On Saturday, 16th April, it was World Semicolon Day. This is a particularly special project to me and very close to my heart.
I had this tattoo done on my wrist on the day I launched this blog on 1 October last year.
By sharing my story with the world, in many ways I kept it alive. It is far from over and every day I choose to live.
There are some chapters in my past that I was holding onto because I was afraid of facing them and letting them go once and for all. January 2012 until March 2015 were the most difficult 3 years of my life. My heart was broken over and over again and I lost two jobs, my new business, my home, the man I loved, and all my pets – Zake, Sally, Javu and Makaylyn. In this time my father also nearly lost his life and ended up in ICU, so all in all it was a very traumatic time for me. Dealing with my diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder at the same time and having severe manic and depressive episodes, by the time I reached the beginning of 2015 I had decided to take my own life. I had the date planned, how I would do it, and had started preparing my belongings and packing them in boxes in my garage, ready to go to charities and the people I loved. I simply felt like I could no longer go on.
Just a few weeks before that final day I experienced a life-changing event that would change everything. Although I’m not ready to share that part of my story yet, it resulted in me making the decision to accept my diagnosis and start to rebuild my life. Starting this blog was part of that journey.
As I’ve started to rewrite my story after that semi-colon, I have started to let go of some of those painful chapters. Two were faced over the past couple of days.
On Saturday I was finally able to bury the ashes of my darling cat, Makaylyn, who during the very worst months of my life was killed by a car. I blamed myself because I had moved and she would never have been on that road if I hadn’t. I wasn’t able to accept the loss of that love for two years. This weekend I was able to forgive myself and let her go.
I bought her a beautiful pot and bougainvillea and buried her ashes. She will always be with me now when I spend time with my new cat (almost cats plural – massive smile) on my patio. I felt the concrete weights slip off my heart and was able to close that sad chapter. I will always remember the happy ones before then when she was happy and full of life.
Another collection of barbed pages in my life was an extremely toxic relationship that began and ended in the same 3 years. I loved this man with all my heart and he managed to burn any happiness I had left to ash. The abuse I put up with is something that changed me and forced me to transform. I choose to spin it into a positive part of my life because it made me stronger, wiser and more committed to loving myself.
Last night I wrote him a long letter that he will never receive. I did it with love, and it was my way of saying my final goodbye. He is dead to me now and metaphorically buried too. I wish him only happiness, and am finally grateful that it isn’t with me.
It has taken me a year to start rewriting my story and it is a process that will continue until the day I die. But that day will not be one through my own hand.
Thank you for allowing me the space to share my story. I really hope that it gives others the courage to share theirs too. Every single one matters.