My Mom-The Good, The Drugs, and the Complicated Relationship
I lost my Mom 3 months ago to a probable overdose. She had been an addict of some sort my entire life.
She OD'd in 2007 and I called 911 and they were able to save her. ( I had just broken up with my partner of 14 years and moved back home) I got her to agree to rehab and thought she was doing OK.
I moved out later that year to a different state. (A decision I now feel guilty about) My step-father was an enabler and was of no help. Apparently, she started to complain about pain so much that my stepfather went to the street and started scoring Oxycontin on the street. (Something I learned after her death) The very same pills she OD'd with and almost died.
She had underlying health conditions and since I didn't know about the drugs, when my stepfather called to say that she had passed and he was having her cremated, I didn't argue. She had been fairly sick off and on for the last year.
Now, I am tormented by his possible contribution to her death. I don't really know what caused her death and for some reason it is not enough to know she is dead.
It doesn't help that when I got to Florida to go through her things, my step-father was openly flirting with a woman who my mom called her "best" friend and lived in the house with them. Also, he told me that "when" he gets married that the property he and my mom purchased together, will go to his new wife.
So first off, I am beyond angry. I'm angry at my step-father for enabling my Mom all these years. I'm angry that he can be so indifferent as to say and do inappropriate things when my Mom just died. I'm also angry because my Mom stayed with him over the years.
I'm angry at my Mom for things from the past, I'm angry at her poor choices over the years,. I'm angry that she didn't take good care of herself. Most importantly, I'm angry at her for leaving me.
I'm angry at the "so-called" friend who thinks it's ok to go through my Mom's things before I get there. Who thinks it's OK to try to grab things she has no right to. Who thinks it's ok to flirt with my step-father while I'm standing there. I just kept thinking, "Really, can't you people act decent even if it is just for appearances sake?"
When I would get upset about this woman being around all the time, I would get told, "This is hard on her" All I can think in that moment is..."it was MY MOTHER"
I'm angry but I am also just completely lost. I would talk to my Mom everyday. She was all those things I mentioned above but she was also ALWAYS there for me. (At least since I turned 17) She supported all my creative endeavors. She supported me when I kept changing my major. She even supported me when I told her I was a lesbian.
When something good or bad happened, she was the first one I thought of calling. We talked about everything. We were extremely alike in our political and world view. She was an extremely compassionate person. She would often feel drawn to the down-trodden in society. She trusted easily.
I say all that because I both loved my Mom for the good qualities she had, and HATED her for her weaknesses. I could never allow myself to make room for the possibility that she was doing the best she could. Instead I spent most of my life vowing to not be anything like her.
Ironically, now that she is dead, I realize I'm more like her than I care to admit. (Minus the addictions) I'm not nearly as strong as I thought I was. I make HUGE mistakes. I sometimes trust the wrong people. I ALSO tend to live in denial sometimes so I don't rock the boat.
All my life she told me how strong a person I was. Then everyone told me the same thing and I bought it-- hook, line, and sinker. I now realize I was strong because she told me and I believed her.
My life feels empty without her in it. It is as if-- everything was in color and now it is in black and white. I feel insecure and so unbearably lonely. I now realize (after the fact) that she was my best friend.
Some friends reached out to me that I didn't expect. Other friends, who I was sure would be there for me, aren't. Some friends don't seem to want to understand that I am being extremely selfish right now and that it has nothing to do with them.
Then, there is me. Although some of my friends have reached out, I can't seem to reach back. I just can't seem to ask for anything I truly need. It is like I am paralyzed. I just want to scream, "I'm here, I know I'm not acting like the old me, but don't give up on me, I need you"
My mom spent most of her life unhappy. It is an overwhelming desire of mine to know if she is happy now.
I will never have answers about her death. I can not control what happens with my step-father. I can't even really know if she is happy now. These are all questions that haunt me.
I went to an appointment with a Psychotherapist who said all these feelings are normal. He said it will all take time to work through and that grief can last a year or two. I'm just not sure I can survive that. I really need things to make sense.