Saturday, April 12, 2008

Icing, meet cake.

Sigh. Siiiigh. Why is it that just when things are looking up, something else happens?

My brother is doing well, I have finally started to relax and feel good about his progress. So of course that means there's room on my plate for more crap to deal with. Such as my father getting another DUI. That makes 3 now. Not to mention the other couple times they've taken him to detox without actually charging him. *headdesk* It's sad, the number of phone calls I've received from my father to come pick him up from detox.

[WARNING: Self-indulgent whinging ahead]

Got a call about 9:30 on Thursday night. It was my dad calling from the detox place. He'd been picked up on his way home from the bar about 3 a.m. Wednesday. For those of you unfamiliar with the process (and jesus fuck, I wish I wasn't, gee, thanks, Dad.), they keep you in the drunk tank and won't even let you use the phone until you blow a zero on the breathalyzer. So that means it took him about 18 hours to sober up. 18 HOURS. Christ.

Anyway, the new and added fun factor to this time is that they wouldn't just let him out on his own recognizance. This time there was a $1,000 bond that had to be paid before they'd let him out. So Mr. Fantastic and I had to scrounge up a grand in cash and drive the half-hour out to BFE in Centennial to the "detention facility" to pay it. We got there about 11, forked over the money and then were told it would be another two to four hours for "processing" and that Dad would be able to call me again once he was ready to go. We went back home and went to bed. Dad finally called at 2:45 a.m., so I got up and drove back out to BFE to get him.

Of course he was shamefaced and apologized and thanked me for coming for him. I had been so angry earlier that I was shaking but I had calmed down a lot by then so I didn't yell at him. I just told him he was stupid and how disappointed I was that he has never learned anything from all of the times this has happened. (Hm. At some point, I seem to have turned into my mother.) Ever since last time, we've been telling him repeatedly that if he gets caught again, he'll go to jail, so just don't be stupid. Call a cab. We've all said we would give him money for taxis if he didn't think he could afford it. I don't know why he doesn't seem to be able to do that. I get that he's lonely - he spends so much time all by himself, rattling around that empty house - so I have no problem with him wanting to go out to places and socialize. But he doesn't have to be stupid about it.

I don't know what's going to happen to him. The first time he actually got charged with a DUI he got home detention with the ankle monitor and all. We had really thought last time (just shy of two years ago) there would be no way for him to avoid actual jail time but the cop who arrested him didn't show up for court and there were a bunch of administrative mistakes and the case eventually got thrown out. But in order to get his driver's license back he had to go to alcohol counseling and was still without his license for over a year. (Not that it mattered much, he still drove without it regardless.)

I've seen on several websites that in Colorado, the penalty for a DUI with a previous DUI in the last 5 years is a fine of $500-$1,500, 60-120 hours of community service and jail time of 90 days to a year, with a minimum 10 day mandatory. Plus, both previous times he had to go to the alcohol counseling (not that it helped) so I imagine they'll make him do that too.

Of course, my brother Steve will end up paying for a lawyer and court costs. And I'll have to drive Dad to court appearances and anything else he can't take the bus or light rail to. I was so angry before but I'm trying to be zen about it. It is what it is and I can't do anything about it, so no point in letting it eat me up. It's hard though, because it just reminds me that he's unreliable. I love him and I accept him for who he is, faults and all. But it still hurts that I don't have a parent who functions as a parent. I can't count on him for anything, not even emotional support. He's an alcoholic who only thinks of himself. It took a while, but I learned that it has nothing to do with me - it's not personal, not a reflection of his feelings for me, not something I did wrong - it's him and how his addiction works.

Whatever happens, I'll handle it. That's...just what I do. People always tell me how strong I am. When my mom died, when Steve got sick, when things happen - well, you can either break down or soldier on. But the world isn't slowing down no matter what you do, so I've always just pushed on through. I refuse to let anything beat me. I don't know any other way to be. But sometimes I wish I did.

Things like this remind me why I don't belive in god. Because if there was a god, then either he absolutely does not care about what happens to me or he does and is actively flinging shit at me. Either way, it's personaly insulting and not the kind of god I'd want if there was one. You know what I believe? Shit happens. Life happens. And it doesn't matter if I'm a good person or a bad person, shit's still gonna happen. I learned that when my mom died. One of the most amazing, honest, kind, caring, selfless people I have ever known and she still died no matter how good she was. That's life; that's how it works. You get a free ride just for showing up, but there's no guarantee how long the ride will be or how much fun you'll have.

So. I'm soldiering on and rolling my eyes a lot at the WTFness of it and maybe checking my karmic balance a little, because just in case, I don't want to come back as a bug or anything.

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