Last night my hubby and I went to my boss' house for a get together to celebrate the engagement of his daughter. My boss is nearly 60 but a very free spirit who I think wants to be Peter Pan - he really doesn't act his age, but then why should he.
In past years he has had gatherings like this and my hubby as been asked to drum - either with his band (3 different ones over the years) or to jam with some like minded musos and a few extras who pop up to sing or play along.
One of the women that we have met and known for probably 8 years or so comes to about every second or third gathering (they most are yearly in nature). She has always been 'different' - sometimes scarily so (for me anyway as I tend to walk the straight and narrow).
Seven years ago she had a little boy and this has always worried me as his mother is somewhat unstable. I have seen her smoking pot at midnight while her 18 month year old son wandered about in a dirty nappy and nothing else and it seemed I (and my hubby) were the only ones worried about this. I got so uncomfortable that we ended up leaving (oh and this was not at my boss' house but another workmates 40th).
I think we saw her again when her son was about 3, then at 5 and now at 7. In this time she has had numerous men, who this little boy calls Dad - and doesn't that break my heart. All of these men have been drop-kicks and no I am not being judgemental (well maybe a little) but honestly they are drop-kicks.
The one before the one we met last night came to a party and was obviously as high as a kite - they both proceed to get drunk and even more stoned and made absolute fools of themselves, and all the while this little boy looked on.
Last night she arrived with her new man and they both were high - and this time from something a lot stronger and more chemical than pot - and along in their wake trails this little boy.
Now this was my boss and his partners time to show their future son in law (a young man from America) who their friends where - most of us are 'middle aged' people with full time jobs and mortgages and children of various ages. All of us work and while some of us like a drink and if I am honest a few may share a joint (I know that shows my age) somewhere out the back - the majority of us just come along for a good time - to dance and talk and listen to music (some good, some not so good but still celebrated).
Last night this woman in her delusional state decided she would sing except she couldn't remember any words and so she did what could best be described as tribal grunts, Indian hollers and some sort of manic crooning while beating out of time on a bongo, or stealing someone else's guitar and strumming to the song in her head.
This went on for about 3 songs with all the people there getting more and more uncomfortable until finally she wandered off, nearly tripping in the pool as she went. An almost audible sigh of relief was heard, but wait, here comes her equally obnoxious partner to sing Eagle Rock - except oh of course - he can't remember the words either because some chemical has his brain so wired the wrong way he ends mumbling words of some description into the mike. The poor band members just keep smiling and playing because after all they are here for my boss and are his friends.
And it just keeps getting worse because she comes back and starts french kissing him mid song then they both start singing Eagle Rock again, but by this time we are onto Roadhouse Blues which neither of them seems to notice.
By this time the band is over it, the audience is over it and my boss - 'he of the excellent musical taste' goes and turns them up because he is having so much fun OMG. (the comment in italics is sarcasm just in case you didn't get it).
Eventually people start making moves to leave, they just can not stand another second so my boss decides to have the toast to the engaged couple as he can see the writing on the wall, and she decides to join them at the microphone and crys and laughs hysterically and throws herself around in some sort of maniacal love dance, while the rest of us politely try not to stare and feel uncomfortable.
Then the pair of them have the barney of all barneys while people scramble to leave and not look like they are abandoning a sinking ship.
And all the while this little boy looks on.
My boss' wife manages to get one to go out front and other out back and we think he has left - watch out other drivers. And then a little boy comes out and says "my Dad took our car and now Mum can't take me home". Oh sweet prince he is not your father and what a shame whoever your father is, that he is not in your life, he surely can't be worse than this.
During the evening I have voiced my concern to my boss' wife and she tells me the last man committed suicide which pushed this lady back to hard drugs. But it is okay she tells me because his grandma lives a block away and looks after him much of the time.
Oh you poor little soul, how I just want to snatch you away and bring you home to a house where love is shown, and food is on your table, and clean clothes are waiting for you. Where you don't' have to see your mother spiral out of control with no regard to you at all. You are what she says keeps her alive, but at what cost to your life and to your soul. And why has your supposedly loving grandmother not taken you permanently, how can she let you get in a car with two people on some sort of heroin trip and know that you have to go home to them and wake up to what - do you have to get yourself breakfast, do you have to give yourself a bath. How can you still smile, how can you still have your innocence. How my heart bleeds for you, how my brain struggles with the wrongness of this situation.
I am so thankful that my children had not travelled this path, I am not naive enough to think some of them have not tried drugs or gotten themselves too drunk but I know in my heart of hearts, they would never do this if they had a child that needed them, that looked to them for their moral guidance.
So please pray for this little boy and his mother - may she wake up to what she is doing not only to herself but to her child. I fear if she does not do this soon she will not be with us for much longer and while some may say 'so be it' - the death of even the worst mother is a burden this little boy's heart does not need to bear.