My computer was taken hostage by the Barbie twins. Their computers are sub-par (or something equally lame) and they’re in a year-round l’ecole at the moment in preparation for some ridiculous test. Luckily I’ve been taking notes.
So where am I now? In our newspaper lab at school. That’s right. I had to Come To School EARLY in order to use the computer because I can’t even get access to mine. School doesn’t start until the second, though, so no one should really bother me. Except all of the people here who are working on the newspaper and yearbook. Word.
So...a LOT has happened. Not even an exaggeration. Get comfortable, because even in the nutshell storytelling that blogs force, there’s a lot of information.
July 23. Apparently at dinner even the twins noticed Bec’s use of painkillers. Mostly because they were banging on my door and then the three of them came in to “recover from the family saccharine.” Bec draped herself on my bed and popped a pill. The three sober girls in the room exchanged glances. Significant glances. Bec noticed.
“I’m in pain,” she whimpered.
“We’re just worried about you.” It wasn’t a lie.
Dinner was a smorgasbord of the usual tripe that happens the first night family gets together after a long absence. After which Bec took not one, but TWO pills.
Her family took their leave so she could rest. I called Madi, who was conveniently down at Mackenzie’s. Mackenzie valiantly realized that this was a meeting for the family and the Madi was an honorary member and stayed home. Four teenagers and my mother converged in my room. The decision was that Bec has a problem. No one said the A word. In the morning, we decided, we’d talk to Bec’s mom. Madi spent the night. The twins slept in the guest room.
July 24th, too early to be up during the summer. Bec’s mom came up for yoga and coffee with her sister. We went through the yoga without mentioning anything. Halfway through coffee I could see my mom was still trying to figure out how to bring it up without being accusatory or hurtful. I’m 17 (now I am, then I was 16) and felt this was the perfect time to behave as such and not worry about her feelings. Bec mattered more here.
“I think Bec is addicted to the Vicodin.”
“Oh, Honey, it’s not Vicodin. It’s OxyContin.”
Two things crossed my mind: Oh Holy ******!!!!! How is that better???? and Aren’t you her mother? Shouldn’t you be paying attention?!?
and third: WTF?!?!
Luckily my mother opened her mouth before I could.
“Gretchen.” It was one word. It was just her name. But my mother is the oldest. And when my mother says my name in the tone she just said “Gretchen” in, I stop whatever I’m doing and explain myself. Thoroughly.
“Claire.” Oh this will be fun to watch.
“I have a question.” This was Lille. I think. Her voice never raised above a near-whisper and those girls so rarely speak to anyone aside from each other that we all swiveled our heads and watched her as she formed the next sentence.
“I have two, actually. First: how is OxyContin better than Vicodin?” She held up her hand before Gretchen could answer. “Second: have you not noticed your daughter’s blatant abuse of it?” Like a tennis match we all swiveled back to Gretchen.
“She was shot. She’s in pain. My husband and I feel that she needs the best care. And given our professions we felt that this was the way to go.” They’re both in Oncological Research. “And Rebecca is not abusing. We are the ones who get her prescriptions filled for her. I filled it two weeks ago and she hasn’t emptied the bottle, yet.”
“I filled one for her yesterday.” A male voice from the doorway. Heads swivel again and we all see that it’s filled with my father, Bec’s father, and Madi’s mom. Apparently dad made some phone calls when he figured out what we were up to. I’d put money that he was listening at my bedroom door.
The grandparents, thankfully, are still at their hotel.
“You what?” Gretchen sounded like a small child. The gaggle in the doorway found seats in the living room and after everyone sat down I decided it was time for me to speak up again.
“I’ve been watching her. Madi and I have been watching. She takes - I’m guessing - a pill every 2 hours. We thought it was vicodin, which was bad enough. Last night she took one before dinner. Lille and Calais were in my room with us and they saw, too. And then she took two with dessert. Something needs to happen.” Silence. Some nodding. Some meaningful looks between Gretchen and the other adults in the room.
And then Gretchen stood up, hugged me and everyone else, took her husband’s hand and left.
That afternoon we were all called up to Bec’s bedroom where we were informed that she’d be checking into rehab. We all told her we loved her and then she, Madi, and I were left alone in her room while she packed. It was silent as a tomb. She clicked her single suitcase closed and hugged us, walked to the door and without turning around said “Rot in Hell, bitches. I know you’re doing this because you hate me and want me out of your stupid little club.” Then she pulled the door closed and left us sitting in stunned silence on the bed.
“That was the drugs talking, right?” I don’t remember who asked but I know that Madi and I looked at each other and nodded. I should have cried, but I didn’t. I remember thinking that was odd.
Fast forward through roughly a solid week of the following: yoga, breakfast with the (silent) twins, lazing around the pool or in front of the television, lunch, more lazing around, dinner, more lazing, sleep. Madi, Mackenzie, and I were fairly depressed. We weren’t allowed to talk to Bec at all so we mostly stared at each other. Not even a little bit of skating. No Society Tuesday business. It’s like when they locked Bec away we all went with her.
As of this posting, she’s still there. Her 28 days were up yesterday, but they say she’s not ready. We still haven’t been able to talk to her. Apparently she’s taking longer than the normal patient. At some point, according to Gretchen, we’ll get phone calls where she apologizes. We’re supposed to be supportive. I don’t know what she has to apologize about. She just got lost. We all get lost sometimes.