From Fear to Freedom

I preface my post with this: I had a rough childhood but it’s contributed to who I am today. My earliest memories were of being forsaken, riddled with abuse and yearning for someone to love and protect me. We always have a choice between despair and hope. Living with both Cystic Fibrosis and the struggle with my parents, I have and will always choose hope.

I have been graced with the miraculous gift to live my life optimistically. I have forgiven my parents; they did what they could, they did what they knew. Did they try their hardest? I’m not the one to answer that question, only they can. Both my mother and father had tough life experiences when growing up as well. My father lost his mother at a young age. With his sister married off and his father trying to make ends meet, my father was left alone. My mother’s mother left her at an early age and her father remarried a “wicked” step mother who was cruel to her. We struggled with poverty, and where there are money struggles there is pain and suffering. This blog is about my life as a whole. It’s not going to be only about how my parents hurt me. There will also be happy times in my childhood. As a child I wasn’t the one who dictated how my life would go, but as an adult I certainly was the only one responsible for how it played out. I am 28 years old and there is much more to my life than my childhood that I plan to tell you about. I have overcome many hard obstacles and I can’t wait to share them with you.

No More Excuses

I’ve been dragging my feet. I have made excuse after excuse to put off writing this blog. It’s not that I didn’t want to write it; I love writing and sharing my story. I’m a natural born story teller, it’s in my blood. Many who’ve heard some of my stories have told me that I should write a book. I’ve struggled with Cystic Fibrosis (a debilitating lung and digestive disease) my whole life, my parents neglected me, abused me, and in the end they broke my heart. As a homeless minor I slept on friends’ couches, worked three jobs, went to school and still found time to be a party girl. My story is about overcoming the odds, and it is my intent to inspire others. Writing a book is a BIG endeavor and let’s be honest, I have some fears. A blog would be much easier to get going; the book can come later. :)

Overcoming my fears will be a recurring event in my blog posts. Just pressing “publish” for this first post took a lot of guts. Will my parents read this? What will they think? Even though it has been years since I’ve lived with my parents I still fear their control over me. I fear my mother’s wrath, though I know she can no longer hurt me and I don’t think that the person she is today would hurt me. I long for freedom from my fears. This blog will be a journey through the truth along the road to this freedom.

 I am a fly by the seat of my pants kind of gal. I lack organization and hopefully this experience of blogging will bring structure to my life. Each post will have a past story and a current story. I also want to keep you wonderful readers up to date with my current circumstance. I greatly desire and appreciate your thoughts. Please leave a message below or for a private message visit my website: www.missybreathes.com and at the bottom of the site there is a section where you can send me a message discreetly. I’d love to hear from you! So here I go with my first blog post!

“We fear violence less than our own feelings. Personal, private, solitary pain is more terrifying than what anyone else can inflict.” – Jim Morrison

In The Beginning…

The best place to start is always at the beginning. My first memory was a quick one, just me lying in my bed. I must have just awakened from a nap. It was as though at that moment when I awoke from my nap, I also awakened my conscious state. I was a toddler and I was lying on my back with my legs in the air resting on the wall. I was tapping my heels against the wall. Lightly so I didn’t upset my mother; I was afraid of her. I remember wanting to go crazy and bang my heels so hard onto the wall in the name of making music. I was humming a tune, which I cannot recall now, and needed the heel tapping to be part of my song but I was too afraid to be too loud. My first memories were of fear and a lack of freedom. This was a perfect example of how my childhood would go.

I only have one more memory of my toddler age, another short one. I must’ve been recently potty trained and I had just peed in my pull ups or diaper or underpants, which ever. It was an accident, I remember feeling ashamed. My mother found out and disciplined me with her open hand across my freshly soiled bum. Fearful, remembering from previous experience of the pain her hand caused, I ran away. It was my first reaction. I remember running away from her around the house like it was a game. I remember the apartment was upstairs and we had an enclosed porch where my father and sisters were at the time. I remember my family watching me run in fear and did nothing to help me. My sisters were too young and my father stayed out of this business (that was to be reflective of my childhood as well; he never came to my rescue). I don’t think I thought she would catch me, but of course she did. I was small, how could she not catch me? She struck me a few times and it hurt. She cleaned me up while I cried in stinging pain. I won’t have another memory until I’m about 5 years old.

Pain was to be a very intricate part of my life from relationships and friendships to my daily health. I would not only be hurt by others inside and outside of my family but I would also self-inflict pain, cause pain to others, and bravely struggle through the pain brought on by my disease. I’m proud to say that I have had the privilege to grow and learn from all of this pain, and continue to do so.

Learning From My Pain Even Today

Last night was a perfect example of my daily struggle with pain brought on by my disease, Cystic Fibrosis. I was awakened with many coughing fits throughout the night. So much coughing is like a work out. This would be a case of overworking my muscles, which is what is causing me pain today. There wasn’t anything I did or didn’t do that created this situation. Trust me; I’ve been over it a thousand times in my head already. What did I do wrong? What did I miss? Could I have done something differently to have avoided such a long night? These questions, I know, get me nowhere. As soon as I woke up this morning to start my day, lying in bed I took a few deep breathes. I could feel my breathing muscles tighten with pain at each inhale. They were tired and sore. I knew I had to get up and start my day; the dogs were counting on me. So I purposely closed my eyes, did some deep controlled breathing and meditated on my dilemma. I realized the pain I was feeling wasn’t the worse that I’ve felt and that in time it would pass. Beating myself up over it was wasting energy that I didn’t have in excess. Cystic Fibrosis is its own entity sometimes and does what it wants. And so, with another deep inhale and a slow exhale, in complete silence, I was ready to rise out of my very comfortable bed. A lesson we can all learn: patience and the will to push on. Now that I am on the list for a double lung transplant I am learning how to graciously wait. I long for the day I can breathe easy but it’s a long wait. Until then I will learn to persevere through each day. Lessons which I’m sure I will use until my end.

 With Love, kindness, and every bit of gratitude I possess, thank you for reading. Stay tuned for weekly blog posts.

For more information please:                                                                                                          www.missybreathes.com                                                                                                                 www.CFF.org