Saturday, January 16, 2016

Andy Would Like That

Today mark's the 12th anniversary of Andrew Psarras's death.  He was 19 years old when he made the last decision of his life.  He snorted Heroin and, according to his friend, became ill.  He laid on the bathroom floor as the decision was made to call the drug dealer rather than 911.  As the result of the poor decision of a friend, Andy's chances of survival, of being administered naloxone, of releasing the tight grasp that opioid had on my son's heart, were 0%.

Now you may ask why I began this tribute to Andy with such a dark vision.  It was necessary to explain where my mindset has been.

Though January 16th has been the most gut wrenching day of my life, my thoughts, my feelings, my grief process has been dominated with a mother's love.  It has defined who I am and it has given me the ability to focus on what is most important to me - that God given ability to nurture and to put my children above all else.

The events of that cold Friday and my response to them are very clear.  Although I was the mother of this precious child, my thoughts were now directed to my two older children.  Peter was in New York City with his band any Molly was at Miami U.  How could we tell them that their younger brother was dead?  How could we keep them safe on their journey home?

Molly collapsed when she heard the news.  Her friend drove her to Cleveland.   Peter was in a state of shock and was also accompanied by plane back home.

Once I had my children home I realized that I could not lessen their pain.  I could do nothing with the gaping hole in my heart either.  But I would not let them see me as a victim.  I would not give them cause to worry about their mother.  The most important lesson I learned from my Andy's death was that life would go on.  I had no idea how to accomplish this.  But as I mentioned in the beginning of this post, it was a challenge that I would strive to attain.  I was connected to my instincts as a mother.

The following day, I sat down to write his eulogy as did my husband.  God had given me the strength.  I was operating on Footsteps in the Sand at that time and my religious beliefs an spirituality had a new beginning that day.

I have written so often about the events of the funeral, how the minister cried and held us stating that he had never witnessed anything like it before.  It was not only for Andy that we stood with Love and a hope for Peace at his coffin,  but also for my children and my wonderful sisters and family.

Andy is at Peace.  I know this to be true.  And my fears of his dying alone on a bathroom floor were put to rest when the minister said, "God was the first to cry.  Andy did not die alone".

Peter and Molly are married and have families of their own.  They now have experienced the bond between a parent and a child.   And I guess this blog is meant for them.

I want you both to know that my love and devotion to you are limitless.  You are in my life and I am Blessed to be your Mom.  Please don't worry about me today.   It is I who worry about you.  He was your brother.  I just wanted to let you know that as long as we live and breathe, I will rejoice and be thankful for the joy that God has given to me and that I will always support you.

With regard to his friend, I had forgiven him the moment it happened.  I could never have pressed charges of neglect.  Andy loved him.  They were both responsible for making decisions that night that would forever change destiny.  His friend calls me Mom.  I am here for him too.

Andy was an animal lover.  He had brought a pit bull puppy that had little hope for survival home shortly before he died.  His friend took her and raised her with love.  This week he had to put her down.  My thoughts and prayers are with you and I know in my heart that Andy was at the other end of that bridge when Felony left your side.

None of us are protected on this earthy plain.   There will always be unexpected events that will challenge our Faith and take us to the limits of our coping process.   But as I have learned over the years,  the traumas and disappointments are inevitable.  The misery, loneliness, fear and hopelessness and all optional.

I have decided in honor of Andy who cherished life and ended phone calls with "Peace", to keep him ever-present with seeing the beauty in everyday and knowing that His Peace is ever present.

Andy would like that.