I didn’t have an easy time growing up. My parents split up when I was 5 years old. I was often bullied and was a very poor student all throughout my schooling years. I had few friends, and most of them were short term friends as we moved around a lot during my primary school days and I attended no less than 12 schools in that time.
Three months into grade 10 and I was pregnant at the age 15. I hadn’t planned on getting pregnant; however as soon as I found out I dropped out of school as fast as I could. I’m not sure anyone other than my immediate family noticed I had left school or even cared. Pregnancy was the perfect excuse to leave as I hated school with a passion by that time and had attempted suicide in grade 8 unbeknown to anyone. My early relationship with the baby’s father was rocky to say the least. It was a time full of parties, arguments, alcohol, affairs, heart break and pot smoking.
During one of our many break ups I decided it was time for me to move on and I hooked up with a friend from school, we were together for around two weeks when he put my 18 month old child into hospital for two weeks; who had been bashed, bitten and burned by cigarettes. Years later and many people still think that it was my fault.
I got back together with my sons father and we now have had more children together. Our family plodded along with me being a stay at home mum and my partner doing permanent shift, we had our ups and downs due to trust issues, how or why we stayed together was often a mystery.
One day we, as a family unit were rocked by trauma that most people only see or hear about on the news and our life’s were changed, we were all suffering shock, and were traumatised. There was no support available for us and the only people we could rely on were each other. People talked about us, what friends we had made and extended family members distanced themselves and through no fault of our own we were pretty much alone.
A couple of years later my coping mechanisms failed, I again attempted suicide. Emotionally drained I needed to do something for myself, as I went along to workshops and different programs at the local Aboriginal Corporation and accidently enrolled in a certificate 2 security guard course. I thought it was a class for self-defence. I stuck with it and was employed upon completion of my course and I ended up working security weekend nightshift. During that time I had joined the board, I studied and completed certificate 4 in governance with the help of a tutor and I have since left the board, am now employed at the same corporation and have since acquired a diploma in community services and enjoy learning.
My partner became redundant and times are hard but I have learned that with time and effort positive change is possible, I will continue to learn and grow as a person as it makes a better me. A better me is a stronger role model for my family.
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