Where do I begin? The beginning? Which is what? This has been a strange week for me. I just picked up and left my home and my life with my daughter to see if I could do better without drugs and alcohol. I was not deeply into either, but I was most definitely numbing myself with them. I was ignoring things with them. I was distracting myself from things with them. I was using drugs and alcohol for a purpose other than fun. I felt like a crap mom. I was loving but that is about it. I was negligent, I was careless, I was uninterested. I was a crap mom other than love and hugs. Those are important but so are baths and healthy meals and clean clothes. I was getting more and more depressed as I saw what I was doing. My world was getting smaller and smaller. I had no friends. None. I had no life. None. I sat in my room all day every day just waiting for the next day. I hardly went anywhere or did anything. I listened to music, read books, watched tv while I drank or smoked or both. I was meditating, doing diabetes care and paying bills, but that is about it. I had no life of my own. I was unhappy. I was discontent. I was aimless. I was just existing without purpose. 

And it had to change. I had to change. So I left. I didn’t feel strong enough to change where I was, so I figured that I would change somewhere else. And the only place I had to go was home. So here I am in my parents house—in my teenage bedroom—writing about change when it sort of feels like I am in the exact same spot I was at 20. Living at home, sitting in the alcove of my bedroom, trying to figure out where I belong and what I want in life. It is a drag to be honest. This isn’t fun, even if it is comforting. I want to just be more than I am. I want to be driven and successful. I want to be normal and independent. I am none of those things. I don’t know what I am at all. I feel like a failure. I have failed at adulthood. I have failed at life. I don’t feel suicidal but I do feel like non existence would at least be less painful than this. 

I don’t know where to go or what to do, so I am focusing on what I have to do, which is take care of my kid as best I know how. Be a good parent. Get her into school, get her with a doctor, give her baths and brush her teeth, make her read books, and play games with her. I don’t have to do anything immediately but be a good parent. A better parent than I have ever been. And once I get that going I can figure out what is next. 

Going backwards to move forward is difficult. No one wants to go backwards ever. But here I am back in my room at my parents’ house. Sitting in the same alcove where I sat as a teenager. Looking out the same window with the same existential questions: Who am I? Why am I here? And I don’t know the answers. I don’t know who I am or why I am alive. But I am someone and I do have a purpose, I hope. And I guess that I had better keep looking for the answers unless I want to keep having to go backwards.