I was blind, but now I see
I am in the middle of 10 brothers and sisters, yes the dreaded middle child so they say. My upbringing was from loving parents who just wanted to give their children a loving a happy home. It is often said that the relationship that a daughter has with her father pre-determines her choices for a mate in the future, and so from my perspective this is true. My father was always working, not a very affectionite man although I knew he loved me. For a young lady trying to find her place in this world, and not confident in herself for reasons that are still unknown, I did whatever I could to be liked, to fit in, to "be popular" to practically jump up and down and shout "hey look at me!" because I did not believe in myself and the goodness and lessons that were put before me. I chose a long and dark road to what I shall call my wasted years. I started hanging out with the wrong crowd and when I say this I want each of you to dig real deep into the people you associate with, and when you do ask yourself the following questions-if you don't like the answers it's best to pull back from them.
Do your so-called friends have your best interest's at heart? If they want you to do something you're not comfortable with pull back, but keep in mind get ready for the storm of name calling,or the ever popular "Come on it's not that bad, just this once" stand strong, stand firm no matter what they call you because a true friend will not do that.
Meanwhile, in my teens and being a military brat I entered different schools from the West coast, middle America, then to the East coast. Everything is different, food, mannerism, cultures... everytime we moved I just wanted to fit in, so here came the drugs, too many to mention and too many years. I did things I don't even care to think about, until one day I woke up and said I was "sick and tired of being sick and tired". I'm not here to say it was easy, it's not supposed to be but that was the day I felt freedom, the freedom to be, to learn, to realize I do not need other people to lift me up. I wanted to be proud of me and not only proud but to have the ability to say that I like myself. Oh the woulda, shoulda, coulda haunt me from time to time but the day I saw my brother laying in a hospital bed dying of cancer, not complaining, he never smoked nor drank, nor did drugs. The thing he wanted most in this world was to have his family be with him, to love and to be loved.
This is but a tiny portion of what I lived thru, as many times I could have died, so I have used this as a tool kinda like prunning shears, to prune the dead branches of my life, drink in laughter, feed on knowledge and service to others, and before you know it I have grown and continue to grow.
This Story of Hope was created in celebration of recovery and to let families know that there are pathways to hope and healing. The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids is the only nonprofit organization dedicated to helping families who are struggling with their son or daughter's substance use. Please consider sharing this page so that families know where to turn to for help, and that there is always hope.