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    Thank you for the discussion, Harriet. I have fallen down a few times and I don’t think I have ever given much thought to it. After a rough childhood I found the most wonderful love. Before that, I was just a criminal waiting for a very painful life. This man loved me and gave me a reason to love myself. Once I started living, I wanted him to be proud of me, I wanted my parents and family to be proud of me.

    When he died, I had to be strong. It was like he kept whispering in my ear when ever I was hurt or scared. I picked up and kept going because I believed that he would want me to do well. Six months later when I was in a near fatal car crash that put my limbs out of commission for a long period of time, it seemed important to me to be strong for my family. I wanted so much for them to love me, and I think I wanted to look at myself and feel like I was a good person, worthy of love and respect.

    After that, I’m just not sure. I pray and love the one. I’ve prayed for death but it never came. I’ve eased my pain by believing that there is a purpose for my suffering and that I have chosen this path, family, illness, the big stuff. When I see someone suffering, I feel so much pain, I want so bad to help them. All my life I have thought myself too broken to help others, and have worked to make myself well enough to be part of this world, not just a burden to those around me.

    I have lost everything so many times that my values have changed from the standard of society. I feel quite certain that if there were no purpose for me here that I would have died by now. If I can’t die, I must find something to do to keep myself busy, from going completely insane with boredom, loneliness and despair.

    Since I don’t have anyone to try and  impress anymore, I try to take of myself as I would my own child. I focus my energy on making life bearable by providing for my most basic of needs. I have food and shelter now, a wonderful companion pet, a social group online where I give and receive support and encouragement. There is more in the works but for now, just knowing that I am doing everything I can to change what can be, is enough to bring peace to my mind and body.

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