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A little bit of me.Ö
From the early age, of around 9 years old, life had already dealt me a pretty rubbish hand. And instead of having the Ďnormalí worries of a child my fight for survival began. It wasnít long before I found comfort in solvents. There was always a can of hairspray or deodorant around the house. Or the occasional treat of a bottle of gas! It was great, as when faced with reality there was only so much I could take of Ďbeing strongí with my ĎIím okí head on.
Trial and error had now become my way of life. Self medicating in all shapes and forms to fill the void. The search for that missing bit of the jigsaw puzzle was on through self harm, eating disorders, occational drink binge, sex addiction(or was I looking to be loved?).
Co-dependency led me into many violent relationships. My earliest one was where i was introduced to amphet and the good old rave scene. What better way to escape? The feel good factor from the speed and the loud music to drown out my thoughts. Perfect!
Perfect until the lights came on and the music stopped. Then I was back to having to deal with me. Moving from place to place was another attempt to run away from me Ė hahaha! It didnít click for a long time that I always took me with me. Falling pregnant with my first daughter, and beat from the chaos of the previous years, surely this little bundle I was going to bring into the world was now going to fix me? Noooo!
The fear of being on my own (and all the other baggage) and the co-dependency in me, led me to an unhealthy marriage, alcohol and the birth of another beautiful daughter. The following 12 years of alcohol abuse were horrific! For my baby girls more than me, as I was often passed out, or in a rage or blackouts. My girls lived it 24/7.
I was on first name terms with the police and paramedics like you do. And my doctor knew me as librium (lol!) with the amount of home detox es I had. My final act of insane behaviour (in blackout) lost me my girls. Which was, in a sense, a relief as they didnít have to suffer at my hands anymore. And the thought of prison was looking good. To again escape the hell I was living, and this time my freedom would be physically taken away. To my disappointment the court decided on community service. I was arrested for drunk and disorderly the very same day.
My CPN, who was now working with me, suggested rehab and within a week I was in. And boy was I ready! But in no way prepared for what was ahead of me. I could write a book on what I learned in the 6 months I was at Touchstones 12. But in simple terms what they did for me was Ďgrow me upí, equipping me with all the tools I should have acquired growing up as a child. I mean, people have been living like this for years!
I also gained a sense of self worth and an awareness of myself and my surroundings. I owe my life to the fantastic staff there.
July 15th 2011 will be my second year of abstinence. And life is good! My girls are also in recovery with evident growth.
Thereís no such thing as a bad day. Just a learning day, although situations can and will always be challenging. Today I give my time as a support worker to ARC communities, coordinate for a group called AGRO (recovery through activity) and have completed training for SMART, which is soon to be introduced into our group.
Iím very aware that Iíll always be an arms length from a drink or drug. And that relapse happens long before the event. So for me itís always important to challenge my thoughts (trigger)Ö.before it becomes a feeling (urge)Ö.to go on to act on it (lapse).