In the mid-west I was born the youngest child of six siblings. My life hasn't been the kindest journey. I beat on the window of the car that dragged & killed my best friend at age 4, I had the first of many back spasm at x-mas at age 5, molested by the 1st person at age 6, the next at age 10, by a family member at 13, gained over 60 lbs to stop them, but it started merciless teasing &body issues, physical & emotional abuse, date rape, Al Anon, & almost 20 years of debilitating illness & isolating just to list a few. As a result Depression, Agoraphobia, OCD, Panic attacker's, and PTSD became constant companions. But there has been just enough happy moments to hold onto. Most recent is the birth of my granddaughter. At age 9, we moved to KY & then to the coast of FL at 10. It was there that my grandfather introduced me to my love of horses & that I learned to play the violin.
On the East coast I earned my Associates & Bachelors degrees. Married and gave birth to my first child. It was an IBM transfer that brought my family to the Round Rock area here in TX. After giving birth to my 2nd child I divorced & then met my youngest child's father. It's a weird coincidence that both fathers actually have the same last name. Four years later I met my current husband at church. We separated, after ten years of marriage, about 7 years ago, but we are still close. When I met him he played bass, I sang backup & was the administrator for 1 yr. It was then that I began to be very ill. Three months later it was decided I would quit my job & home school my youngest child. Next thing I know I'm going to seven specialists.
I had no idea at the time these debilitating illnesses would start a seventeen year journey of me being closed off to the world. I was usually only leaving my home a couple of times a month and usually to see a doctor. It only takes a couple of weeks for most friends to stop visiting and a less than a few years for the depression to begin to take hold. A failed attempt to get an appointment with Blue Bonnet Trails for my Autistic teen and I sent me to Lone Star Circle of Care. It was one appointment with a Psychiatrist who was there at the time, that put me through a made for TV nightmare, that has left me still afraid of mental health workers today. That is why I was introduced to Gordon Butler by Blue Bonnet Trails. He told me about a project that he was working on and encouraged me to help for a couple of months. Years later he contacted me again because that project was becoming Pavilion. He asked me to join the Peer Leadership Team and become a Board Member.
After seventeen years of seclusion I am now a part of this wonderful program. I still worry about just how effective, how dependable can be due to my constant health problems. But find myself encouraged to try due to the kind people I meet each time I volunteer, and by the sense of accomplishment and contribution that I feel once again.