The bonds of sleep slowly slid off my body, and I could finally stretch out my legs. I yawned and
rubbed my eyes. My morning breath was awful. The strong smell of alcohol hit my nostrils, and the
heat of anger flooded my body. I was alive! Damnit! I was still alive! WHY! My 12 page suicide
note was still attached to the bedroom door. The empty Klonopin bottle was still on the nightstand.
A ½ liter of 100 proof liquor sat on the floor. The other half I had used to wash the pills down. I
should be dead.
DAMN! I kept saying in my head. I don’t usually swear, but I figured I already tried to kill myself, so
to hell with it.
I pickled my brain in a bath of 100 proof alcohol which I secretly drank daily for about two years. In
my desperation for relief, I’d followed the advice of an internet stranger who recommended alcohol
to take away the vertigo. Yes. One shot did. But soon one shot wasn’t enough. I needed two, then
more and more. The escape was glorious. Soon, instead of just using it for vertigo, I was using all
the time just to escape my illness, my reality, my depression, and the struggle I was having for
identity, feelings of failure, and utter loneliness.
It wasn’t just the alcohol, either. I had figured out ways of getting my hands on prescription pain
pills. They also took away the vertigo, but even better, they numbed everything. Oh, I was such a
mess! That is exactly where really bad coping strategies can land you, given enough time and
energy. Limited solutions, taken to their extreme, took me to a hopeless destination — The End.
The end of myself.
I was filled to the brim with anger that I was still alive. I was still here. I was still sick. I was still
useless. I was still a burden. I was still without hope. I was still lost. I was still helpless. Still…
My story didn’t end here. In fact today I say , “I am well.” My memoir, Well, chronicles my journey
toward healing. When I came home from treatment, I started pouring over old journals and found
entries where I sought forgiveness, healing and deliverance. I gathered them up into a scrapbook. I
also added original artwork telling my story through the end of a paintbrush. I dug through my
blog, and gathered essays into the scrapbook too. I realized this scrapbook had become something.
It had become a vulnerable and raw memoir telling a story of hope.
Depression and addiction are often taboo topics in the church. However, Christians are just as
susceptible to depression and addiction as any other social group. Christians who suffer from these
afflictions often don’t seek help because of shame and fear of alienation. For a depressed Christian
or a Christ follower with an addiction, seeking help feels like shining a spotlight into their spiritual
life and highlighting a failure as a Christian.
There are many hurting Christians in desperate need of help, and it is common to feel like you have
nowhere to turn. I am very passionate about this topic because I am one of those Christians. I live
with depression, and I’m in recovery for addiction and attempted suicide. I also have a chronic
illness. I pray daily that my story of survival can help someone survive as well.
Alias In Town is an anagram of the author’s name. In every town there are alias people living
with chronic illness, chronic pain, addiction and depression. Alias In Town is one of those
people. Learning to live well while ill is a necessary and difficult endeavor. She learned multiple
coping and life strategies to be Well.
“I am more than my body. I am body, mind and spirit. My body is simply the weakest unit of the
triad. Though chronic illness affects the entire triad, I have made considerable effort to strengthen
my mind and spirit to find the balance of ‘Well’. – book excerpt
Her style of writing is to combine multi-media formats into stories. She utilizes short essays to tell her
story in words. She creates original artwork to tell her story through the end of a brush. She includes
personal journal and diary entries to remain open, honest and raw in her writing.
One of the most anxiety releasing activities she utilizes is art. She explores art through several
mediums and included them in the book “Well.” She does not claim to be a proficient artist but
utilizing art is cathartic to her. She has an art website
She has been married for 35 years with 6 children and 7 grandchildren and lives in central Ohio.
Her website is www.aliasintown.com