A TAR Tale by Gerri


Survivor is a strong word some days. I was blessed with a precious baby boy. He was extremely smart and very athletic growing up. His personality was almost mirror to mine. People loved him and he loved people, maybe too much in school. He had his whole life planned out for him at the ripe old age of 15. He was dating the love of his life, going to college and majoring in Electrical Engineering, and playing baseball and football. He suffered a few concussions playing football, and a shoulder injury ended his time as an athlete. I failed to see it coming, but looking back now I can see the signs of his isolation and change of friends. He lost his girlfriend. His behavior begin to change and I just attributed it to depression. I thought if I could just give him some hope or something positive in his life, then he would be okay. RIGHT!!! I went down the dark path with him and did not even know that I was doing it. He would steal from me time and time again. He would become verbally abusive if I did not give him what he wanted. He would get into physical altercations with his father and brothers. I was sacrificing myself, my marriage, and my relationship with my other children to try and save him.

After several rehabs and tens of thousands of dollars later I lost him anyway. He died from an overdose of fentanyl after being out of rehab only 3 days. I never took care of myself or my other family. I still struggle with the guilt of not being able to save him, but I also struggle with my own self care now and I’m trying to build back the relationships I almost lost. Self care is difficult when it comes to your children. I will say that self care can come in many different ways. Each person needs to find something that brings them comfort and peace. I know some people find that peace by going and shooting targets, meditating, reading, or screaming into a pillow and crying. There is no one solution but work to find what brings you joy. Thank you allowing me to get this out.

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