As far back as I can remember, I’ve felt out of place.
During my childhood years, most of my friendships were ones of comfort and familiarity, not of shared interests or ideas. And despite having friends, I often preferred to spend my time alone.
Then came the teenage years…
It was as a teen that I learned I wasn’t immune to peer pressure. I also found out that I could play a pretty convincing role when I had to. From my early teens all the way into early adulthood, I played the role that mirrored my peers. Later, I realized that the decisions I made which were contrary to who I truly was still had very real consequences.
It wasn’t until I became a mom for the first time, at the age of 21, that I began to let go of my mask. I credit my son with being the one who pulled me back to reality. When he was born, I stopped caring about fitting in with my peers. My baby loved and accepted me for who I truly was… his mother.
By the time I turned 22, I was already a wife and a mother. Although life at that time wasn’t exactly easy, I was content… at least, for a little while.
Let me be clear, I never planned on becoming a drug addict. I don’t think anyone does. But regardless of how or why or what my plans were, I fell hard into a drug addiction.
The guilt I felt, especially as a parent, was almost debilitating. I was stuck in a vicious cycle where feelings of worthlessness (over being an addict and a less-than-stellar mother) led to using more drugs to numb my self-hatred, which led to greater feelings of worthlessness… and so on went the cycle.
Drug addiction has only two possible outcomes… recovery or death. And the window of opportunity to choose is never open for long. At the peak of my addiction, not many options for recovery programs existed and, although I desperately wished I could break free of my addiction, I had lost hope that it would ever happen. I needed a miracle.
As the window of opportunity for surviving my addiction came to a close, I received the miracle I needed to survive. An excellent recovery program, that previously hadn’t been an option, suddenly took me in and I began my journey out of addiction and into recovery.
For time’s sake, I’ve simplified the events that occurred which led up to my recovery, but trust me when I say, it was nothing short of miracle.
After the fog of addiction began to lift, I couldn’t help but wonder… why me? Many people struggling with addiction (you’d be shocked by how many addicts you unknowingly encounter every day) can’t get the help they need. So, why me? This couldn’t have been random. There had to be a reason… right?
I believe with my whole heart that I was saved from my addiction for a purpose. I know that, at least in part, it was for the sake of my children (BTW, I became a mother twice more after my oldest son was born and now I’m a mommy of 3). Then again, I wasn’t the only addict with children, so perhaps there was an even greater purpose for my salvation.
At the time of this writing, I’m about 1 month shy of having been in recovery for 5 years. And in all that time, I’ve not been able to shake the feeling that there’s something very important that I need to do.
I’ll admit that I’ve felt compelled to start this blog for a long time, but I kept putting it off. I prefer to mind my own business and I highly value my privacy, so naturally, spilling my guts online did NOT appeal to me… AT ALL. Even so, God kept dropping “hints” via the universe that I needed to do what I was being called to do. So, ready or not… here I go.
At this point, you know a bit about where I’ve come from and, although my past might come up on occasion, I’d rather focus on the present and future, both mine and yours.
There’s one aspect of who I am that supersedes the rest in terms of importance… my faith in Jesus Christ. I’m a Christian, but I’m also acutely aware of my many flaws and epic fails. Although I’ve failed myself too many times to even guess at, God has never once failed me. It would be impossible for me to repay Him for all that He’s done for me and for His unconditional love, but still, I want to try.
Having said that, I don’t believe attempting to force my faith down your throat will ever produce positive results. Taking the leap of faith into the arms of Christ is a deeply personal decision that has to come from the heart. But if you do want to know more, I would love to talk with you!
Politically and culturally, I’m in favor of the ideas laid out in the constitution (the original version). I believe we should be free to do what we want, so long as what we want to do doesn’t negatively impact our fellow citizens’ abilities to do the same (in other words, do what you want… in your own lane). From what I understand, that sort of freedom is exactly what the authors of our constitution intended. Unfortunately, we’ve gone a long way in the wrong direction from what the founding fathers envisioned. I guess, if I had to label my beliefs in this area I’d say I’m a cultural rebel on the political right 😉
Suffice to say, we’ve got a lot to talk about and I think it’s time to get started!
What we discuss going forward will largely revolve around you. So if there’s a particular topic or issue that you’d like to see addressed, I’ll do my best to make it happen. Remember, this is your place too!
To be clear, this isn’t a blog about moms with addiction issues (though, they are certainly welcome). It’s less about a single topic or issue and more about the kindred spirit of the women who make this place their own.
If you feel like you have to tone down the truth of who you are in order to be accepted by others or even to be reconciled in your own mind, then you are who I’m doing this for. I know how you feel and, although I don’t have all the answers, I can tell you that you’re not alone.
I don’t want to talk at you. I’m not a guru, teacher, life coach, etc., and like I said, I don’t have all the answers. The truth is, I need this place as much as anyone. If I’m able to give AND gain strength and support along with you, I’ll know that the purpose of Yankee The Rebel is being fulfilled. Please, help me make this a community… not just another blog.
Lastly, there are a lot of things I hope to do here, but offending people isn’t one of them. And if you’re still reading this, you probably won’t find the things I say to be too offensive. Even so, I recognize that I can’t be honest without offending someone and I refuse to sacrifice on honesty. So if someone finds the truth or opinions they don’t like to be offensive… oh well. To those who are easily triggered, consider this your official “trigger warning”.