My 85; soon to be 86 year old mother is a gift from the universe. She has been living with me since September and has become such a symbol of 'life if I don't quit drinking'. At her advanced age, she is still in the throes of the disease of alcoholism. If she's not puffing on her e-cigarette or scratching 'scratch 'n win' tickets she's eyeing the liquor cabinet or pining for a beer. Often she's doing all three.
When she moved in the only 'rule' we had was that she could only have one beer a day. Her mission in life is to break that rule on a daily basis. Although she is basically, anti-social, she hangs around the dinner table each evening, not to continue our mealtime chats but to wangle another beer out of me. She is often willing to humiliate herself by asking me for another beer or a shot of a liqueur. Being a soft touch, I sometimes give in and pour her another. She plays on my kindness which she perceives as weakness.
She is my future. I am a younger version of her. The only difference between us is that I finally recognize my alcoholism for what it is and she is in denial as she likely will be for the remainder of her life. I try not to keep her favourite liqueur in the house. Yesterday she gave hubby $30 when she thought I couldn't hear her and whispered for him to pick her up a bottle. He's caught between the 'live and let live' school of thought and the 'protect her from herself' theme that I try to instill in, not only him but in myself.
I feel bad for her because I know how an alkie's brain works. I remember when I was in my heavy drinking days that I would manipulate situations to allow for my glass or three of wine. I have a lot of patience with her addiction but it is my responsibility as her caretaker to try to ensure that she doesn't do a face plant on my ceramic floor.
I am really hoping that this dozen days of abstinence becomes a dozen months and a dozen years.
Today I am meeting my old work friends for lunch and then spending an hour with my favourite Uncle (my Mom's 83 yo baby brother) who is a sweet guy. He plans to have a glass of wine with me. Not going to happen but he has seen me abstaining before and adjusts quickly when I drink tea during our visits although I know he is disappointed.
Spring is in the air!! Cardinals are at my birdfeeder. They are magnificent!