Monday night. I’m stuck in Florida. It’s been a long three days navigating the ridiculous road of securing a bed in detox and rehab for a loved one. You have to understand, the fact that after decades of being an alcoholic, this person reached out for help… I am hell-bent on making this happen no matter what.
After calling six detox facilities, all supposedly in his insurance plan, we were narrowed down to three that really did accept it. So the intakes start, minimum six phone calls back and forth for each, one hour of questions regarding his past substance abuse history, mental state, the year started, how much alcohol is being consumed etc. If you’ve ever tried to get an addict or alcoholic help you know that all this time you’re also having to keep them comfortable so they won’t run and change their mind. So add in here a couple of trips to the liquor store, dealing with someone inebriated yet still willing to get help. They can’t be left alone. Vomiting, shaking, dehydration, this is so sad. Because this was Saturday and Sunday, he won’t get in anywhere until Monday. The wait. We all know the wait. The suffering is not spared on loved ones.
We got the call. He was cleared for detox and 28-day rehab. In Florida. He wouldn’t go unless I accompanied him. I stayed the night with him, no sleep for either of us and at 5:00 am Monday morning we were on the way to the airport. He was withdrawing before we even boarded the plane. Bars in the small airport were scarce and not open anyway. The panic set in. We boarded the plane with plans for him to be picked up upon landing and for me to immediately board a flight right back home, literally less than an hour after landing. He was becoming petrified on the plane, feeling trapped, shaking, crying and miserable. I asked the steward when they would be serving beverages. It would be a little while. Luckily the flight left on time and fifteen minutes after takeoff, we had six bottles of vodka on our tray. It was a three-hour flight. I don’t know how we made it. He was begging for another drink by the time we landed. I assured him he would be met at the airport immediately and be taken to detox. I would walk directly to my next flight and all would be well.
I sat him in a wheelchair as I waited for his luggage, all the while looking for his driver. Luggage in hand, I called the rehab to check on the van only to realize I was texting and leaving messages regarding our arrival, for the WRONG rehab. We would have to wait another thirty minutes. I missed my flight back home.
After 25 minutes trying to calm him, the van arrived. An attractive, healthy, happy woman who just completed the rehab, exited the van, joyously saying goodbye to the driver and I put him in the van. This was huge. I have faith he will do well. He waited many years to get help and sometimes that’s the best time. Either way, he was ready. I was ready to find my way home.
Hence, I’m in a hotel, no clothes, meds, bags with a flight back home in the morning.
Oh, did I mention there’s a snowstorm expected at home tonight! You can’t make this shit up.