So much of my identity used to hang on the fact that I did everything gently, naturally. I prevented health problems, I did not medicate them.
It was quite a slap in the face, then, to find myself on addictive medications – twice. The first time they were prescribed, I was desperate and ignorant. The last time I was desperate, but not ignorant. I nevertheless did not want to take those pills; I was forced. I feel violated. I can never be the same person I was before the benzos. They took things from me – my innocence, my reputation, relationships and my health.
I am so happy to finally be free. But I feel like I was just let out of prison where I was raped and beaten. Where they played games with my mind to drive me crazy. Where they tortured me with sleep deprivation and isolation. But because it was an invisible prison, nobody understands that that is why I’ve changed. That is what caused the crying and the rages, the outrageous fears and the crushing exhaustion. That was why.
I will never be the same person again. But I can’t say that I want to be. I’ve grown. I’ve learned things that I might not have been able to learn any other way. This is what suffering has taught me:
*God really does love me.
*There are some things worse than death.
*Quick relief comes with a hefty price tag.
*My mind is incredibly powerful, and I am stronger than I thought.
*Be grateful for all my blessings, both small and great.
*Being right and being understood is not as important as being a friend.
*As long as I concern myself first with what God thinks, it does not matter what people think.
*Never be afraid to share my gifts. Maybe God gave them to me for a reason.
If I can remember those lessons, I believe there are amazing things ahead. I’m a butterfly just emerged from its chrysalis, wings still shriveled and wet. Soon, I will fly.