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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Thursday, May 31, 2012

So Much for Plans -The Playing is Awesome!

We were so surprised to sell our home in 2 days at full price along with a back-up offer! Of course, we still lost money but could move on. We had 45 days to find a place to live.

Our plan was to put our home on the market and wait 6 months or so for it to sell and then rent for a few months until the new planned community was completed in the area we wanted to live. We had to act quickly and were lucky to find a home for rent a couple blocks from where the new homes are set to be ready in spring of 2013 (we wanted Brady to be in the same neighborhood). Another strike of luck was that we had to sign a year's lease, so selling when we did aligned us perfectly with our plan. The house fits most of our needs but what is amazing is that we're in a jewel of a location. Our back gate empties onto a huge green belt, which is like a park! It has benches and walkways, flanked by 2 pools, a play area, tennis courts and a sand volleyball court, not to mention all the built-in kids. Brady's in heaven!!!! "Mom," he said. Can you believe it? I can just get on my bike and go out by myself." He feels so free and independent. After school, he meets his friends and they ride round and round the walkway, switching from bikes to scooters to big wheels. I've had kids in our house almost daily, which I didn't do when my kids were young. My grown children would hardly recognize that I've become the Kool-Aid Mom! I'm just sorry I was too overwhelmed when I was younger to do the same for them.

This has been a wonderful move for all of us. We have wonderful neighbors (whom we know from Brady's school) and even OUR social life is bustling. The new neighborhood is only a couple blocks away but will be fairly normal with streets and homes. Who has a park in their backyard???!!!! It's going to be quite a challenge moving from this sweet location!

The other day, Brady (our little old soul) said, "You are really good parents. You're always trying to make my life better."

That's what it's all about!