I really believe most things happen when they are supposed to. The cards that get drawn are dealt when it was time to read them. That being said, things seem strange and coincidental, even though I know that they are not. I was riding home yesterday when my girlfriend brought up out of the blue, the question of if my ex wife still had my last name. Since my divorce went final, I have blocked all contact with her. Phone, email, social media, everything possible. So needless to say, there was no way for me to know that. Due to the volatile situations my ex wife often was involved in, I certainly hoped that she had went back to using her maiden name. This being the age of the internet, I had my answer in less than five minutes. Sure enough, she had changed her last name back and but apparently that hadn’t changed her self destructive behavior she exhibited while she shared my own surname. The most recent result showed that she had been arrested for multiple counts of felony drug possession…less than 24 hours ago.
I always knew this would happen. It was not a matter of “if”, it was “when”. There is no doubt that it would have (and should have) occurred while we were together. The risk of it happening in front of my daughter or dragging me down with her was always this menacing dark cloud hanging over our marriage, to the point where it was almost like a third being within the relationship. When it gets to that point is where the reality sets in: HOPELESS. Let me say something that, while being my opinion, I am going to say is truth by trial. When you are in a relationship with someone who is an addict, trying to help them all by yourself is HOPELESS. When you are in a relationship with someone who has a mental illness, trying to help them without any therapeutic knowledge and professional counseling is HOPELESS. The only way you can help whatsoever is letting go of any expectation and accepting that things will get close to rock bottom before they improve while you are merely a guiding aid, after they themselves are the ones that want to change utterly.
Seeing the mugshot was like seeing a ghost. I have seen her go through the stages of cancer, hooked up to chemotherapy and having her body ravaged by poison. I have seen her go through a miscarriage, opiate withdrawals, car accidents, every train wreck situation possible…but I have never seen anything like this. I have never seen anyone I know personally look this bad in present time. She has finally taken that step into a demons grip of hard drugs. Meth. Shooting up. You know those fucked up commercials and online advertisements warning people about doing hard drugs, and the effect it has on your physical appearance? I always wondered what parents and friends felt like when they saw the lifeless visages of someone they knew withering away.
Do I blame myself for cutting her from mine and Cali’s lives almost two years ago? No. It took confronting and dealing with my own codependancy issues to say that, but no. Because let me reiterate this, and anyone in a similar situation should at least stop to listen to this point: what happened this weekend was going to happen no matter what. Whether we stayed together or not. Whether she was in Florida or not. She DID all of these same things while we were married. With a brand new house over her head, jobs paying her, schools educating her, a little step daughter adoring her. You can choose to look at it through whatever opinionated view you have of addicts and those with mental personality disorders, but there simply is not a way to place the same values on things that someone without those kinds of issues will, compared to those that do. So before you puff out your chest and think you are going to “protect and to cherish” no matter what, please educate yourself on what is really at hand and how to help, while protecting yourself. I’m fortunate. I got out before there was no coming back.
Codependent relationships are a type of dysfunctional helping relationship where one person supports or enables another person’s addiction, poor mental health, immaturity, irresponsibility, or under-achievement.
Obviously, this all churned up a lot inside my mind. I was almost mystified while contemplating how in the hell I arrived at the point I am at in life, compared to how things were back then. I often ask my girlfriend what planet she is from, because of how foreign and awe inspiring being in a healthy relationship seems to me at times. I never ever say this word, but the closest I can come to describing my circumstances in life the past 9 months is “blessed”. Fittingly, a package arrived for Whitney this weekend. A girl from Greece who read our story on Humans of New York did a drawing of her standing in the water that day way back in August. It had her quote at the top, “and Happiness was everywhere that day”. What I loved the most about it was what this girl had added to the drawing, at the bottom. One word.