The Fighter. The Mother. The Healer.
I’m a 42 yr old woman with many past and current hurdles. I started a journey about two years ago to get rid of the old and start fresh no more medications no more sitting idle!
I didn’t have a great childhood, it was full of pain and heartache. I am a survivor of sexual abuse. The abuse came at the hands of close family members, one even raping me at the tender age of 15. I didn’t over come anything, I drank it all alway. From the time I woke in the morning till I finally passed out at night, I drank. I partied hard and played even harder. If I could drink myself into an oblivion, I had a chance of forgetting what happened to me.
When I was 17 years old I was told that I was never going to have children. It was medically impossible due to polycystic ovary syndrome and high testosterone levels. I was heart-broken. The one thing I always wanted to become was a mother and to find out it was never going to happen, well it crushed me so I did what I did best at the time, I drank all the pain away. I worked and paid bills like everyone els did. Yes, even at 17 I was told you do not go to school you work so that’s what I did.
Many years passed, a long with them many boyfriends as well. One day I came home nothing out of the norm but I walked in the door and immediately got sick! My mom said, “you’re pregnant” I told her that was absurd and she challenged me to prove her wrong. Just to be a smart ass I bought two pregnancy tests. The first one came back positive. I couldn’t believe it, I knew it had to be wrong, so I waited until the next morning and took the second test too, it also came back positive. I was in complete shock! I went to the doctor’s office and they did their test and for the third time I had a positive result, but oddly enough the blood work came back negative. So the doctor called me in and we did an exam and sure enough I was four and a half months pregnant. I couldn’t believe it. I was in bliss. A few months later Patricia was born happy,healthy and as cute as can be. Allan and I got married two years later.
Once Patricia was in school I thought maybe it was time I go back to school as well, so I did. I was hired as a medical office assistant shortly after completing my program. I was at that office for about six years then decided to change things up and switched jobs.
During this time I had gastric bypass surgery to help me lose weight and I had lost so much that I couldn’t identify who I was anymore. My old coping mechanisms returned. I started to sneak drinks after work. Then it was sneaking drinks at lunch and after work, then it was all the time again. I had a new me, physically, and new job and I was losing control. I went and talked to my boss at the time and asked for some time off to get things back on track and he said no. I had no choice at that point but to hand him my keys and quit. I left there went and grabbed a bottle of booze and got drunk, I was mad, not at my boss, but at myself. What the hell was I going to tell my husband? Would he understand? Would he be supportive or not?
The next day I went to my doctor. I admitted that I wasn’t ok, I told him something’s wrong it’s the drinking, the weight loss and quitting my job. My doctor said I’d be fine if I just take a couple of days to relax. I didn’t know what the hell was I going to do, so I did what I did best at the time and I drank, heavily.
I started to see things from my past. All of the terrible things that happened to me as a child and a teenager all came flooding back, and I couldn’t take it… I was screaming and no one was listening. I took a whole bottle of medications with the booze, phoned my husband and said, “I love you I’m sorry and good bye.” The next thing I remember is waking up in the hospital. I was there for a week when they sent me home with absolutely no resources, nothing.
About a week went by and not only was I still drinking, but I was still suicidal. I thought to myself that this time I’ll make sure I don’t come out of it. I took all the pills I could find. I called Allan again to say good bye and I love you. The next thing I remember I’m at the hospital and I’m vomitting like crazy. I thought I was going to die! Allan said that when he got the call from me he had called my dad, the landlord and the ambulance. By time he got home the police where there and my 6 month old puppy was jumping on my chest to keep me breathing.
They put me in the hospital for eight weeks.
I was diagnosed with Major depression and Schizoaffective Disorder and PTSD. Wow hey this was my new life meds groups, meals, exercise then finally I was allowed to go home. Many years have passed since this happened, six to be exact and I feel better. It took me a long time to recover. I actually didn’t think it was possible but over the past two years I have most of my medications but a few. I’m back at school again, starting a new chapter in my life, and the weight I gained from ALL the meds I was on I have finally lost enough to get back into jeans. I had to make a lot of changes and do a lot of forgiving. The biggest one was forgiving myself for not being there as a mother and wife during some of my crisis moments. I had a hard time allowing myself the time it took to heal, and to remember everyone has a past. I walked a different path than most. I took risks and they are paying off! I am a survivor! I no longer let others dictate my life. I take control and I make the choices I need not only for me but for my family.
I have one life that I almost lost because I was lost, but now I know who I am.
I am simply me! And it’s ok to have a mental illness and it’s ok to cry and have emotions. It’s also very important to remember to be true to yourself!
Live life enjoy everyday and remember to tell your loved ones you’ll be OK!
Wanda is a happily married woman and the mother to a beautiful daughter. Her family lives in Beautiful British Columbia where she has lived since she was just two years old. She enjoys country music, reading and spending time with her family and friends. She has just returned to school and is looking forward to starting her new career.