Tuesday, May 22, 2012


A close friend of mine gave me a copy of this book to read after she finished it. I had a long trip to Bergen yesterday so I have read quite a bit of it on the plane. There are so many parallels here to my own life that it has been a difficult read. At first I found the mother very hard to relate to or like, but half way through I also saw a lot of me in her. It is that same fear that I have had for my own children. I suspect it is the fear most people have when they realize their spouse is an addict. I have often thought that I could not bear to re-live addiction with my kids. I don't think anything could be more painful. But what often happens is that we shut down and become practically dead so that no one can hurt us. What I have hoped is that I could somehow control their lives to the extent that it would never happen. What I realize more and more is that they are on their own journeys. And, painful as it may be, I have to let them live those journeys. That said, I do believe the stability we offer our children growing up does count for something. While I can't stop them from making bad choices, I do believe that children come back sooner than they would without strong families. Sometimes, without that, they don't ever come back. This is a beautiful story about the love between mother and daughter. I'd highly recommend it to anyone dealing with family addictions. "Sometimes, we have to give birth to our children twice....Once your child becomes the "garbage" other parents are afraid of, you never look at any teen, or yourself, the same again. All you see is the child they once were." "Nor did I grasp the capacity of love's absence to destroy, that my lack of love for myself made my own life unbearable. You take someone whose life experiences have taught them they're worthless, string them out on drugs, and you have one miserable person. How could I have given what I didn't have? It's hard to value another life when you view your own as dispensable, hard to understand how you can have so great an effect on someone else when you don't think you matter." - Mia Fontaine

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