Read the Two Sides Prologue
I watched a little girl today while having a coffee at a Tim Hortons donut shop. She really was an image of peace and serenity, no more than five, as she sat with her mom in front of me, eating a sparkled donut, the kind that most kids like to eat. Her mother mixed a hot chocolate with chocolate milk, so that her drink would be just as sweet, but not so hot. I watched her sitting there so attentive to her donut. I remembered a time when I needed to be told to wipe my mouth and not slurp my drink, when I had to be reminded to take my shoes off when entering the house. When going out at night felt like going on a week’s vacation. You were completely absorbed in every moment and nothing else mattered, not yesterday’s failed test, not tomorrow’s trip to the dentist, not the biggest of snowfalls. All that mattered was the moment you were in, and what you were sharing with the people you were sharing it with. Growing older, I’ve realized that life is not that simple, and I found out the hard way.
Life is weird that way. You know, I never felt at any time in my life that I had it all, that I had everything. But I can say this. Whatever I did have, it was taken away from me quickly, quietly and abruptly without notice or even the slightest bit of warning. God, we never saw it coming; but when it came, it came hard and it felt like it would never leave. It never did leave and will linger for a lifetime.
You never really know what you have until you lose it. And I did. I lost my life, as it was, never to be the same again.
Inspiration and Resources
IMPORTANT NOTE: Having gone through so much in my life while struggling with illness, I have come to realize the utmost importance of having people by your side during difficulties. Reach out to a parent, a friend, a loved one. Reach out to me, to anyone. There are always people to talk to. Talking is life saving.
MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS LINE: In Ottawa: 613-722-6914 / 1-866-996-0991
ROYAL OTTAWA MENTAL HEALTH CENTRE: 613-722-6521BOOK GOALS:
- Fight against stigma
- Educate about Mental Health
- Provide hope and healing to sufferers/supporters (Healing CAN Happen)
- Inspire people to make change
At the young age of 12, mental illness began to affect me; that is when everything changed and became complicated. My childhood, worry-free and fully immersed within my family and my friendships, would change forever. Life would never be the same again, as I headed towards a future of uncertainty and confusion. It would ultimately lead to eventual demise, and life as I once knew it would never be the same again. It would take a miracle to get back on track.
QUOTES FROM MY BOOK
“The most difficult phase of life is not when no one understands you; it is when you don’t understand yourself.”
“Inside my heart is breaking
My make-up may be flaking
But my smile still stays on.”
THE SHOW MUST GO ON – Queen
“It does not matter how normal your childhood was, or your life is—idealistic means nothing—it can be destroyed in a moment. It does not matter how good things WERE—when it hits, it plants a demonic hand. It can destroy anyone. Mental illness has no favourites.”
“It’s awful to think that there are others out there still feeling the way I felt just a few years ago … others out there feeling the way I had felt.”
“If the next step or step after is not the pinnacle, at least you will be two steps closer and that’s what matters.”
“Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”
“Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.”
Booker T. Washington
“There’s a hero, If you look inside your heart,
You don’t have to be afraid of what you are.
There’s an answer, if you reach into your soul,
and the sorrow that you know will melt away.”
Hero – Mariah Carey & Walter Afanasieff
“Life is never made unbearable by circumstances, but only by lack of MEANING and PURPOSE.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (KJV)
“That person on the street is someone’s son or daughter … they were in kindergarten just like you.”