So to say that my transition from Wilderness to Residential was rocky would be a large understatement. I was mad at my parents for not taking me home. I had just climbed mountains and built my own shelter. I could accomplish anything! I didn’t need to stay sober, I could just use in moderation. Everything was right in the world and I was healthy. But boy, I was wrong. So wrong.
This is called a “Wilderness High”. Anyone who has gone through this or was a part of someone else’s process knows this all too well. A wilderness high is basically when you think you’re on top of the world and are completely “cured” and don’t need to ever do therapy again. Anyways, on with the story.
At the program I went to, they don’t like the kids to know future information (also known as FI) because then they “future trip” (meaning they do nothing but think about the future when the whole goal is to stay present). So I wasn’t told that my parents were coming to pick me up that day. But I had a feeling and I knew. I was being awful my last couple of weeks because I had a feeling I was leaving soon. So, the day before I left, my therapist came out to the field and was giving out letters. He wouldn’t give me my letters. I was so mad. He told me if I hadn’t been able to do work, why did I get letters?
The next morning I went into session. I sat down, crossed my arms, and said “This isn’t fair” in my not-so-cute whiny voice. A couple minutes later, I was allowed to go to the end of the campsite, I ran to my parents as fast as I could. And there they were: in a car, with their phones out, just kicking it. I was so happy. Seeing my parents that day was one of the most amazing moments of my life. But I can recognize now, I did not deserve it. I had stopped working and it wasn’t fair to myself or those around me. But, I graduated wilderness.
My therapist did give me one last talk. He told me he was worried about me and that I really needed to do my work. I was too excited by the fact that my parents were there. It was all I could focus on. I was going back into old patterns, already. So, I said goodbye to the girls, had my goodbye ceremony and was off.
We drove to the base camp and I got to shower and shave. I cried over running water. Oh, the little things in life. I was allowed to spend one night with my parents before they dropped me at my next program. Most of it was spent on Facebook (which I wasn’t supposed to be on). I made some calls to family and spent, sort-of, quality time with my parents. I honestly don’t remember too much from that day.
But, I do know that I took my sweet time getting ready the next morning, still in my weird punk stage. Choker necklaces and Creeper shoes… it was interesting. Well, we missed our flight to Salt Lake City. I couldn’t have been happier. Anything I could do to get out of going to the next program. But, missing one flight didn’t stop my parents. Yes, I did get a couple extra hours, but that didn’t stop my parents from taking me. I didn’t want to go to my next place.
I had a plan though: hold it together so that it looks like I have changed, then when we get there, throw a fit and cry so they feel bad. It was the classic Emily tantrum. I was so used to getting my way. People didn’t say no to me, especially not my parents. I thought it was powerful to have everyone be afraid of you, walking on eggshells, not knowing when you would blow up. Well, that didn’t work. We drove up to the house, and I got so anxious. When they told me to say goodbye to my parents, the hysterics started. I held on to my dad’s leg, crying and talking like a baby. Looking back on it, it was absolutely pathetic.
Needless to say, I stayed and my parents left. Well, now I had to scheme. If I was outwardly compliant, I could get my way out of there so fast. Or so I thought. I followed the rules for the most part, I was a little “sketchy” here and there. But it didn’t take long before my old patterns came out. I was so mad at my parents, I hated everyone at my program, everyone was out to get me. Everyone there was stupid and could never help me. I didn’t need help.
Well! Don’t forget to read the fifth post, next week! Tuesday at 10:00 AM (MST). It will be a continuation of my couple months in residential.
Comment any thoughts or questions you have.