I was supposed to hook up with Eve and go to a meeting but she blew me off. I went alone and when I got there Tracy announced, “Deidre’s in jail.” Everyone gasped. We all knew Deidre could go to jail, but I, personally, never believed it would happen.
Deidre was the woman in my first step meeting who’d shaken her finger at me and said, “In the back of your mind you’re planning your next drink and you have to squash that thought like a bug.” She’d smacked her hands together and twisted her palms to make her point. She’d known what was in the back of my head because the same thing was in the back of hers. She chronically relapses.
Deidre started attending meetings a couple of months before I did because she was court ordered to. She’d smashed her car into an automobile with two teenage boys in it. The boys weren’t wearing seatbelts and they’d rocketed through the windshield lacerating their faces and wrenching their spinal cords. The boys’ parents had attended every court date Deidre had and she was convicted. During sentencing, the judge gave her two options: she could go to work during the day and get locked up at night for three months, or she could stay in jail around the clock for twenty-four days. Deidre chose the latter.
“Deidre’s been incarcerated for three weeks now,” Tracy said. “She was so depressed the first week that she was put on suicide watch. She’s been writing me letters on ruled notebook paper she decorates with flowery drawings to make the paper look like stationary. She says she’s made some friends in jail—no one she’d hang out with on the outside—but having friends has helped. If all goes well, she’ll be released in a few days.”
On the outside, Deidre looks like a regular suburban mom. She’s involved in her kids’ schools and activities. She’s always put together well. She has a nicely decorated house. But she’s driven in a blackout countless times. Looking at her is like looking in a mirror. I could be sitting in jail. It scares the shit out of me. Deidre is a tough-talking tall woman you wouldn’t want to pick a fight with, and she was on suicide watch. I’m a five-foot-four hundred-and-fifteen-pound blondie. I’d get eaten alive.