The next few months were full of loneliness and lots of tears. In May 2010 his court date came, and my friend Anna drove with me and his mom to New Mexico for the hearing. The judge released him that day, but he couldn’t come home to Texas for a couple more weeks. Just in time for the birth of our son, Kayden, on June 28, 2010. This was one of the happiest days of my life. He was beautiful and perfect, and I thought the answer to all of the struggles we’d endured up to this point. However, after Kayden was born it seemed like the addictive behavior got worse. The next year was full of sleepless nights with keys and wallets hidden underneath my pillow. Still, I stayed and on April 2, 2011 we were married.
April 8, 2011 is another day I will never forget. This night we were having some drinks with family and he ends up getting my keys, jumping in my car and taking off. His sister and I jump in her car and follow him to a gas station. I walk up to the car and grab my wallet from him through the window and that sets him off, so he takes off from the gas station onto the highway. We follow behind him and see the cars are all at a complete stop due to road construction, but we see no brake lights from him. He ends up ramming into the back of a car full of six people. His hip is shattered, and he has to have surgery. We get through the surgery and the next couple of months of recovery and I’m praying that things get better. However, the next year is full of the same thing – sleepless nights and hidden keys and wallets. Still, I stayed.
We weren’t able to run from the addiction. It followed us here. Ultimately, addiction won out. I wasn’t the perfect wife or the perfect mother, but I stuck by and took care of our family while also dealing with the stresses of addiction. Addiction isn’t something that just affects the addict. Addiction is something that an entire family endures. After 5 years, enough was enough. After a three day binge, he came home and I told him that he needed to choose. He could go to rehab and get sober or he needed to leave. That day he chose to leave. June 5, 2015 is the day our lives forever changed. Addiction had taken over our family and it was heart-wrenching. While it was probably one of the saddest days of my life, it was also the beginning of a beautiful journey of self-discovery and strength. They say you can’t love someone out of addiction, and that is so true. I loved that man so much. Over the next year I struggled with my decision to break up our family, but I knew that I couldn’t continue down the road we were on. He tried multiple rehabs, but he relapsed each time.
I was now a single parent, and it was tough. I was feeling emotions that I couldn’t control or understand, but I also had two boys who were confused, and feeling those same emotions at such a young age. For the next 2 or 3 years, there were a lot of tears shed. They didn’t understand why their dad was gone. He would call every now and then, and was consistent for a few weeks, but then all contact would stop. To this day, he still reaches out every now and then, but he hasn’t been active in their lives since 2016. We grew together, we survived together, and more importantly, we overcame together. Addiction is what broke our family, but it didn’t break us. We are stronger today than we have ever been, and our story isn’t even close to being over.