☼ Love Is Pretty Quiet

IMG_0660One hug, once a year. That’s all that’s left of my relationship with my son (for right now), but it’s a powerful thing, this hug.

It carries a quiet message.

This year, faced with Joey’s (very loud) silence, I made the trip to Florida anyway, hoping to show him that I will show up every year, full of love and open arms, no matter what.

Hoping to show him that my love is constant. (In case he ever wants to come back.)

I stayed for four days, even when faced with more deafening silence, sending out messages, letting him know where I would be having breakfast or catching sunshine in case he wanted to join me. Finally, on my last night, Joey met me for dinner. I didn’t ask questions about drug or alcohol use (I never do, anymore). Instead, we enjoyed the moment, and made a new memory to hang onto.

All I can do is love my son.

And love is pretty quiet.


I’m giving away ten signed copies of The Joey Song: A Mother’s Story of Her Son’s Addiction. Enter to win via Goodreads! https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/135217-the-joey-song-a-mother-s-story-of-her-son-s-addiction

8 thoughts on “☼ Love Is Pretty Quiet

  1. Laura

    Thank you so much for your intimate account of the relationship you have with your beloved son. Although difficult circumstances, it is also comforting to know that no matter what, women are not along in their struggles. It was from that place that I opened a women’s addiction treatment center and it is here that I am witness to strikingly similar stories nearly every day and have wondered if there was a place I could go to ingest the pain our residents suffer. Thank you so, so much for your commitment to giving this struggle a purpose, that you share with others. Many blessings and much love. xo

  2. Laura

    A friend forwarded this site to me so that I might gain a perspective that I have not had to have, but still want to understand. Somehow, by the grace of what and whomever, I have not had to walk this excruciating path with my son. He was 7 when I sobered up, now he is 22 and somehow he has managed to avoid the inevitable path that he was dealt (his Dad is still “out there”).. Back in the day, I dragged him to my meetings and gave him “jobs” to do like be the “coffee boy” or count the money for the treasurer. As a 7 year old he naturally loved being of service. Now he is is own man-self and I see addiction showing up in other ways, but he is aware and talks to me about what he thinks is going on. He is still young, and there is lots of time for him to trip or fall, but I’m hoping and praying that he has enough lived experience in recovery that he at least knows where to go for help. My heart aches for Mothers who must step back and witness their babies suffer. I am not sure I am that brave. On the flip side, today I run a women’s addiction treatment center and nearly every day hear their painful stories about wishing they would have “got it” sooner so that their children didn’t follow in their mother’s shoes. Somehow I know in my heart though that there is something magical possible in the healing journey that makes it that much more powerful.

  3. Amy

    Sandy, thank you for sharing this post. I am so glad I found your blog. I am waiting on the library to get your book in stock. I am excited to read it. Sharing your story is going to help so many others.

  4. Ruth

    I relate so much to your post. My daughter lives in my city but the only time I hear from her is when she needs money. I’m beginning to feel like she doesn’t need me, anymore. The silence is deafening. Her indifference to my needs cut me to the core. And yet, I’ll continue on with this arrangement because I love her. I’m learning new to the Mom’s of Addicts Club so I’m slowly learning slowly how to let go but still be there. Hardest thing I’ve ever done. So glad you wrote this. You gave me another tool for my tool box. God bless you!

  5. Emily Harman

    thank you for sharing this Sandy. You are helping so many others. I’m at a point where I need to read your book again.


  6. cindy perry

    Sandy you’re a role model, mentor and awesome Mom for so many of us out here and I’m still waiting to get your book..so very excited to read it..I myself are facing the time I finally face my son after now it’s been 15 yrs..scared to death of facing what you have the silence, hate toward me and his own anger, but as a Mom I’m going to do it and let the cards fall where they must..I miss him but also scared to meet the new son he is today..He’s in the army has been for over 17 yrs. he’s so angry at me and tells the family he doesn’t even care to see me and calls me Cindy not “Mom” now..where does it go their love for their Moms.. I was doing alright with this until a few weeks ago and also now that I’m 61 and my health is up and down afraid I will die before I can even say goodbye..Thank you again for loving us Moms as you do and to share a very heart breaking story..will be praying that Joey will see you as the Mom he always loved..

  7. Judy Maxwell

    Sandy I just finished your book last night and will take time to process this. I actually have a lot of recovery but had a bad dream last night. It is hard to explain this to anyone what happens inside our hearts and minds. Bless you for sharing this intimate life-sentence between you and Joey. My sons name is Joel. It was almost Joseph the 4th. With hindsight maybe deciding on a different name was the best idea a young couple could make considering the life of wreckage we watch Joel try to clean up.

  8. Tami

    Sandy, I feel so much love for you, my kindred heart sister! I know what it is like to grab a hug or take a picture of my daughter — because I might not get another one for a very long time. My heart is full knowing you were given this moment with your son. I am so happy for this new memory the two of you will share.


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