by Sandra Shaffer
Mike was a 47 year old drug addict. I loved him in spite of that. He literally killed himself with meth. He had so many accidents happen to him. He was only 3, my baby, when he had his left foot mangled in a lawn mower accident. His childhood was filled with mishaps but he was a great kid and overcame a lot.
He was in a massive oil field rig explosion and fire at age 30 from which he was disabled and never worked after that. He spent months in the hospital and became addicted to pain meds. After he came out of the hospital, it was an easy transition to street drugs. I had lost my husband shortly before that and had started a new relationship.
I have always felt guilty that I did not do enough to try and - I don't know - keep him away from the drugs I guess. At different times he seemed to be clean and I had such high hopes. Then his girl friend and child left him and although he still had his boy alot I think he just sort of gave up and gave in to the drugs.
He was bad hoarder and I really could not bring myself to visit his home. The few times I did go I was physically sick. He did visit me and was always a good son to me and I love that grandchild. In December of 09 he had a stroke and developed heart failure. He did not take care of himself and finally came to AZ and stayed with me for a few months in Feb. 2010. He was in the hospital twice here but he got well and got on a lot of meds., listened to the doctors and felt so much better.
He told me he was through with drugs but I learned later he continued to take them. He was not very well the whole summer of 2010 and finally on December 4 of 2010 he became very sick. His heart was in the final stages of failure and all his organs were starting to shut down.
He came to stay with me and I cared for him until he died in my arms on December 17, 2010. I am so sad - I feel grief for the man he should have been and I feel guilt for not doing something about the drug abuse.