We can fool ourselves into thinking that we have our lives well planned out. It was that way for me, being a product of the 1950/60’s: I’d go to college, meet my prince, get married, have children and live happily ever after. As much as I thought I knew what to expect, my life was riddled with surprises. But the last was the most unexpected, compelling me to write Fifth Child, a non-fiction book about the anguish and consequences of a drug-addicted child, which resulted in parenting her child almost since birth.

My husband and I are cast into a shockingly large demographic. Grandparents raising grandchildren is a growing phenomenon in our country because of our shifting economy, unmarried teen mothers, alcohol abuse and illegal drug use. Close to 10 million grandparents comprise the club. We had already raised four children. Jaime was our third child, and Brady is her son, who began calling us Mommy and Daddy when he was three. Readers may be amazed to find calamity overcoming a so seemingly traditional family. But as events and family history unfold, disturbing pitfalls and unfortunate genetic vulnerability reveal fault lines that can sabotage people from any walk of life.

"The Addict's Mom Sharing Without Shame" Video is so important whether addiction has touched your life or not. It's powerful. Please click on the link below to watch the video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHNZbbePiKg

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Friday, January 6, 2012


After soccer, I made grilled cheese for Brady and a frozen dinner for myself. Gratefully, when we were finished eating, he did his homework with minimal prodding and then we played ”Word Bingo.” He practiced five minutes on piano and played fifteen minutes with his trains before taking a bath with his collection of boats where I washed his tangled hair and carefully combed out the knots. After persuading him to get out of the tub before his fingers turned into prunes, he got into his pajamas, I read him a bedtime story, and we both conked out.
This might seem normal for some moms with kids, but I’m in my early sixties raising my grandchild! 
After somewhat blindly raising four of my own children into adulthood, being a grandparent raising a grandchild, has given me, along with my husband, a second chance to re-assess and do it better.

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