Everyone Has A Story
Over the past (almost) year, I have shared my story. It is not a pretty one, and that is something I knew from the beginning. It hasn’t always been easy. After I finished writing Love Through Bipolar, I cried. That was a hard post to write, but it needed to be written. It’s become one of my favorite blog posts. I think it’s because there is so much emotion and love behind it.
I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression for years. I was a teen when things started going a bit downhill- I have posts dedicated to this. The Journey Through PPD is about the time after Julian was born and I had a battle with Post-Partum Depression. A Letter to my Anxiety and Depressionis just that- a letter to what holds me back from feeling things as I should or doing things as I would like to.
But yet, I still didn’t see the point of sharing my story. I didn’t think it would help anyone or change anything. My life changed again right in front of me as my marriage fell apart and I started drinking heavily, but I was in no shape to talk about it. Everything fell apart the day Jake died, and the aftermath was nowhere near easy. Thankfully, I went into therapy. My therapist helped me develop coping skills and tools to be able to rebuild my life.
Rachel once asked me how I could make something good out of losing Jake. This was a hard question to answer at first. I had no idea how this would happen, because losing him has been one of the worst things I’ve ever experienced. It took a while, but I decided on two things: volunteering for the American Federation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) and creating this blog.
Going on A Mission
Sharing your story can be rough, and that’s normal. Everyone decides to do so at their own time- some start at the beginning of their journey, some wait a while, like I did. If I had, most of my blog posts wouldn’t have made sense- I was far too drunk to be creative. What makes someone want to tell their story?
- Helping others. This is a big one for me. Helping others helps me deal with my loss and helps me stay on track with my sobriety. I know I am far from the only person that has lost someone they loved to suicide. This is a sad fact. I’m also not the only mother out here trying to stay sober. Being a mom who doesn’t drink is not easy these days, especially when there are wine jokes everywhere and kids are stressful. Telling my story of getting and staying sober reminds me of how far I have come and hopefully gives others hope that they can get there too.. I have read a lot of comments thanking me for telling my story of coming back from losing Jake, and it does help a lot, especially on the bad days. It helps me continue Jake’s love of helping others. This is something else that helps me heal.
- Helping yourself- processing can come in many ways. I wouldn’t have been able to start this blog much before I did- August 2017 was almost two years after Jake’s death. I needed that time to heal and figure my life out. It wasn’t the easiest process. I did write in journals that became the beginning of this blog. As you write, sometimes you realize things that you hadn’t thought of until then. Writing allows me to let out the things that I cannot say for some reason or another, and this is common in many writers. I’ve been able to look back some of my earlier blog posts and realize how far I’ve come and where my thoughts have changed. This is a good thing.
- Marking milestones as you go through healing. When you are deep in grief or in active addiction, you don’t see milestones. You barely see the next day. As of July 1, I’ll have 18 months sobriety. That’s something I wouldn’t consider in 2016. I thought I would just keep drinking forever.
If you decide to tell your story, please take care of yourself. Take time to unplug if you need it. Disconnect from the internet, take a walk, listen to music, whatever you need. It will refresh you to keep moving.
Pics courtesy of Pinterest