Saturday, July 12, 2014

Choices

I know many of the people reading this blog are Andrew's friends, who are telling him what is being posted.  At this point, Andrew may be reading it himself.  Regardless of how the information is being passed, how about thinking before you do or say things.

I waited to post again because I was so mad last weekend.  I really do not care what Andrew does to try to play games with me and my feelings, but when it comes to an innocent 12 year-old you have gone too far.  If you want to know your brother's reaction last week, after a long pause (which is very unusual for Joseph) his first comment was, I don't know if I want to go, I am afraid of Andrew.  After several hours of contemplating the situation Joseph came back with more questions: "Why does Andrew suddenly want to hang around with me, he was a jerk to me when he was home?"  "Why does he want to hang around with just me, we are a family and should do things together?"

As I've said before - time to show some maturity.  Start by admitting your mistakes.  Then realize the damage done to the entire family, not just us here in Florida, but the entire, extended family.  Leave your brother out of it for now.  He has been through enough over the last few years and does not need someone playing games with his emotions.

We are always here.  We are willing to work on putting pieces back together.  In the same vain, life keeps going.  We stopped living for too long, it won't happen again.  Everyone's life is shaped by the choices they make.  Often times, easy choices are not wise choices and wise choices are not easy.  Wise choices often make your life easy and easy choices often take you down a long and treacherous  road.  In the end, the choice is always yours.

Friday, July 4, 2014

And so it goes

Yes, I dropped all of Andrew's clothes and personal belongings off at his friend's house.  I even stopped to pick up some of the foods he always liked.  Did it go well - no.  I am surprised - no.  Joseph wanted to come along to see Andrew.  I did not want to say no, he wanted to see his brother.  By the time we left Joseph was teary eyed and very upset.  Perhaps it is better that he sees the truth rather than keep some fantasy that Andrew will actually be a brother to him.  Am I a little angry - yes.  None of us did anything but try to get him help. Joseph and Jacob were innocent bystanders whose lives were turned upside down by all of the problems Andrew brought to our family. There are no acceptable words to express how I feel...

Our children have been raised with the notion of family comes first.  Family will be there when no one else cares.  Yet Andrew would rather play the martyr and lead people to believe that we refuse to provide for him than admit he was wrong.   At what point does he learn to be an adult, admit his mistakes and move on.   

Thursday, July 3, 2014

A phone call

As is typical with the justice system, nothing goes the way they say it will.  I learned yesterday that Andrew's transport back to Cape Coral was changed completely since our exit interview with the facility.  It would have been nice for someone to let us know what was going on.  It would have been nice to get a call that he was ok and back in town.

Our first phone call from him was last night.  No big surprises.  He asked if I would deliver his belongings to a friends house.  I asked if that is where he is staying and I got a vague answer, sort of a no, but not really.  The residence is not the address he gave probation.  Again, I am not surprised.  I have had no direct answers to questions such as what was done to prepare for his release; how is he expected to take care of basic needs; how will he be earning money.... So at night I have all kinds of images - is he safe, will he be able to eat, how will he get around.  Then I have to remind myself, he is 18.  He has had every opportunity to work on making amends with his family and refuses.  The only contact we will have is if he wants something. 

Where will he go?  I really do not know.  How long will it be before he wears out his welcome with whoever he staying with?  Then what? Let go and let God.

Things could be so easy for him if he would be willing to work on family therapy.  I hope his stubborn streak serves him well.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

July 1

Thought of Andrew as soon as I woke up.  Wondering how he is feeling.  I thought of his probation officer going to pick him up: I wonder if Andrew will talk, will he sit there in silence, what will the officer say to Andrew?  The only reason I expect to here from him in the next few days is so he can get the rest of of his belongings.  I have his clothes and personal items packed and waiting to be delivered.  Mark had his bike repaired because we figured he would need a way to get around.  When we were doing one of the exit interviews with the staff from his facility we offered to continue to pay for piano lessons for him, I doubt he will follow-through. 

Good luck Andrew, we love you

Monday, June 30, 2014

Well, it has been almost five months since the last post.  In that time Mark and I attempted to visit Andrew, but he refused to see us.  We have called the facility weekly, but he has refused to talk to us.  We have requested, countless time, for the facility require family therapy but they repeatedly told us they cannot force family therapy and Andrew refuses to participate.  Tomorrow he is released.  He will have no stipulations, no probation, he is simply released.  Mark and I had talked about going to pick him up, but after several conversations with the probation office it was decided it would be safer for everyone if probation provided the transportation. 

The picture below is a page from Andrew's baby book.  I wrote my message when Andrew was about 3 years old. As you can see, he left a message to me last year.  Good thing the facility did not think family therapy was a necessity.

Everyone is asking us where Andrew is going to live and what he plans to do.  We do not have many answers.  Apparently he was allowed to talk to his "girlfriend" (which was not supposed to be allowed) multiple times while he was in Dade Juvenile.  They have made arrangements for Andrew to live with her - the location keeps changing.   He has told some people he has a job lined up, he has told many people he plans to attend Florida Southwestern to study literature.  He has told us nothing.

I am praying that although he did not get the therapy he needed while he was detained, that the time away from the drugs was enough to help him.  I hope he is able to stay away from drugs and alcohol and used the many talents he has to become a productive member of society.  He turned 18 on June 22.  At least before we had the ability to intervene when he started to slide. At this point he is on his own and there is nothing we can do.  I admit I am scared; we have been down this road too many times.  I am scared for him - will he be able to find a job, support himself, stay clean... I am scared for us - the other two boys are finally doing well, with most of the anxiety gone.  We have asked Andrew to respect our home and not come over unannounced.  We have told him we are more than willing to talk to him, but we would like the initial conversations to be at a neutral place.  Will he even contact us?   The saying they repeat over and over at ALL of the family support groups is "Let go and let God."  When you are dealing with a minor this sounds a little ridiculous; Andrew is no longer a minor, so let go and let God.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Off to Florida City

Mark and I are going to the facility today to meet the case worker.  When we call, all we are told is that there have been no incidents.  I don't expect Andrew to see us today, but at least we will meet some of the people and see the facility.  My expectations are pretty low, I have a feeling the other places he has been will look like resorts compared to this facility. 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Playing Games or Making Progress?

I would like to believe perhaps there is a slow change occurring but I am cautious to be hopeful. We know Andrew has at least started to communicate with grandparents, a letter to his grandfather and calls to both grandmothers. Yet there is still no effort to communicate with any of us, not even his youngest brother who misses him tremendously and asks about him constantly. 

His past behavior makes me believe this is more of the same, especially since he is still refusing family therapy.  The only difference now is that I know I cannot change him.