“In 2006, I wrote goodbye letters to my children, and gave the letters to this person. We said our goodbyes, and he went into the living room to await my passing. As I laid there with a bottle of pills in my hand, unable to walk without a walker to assist me, unable to eat due to my serious digestive issues, unable to keep even a sip of water down, unable to think clearly due to my addiction to these pills, God intervened. I wanted to die only because I couldn’t see a way out to live, and I had no support. I didn’t really want to die. I just didn’t know how to live, without being high, too fearful to face the untreated trauma, and in denial.

It was the thought of my children standing over my coffin that stopped me from taking those pills, and years later, in early 2013, after awakening from a lethal overdose, my children, and the thought of them once again standing over my coffin, heartbroken, and possibly unable to recover, is what gave me the strength to ask for help to save my life.

I prayed to God to help me out of my pain, and my Substance Use Disorder, to show me the way out, and I promised that I would follow any path that He put before me to help others living with this disease. My prayer was answered.

About a year into my recovery, I said to the family member who encouraged me to die by suicide, “You wanted me to kill myself, and look at me now.” His only response was, “I know.” I never got an apology. And, I’m fine with that as he is unable to connect emotionally, and I am aware that he saw no other way out for any of us. He himself lacked the coping skills. I hold no ill will. He did all that he knew how to do at that time. And, he was probably terrified watching me slowly dying over the years. Beyond all doubt, I know in his own way, he loved me. We all deal with pain, suffering, loss, and disease with the tools that we have at hand.

By the grace of God, I survived.”

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