I have struggled with an eating disorder from the age of 5, body dysmorphia from the age of 9, and self-harm beginning at the age of 12. I have had several suicide attempts with the last attempt in June of 2015. I was diagnosed with Major Clinical Depression and received much needed treatment and care at Montecatini in 2013 and 2014. I know that recovery is not linear. Some days I take two steps forward and the next day I feel as if I am playing chutes and ladders and I slide right back to where I started years before. Two years ago things got dark very quickly and my brain was not firing correctly. My depression and inability to work through my PTSD and past experiences took me to the brink of death. I was alone, scared, and could no longer pull off the song and dance that I hid behind for so very long.
Today through my work in recovery, things are very different. I am gainfully employed reaching out to others with Severe Mental Illness. Offering to hold space for others in dark places, I now I am able to give back.
I have finished my course work at UCSD for my Drug and Alcohol Counseling Certification, and I am working on my 3,000 hours of supervised hours to be fully certified. I have been sober myself from alcohol since January 4, 2007.
I am grateful for my life today. I am grateful to each and every one of you who have, and continue to, pour your lives and love into my soul. Thank you for being in my life and in my heart.
The tattoo in the picture is to remind myself to continue to make daily affirmations. “I am enough” today…just as I am…with all my cracks and imperfections…I have a place in this world…my past allows me to connect with others in a way no one else in the world can. We all have a past and present that is a gift to others if we are willing to be truly authentic.