Never take Your Mother for granted..

By
Anne Emerson
Mom's Name
Cheryl Emerson.

I had always hoped I would get the chance to be a mom someday. And 13 years ago God blessed me with my one and only son Braeden. I couldn't imagine my life without him. However I was very close to losing him because of my addiction.

In 2006 I had went to inpatient treatment for meth addiction. I was having difficulty sleeping, falling asleep, staying asleep, the whole bit. I'm sure most of it was just my body and brain repairing itself from my meth use and getting back to some normalcy. But when you start thinking addictive type thoughts such as "what can I get for sleep that will make me feel high," it's honestly just opening up the door for disaster. I was prescribed Ambien, a sleep med that was well known for making people sleep walk, eat and drive. Laugh, think yeah right. But it happens, I have 2 DUI's for driving in an Ambien blackout with absolutely no recollection of what happened. With my first DUI I was 20 yards away from my parking spot at my townhome when I got pulled over somebody had called the police saying that there was a drunk driver driving all over the road. I had my son in the backseat however the last I remembered I had put him to bed and my parents house and had laid down myself to go to sleep and had woke up in the county jail. When I received the police report of the incident I could not believe what I was reading, I was just in tears. In a complete blackout I have put my child in his car seat buckled him up and was driving to my home just a few miles away from my parents house where we were staying and when the police officer tried to pull me over I stopped my car and as soon as he got out of his car he said I put my car in reverse and almost ran him over. When the officer approached my vehicle he asked me how much I had to drink, he said I replied with slurred speech saying nothing officer. And when he opened the door I nearly fell out. Apparently I had taken multiple Ambien but I have no idea because I don't remember. My parents are out of town and so my sister was called to come and get my son so that he wouldn't go to foster care. Child Protection was involved and by the grace of God my son was allowed to stay with my parents and not go into a foster home. CPS and I came up with a plan that would have my son home with me very soon at least so I thought. It wasn't but two or three months later I got another DUI as I was on another Ambien blackout and was driving my car on the basketball court at our townhouse and almost ran over all of the little kids including my own. I have no idea how I even fit my car in the entrance to the basketball court but I did and the other parents that were outside had to come running and sweep up the children so that I didn't run them over. I am still in disbelief that this could have even possibly happen because I don't remember anything and that's very scary to me. I could have killed my own child or could have killed someone else's child. I lost my town house, I lost my job and I lost custody of my child because of Ambien, not to methamphetamine which was my major drug of choice. I hadbeen sober from meth for about two years when I was using Ambien and so once I lost my townhouse and voluntarily signed over custody of my child to my parents so that CPS would not terminate my rights I ended up relapsing on meth. I'm not one to have pity on myself because if I'm getting in trouble for something it's obviously because of something I did that I shouldn't have been doing but after I had to give custody to my parents I was feeling all sorts of pity. I was ashamed of myself I was disappointed how could I have done this how could I have let my son down and now my parents are inconvenienced and have to take care of my son because I was unable to because I was on Ambien and took more than I was supposed to and ended up driving in an Ambien black out and lost everything I had worked so hard to get back when I got sober from meth. Feeling sorry for myself I relapsed on meth instead of doing what I should have been doing to get my son back. My mom who gets up for work at 4 in the morning now had to take care of my son at night because my dad works 2nd shift. I had hoped that my son would not remember much of this because he was little but my parents continued to have custody and still continue to have custody to this day. I am far beyond where I was back then, when I voluntarily sign over custody to my parents but I'm not yet where I need to be in order to ask for my custody back financially. Being a felon has made it very difficult for me to get my own housing and to seek employment that is sufficient enough for me to financially support both him and I. But I long for the day he is living full time with me again. I am with my son every single day and I have him on the weekends but my mom still has to deal with my child even though I'm there. My son is absolutely wonderful he's very smart he's polite and respectful however he's just like me and he has a mouth on him and so he and my mom get into it the same way that her and I did when I was growing up, which is very stressful and frustrating for everyone myself my son my mom and my dad. At times I feel bad for making my mom have to put her life on hold to raise my son along with my dad because I wasn't able to do it on my own over the years because of my addiction and other times just plain shame and disappointment in my choices. The nights that my mom had to get up in the middle of the night to take care of my son when he was sick because I was in prison because of drugs, the mornings that she had to get up with him when it was her only morning to sleep in. My mom has had to put many things aside over the years and even though I am forever grateful for her and for my dad that doesn't mean that I don't carry to this day a heavy load of Shame and guilt for not being able to raise him by myself. I wish I could go back and redo those months of Ambien use all over again and not have taken them at all but I can't and I can't change the fact that have had issues with addiction in my life but the one thing I can change is what I do from here on out. Today I am there with my son every single day so that my mom can go and do the things that she needs to do whether it be take a long hot bubble bath, and put her pajamas on and watch TV and be in bed early or go shopping. I'm there today being the mom that I should have been years ago but clearly drugs got the best of me, who knew the Ambien was one of the worst medications that you could give a meth addict. Over the years my mom and I may have not seen eye-to-eye on everything but the love that I have for her is not any less even when we don't see eye-to-eye on something. My mom has been there for me when I needed her most, raising my child when I couldn't and being there for me when I lost my fiance to heroin December 3rd of 2017. My mom was more of the tough love type when it came down to it but she never gave up on me and she never lost hope and for that I am forever grateful. So on this Mother's Day 2018 if there's anything that I could say about being a mom it's never take your motherhood for granted because you never know when that moment may come where your child is taken away from you whether it be losing custody, or losing them to death because of drugs. Being a mom is something sacred something special and something that I will never take for granted again. I think about the mothers who have lost custody of their children and don't get to see them and never will get to see them again and I think of the mothers who have lost their children to overdoses such as my fiance's mother who has lost both of her children and this is her first Mother's day without them. My heart breaks for her. So to my mom I want to say thank you very much from the bottom of my heart for never giving up on me, loving me when I wasn't very lovable, and for loving my son and taking care of him when my addiction got the best of me. I know that there are times where we may not agree on things especially when it comes to my son, and his sassy attitude like mine but there is not a day that goes by that I don't truly appreciate everything that you have done and continue to do for me and my son and we will both be forever grateful for you and all the love that you have given to us unconditionally each and every day!! Happy Mother's Day love you Mom