Since creating my blog this is a question that I have asked myself many times over the past week,
Why am I doing this?
When I asked myself this question I started to wonder if I was doing the right thing especially as I normally prefer to use good old pens, paper and glitter to create something rather than having to click on custom design which involves too many options for my brain to cope with.
This question then led on to many other questions, Will anyone actually be interested in what I have to write? Will others be able to relate to my story? Will my blog help anyone, if so how? Do I know what I am doing?
I soon realised that I was questioning and doubting myself before I had even given my blog a chance to develop.
I then asked myself the question again ” Why AM I doing this?
Immediately I was able to answer the question with “I want everyone to recognise that addiction is an illness and I want to help others who may be able to relate to my story”.
It has only been since losing my mum in January to chronic alcoholic liver disease that I have been able to recognise that her problems with alcohol was because she had an illness. My mum may have made bad choices due to her relationship with alcohol but not because she was a bad person. At the time it was very hard for me to see her addiction as an illness due to the frustration, anger and pain that comes with watching someone slowly kill themselves and their life spiral out of control. Someone that I loved very much despite all the horrible things that she said and did whilst she was on one of her drinking binges.
With writing this blog I am hoping to be able to talk about my journey of living with an alcoholic and the effects that this had on me as a child and as an adult whilst also recognising the difficult journey that my mum went through.
During my story I will be touching upon sensitive issues that relate to my own personal experiences such as –
Being a looked after child within the care system,
Emotional, Physical abuse and neglect,
There may be other issues that I touch upon during the process of my blog.
Me or the drink?
Four simple words, one simple question, one heart breaking answer.
Why cant you put your children first?
Another question that would never get answered. I remember asking my mum these questions many a times and always knowing deep down that no matter how many times I shouted at her, got frustrated with her to the point I would pull at my own hair and I demanded that she chooses us over the booze, she was just not strong enough to do it.
As a child it is the most heart breaking thing, seeing someone that you idolise chose something that is slowing ruining their life. I always remember sitting at the little window at the bottom of the stairs at the age of 10 whispering “up above the sky tonight, I wish upon a star so bright, I wish that my mum would stop drinking and I could have my mum back .”
When I see how some are able to kick the booze and become sober I always feel proud of them for being able to do so but at the same time I feel jealous. Why are they able to do it and my mum wasn’t?
Another question I will never know the answer to.
Although I can now understand why it was so hard for her to beat her addiction and why she did what she did whilst under the influence of alcohol I will always have the same questions.
What could I have done to help her?
Why wasn’t I enough for her to stop?
“just breath, just breath”. Taking in deep breaths whilst holding back the tears I can remember repeating this to myself over and over again. “I need to be strong, I need to be strong”. I could feel my legs wanting to crumble away underneath me but I was determined not to let them. The pain in my chest was unbearable, I felt as though my heart was tightening as I tried to take in everything that was happening around me. I wanted to run just run away but when I looked at my younger siblings on the either side of me I knew I couldn’t. I knew that at that very moment I was their strength to help them get through the day so I knew that I had to find my inner strength from somewhere. Why is it when someone passes away we always feel we are the ones that have to be strong for everyone else? they are probably thinking the exact same thing.
Feelings of anger, sadness, relief, pain, guilt over whelmed me at different points through the 30 minute service leaving me feeling as though I was in a daze or a bad dream that hopefully I was going to wake up out of soon. Memories of happy times appeared like snippets of home movies but these where quickly fazed out as I started to wonder if my mum knew how much I truly loved her despite everything that had happened and how I didn’t blame her any more or hate her for what had gone on. Those 30 minutes appeared to change my thought process. I seemed to all of a sudden feel empathy for her life and what her life had become. I started to remember my mum for who she was before the drink took over. The caring, loving mother who gave me hugs and tucked me up in bed, looked after me when I was poorly. How and why did things change? I almost felt at times as though the drink was the devil when it took over her body and her way off life. I wished so much that I had visited her before she died despite the fact she was on a drinking binge, just to tell her that I loved her and I forgive her. The feeling of guilt made me feel sick as I found myself thinking about what a terrible daughter I am for not seeing her during that time. Even though consciously I was able to justify my reasons why. I always avoided her drinking binges now I was an adult and I could. How was I to know that this would be her final binge?
They say time is a great healer but how much time do you need to heal so many wounds that appear to keep re-opening?
For a very long time now I have debated on the idea of whether or not to write a book. Instead I have decided to have “another great idea” and create a blog although I have no idea on what I am doing!
I have an idea of how I would like my blog to look and what I would like it to be about however I feel this could possibly be a working progress as it has taken me almost half an hour to work out how to complete this section. So I have made the decision to think “sod it” and just go for it!
I want to share my story, my journey, partly to help me process some of the difficulties I have experienced but also to reach out to others particularly those who have lived with an addict.
The question I have is “where do you start?” I hear people say “start at the beginning” but where does it all begin?