One of my biggest interests is building a connection with people from all walks of life. Behind every person, there is a story and through conversation, you can learn a lot about anyone if you are willing to listen.
I have a friend that approached me to tell her story. She asked to remain anonymous because of the sensitivity of the subject matter, we both agree that her story could resonate with a few people and in turn reassure said person that it gets better.
*From this point forth, I will be telling the story in the first person
Tasting the bitterness of life at an early stage. Having to accept the fact that your family’s financial situation can no longer afford you the life that you had once known. That was my reality.
I remember coming back one day from boarding school to a home that was broken. In my absence, mom had become a monster, and dad had fallen victim to the addiction of alcohol and drugs. My time away was miserable, but being home was worse. I lived with two conflicting parents that were never at peace with one another. The friction stems from the fact that dad had been wasting money on partying and feeding his addiction — while subsequently running the family business to the ground without any funds or resources to fall back on.
I was at the inception of my young adult life and adjusting to the new situation was hard. Ideally, I should have been working on myself and enjoying the bliss of youth, instead I was a miserable child craving the parental love and support which I was never afforded. I became a version of myself that I never anticipated. I made it a point to leave the house during the early hours of every morning and only return after sunset, giving myself just enough time to get to my room and cry myself to sleep.
Life outside of home was not any better. I was consumed by the party life and engaged in the excessive consumption of alcohol and cigarettes — the latter didn’t last very long, but it was a welcomed escape from my miserable reality.
I began to hustle and made good money by running a small business. This allowed me to help out with some bills at home, but the pressure of having to support two unemployed parents, while also juggling academics as a full-time university student became too much to handle. The business was drowning and I needed help. I was so desperate to build a better life for myself that I even considered getting a blesser.
Even though at times my mom and I don’t get along, I will always maintain my dream of one day giving her the best life I possibly can. I know how hard she works to provide and although she may not show it, I know that she loves me. I understand the stress she must be dealing with, but sometimes I wish she could take the time to hear me out. I am dying inside!
My dad, on the other hand, is a completely different story. I used to listen to other kids talk about their families and the support of their fathers, meanwhile, my dad couldn’t even acknowledge me as his daughter. These things weighed heavy on my heart, and became the catalyst to my depression. I felt as though my soul had been detached from my body, I felt a gaping hole within my chest. I searched for love in various relationships, but none could fill the void that my father had left.
For the longest time, I felt as though my life was worthless. I have been jobless since graduating, gave up on my business, and have no means of income. I thought I’d lost myself but in reality, there was no me. All these years I’ve been running and trying to escape from the girl who never was there.
This is not how my story will end, I am working first on healing before I can tackle my situation. I realize that I have to first love myself instead of feeling sorry about anything beyond my control. I have been sober for 5 months now, and haven’t been engaged in any activity that could jeopardize my mental well-being. All I am doing now is embracing life and rediscovering myself. For the first time in a long time, I am alive!
“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.” — Serenity Prayer