The summer after I graduated from high school was supposed to be the best summer of my life. I lived on my own, while most of my friends lived with their parents, and I had a huge circle of really amazing friends. The only thing was that my huge circle was a huge party circle and my friends and I did a lot of drinking together. We had some amazing times that I will never forget and some of those people are still in my life in huge, meaningful ways. But, all of that drinking and partying was bound to catch up with us eventually.
On July 24, 2004, the friend of whom I spoke in my last entry was killed in a drunk driving accident. She was the driver, two of her passengers were killed (one of whom was a pregnant friend of mine), and the other passenger was seriously injured. In one moment, the blink of an eye, I lost one of the best friends I have ever had and I lost another friend as well. For some reason, due to a series of events that I have never understood, I was on scene at the accident. I saw my beautiful friend lying dead in the street. I am not going to say any more about the accident itself, but I will say that everyone who knows me tells me that that was a pivotal moment in my life. I changed after that.
The rest of that summer was debauchery. At the time, the only coping mechanism I had was alcohol. I didn't think about the fact that alcohol consumption had cost my friend her life; I thought about how I didn't want to think about it. In fact, I went on to spend nearly ten years not thinking about it. I would drink and cry over my friend very often. I didn't understand and I could never get it out of my head. My partying and my lifestyle caught up with me at the beginning of 2005 when I found myself pregnant.
I remember thinking that it was a good thing that I was 18 and pregnant because I had been drinking so much that I really needed to slow down. At 18, I already was having a hard time holding a job. I couldn't function and I was in and out of some really crappy relationships. I knew that having a baby would slow down my alcohol consumption and it did for nine months. After my daughter was born, however, I picked up exactly where I left off. I was never, not for one second, ready to be her mom. I went out all the time, leaving her with various babysitters. The only plus side was that having a baby at 18 seemed to run off my crappy boyfriend.
I was in a horrible spiral. I felt sadness over the death of my friend and guilt over the fact that I never bonded with my baby. I was drinking to try and get rid of it. I kept failing my college classes and quitting jobs, and I experienced something that most other teen moms experience; I didn't have any help. It was a vicious, ugly cycle. When my daughter was about five months old, I started dating my husband.
I fell for him really hard, really fast. One of the key components of our relationship was that we both liked to drink and party. I was no stranger to drug use, but my drug use escalated in the early days of my relationship with the man that I would eventually marry. We drank nearly every night and he moved in with me really quickly. My priorities were simply not with motherhood. Right around the time my daughter turned one year old, I made the decision to let my aunt and uncle adopt her. This is something I have never publicly discussed until right now, and if you are reading this and I badly lied to you about it, I apologize (message me, let me make amends).
Ironically, my daughter left me on the birthday of my friend who was killed. My daughter, who was named after that friend, left me on her birthday. It was too much. I couldn't handle it. I went out of town for the weekend and I spend two or three days drinking heavily and doing drugs. And then I came home to an empty house and a feeling of guilt and failure. I stayed drunk for a lot of years over these things. I was miserable and I had no idea how to deal with my feelings, so I drank.
To add to the guilt, I got pregnant really soon after my daughter left. The fact that I was abusing drugs and alcohol combined with the fact that I had recently tried parenting and failed hard led me to an abortion clinic. I was given valium, had a baby removed from my uterus, and sent home. I went back to work and went back to drinking. My boyfriend's grandfather died while we were out of town procuring my abortion and I remember being at his funeral, looking down and seeing a huge bruise where my IV had been during the procedure. People kept asking me what the bruise was from and I didn't want anyone to know, so I lied.
There I was sitting in more shame than I had ever imagined. There I was sitting in pain. The only thing I knew would take it away was to continue drinking. I wanted to black out as hard and as often as possible. The next year of my life was a blur. I was drunk pretty much the whole time. At one point, I had a pretty decent job and I would call in to work and make up the world's most ridiculous lies. At the time, I thought I was getting away with it, but looking back, I think there was probably no way that anyone believed me. I would get drunk and pick fights with my boyfriend. I would get drunk and do really embarrassing things that I didn't want to hear about the next day. I went through phases when I would blackout after only one or two drinks.
And then, I got pregnant again.
To be continued....