday evening when I was sure he was sober. August 3 is his move-out date unless he’s working and paying me $200 per month rent. Six months is long enough for anyone to find some kind of paying work if they apply themselves and I’m soooo done with this Mom Gig. I told him I would drive him back to The Big City and drop him off or he could just walk out the door but he would no longer be welcome to live with me. He hid his panic pretty well and I haven’t mentioned it since. If he thinks I’ve forgotten he’ll get a very rude awakening come August 3 when I show him the door. Let’s see if this lights a fire under his ass 🙂

*Jeff Dunham. Fantastic!

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Second Verse

Finally talked to The Boy on Monday night. He had plans to visit an Army recruiter Tuesday. WTF??? Now, no offense to my son, but that kid would not make it in the military. I just. I mean, srsly?

Hiding my skepticism, I said encouraging words, offered once again to pay his rent this month and promised to be there for him whatever he decided.

Yesterday morning I get this text –

“I need help”

Nothing more, just those three words. After catching my breath I dialed the phone. He was in tears and the background noise was traffic. I asked him where he was and he said he didn’t know. All alarms ringing now, I told him to get to somewhere safe, that I was on my way and would call when I was in the neighborhood. He texted 30 minutes later that he was at a friend’s and would wait for me there.

So. The Rest of the Story is that he did not try to get a job or find a roommate and vacated his apartment on the first. While he never told me a direct lie, he did leave out some facts and talked around some of my pointed questions. We’ll deal with that later.

He carried most of his stuff down to the dumpster – the remainder (minus his bike which said friend is storing for him for now) fit into the back of my tiny car. His glasses* were a smashed wreck, no screws, one lens falling out, so our first stop was Visionworks in the Washington Square Mall. Lemme tell you what – those guys know their job! Mike (hope I got his name right) was able to clean, repair and adjust what I thought was a hopeless cause and The Boy looks respectable again. It’s a miracle, I tell ya!

I brought him home with me and we’ve been talking about his life and where he wants to go. He is rudderless at the moment, not knowing what he wants to do next (but still talking about the Army) depressed and confused. He’s spending the today out at the alpaca ranch with Awana doing the heavy lifting she can’t.

Rest, food and hard physical work will clear his head. How long it will take remains a mystery, but he’s welcome to stay as long as he needs to.

Sigh. I am tired.

* He has always been hard on glasses – the screws just fall out no matter what we do to prevent it. I told him to go over to the mall and have the screws replaced, that they do it for free so you’ll come back, but he always denied that they do walk-in stuff like that for free. Hah! Mom Was Right. AGAIN! “I never thought it would be so easy…would have come over sooner if I’d known I could get them fixed for free…” and so on. Prolly won’t let him forget this any time soon…

 
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Posted by on February 5, 2015 in Family, The Boy, You're kidding

 

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So glad the weekend is over!

I am so tired today! The show went pretty well for the Sweatshop Girls and we’re all happy that it’s over for this Season. We’re gonna take a week off and then get together to plan our next move. Stay tuned…

The Boy and I went back to his apartment early on Saturday to get it cleaned up and habitable again. After five nights with Mom, he was looking like his old self again, sarcastic sense of humor back in evidence and his eyes clear. Constant pleas to take a shower had finally worked their magic and he no longer smelled like the barroom floor on Sunday morning. Couldn’t get him to eat as much as he should have, but at least he was hydrated.

He was not looking forward to going home. Neither was I, to tell the truth. I was hoping it wasn’t as bad as I remembered but fearful it would be worse.

I won’t go into details. It was filth like I’ve never seen. It took seven hours to haul out the trash, wash the walls and carpet and haul two full shopping carts worth of empty bottles and cans out of there. I’m not even exaggerating. I wish I was.

We went shopping for the essentials, including a floor lamp – there is no overhead fixture in his room and Mama can’t have that! If he can see the dirt he will clean or I will know the reason why. We bought hangers and a dirty clothes basket and talked about organization and what I expect to see when I go back up this weekend.

We talked about how and why the room got to be in that condition and I’m not as worried as I was about his state of mind. At the first sign of backsliding, however, he will be placed under house arrest (my house) and will be flogged with righteous indignation and The Rules of his childhood that he so hated until he begs for mercy.

He was ashamed that I insisted on getting right in there and cleaning and worked as quickly as he could so I wouldn’t see some really nasty things. I just don’t even have words.

Anyway. His room is as clean as bleach, soap and water can make it, when I left there was no alcohol or empty containers in the place and there was food in the fridge. We’ve been in contact by text and phone every day and will continue to be into the foreseeable future.

He has printed out his resume and is riding his bike around looking for another job. His financial position is fine, provided he gets a new roommate and a job by the end of the month.

Sigh. I’m glad it’s over but so sorry for the experience. Mama Bear has been awakened and her cub better keep his shit together or face my wrath…

 
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Posted by on December 9, 2014 in Family, The Boy

 

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Detoxed and ready to roll

It’s been a long week and I am tired. The Sweatshop Girls will be in Albany at the Willamette Event Center peddling our wares if you’re in the area.

The Beast seems to have made a full recovery – he’s back to his usual self, making me wonder if it wasn’t alcohol poisoning on top of not enough sleep or food that sent him over the edge. He has no obvious signs of withdrawal (and I’ve been looking hard!) and his appetite has returned.

This episode has certainly driven home the fact that I need to be more involved in his life, no matter what his preferences might be, and you can bet this will not happen again if I have anything to say about it.

He’s been concerned about this little “vacation” because he needs to get a new job ASAP and sort out his roommate situation. Tomorrow morning I’ll be taking him back to The Big City where we will take care of business.

I texted Brian, the roommate, to let him know what was what and make sure he doesn’t think I’m crazy, based on my behavior on Monday. Because H has regained his sense of humor, although he doesn’t read this blog, here’s a comparison between him and his roommate.

H on the night in question –

Jesse Pinkman. Please tell me you know who this kid is...

Jesse Pinkman. Please tell me you know who this kid is…

Actually, H looked worse, but I couldn’t find a picture horrible enough. The baggy pants, beanie, totally out of it expression, loose layers of coats. Jesse at his worst.

In contrast, Brian, the roommate –

Tom Keene from The Blacklist. If you know the show, you know who he turned out to be...

Tom Keene from The Blacklist. If you know the show, you know who he turned out to be…

Bizarre! They would never live in the same space if they hadn’t been thrown together by the apartment management office.

Anyway. All is well. Mama Bear is not done whipping her cub yet, but at least he’s traveling in a straight line 🙂

 
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Posted by on December 5, 2014 in Family, The Boy

 

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Intervention

I haven’t written much here about my son, for good reason – his story is his to tell – but the events of yesterday negate any further silence. Buckle up, this will be a long one.

H (sometimes referred to as The Beast or TB) has been living in The Big City, on his own for just over five years now. Getting him out of the house and motivated to live his own life was not easy and maybe I’ll toss in a bit of that story as events develop, but leave he eventually did, off to live his Dream Life with his best buddy, B, away from all the rules and regulations life at home entailed.

Life seemed to be going well for him for awhile – he had a good job, an apartment he shared with B and B’s fiance, M, and the bills were paid on time. The Family gave him cash at the Holidays but he refused any and all assistance, keeping up a cheerful demeanor and insisting that he was doing Just Fine.

B and M moved out, got married, had a baby and that’s where I think things started to fall apart.

Last year about this time H lost his job. He said it was because he was late to work and someone else had to open the restaurant for him. While I don’t have the facts, I believe he was drunk or hung over and that’s the real reason he was fired. What matters is that he was hiding his drinking and The Family helped him with bills while he looked for a new job. We didn’t give him much because he swore he was on top of things and didn’t want our help.

We thought everything was fine, and maybe it was. He and I have been close in the past, but our schedules have been opposite for awhile and we haven’t talked as much as we should have. I should have been a more involved Mama, but he was adamant that he was a grown-up and was just fine on his own. Life was peachy. Life was good. His job wasn’t the greatest but he had money and clothes and didn’t need me to stop by for a visit. Red, Flags, I know, but ya gotta let a baby bird fly, right?

On Thanksgiving I went by his place to pick him up to go to dinner with The Family. We had texted the night before and he said that he’d worked a 14-hour graveyard shift and might be sleeping when I got there. I rang the bell, called his phone and knocked for half an hour before giving up. I texted him (his voicemail box was not set up yet) to call me when he woke up and that was that. I was irritated, but he sleeps soundly and maybe he just wasn’t up to dinner. This was 11:00 AM.

He finally called at 5:00 PM and sounded like shit. Claimed he was sick, very sick. I asked how much he’d drank and he laughed me off and wouldn’t give a straight answer. Not being able to verify his story, I lectured him about staying hydrated and to call his Mom once in awhile and rang off.

Cut to yesterday afternoon. He called me, sounding very unlike himself. Said he didn’t tell me he loved me enough and he really wanted to call just to say, “I love you.” Said he’d called Grandma, too, and alarm bells began ringing in my head.

I was at work and the connection was bad, so I headed outside to see if the reception was any better. H talks very fast and quietly so it’s hard to understand him even in person but I got the gist. As I was talking to him Mom started calling me, so I knew this was something serious.

H started to ramble and say that he hates his life and doesn’t know what to do and apologizing over and over for “everything he’s put me through,” admitting that he’d lost his job, on and on, pretty incoherent and I finally just asked if I should come up there and get him, bring him back to stay with me for awhile for a change of scenery.

That stopped the conversation entirely.

“You’d do that?” he asked.

“Of course – I’m your Mom! I’ll leave right after work. Will you be okay until then?”

We chatted for a few more minutes and I became more worried. He sounded very unlike himself, crying and, well, suicidal. He was so moved that I would drive up and get him. I was debating calling 911 to get someone over there but he seemed to calm down a bit when I promised I would come.

I told him I was on my way, hung up and dialed Mom. She was packing a bag but reluctant to drive to The Big City in the dark. I told her I was on my way and would call when I got eyes on the situation.

The car was full of stuff so I had to make a quick stop by the Studio where I told Awana what was going on and Sabu and I hit the road.

As I was stopped at a red light I checked my text messages and saw – “I’ll leave the door open in case i cant get to it.”

WTF?!?!?!? Almost lost my shit right there. Tried to call B to see if he’d go check on H, but the number I have is no good. Texted back – “K. On the way.” Hoping he’d see it and not do anything rash.

The entire ride my mind was flipping over the possible scenarios and what I should do in each case. I was really hoping I wouldn’t be dealing with a body. Or a situation that would require a hospital stay. I was loaded for bear in any case.

I bounded up the stairs, rang the bell and waited about five seconds before trying the door. Locked. I knocked and heard footsteps inside. The door cracked open and a handsome, bearded and bespectacled face peered out. I’d found myself a genuine Hipster! WTF he was doing in my son’s apartment was not readily apparent, but I had no time to think about it.

“I’m looking for H,” I said, pushing my way forward.

He had the gall to block my way and say, “I don’t think he’s here right now.”

“I’m his Mom and he better be here,” and I pushed my way inside.

Taking a deep breath, I knocked and then opened his bedroom door. It was pitch black inside, the only sound a very faint wheezing. My heart was in my throat, I can tell you! I reached for a light switch, but there was none. I couldn’t see a thing but my Mama taught me to be prepared, so I whipped a flashlight out of my pocket and shined it around the room while calling his name.

He was passed out in an office chair, head back, headphones on. He was very hard to rouse, finally coming to a groggy consciousness and looking around himself like he wasn’t sure where he was. I was worried he was going to need a trip to the hospital but he soon came to enough to realize that his Mom was standing in the middle of the wreak that is his room.

Beer cans piled three feet deep on the floor and stacked on every horizontal surface. Cigarette butts spilled everywhere. Food wrappers tangled into mounds of filthy, stinking clothes and who knows what else. One hole in a wall, the closet door off its tracks, the bed a greasy, nasty mess. Every surface coated with a sticky residue that turns my stomach just to recall.

He began to cry and apologize profusely, standing on unsteady legs, swaying and telling me that I shouldn’t be in his room – it was too awful for me to see. I asked him to step out into the living room where there was light so I could see his face and he kept turning in circles, telling me I shouldn’t be in there.

Sigh. It was so very sad. He started thanking me for coming for him, that he didn’t deserve such a sacrifice and so on – the typical things drunks say when they know they’ve fucked up and can’t bear the thought of themselves any longer. Sadly, I know this place all too well – his father is an alcoholic and drug addict. This is all deja vu for me.

I told him to pack a bag, that I wanted to talk to his roommate for a minute. Poor Brian! He was obviously not prepared to face an upset Mom on this night. I quizzed him, trying to get a handle on how long H might have been like this, how often it happened, etc. but Brian has not spent much time with H – their schedules are opposite and they aren’t friends; he found the place through the manager’s office and had only been there a couple of months. Was, in fact, planning to move back to California in a couple of weeks. I got his number and promised to send some cash ASAP to be sure the rent and bills are taken care of. He was a nice guy, understanding, or faking it very well.

Somehow I got H to pack a bag with the things he HAD to have, bundled his blankets into a paper bag and got him downstairs in one piece. He seemed to be waking up, but he was not in good shape.

The ride down the freeway terrified him. Living in The Big City, he rarely rides in a car, preferring to walk or ride his bike. The alcohol-fueled paranoia only made the trip more bizarre for him and it was hard to get him to talk about anything else.

By the end of the ride he was sounding more normal and I was in full on Mama Bear mode. He WILL be attending AA meetings. He WILL disclose his financial situation. I WILL be taking him back to clean his room and there will be no arguing about it. I WILL be making a key so I can get into his apartment in future if he doesn’t answer the door. He WILL be in better contact with The Family in future.

The smell of stale booze was so strong I insisted he take a shower and put on come clothes I had stashed in the closet. We set off immediately for the laun-dro-mat because there was no way any of his nasty things were going to be inside my trailer!

He was still pretty out of it, but talking like a human being, so we had a long conversation about drinking and alcoholism and his genetic predisposition for being an alcoholic and drug addict. I did everything but take a hammer to his head and he admitted that he has a problem and totally fucked up.

He thinks the drinking is mostly situational – when he and B get together they drink, but he also drinks when he’s alone. Riiiiiigggggghhhht. Sounds like classic alcoholic justification and I said so.

Anyway. He’s here with me for the time being. I have to work today, so I left instructions for him to eat whatever he thought he could hold down and drink as much lemongrass tea or water as he could. I called at lunch time, hoping he was asleep (he didn’t sleep at all last night) and had a little chat. He doesn’t want to go to an AA meeting alone but there isn’t an open meeting tonight, so tomorrow it is.

I just hope this change in his routine will get him back on the straight and narrow and enable him to get a grip on his life. If I can swing it, I want him to see a doctor and have some blood tests to make sure there isn’t anything serious wrong with him and to see a counselor of some sort – he said some very disturbing things about not feeling like himself and “freaking out” about his life.

I’m just thankful I was able to dash up to get him – if I was still with the narc it would have been impossible.

Stay tuned for the rest of the story…

 
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Posted by on December 2, 2014 in Family, The Boy

 

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