When I started this blog last May I promised myself that I would just be me….warts and all. As I’m sure most of you know, whether through my blog, MWOP, or another distasteful site, that I am a recovering drug user. During the last 6-9 months of my nursing career I abused pain medication after I would get home from work. 3 years ago today I was confronted by the manager of the ER, and I unburdened myself. Confessed. Cried. And I was so fucking ashamed because I knew all along that I was playing with fire. Unfortunately I was so burned-out that I was at rock bottom with a career I hated—I had spent ten years compulsively caring for other people but didn’t have anyone take care of me. May 29, 2010 was a dark, dark day.
As of today, with the exception of my gastric bypass and a C-section to deliver 6-inch, I have been sober for three years. My nursing career has been over for three years. My husband, parents, brother, and closest friends have known about my inner demons and depression for three years now. I take medication for anxiety and to sleep, but I don’t abuse them to get stoned. When I went in for my one-week post bypass check-up, the surgeon handed me a prescription slip for a refill of the Dilaudid I had been using after surgery. I handed it right back to him, and let me tell you: that was a proud moment.
And in these three years what has changed? John and I have been through a bankruptcy (not brought about my drug addiction; there was alot of credit card debt that we both brought into our marriage) and foreclosed on our home. We have had to work on our marriage but have stood by and loved each other no matter what. I have given birth to my second son, a precious little blob of cute who will turn 2 in late July. My first-born is now officially a 2nd grader. I am a stay-at-home mom now. We live in a modest rental house with terrific landlords, and we pay cash for everything. We have paid off our remaining vehicle. I have been seeing a psychiatrist and have finally found the right combo of antidepressants and mood stabilizers that help me function—I’m now the old Carmen that people remember me to be as a young woman. My house is constantly cluttered because a) it is smaller than our old house and b) I’d rather spend time with my kids than compulsively cleaning. I have had gastric bypass surgery and as of today have lost 82 pounds. This morning, for the first time since 1999, I put on a pair of size 16 jeans. There was a little muffin stuffin going on, but by God they fit.
Here’s to the next three years!