Have you ever heard of William Carlos Williams?
I mean what kind of a name is that anyway?
A fun one I suppose…
I had not heard about him until his poem became a prompt for the writing group I attend. The assignment was to mimic his style and write a This is Just to Say poem; Here is what I wrote, but I warn you, it is not very fun.
This is just to say…
I went in your room while you were gone and I cleared up all the dirty dishes and moldy food scraps, I gathered your smelly clothes, and made your bed ‘just so’ because I was searching for whatever it is you were hiding and I found it and I threw it out.
You know what it was I am sure,
…Forgive me, but I love you too much and hate what you are doing.
Here I am to talk about something not very fun: being the parent of a child who became addicted to drugs, right under my nose. TODAY, marks 9 months since my son died of an overdose.
Practically speaking, this is my creative hook to share with you fellow-parents some items you might be seeing, or items to look for, if you suspect at all that your son or daughter may be into stuff he/she should not be into. I list them in a rough order of how I found these things in my son’s bedroom and in my home, honestly, the timeline is now blurred.
- Lighters and matches
- Little plastic Baggies, in pockets, in the laundry, crumpled on the floor
- Razor blades
- Pens, with the innards taken out of them
- Straws cut short
- Cigar innards
- Weed seeds, weed leaf flakes – it’s not oregano
- small butt ends of joints
- Glass or metal pipes, bowls, and contraptions in parts
- My kitchen box of Baking soda
- Ziplocs with white residue
- Foil scraps, and even my foil tube
- A large propane lighter
- Sticky-gummy stuff on the night stand
- Burn marks on the quilt
- Funny looking tiny papers w/ little cartoon prints
- Spoons gone missing, found in the bedroom with soot and burn marks on the backside
- Random colored pills with random letters and numbers, in a Ziploc baggie
- Tiny vile bottles, unlabeled, with some kind of oil in them
- Stuff on wax or parchment paper that looks like someone melted a lollipop on it – only it’s a golden brown color and smells bad
I did not find them all at once…
It was one item here and there, at weeks or month intervals between times at first…
I dismissed the oddity and believed the excuses from my son, when I asked him about the items:
“we use the lighters at work”… “it’s my buddy’s, not mine”….
Repetitive finds began building and then multiple items were found at a time as I went in to clean his room A.K.A. – compulsively and obsessively search his room, daily after he left the house for work.
Suspicions became confrontations….but by then, it was too late, because I had been too naïve and too afraid to bring it out into the open much sooner; Ignorance never pays.
Once again -the purpose of this post is to alert you and other fellow parents what to look out for – and if you spot one or two of these items – do not think:
“Oh, not my child…”
“Every kid experiments, it’s not that bad, I know his friends…”
Remember Parents: Knowledge is Power.
And that doesn’t just apply to our kids.
“But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible,….” Ephesians 5:13
When it becomes visible and known, then a parent can deal with it and perhaps save their kid before it’s too late. Don’t be afraid to look…