I go to visit my son in jail on Saturdays. He’s been there 3 weeks I think. Will be there at least another 2. Possibly another 6. This place is a dump. Not all jails are. I know this because when he was in jail last year it was at a pretty decent facility. It kind of sucks that I know this.
Saturday I walk in with his friend, Tony, who wanted to visit my son with me. I explain to Tony to get out his ID, leave other things in the car and I give the clerk my son’s name and our ID’s. She sends up our group. I have the timing down so I don’t have to wait in the small lobby with the other visitors. It is really sad and uncomfortable.
We get on the elevator and the women we are with look nervous. I can tell it’s their first visit because I used to look like that. One of the women asks what are we supposed to do? I explain the process to both of them and they look relieved. Relieved that I answer. Relieved that I seem normal. Relieved that I’m not judging them for being there. I understand that too.
The visit starts and my son shows up on the monitor. He is so happy to see his friend. Don’t get me wrong, he is glad I visit, but I always visit. When someone else shows up he is ecstatic. Last week the mother of his child and his daughter went with me. He was so grateful. (sorry, I can’t say baby mama, she is so much more than that)
When I say, my son, that’s what I mean. He is clean now. No more detox. He is clear and he is the guy I know. It is so refreshing to see him like this. Each week he seems better. How horrible is it that I don’t want him to leave right now? Right now I know he is doing okay. He is safe. He is clean and bright eyed and oh speaking of eyes, he has awesome clear blue eyes and that is a fact that gets lost when he is using. I saw them again on Saturday.
I can hear a woman talking to her inmate and she is crying hard and loud. We continue to talk to my son about books and UFO’s (seriously) and just fun stuff. We talk a little about the business end, what his attorney told him, how is his daughter, stuff like that, but mostly it was a light-hearted visit. I didn’t leave with a heavy heart like I have in the past. The woman at the end is a freaking mess.
We all get on the elevator again to leave and the woman is still crying. I talk to her for a minute. I’m not sure why her boyfriend is in jail and it’s none of my business. I found out her name is Lindsey and I add her to my prayer list.
I get a little – something – not angry – I guess upset, that none of my family members visit or talk to my son. Not his siblings, not his dad. I realize they had to set boundaries themselves and I am trying not to let this get to me, but I know he is going to need support in order to succeed. I hope they come around.
So, here I am. The veteran visitor. Helping others with the process. Comforting others. I never do anything half way. I drink, I become an alcoholic. I run, I end up running marathons. I visit jail, I become the room mom. Go figure.