Friday, May 20, 2011

Road trips!

Spring has FINALLY sprung in my region of the world and we have hardly gone without a day of rain. It's been a challenge trying to get certain projects done like doing my back yard. Most of the time it's to wet to get the tiller out and going. Some days it's so nice and then the days of rainy downpours begin for days on end. I'm really not complaining. It's nice not having to water the lawn or run the swamp cooler and pay for those luxuries when I can get them for free with the cool breeze's that whisp around and the raindrops that drop from the heavens. Summer will be here soon enough and I know I will than be wishing for winter once again.

This is my fruitless plum I planted on the side of my home. Yes I need too and WILL be working on this part of my yard soon enough, so for now, ignore the weeds por favor. I love the pink flowers that blossom every spring and the hint of sweetness it gives away. But most of all I love the story behind this tree of mine.

It was April of 2008 when I purchased this tree. It was the very first tree I bought for my yard since moving in eight months earlier, and I was filled with excitement to play in the dirt and start accessorizing my front yard with trees, plants, and flowers. It was also the month that Chad was to be released "any day" after spending 2 years in the county jail for the pharmacy robberies he committed.

On my way home from buying my tree, which by the way was hanging from the trunk of my eclipse, an unknown number rang my cell phone. "Hello." "Come get me." It was my Chad calling. He was out!!! He had finally been released to freedom once again and oh how I was so excited to see him, face to face, without glass separating us. The day had finally come!!

Instead of taking my tree home, I turned my car around and it made the journey with me. I kept telling my tree to just hang in there as it was being whipped by the wind while I travel to the destination of jail, 30 minutes away, 75 miles an hour. I kept thinking my tree was going to die from either the wind or from the trunk bouncing on it from the bumps in the road, but it would have to be strong because I was on a mission. The mission I had long awaited for.

I pulled into the gas station where he said he would be. I remember looking all over the place for him and then in a quick blink, there he was, lying on the grass in a pair of clothes that didn't belong to him. Not even parking my car, I jumped out and ran to him. He scooped me up and whirled me through the air as he hugged me in his typical fashion. Talk about Kool-Aid smiles. I remember Chad saying, "take me home so I can get out of these wrinkled clothes." Off we went. Homeward bound we were, me, him and my tree.

It was the first time Chad saw my new home. He loved it and loved having his very own room. Sadly, not many inmates leave jail to a nice home with a room they can call their own. Chad had it so good so many times, if he could have only realized. After showing off my little brick house, he went through some things in his room. He came across the obituary I had saved for him. It belonged to a friend who had died earlier of an overdose. Tears streamed down his face at the heartbreak of losing his friend and never being able to say good-bye. I let him be to absorb his pain and adjust to the outside life he was facing to live in.

My little tree was a trooper and made it. I got her planted and slowly she progresses with growth every year. She blooms more each spring and seems to be prettier and prettier every time. It's a constant reminder of the small road trip we both endured and happiness I had on that April day.

I haven't seen Chad in about a month. The last weekend I planned to see him, the prisons were put on lock down. There were three violent incidents at one of the other prisons in the state, one leading to the fatality of another. Because of the rise in violence, the prisons were locked down and all visitation was cancelled until further notice. It's finally been lifted and I will plan another road trip once again. I have spoken with him though and he's doing well!!!!!

Life has been extremely busy. My oldest has completed his second year of college. I cannot believe he has already done two years of college. Time is flying by quicker than I want it too. I made the trip to pick him up but unlike last year, I did it alone this time. Driving through the canyons and over the hill tops I laughed and cried over the memories from the last trip doing the very same thing......only with my dad and Chad.

That morning started with Chad and I sitting on the front porch waiting for pops. He is ALWAYS on time but wasn't this morning. I was almost ready to call him for the "status of his location" suddenly he came rolling around the corner. Both Chad and I laughed as we tapped on our wrists pretending as if we had a watch because he was TEN minutes late. He rolled his window down and we both said laughingly "you're late". He smiled back at us and said "oh whatever, get in the truck".

Dad had packed us cookies, muffins and Gatorade's just like he used to pack snacks for us when we would go fishing in our early days. I by far have the best dad one could ever wish for. My heart holds such a special place for this man I call dad. Chad took the front seat with dad and I took the back. It was surely going to be a day of laughs and bugging because I was going to make it that way. It was almost like I knew there would come a day when I couldn't make memories with the three of us together again so I was gonna make it worth my while and I did.

We both love the movie "Step Brothers" so I wanted to do to Chad what Dale and Brennen did to each other. Pick pick and pick. So the road trip turned into giving Chad wet willy's, pulling his hair, tickling his ears, putting my feet in his face and ears. Yes, I was the pestering sister that wanted nothing more than to make us laugh and do things that we hadn't done to each other since we were little kids. Dad referred to us as children of the corn, LOL. He laughed at the two of us instigating the other and wondering how he's made it all these years with his crazy kids and the things they did and still do to each other, even at 27 and 38. I'm sure by the time dad dropped us home that night he was more than happy to get rid of us. My plan was accomplished!!!!!

It was a very quiet trip this time around. Just me, once again, on the same road to pick my twenty year old up. The lake is still frozen, snow still packs the mountains and the rivers and streams are rushing for time as the run-off fills their beds. I'll be sure to insert pictures soon.

I thought about both of my boys and pray so much that they will never dabble with drugs. I'm truly frightened beyond repair I think. I know how I've raised them, I know the mother I am to them and I know the values I've tried to instill in them. But I can't be there with them every minute of the day. I can't be there to say NO or please don't when and if the opportunity of hell comes to their lap. I can only keep praying and keep talking to them in hopes that the choices they make will be the right ones and that they will never fall victim to a drug addiction.

There were two more major drug busts this last week in different counties of the state. Counties very close by mine. Twenty three people arrested in one encounter, three in the other. How sad and angry I feel for those as they are guided by law enforcement in hand-cuffs. They are so lost and so controlled by the money and highs heroin or any drug provides. It's honestly just sickening. I remember when I was a little girl.... if you used heroin, you were doing the BIG stuff. It was hard to get, expensive, and seemed to be the "extreme" if you were using it.

These days, it's nothing to get a balloon and it's CHEAP. It's everywhere! Buying heroin is as easy as buying ice-cream from the ice-cream truck. I can walk down the street in my neighborhood and find it just like I could in the ghettos of town. Heroin is not prejudice in who it picks. It goes after anybody and anyone that is willing to use it. It takes the soul out of its shell and slowly chisels it's way through the hearts of families as they watch their addict dwindle away too nothing but a junkie. It pisses me off honestly.

In other news, Lacey has figured out that the bed we bought her for Christmas is exactly that, her bed. She has always slept with us, fault of my own, and it has definitely been a challenge working out the sleeping arrangements. But the switch has turned on and she is now sleeping in her own bed, Lacey's bed. I guess I owe a thanks too Grizz and Odie, my nephews dogs. By bringing them here for visits and them plopping themselves in her bed when they're all tuckered out, might just have been the wake up call for Lacey to realize what the definition of a bed is. I must admit I miss having her cuddled up at my feet or in the bend of my knees but it's also been wonderful not wrestling for space and her winning every time.

Life is good and I'm moving forward. Enjoying the days of spring and rain. I'm a busy girl with lots on my plate but I'm taking it for what it is, one breath at a time, one day at a time and being grateful for it all. I will be taking another road trip next weekend to Grand Junction, Colorado where I will be dropping my college boy off as he embarks on another chapter in his life. Working and summer college classes in Denver. He is a free spirit and not afraid to take on new beginnings. Spring has definitely sprung. New life, new beginnings.

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