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Recovery: Day 1,096

Recovery: Day 1,096

Today marks three years of recovery for me, and what amazes me the most is how quickly time is able to pass us by if we do not pay attention. This is what recovery has been about for me; paying attention. At first, what started out as realizing and admitting I had a substance use disorder, had now become a three-year recovery process of understanding…why. By showing up for my life, keeping myself accountable for my own choices, and learning how to express my emotions in a healthy manner, I have been able to see another day and live my best life in recovery.

In this post, I will share with you some of my biggest recovery struggles, and why this way of life is no easy feat. I will talk about what recovery has offered me thus far, and despite the challenge of it, why I would not live another way. Regardless of what it is you may be battling, recovery from anything is a day to day process. Recovery is simply choosing to want the best for yourself and your life, and getting honest about the things that pull you away from that.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.

Dear Depression,

Dear Depression,

It’s #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth, and you know what that means…I am going to write about it! Except this time, I am doing things a little differently; I am writing a letter directly to Depression.

If you have spent any part of your life having to overcome the battle of this mental illness, you will understand this letter on a deeper level. If you have never experienced the struggle that is depression, then I urge you to read this letter so you can try to understand. Depression takes on many forms, and it has this cruel way of making everything seem fine to the outside world when in reality, the person suffering is having to fight a constant internal battle.

For me, writing about my own experiences, and sharing the struggles that I face has been a key component in my own mental health recovery. I hope by reading this letter you feel better knowing you are not alone, or you are able to take something away from it so you can empathize with those in your life who do suffer from depression.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.

Learning to Choose Inspiration Over Desperation

Learning to Choose Inspiration Over Desperation

5 years ago, today, I found myself in Jail Cell #11. My ‘roommate’ appeared to be a regular and very aware of the fact that I was terrified. Despite shame being a feeling I was familiar with; this was a level of shame that I had not yet experienced. Up until that humbling realization that I had put myself in jail, I had been pretty convinced that I was invincible; that I could get away with anything I set my mind to. Getting arrested was a pivotal moment in my life. It was through this time of desperation that I was able to make a step in the right direction.

Despite this incident being the motivation I needed to quit my addiction to amphetamines, the big question I was left with, was why did it always take desperation for me to want better for myself? Surely, there was another way to go about how I live my life.

In this post, I talk about the two motivating factors we all tend to lean on when it comes to making a change in our lives: Inspiration & Desperation. I beg the question of, why does desperation seem to be the most popular choice, and why is it that we wait until we are at our worst to want better? I am only speaking from experience here, but I guarantee all of us have an example of when we were inspired, and when we felt desperate. Since my arrest five years ago, I have slowly but surely begun learning how to choose inspiration over desperation. Isn’t it beautiful that we always have a choice?

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.

10 Lessons My Mental Illness is (still) Teaching Me

10 Lessons My Mental Illness is (still) Teaching Me

My Mental Illness never fails to remind me that it has a key role in the way I live my everyday life. I still struggle with the fact that each day has its own set of challenges, but that is only because I still struggle to let go of what I cannot control. Having to accept that my mental health will always require a certain level of work has been challenging, because let’s be honest, mental illness can be exhausting.


In this post, I share TEN lessons my mental illness is still having to teach me about myself, or better yet, lessons I am still having to accept about my journey. We are all going to face our own set of challenges in life, and for a portion of the world, mental illness will be one of those battles. We cannot deny what we must face about ourselves, and the 10 lessons I talk about are just some of the truths I can no longer run from.
 
Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.

5 Daily Habits That Make Me a Better Person

5 Daily Habits That Make Me a Better Person

My life has always revolved around having certain ‘habits’, but it was not until my recovery that I started to learn (and accept) which habits were good for me, and which were bad; most of them being the latter. Because of this, I have spent the past couple years discovering which habits I could incorporate into my daily routine to make me a better person. What I have found thus far has been incredibly beneficial, not only in my recovery but just as a human being in general.

In this post, I share with you 5 daily habits that keep me on the right track, and I go over what each habit has done for my life since making it an everyday priority. We are all going to face tougher days in life, but it can be the daily habits we choose for ourselves that keep us afloat when the going gets tough. These may not all work for you, but I think all are worth giving a shot!

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.   

My Take on Being a 'Woman'!

My Take on Being a 'Woman'!

It was not until this year that I truly paid any attention to International Women’s Day. I know what you are probably thinking, ‘How could a woman not pay attention to a day that is dedicated to the achievement of being a Woman?’ Well, for one, it was not until recently that I even granted myself the permission to own, and accept the accomplishment of what I feel it means to be a ‘Woman’. So, when International Women’s Day came around this time of year, it gave me an opportunity to really think about the word ‘Woman’ and what it means to me, as well as what it has meant to me in the past.

In this post, I try to piece together the many moments in my life that I have felt like a Woman, but also, the many moments where I am taken back, and able to feel like that scared little girl I have once been. This post is not about ‘Feminism’ or however YOU choose to define that word. This post is simply just my perspective of being a female, a girl, and most recently, a Woman. A title that I fought off for quite some time, but am finally starting to see the beauty in what it actually means to appreciate it.  

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.  

On Life, Loss, & Learning That One Cannot Happen Without the Other!

On Life, Loss, & Learning That One Cannot Happen Without the Other!

The idea for this post didn’t come to me because of good news I received, but because of the opposite. The news of an old friend passing caused me to take a deeper look into loss and what it has meant for me over the years. Although this is a much tougher topic to cover, I always feel that it’s necessary to explore both the ups and downs of life, because like my title says, with life comes loss, and we must learn to accept that one cannot happen without the other.

In this post, I talk about loss in a way that hopefully offers you a lighter way of looking at something so dark. Not that we should become numb to it happening, but instead, we should live our days moving forward believing that our life is for something greater than the pain we experience. If we allow the darker times to consume us completely, we take the risk of forgetting just how beautiful life can be when we are able to learn from it!

This post is not only dedicated to my friend who is now in peace, but also, to any, and all families that have been impacted by the violence that has been occurring...everywhere quite frankly. We live in a scary world, but we cannot allow the world to make us afraid to live!

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you. 

8 Truths My Tattoos Won't Tell You!

8 Truths My Tattoos Won't Tell You!

When it comes to tattoos, we all have our reasons for going under the needle to permanently put ink into our skin. In the 8 years that I have been partaking in the art form that is tattooing, I have learned many truths about having tattoos; what they mean to me, what they mean to other people, and why the latter is the least bit of my concern.

As I excitedly await a tattoo appointment I have today, I felt that it was appropriate to write about my tattoos and shed some light on the topic. In this post, I talk about 8 of the more important truths I have gathered through my journey, passion, and appreciation for ART that is tattooing.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you!

AA Wasn't for Me, but Recovery Isn't 'One Size Fits All'

AA Wasn't for Me, but Recovery Isn't 'One Size Fits All'

After my last drink in August of 2015, I thought that because I admitted to having a problem with my drinking and drugging, that meant that I must attend meetings, work the steps, and recover by their rules. It only took me three months, and three chips later to realize that I didn’t have to recover by following a specific program.

In this post, I share with you some of the ups and downs I have come across throughout this recovery process of mine, and I share some more of my reasons for not connecting with AA. It’s important to understand that there is not a ‘One Size Fits All’ recovery program. Behind every story is just a unique person with some highs and lows. You don’t have to be an addict to relate to the fact that we all have flaws.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you. 

Dear Readers,

Dear Readers,

This week I wanted to do things a little bit differently, and write a letter to, well… you; the one reading this; the one who has somehow found this page. You are a huge part of the reason why I continue to put myself out there, and just by clicking that ‘read more’ button, you are supporting me in more ways than you will ever know.

In this post, I open up in a different way and I get the chance to say how I feel to those of you that are reading this. Every single one of you is a reminder that I am not alone, you are not alone, and together, we can make the world that much better.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.