Inspired by @veshecco @jenna *chronologically li.sted
  1. I went back and forth between my mother and my grandparents until the age of 11. (That is another entirely) I got braces that year and my mother agreed I'd stay with g'ma through junior high. The summer I graduated from 8th grade, I flew back to California and spent the better part of those few months with my mom and by then, siblings.
    I had to make the decision to stay or go off to boarding school, back in Arizona. Those were the two choices given to me~nothing in between. I ultimately decided on boarding school. There were many factors involved in this, the most crucial being, my mother really couldn't afford to keep me. This was ultimately a good decision for me, personally, as I excelled academically and was able to acquire some college scholarship money. This was the first major turning point in my life.
  2. Having spent 8 years in denominational boarding school, the path we were encouraged to follow was, graduate from college, get married and have babies. So that's what I did. I made the choice to marry a year out of school at the ripe old age of 22😳
    I had my first child at the age of 25, and three by the time I was 30. I have no regrets regarding my choices, as it brought me a great deal of joy and contentment, to be a mother. I did, however, choose my partner poorly, and that decision was a significant turning point for me. Again, there is much more to this story, but getting married so young (virtually going from living with roommates to a husband😱) combined with settling too early, was a decision that has affected my life a great deal.
  3. There were plenty of red flags I chose to ignore, prior to my marriage. Again, another entirely..The short version is that he had an anger management "issue" and in my mind, I figured if I could just be "good enough", it would get better. Codependency, to be addressed later. He was emotionally, verbally, and occasionally, physically abusive.
    I had no one at this point (cancer) but his mother, who told me to "pray about it". At the 10 year mark, I'd had about enough and was in my head, plotting the exit strategy~when my youngest was old enough for kindergarten. Somewhere in between, something was said/done (I don't talk about it), and a switch was flipped. That moment in time, set in motion, my divorce. It took another 3 years, and some last ditch efforts, but, after 3 children and 15 years of marriage, I was finally done.
  4. After my marriage ended, I began dating someone I'd known a few years. THE RECKLESSNESS OF DATING NARCISSISTIC COPS We were actually engaged (on/off) 6 of the 7 years we were together, Again, another🙄Thanks to my still-in-existence, codependency issues, I chose another man I thought I could fix.
    We sought counseling from two different therapists, but when he didn't like what they had to say, he would stop going. Turning point~I kept going! Again, this is the very short version, but I had finally decided it was time to deal with my own issues, and stop choosing men who were abusive and that "needed fixing"..time to fix ME. After nearly weekly sessions, for over six months, I was finally able to leave for good (I would always go back) and this has lead me down a significantly better path!
  5. I have been through a great deal in my lifetime, as many of you have. I lost my g'ma who raised me, to cancer at the age of 18~my mother and g'pa died 6 months apart, when I was 23. I never knew my natural father, but lost my FIL just a few years later. All cancer. My mom was 42.
    However, nothing prepares you for the loss of a child. My life, my kids' lives..everything changed, forever. I'm not entirely sure how they're processing~they're busy college kids, but the impact for me is nearly indescribable. The anxiety, the insomnia, the fear of more loss, the sadness and heartbreak, the anger..I haven't felt peace, or real happiness in two years. I have moments of joy, but it doesn't last. I deflect a lot of my pain to get by, but also try to process it. March 1st, 2015💔