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Providing non-judgmental and non-criticizing support for family and friends of end-stage alcoholics through one-on-one coaching, support groups, blog posts, workshops and public speaking.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

In some people we trust...

All others pay cash…

I trust that the sun will rise each morning. Without fail that sun will edge its way over the paddock and provide a beautiful view for about 20 minutes. It happens everyday. Even when it’s storming outside, I know the sun takes the expected route – over the paddock and on up into the sky even if I don't actually see it.

There are very few things in my life that I trust without contingencies. The sun and moon are only two. I also trust that Jade will chase after any mouse she sees. I trust that my great-grandson will laugh when he sees me. I trust my great-granddaughter to tell me truth no matter what – after all, she’s only four. I trust my bff, Carrot to keep my secrets. I trust my navigational instincts. I trust my soup-making abilities. And, I trust that Riley cannot be trusted.

I have to have a heart catherization to determine the extent of a heart attack I had more than 4 years ago. It was never done when I was told that I had the heart attack. I don’t know why, but never the less, I need to have one know. It’s really just an elimination process because I’ve been having chest pains. If my heart can be ruled out – then the chest pains are most likely caused by living in a stressful environment and being overweight. I’m not a doctor. I’m at their mercy. I’ll do as I am told. I’m not saying I’ll trust them to be right, but if they talk to me in a language that I understand, I’ll totally lean toward their direction.

Actually, having the heart cath is a relatively simple procedure. It’s done on an outpatient basis. I’ll be sedated and won’t remember a thing about the procedure itself. I like that. There are times and things I just don’t need to know and my body’s surgical details are right up there on the top of the list.

Unfortunately that fact that I’ll be sedated brings up another issue. I must coordinate with Alea’s work schedule so she can take me. The hospital is two hours away. She also feels that if she weren’t there and something went wrong, she would never forgive herself for not being there. It’s a closed issue – at least for me and Alea.

Riley says he should be the one to take me. Riley, who has not been totally sober for more than 76 days, wants me to trust that he will be sober on that day. He wants me to trust that he will not forget me at the hospital. He wants me to trust that if I ask him to not drink – that he will not drink. He wants me to trust that the two hour ride will not put my -- or anyone else’s -- life in danger. And – if something goes wrong – he wants me to trust that he will make the right decisions concerning my medical care. He has become so insistent that he yells that I should “trust” him to do as I ask him to.

Alea and I have been over the medical scenario many times since Brian’s death. We know -- without a doubt – what each of us would want if the unthinkable ever becomes reality. I trust Alea to make the right decisions for me. I trust her to not leave the hospital while I’m there. I trust her driving ability. I trust her to be sober for the entire day.

Yesterday my project was to re-do my closet configuration by moving the shelf and hanging bar up to adult height. I don’t know why the master bedroom would have a closet designed for a kid – but there it was. It needed to be fixed so I could finally unpack the rest of my clothes. To accomplish the task, I needed some wood screws that were a shorter length than the ones I had. That meant a trip to the hardware store. I also needed celery for the chicken soup I was making for the presentation I’m giving on Friday. That meant a trip to the grocery store. Both stores are easy to get to and close to each other.

I was so busy with unpacking boxes and assembling bookshelves that I found myself being resentful that I couldn’t send Riley to the store to get the necessary items. He starts drinking at 5 a.m. By the time I realized I needed the items it was almost 9 a.m. There was no way I could let Riley drive to the store. In fact, I couldn’t have sent him even at 5 a.m.

So, here’s this man who says I should trust him with such an important task as taking me to get a heart cath when I can’t trust him to go to the hardware store.

I understand that a part of Riley wants me to treat him as my husband and partner. I also understand that he wants to appear to others that he lives a life that is not alcohol infused. I understand that he wants to be drunk while trying to live a sober life. In my mind, it’s all a part of the alcoholic game of “Let’s see who I can con into believing I’m not really drunk.” It’s the same game he played while being a district representative for AA while he was drinking more than a fifth of vodka every day. I don’t believe he really conned anyone. Those AA people are too smart for that. And I’m too smart for that.

I trust that all his ranting were simply drunken bravado from a man whose hazy brain thinks he is capable of doing anything the same as any sober person.

Living with an alcoholic has not caused me to be incapable of trust. I just reserve it for things that have proven to be trustworthy. In Linda World, using the analogy that “In some people we trust…” Riley would have to pay cash.

9 comments:

Alcoholic Daze (ADDY) said...

Stick with your plans for Alea to be there for you. I had a similar story, as you know. When it was getting close to my daughter leaving home to go to university 200 miles away, I had a similar dilemma. I don't drive on motorways (freeways) and so Greg said he would, of course, drive our daughter and all her belongings, bedding, kitchenware etc to uni. Like your Riley, there was no hope in hell that he would be sober to do it (he could not even drive legally to the local shop let alone 200 miles and in any case his legs were getting so bad he could not put pressure down on the car pedals). So I arranged for his sister to take us. I think Greg's pride was hurt - he wanted to be the man of the house and see his daughtr settled. But I knew he would never manage. So secretly I made plans with his sister and let him believe he was taking us (partly to give him hope and partly in the hope that it might be the one thing o make him stop drinking). About two days before the trip, he admitted he wouldn't be able to manage. It was sad to see him make that realisation, but at least I had my plans with his sister already in train.

Riley probably thinks he CAN do it, but the reality is far different. You need to get that procedure done - you owe it to yourself - so stick with your plans with Alea.

shadowlands said...

Your primary purpose (and entitlement) is to get and stay well in your own body.

looby said...

Best of luck with the op. It's a little bit sad hearing Riley insisting that he can be trusted. He's trying to tell himself that he can, of course.

Ann said...

Back to that trust issue again.....Thank God for loving support from family and friends.

HyperCRYPTICal said...

Good luck with the heart cath Dear Linda - thinking of you always.

Anna :o]

Syd said...

I hope that all will go well with your heart cath. I suppose that Riley would like to think that he is the man who can do those things for you. Sadly, he wants to do those things but alcohol waylays all those plans.

Gabriele Goldstone said...

It is all about trust. That realization was a big one for me. How's that song go... I can see clearly now the rain is gone...

Razormuse said...

It is now 2014,September. I recently found this Blog..it's a treasure to me. I am a "caregiver" now, but was his wife originally. Iam Not a drinker. I am filing for divorce as my alcoholic is in end stage & I can no longer cope with the smells,the staying awake,throwing up... I dont know why you havent posted anymore, but I wish you well & thank you for all the information here.

Linda -- The Immortal Alcoholic's Wife said...

Razomuse -- I am still posting to the blog. I only post to comments when there is something that I feel I need to address. Please go to the "home" page and continue reading. A lot has changed since I wrote the post about trust - AND - a LOT has stayed the same.
Linda