The pain inside me used to eat me from the inside out, as if boiling water

Scorched my skin to third-degree burns. Breathing was difficult. Eating was

Impossible. Sleeping was something I could not do. I was out of my mind and

Couldn’t even recognize my own parents. I thought they were evil spirits

Chasing me.

My ups and downs resulted in me staying home all day watching

Marathons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dawson Creek and One Tree Hill. I

Got lost in a world where everything wasn’t hurting, I also lost track of time

And hated my life so badly I tried to kill myself again.

At the time, I wasn’t happy I survived  the doctor pumping my stomach and

Recharging my heart. I believed they had wasted their time.

Although, as I saw the pain and worry in my parents and sisters eyes a

Part of me knew they needed me in this world so I had to learn how to survive

In it.

I started Alliance House in 2011. I recognized the pain disappearing slowly

As I was put to work both in a transitional employment and at the clubhouse.

My transitional employment was with Camp Bow Wow, working with dogs. I

Liked it and enjoyed being able to bring my service dog to play with other

Small animals like her.

The biggest show came when something else started happening. I thought

I was sick. I went to my therapist to see what was wrong with me. When I

Described my symptoms of calmness, a bubbling inside and the need to sing,

Write and dance again, I thought I was going through another maniac state,

But my therapist asked me other questions.

My answers were I was sleeping again, dreaming again and the

Urge to eat again. Instead of staying in bed all day, I jumped out of bed to go

See my new friends at the clubhouse, go to work and finally got my life back.

She said I wasn’t experiencing mania, I was feeling happy, something that

Had become foreign to me over time since being diagnosed at the age of

Twenty. Hospital stays became non-existent and I haven’t tried to hurt my myself

Since 2011.

Since then, I had a successful job for two years as a peer specialist where

I could in turn help others deal with their mental illness, published two novels

Starting in 2012, graduated college with a bachelor’s degree and currently

working on a third novel with a writing coach and a New York City literary

agent. If I ever make real money, I would donate to the Alliance House

because they are one of the main reasons the days are lighter, that I am

writing again and that I not only love myself but have the ability to help and

love others.