As you know, I’ve been very concerned about not being able to reach Hayley since Thanksgiving. And when her younger brother tried texting and phoning the 3 contact #s we had for her, with no luck over Christmas, we became very distressed. A couple of weeks ago, I heard from Jill, my ex-husband’s wife, that she had received a text from Hayley asking for her brothers’ phone #s. That meant that Hayley no longer had her phone. I called Jill last night (who lives a couple of thousand miles away) and asked her when Hayley texted her and from what #? Apparently Hayley had sent the text the day after Xmas from a number I didn’t recognize. I asked Jill to text Hayley and see if she responded. Amazingly, Hayley did respond by calling Jill last night, around 10:00 pm. Hayley said she was fine, living in a safe place with people who cared for her and had a new puppy. Jill said it seemed her speech was slurred at times, that Hayley cried about missing her family, but just couldn’t face talking to any of us. Her shame was, obviously, a huge barrier. She told Jill she was still using heroin, but not as much, and that ‘using’ helped her manage her eating disorder – that stopping the drug use, like the eating disorder, was impossibly difficult and beyond her capability – or, desire.
I am, of course, greatly relieved that Hayley is alive, and apparently ‘safe’. And after a lot of thought, my paradigm has shifted. My “hope” now is not for Hayley’s recovery, but simply for her to be alive and relatively safe. It appears that she has made some sort of life for herself. For most of her adulthood, Hayley has struggled to manage, connect, function at a ‘normal’/acceptable level. She never could really make it work for herself. And now, she has found a way to ‘live’, and cope and be. I don’t like pushing the limits of my ‘hope’, but I do wish that Hayley is able to give and receive some level of joy, compassion, experience goodness and beauty and, dare I say, Happiness? And, who am I to say how some one else needs to live or what they should do? Yeah, we all agree that as long as you aren’t harming someone else, there’s a range of behavior and lifestyle choices that are ok. But the “ok” is definitely premised on my own life experiences and perspective on the world.
I try not to dwell on the liklihood of criminal activity necessary to support a drug habit – or how opiate addicts support Afghani terrorist activities by filling the demand for poppy crops. I drive an SUV, playing my own part in America’s oil dependency and consumption, which most likely contributes to the instability and scramble for power and influence in the Mid East, which ultimately drives terrorist activity. ARGHHH . . . stop! My guilt complex is taking over!
Nevertheless, for now, I am comforted by the fact that Hayley is alive – and feels like she belongs somewhere – and perhaps, is giving and receiving love from a sweet, innocent puppy.