I was 18 when I got the call that changed the trajectory of my life.
It was my uncle speaking the words I knew would come some day, it was just a matter of when.
“Your mom has been arrested again. And we have the kids.”
I had recently moved out of my house to get away from the drug induced environment that I had been raised in.
On one hand I finally felt free, but on the other hand, I was torn with leaving behind my mother that I never could help, and my two young siblings (ages 1 & 3 at the time) who had already been through so much.
In the years leading up to becoming a legal adult, I had wished there would be a day that I could save my siblings from the impending upbringing that I knew they were in for.
I had no idea how it would all play out, but this is where it all began for me. This is where my path of becoming a mom and having a family started.
It would be an understatement to say that the path was anything but smooth.
I rode a roller coaster of knowing if I was doing things right or wrong, or making things better or worse. I struggled with alcohol and dabbled in things that could have taken me down a much different path.
But I knew I was doing the best that I could and I knew that I was at least ending the cycles of abuse.
Over time though, things got better and I grew wiser. At some point I knew that I was paving a different path, for myself and my siblings.
I don’t know who saved who more because I also know that if it wasn’t for those babies, things could have been a lot different for me.
Today I am more thankful than ever for all of it. It has taken a lot of years and a lot of work to undo so much from so many years, but it has been every bit worth it.
I’m most deeply thankful to be on my own path of sobriety now.
Alcoholism and addiction runs far and wide in family systems and the reality is you never know if/when it might take hold.
This is a path, a calling, and a fight that I will never give up on, for myself, and my kids, and women, and families.