Dismal rain and melted snow on Day Eleven of rehab

I am not sure, but the exterior temperature must be very warm because the huge mounds of snow have dwindled down to almost nothing.  It is raining and has been raining all night and that has aided the cause of the warmer temperatures and rendered the snow mounds ugly with flecks of black and other sooty colors on their surfaces.  The overall effect is one that is depressing instead of renewing and I wonder if that is reflecting our spirits as we head into day eleven of rehab.  I am going to say it isn’t.

We spoke to the young man yesterday and his spirits were high.  He is very anxious to get out.  In the family, we continue, as a group, to communicate and discuss where we are in all of this. This communication has taken every current shape from texting to actual discussion and is ongoing.  We have discussed all sorts of issues that are going to be important as we transition Michael and ourselves from the clinic to real life.  We have made plans here and there to take care of many different things, from the phone (which was paid for by the older boys’ business) to how to get Michael active again (his Christmas present morphed from what it was to a paid membership at either the Park District gym or at a private one).  We have continued to dialogue with counselors at the clinic to get input when we weren’t sure what the best official stance is that we should have in certain areas.  We intend to do everything we can to help him avoid situations that may compromise the progress he has made while “incarcerated.”

Many family members have a background in psychology due to the fact of their teaching credentials, but Christian’s wife is the most expert of all having done her Masters in Clinical Psychology.  She uses it in her daily job working with autistic children.  These connections do not hurt our family goals at all as we all try to help him.

We are not even all sure that he really needed an extensive treatment program such as he has had to endure.  My take is that that is probably accurate.  “Hollywood” as he is nicknamed in the “facility” had himself chosen to fly home without his supporting cast of chemicals and at a certain point tell us he couldn’t do it alone.  My real feeling is that the rude shock of being in a county facility, seeing the horrible effects drug use has on others, and being with people you often don’t have much connection with  is a very good “wake up” call.  This facility is not a “spa like” situation where perhaps he wouldn’t have felt the full effects of what he has done not only to himself, but also to his family.

I have to say that I am not enjoying the tree as much this morning.  My coffee is good despite having been made twice.  Ridiculous man that I am I had done a great job of setting up the coffee yesterday, grinding the beans, cleaning the carafe, filling the receptacle with water, only to find out this morning as I craved my first cup of coffee, that the carafe was filled to the brim with hot water!  I had neglected to install the ground coffee in the gold filter!  As Michael must do with his life, I had to start over.

That was just a preview of how things were going.  I straightened up a few things, and then sat down to the disarray caused by our canine in the living room.  I hate visual pollution and am not happy by the displaced ornaments and pine needles she has knocked down during the night as she heads toward our front window.   Years ago we had replacement windows put in our house,  which is about as old as I am, to conserve energy and to keep me from losing my cool each fall and spring when I struggled with storms and screens.  I have always had little battles going on in all sorts of life areas and that was a monumental one.  Our storm/screen situation was somewhat scary at times since the windows are large for a house that isn’t and the flimsiness of the storms had them bending and flexing as I worked with them only to shatter at the first incorrect move I would make.  It was nearly impossible to fit them in without a struggle and it was a biannual moment of stress I certainly don’t miss.  Anyway, the front picture window was replaced with a bow window with an accompanying seat.  The seat and its surroundings match the décor of the house quite well as they are in oak that I finished to match the furniture we have in the nearby dining room.  Sometimes we don’t think about the ramifications of what we are doing, we ignored here the fact that our dog, Ali, was going to take this location over the minute we left the house.  Not thinking about that I sanded it beautifully and gave it layer upon layer of tung oil, finishing it all to a beautiful luster.  One day we returned home to find enormous gouges in the seat area of the window, attributable to Miss Ali who had, in her quest to rid the house of its mailman attacker, scratched the window seat almost beyond repair.  I immediately took charge, re-sanded the whole affected area, re-tunged it (if I can say that) and once dry I purchased a carpet runner and cut it to fit over the entire seat.  Now Ali has a deluxe area that she can not only use as her attack runway but also to bask in the sun of the afternoon and stretch her long legs out.  At first she would never do this in our sight, now she is bold enough to do it the minute we leave the house.  On top of this, we must leave the blinds open because if we don’t, her afternoon mail attacks damage them!  And then, of course I have had to resort to a plexiglass square sheet directly in front of the window screen on the sides, because Denali has ruined two window screens already as she throws her body against the windows in anger as the mailman passes by and “attacks” our mailbox.  The surprise I just yesterday was that she even cracked the plexiglass!  Ali’s commitment to her job as border collie protector is only matched by Koerner reaction to challenge.  She is not unlike her owners!

So, here it is New Year’s Eve and I have spent all sorts of time talking about my past battles.  It seems that I have a bigger battle at stake here and, as usual, my mind wanders around all sorts of battlefields wondering how to most correctly attack the situation at hand.  I only hope that God grants me and my family the strength and ability to correctly deal with what we have at hand.  Despite what I am seeing in front of me in terms of disarray and ugly weather, I firmly believe we shall be able to conquer the devil that attacked our son and our family.  The support of our family, friends, and overall network will see us through it!

Happy New Year!


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