I wanted to express my personal story of how alcohol almost and partly ruined my life. I am a young mom and was a young wife. My marriage was short-lived due to abuse on my end, and I couldn’t cope with the loss of my marriage. When I was 20 I thought a family should always stick together regardless of anyone feeling mistreated. I couldn’t have been more wrong, but that was the example I grew up with in my family and parent dynamic.
After we separated, I was so lost and I started hanging around with the wrong crowd that had zero goals and ambitions. We would drink until we blacked out everyday. I had a full-time job, and I would go into work still drunk and leave early to meet up at our favorite bars. I started a new relationship that was based on how much we loved to drink together, until it wasn’t fun anymore and the drinking became a huge issue for us that eventually broke us up. I couldn’t handle another failed relationship; the rejection was too much to deal with.
I drank even more, lost my job, and spent more and more time away from my child. I am not proud of any of this and today I still hold that guilt, but I was selfish and like they say, young and dumb. One night I ran into my ex-boyfriend and we started hanging out. I didn’t want to lose that feeling of a good time with him so I continued to hang out.
We drove to a friends house and I knew I couldn’t drive home so I gave him my keys. At this point I was blacked out. When our friend’s mom came home, she kicked us out. I don’t remember leaving the house, I don’t remember getting in the car, and I don’t remember driving away.
I ended up in a town 20 minutes away from where I was, my car crashed into a hillside. My whole front windshield was smashed in. HOW WAS I STILL ALIVE? I will never understand, but I pray to the higher power that I didn’t hurt someone else.
After getting arrested, I didn’t know who to call. So I decided to call my ex-husband. When I did, he was not understanding (in hindsight: why would he be?) and immediately threatened to take my son from me. In that moment I had to prioritize my son, my life, and how I wanted to live it.
I fought hard to keep my son, to show I am a responsible parent, and that I will never go back to being that irresponsible with my life again. It has now been 10 years since that time of my life. It was a long 10 years to get back my good driving record, to pay off the fines, and finish probation and DUI classes. In the end I realized that trauma happens to everyone, big and small, but the one thing to remember is to not let it control you. Take your life back!