On New Year’s Eve, my husband, son, and I went to see Thor, got some dinner at our favorite Mexican food chain, then came home and began a movie marathon.
As the first movie was ending, my son got the New Year’s Eve phone call that I had been dreading--to go hang out with friends. I wished that he could have just stayed at home with us where I knew he was safe and not likely to be tempted to do anything stupid.
But, they were some of his childhood friends, so I hoped it would be okay and he promised to keep me posted on his status throughout the evening. As the night went on, I received the updates: they went to get junk food, they went to Dillon’s girlfriend’s house, and then went to I-Hop at midnight. After that, they planned to spend the rest of the night Dillon’s house.
I believed every single update -- until the next morning.
He came home at 9:00 a.m., as he had promised, to get ready for a job interview at Little Caesar’s Pizza. When he came into the house, he was chewing gum like crazy and it seemed to be clashing with the smell of alcohol emanating from him. He went straight to the shower—probably to try to wake himself up and wash away the evidence. But, after the shower, when he went to his room, instead of getting ready to go to interview, he crashed onto his bed.
Well, the shower obviously didn’t work to keep him awake and it didn't seem to do much to wash away the smell of alcohol. I don’t have any experience with people who drink, but when I walked into his room, it seemed to me, that he still reeked of alcohol as if it was coming out of his pores or something. I tried to get him up and moving, but he was out cold. I spoke loudly and sharply, practically yelling at him until I saw his eyes open a little bit and got a grunt of acceptance out of him. At that point, getting up and getting ready was all on him.
I couldn’t believe it when he actually started to get ready, but was frustrated at how slowly he was doing it. He finally made it to the interview, but was five minutes late. We were afraid that it wasn’t going to go well. It made me angry that he partied all night long— all the while leading me to believe that I could trust him and what he said he was doing—and then was unprepared and hungover for this interview.
He came home and went right back to bed. I wanted him to take a drug test, but he said he wouldn’t until he woke back up. I didn’t have any alcohol tests and wasn't sure if they would have worked by then anyway. Alcohol had never been his substance of choice, so this was a new area for us to have to deal with.
The drug test came back clean and when we asked him why he had been drinking, he said, “I don’t drink because I don’t handle alcohol very well.”
Was that a denial, or a way of getting around answering the question?
He didn’t get the job.
And there we were.
Beginning the new year with a potential new problem.
Happy New Year?