Hey all! My name is Caitlin, and I am a grateful, recovering alcoholic. My one year sobriety date was June 25, 2019. Along with the addiction I have been battling, I have also dealt with mental health disorders as long as I can remember, going back into my teen years. Severe depression, anxiety, panic attacks, eating disorders, as well as PTSD from several traumas that had been left untreated, are all a part of my story.
For a long time I could not for the life of me figure out what was wrong. Was everyone living and feeling like this all of the time? Growing up, my family and I were kind of a part of the generation that did not really discuss all of these things. I love them more than anything. They are my rock, and we have been in this journey together with learning how to communicate with one another, and it is beautifully freeing. Let me tell you, it is never too late to learn new things.
I have been seeing therapists and doctors for years, while trying to find the right medications for stability. It just never seemed to be enough, and my downward spiral into the depths of depression and alcoholism finally hit rock bottom last year. My “rock bottom” is something that I am grateful for every day I am alive, because that is what saved me. I was able to get admitted into a rehab treatment facility for 6 months, with intensive therapy. It is there that I learned how to heal, and live. I learned what happiness is, and wow, it felt amazing, and kind of scary. I learned that it is ok to ask for help, and it is ok to talk about our feelings and traumas. Everything that we feel is ok.
During the first few months of treatment I was too terrified to speak. I would break down and just cry because I was in shock and so overwhelmingly scared. Slowly with the help of the facility, community, and new friends, I found my voice again. I now do everything that I can to help others who need to find their voice also, or feel as if there is no way out of these things we call addictions. I have seen the darkest of days, and have not wanted to live anymore. Now, I want to do anything and everything I can to be of service to others, and to chase after my dreams again. I enrolled back into college in January of 2019, and next May of 2020, I will be entering into the Nursing Program to be able to reach my longstanding dream of becoming a Flight Nurse. Things are possible now. Life is possible now.
It is ok to speak up and speak out. It is ok to ask for help and get needed treatment. Through sobriety and therapy, my mental health has been much more stable now that I allow the medications to work properly. I found my voice again, and I am here always to help others find theirs.