barely Surviving to Healing & Thriving


A life filled with abuse, abandonment, mental illness, obesity, homelessness, opiate dependency and incurable disease. She went from a wheelchair to running 5K , advocating and making international news with cannabis, fitness and nutrition; transformering herself into Fit Cannabis Girl and opening Break the Stigma Fitness all while being a single mother! 

 
 

1986-1989 it all started here

I was born on October 21st, 1986 to a father who worked as a truck driver and a mom who worked retail. I had a brother two years older and we lived in Saint Paul, Minnesota. I weighed 7 lbs 6 ounces and was born with a heart murmur.  I am told I was a happy baby, but drooled a lot. 

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From the start my parents had a rocky relationship. My father was very controlling, manipulative, and mean. He also had an affair very early in their marriage that my mother tells me broke all trust. Due to his abuse she tried leaving my father many times starting in 89', but she always went back to him due to my brother and I, financial reasons, and promises of change. 

 

1990-1994 preschool Days 

I started my formal education going to a preschool my mom was a teachers assistant at.  I was always closer to my mom growing up and as a child had a good relationship with her during this time.  I grew curious, artistic and was smart. I loved to learn. 

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There were happy times periodically placed throughout like when Roland's parents brought us to Disney World and Disneyland as children. Rolands parents did play a significant role in my life.

ASK ALANE she left him when?

 

1994-1997 - Rocky Times 

I lived in chaos. My father was obsessively in love with my mother and extremely angry and jealous. Add that to manipulative, mean and vindictive and you have a really emotionally unstable and abusive individual. He would call her place of employment and show up during her shifts. She lost many jobs due to his behavior. I think this was all a strategy he used to make her depended on him for money so she would have to come back to him. When it continued to happen she started looking for options out, again and left him in 1994

She turned to drugs and dated men to escape the torment she felt when she was with Roland. Looking back I am not mad or resentful at this. I know she was in so much pain and didn't know how else to deal with his abuse. It didnt take long before she used daily and had drug induced seizures, one time my brother and I found her unresponsive. 

Still, facts are facts and this lifestyle caused harm to her, myself and others around her.  I think back to a specific incident in  94'  when she brought me to the cabin of the guy she was seeing. I would proceed to break both of my wrists while there from taking a bad spill on a swing. I was standing on it, then fell backwards and tried to catch myself in a backwards bend. This is when she told me to "lay on the couch with ice". It wasn't until a few days later when we would return to the cities and my grandmother would take me to see a doctor. I was sent home with casts on both broken wrists.  

Roland loved sports and coached my soccer team during these years. I would complain of pain and issues, but would bullied, laughed at, and told I was saying it for attention when really I was struggling with symptoms of EDS. He would often get kicked out of games for being aggressive with the referee, other coaches or kids. This behavior was only amplified when we were in private. If I ever let him down, he would be sure to let me know what a failure I was. No matter what I did, he would only point out the things i did wrong, never a word if I did something right. His anger, manipulation and abuse only got worse as I grew older.

 

1997-1999 Growing Pains

Alane left Roland again in 97' and officially divorced in 99'. Once she left him, I bounced around with her initially, then was forced to live with Roland because he was financially able to obtain counsel and got custody of my brother and I. Even though he had custody, I often stayed at his parents who lived 3 houses away.  

After they divorced, Alane was never fully able to escape the turmoil of being in Roland's web. He would hurt her by dictating when she could see us, always causing some kind of drama to make the situation unbearable. He especially loved to put me in the middle, making it conditional that he would have to be there for her to see us. On the rare occasion I was allowed to go with Alane I was berated with questions and put in the middle of their chaos when returned. His anger was terrifying. One memory in particular stands out when he demanded I take him where my mother took me. He actually thought a 10 year old kid could give him directions to a store in downtown Minneapolis. When I couldn't provide this information he screamed, saying how stupid I was for not remembering. 

We were helpless to his ways. I know this control and manipulation played a significant role in what lead her down a heavy coke/crack addiction during this time period. Due to her use, her and I started to have a very volatile relationship.

Roland continued to make fun of me, belittle me and always made sure I felt worthless. He was a bully through and through.  I was nothing to him and he made sure I wouldn't ever forget it. His ways lead me to never truly feeling wanted or loved by him. 

Alane battled hard, and by 1999 put herself in 4 treatment programs trying to sober up. She had bouts of sobriety, but wasn't able to kick it for any length of time. I always felt like she had the best of intentions, but Roland and the drugs had gotten a hold of her so bad. I also know now she was dealing with major traumas from her childhood and had a lack of family support, so the deck was stacked. 

2000- Independent Girl 

In late 2000 I was in the 8th grade and living with Roland. He struggled with drinking on and off most of my childhood, with bouts of violence, but now was hitting the bottle extra hard and started to dabble with uppers. Roland is very good at manipulating, and Alane was completely addicted to uppers at this point. He knew this and wanted her back in his life so he admittedly said he used meth to luer her back into his life. At this point they started to spend time together and use. 

Things were very dysfunctional.  When I would see Roland, He was a bully, calling me names and was always screaming. I lived on eggshells. I sought an escape and also needed to make money. Thankfully, I was turning 14 soon which meant I could get a job. Finally, some true independence. 

I spent the weekend of my birthday gathering applications at the local mall. I was hired instantly at Orange Julius, and soon after at Subway in the same food court. I had to work two jobs due to rules about how many hours a minor under 16 could work for one employer and for me, I needed to work more then 20 hours a week. I became a workaholic. I was addicted to the freedom making my own money brought me and how it got me out of the chaos. 

Now that Roland and Alane were on good terms, I was allowed to live with her. We lived in section 8 housing just down the street from Roland and my Grandparents. We had next to nothing financially and lived on government assistance. There would be times when the food assistance value would be traded for half that dollar value to help support her habit. Alane would would be gone for days on end coming home looking the weight of a concentration camp survivor and would spend a week in bed recovering. I remember a time when I came home to a random man sitting in the one bedroom/studio apartment where my bedroom was the living room, claiming he had already paid for the apartment and wasn't going anywhere. I gathered my things and left.

I went to live with my friend Brooke. Through her family, I would meet those i called my "adoptive" family. Tina was my "Mom" during this time and someone I admired greatly. She owned her own small business, was a single mother of 2 kids,  and took in any kid who needed to be loved.  Her "kids" became my siblings and this was the first time I can remember feeling truly loved and cared for. Unfortunately she lived 4 hours North of me in Grand Rapids, MN, but I didn't let this stop me. I took the greyhound bus on long weekends off from school, holidays and spent the summer with them. I desperately wanted to live with them, but Roland wouldn't allow it. My relationship with them continued through high school. 

2001-2005 High school HigH

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In high school i was quiet, and kept to my small circle of friends. I enjoyed music, school and work. I ended up missing about a third of class because of my hectic life outside of class.  The administration and teachers were supportive and kind through this because they knew some of the struggles I dealt with in my home life. I wasn't reprimanded as long as I got my work in and maintained grades. I kept an A/B average, won a writing award, and excelled in arts while maintaining employment. By junior year I applied for and was accepted into Post Secondary Education Option which gave me the ability to take college level credits for free that also counted towards my high school credits.  I registered the maximum allowed credits attending part time my junior year and full time senior year. I loved being apart of that program because high school wasn't my thing. I had a hard time relating to anyone and was dealing with severe depression and anxiety from my home life and struggled with my weight. College classes allowed more freedom and the ability to work more, I loved it! I graduated in 2005 from High School and was already halfway through my associates degree, I graduated in 2007 I remember thinking, how badly I wanted to loose weight, but I distracted myself with a busy work and school life. I thought "only up from here"!"

SR PICTURES INSERT- Pictures in High School? 

By 2003 Alane got sober, and did it on her own. She obtained a job as a school bus aid until 2007, which she credits help keeping her sober these years. 

   

2005-2009- Wedding Bell Blow Up 

 
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Music and concerts were my refuge, and that's where I met Joe, my ex-husband. I wanted nothing more then to have a family, be loved and feel apart of something. I saw the potential of this when I met Joe and it took me all of 3 weeks to move in with him.  About a year later we bought a house in the Spring of 2006, and by October 2006 we were married. Tina, didnt agree with my marraige and I havent talked to her since. I got pregnant in the beginning of our marriage and in July of 2007 I had my daughter, Raegan. I was going to school full time in the evenings and weekends for psychology & business management while working full time for Wells Fargo Investments. I was as determined as ever to have what I didnt growing up.

Things became very stressful at home. Our financial situation was strained due to the the market. It crashed, and because we were in an ARM mortgage our payments started increasing. Joe was also fired from his job the same week I had Raegan, and decided to leave for 3 weeks to work a side job in another state just weeks after I had her. 

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My joints always were making noises and caused pain. Because it had never been addressed as a child, I had rescinded to, this was normal. After I had my daughter, I started having significantly more pain throughout my body, especially in my knees and back. I would walk, and my patellas was sublocate, then eventually dislocate. I also gained weight, was depressed and always felt run down. This is when I knew something medically was wrong.

On my daughters first birthday I found out my husband was having many affairs, and we separated.  I tried to save the house, but I couldn't maintain the bills alone. We tried multiple times to work things out, but in the end decided to divorce. We would end up loosing our house after loosing 50K in value in less then a year because of the crash. Raegan and I moved back to my granadmas briefly where Roland was living.

Roland belittled and told me I was worthless. He was fond of telling me how fat and unattractive I had gotten during this time. Saying things like "no wonder Joe had had affairs", and remind me that no man would to be with me the way I looked. 

The artist loft 2009-2010

In 2009 Alane had an injury and went to the doctor. He prescribed her pain narcotics to help with the pain. touch back on alane. 

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To escape Roland's abuse,  I secured a cute 2 bedroom artist loft in Saint Paul for Raegan and in November of 2009. I had lost a good deal of weight at this point, getting down to about 190lbs. Looking back I can only contribute this weight-loss to how sick I truly was during this time. I was in and out of the hospital frequently with multiple bouts of kidney infections, pneumonia, and c-diff. 

 

Febuary 6th 2010

Febuary 6th 2010

In Decmber of 2009 I obtained a job at an insurance agnecy after ending my employment with Wells Fargo Investments. I worked for about a half a year before I was too sick and put on short term disability by my doctor in March of 2010 . At this point I was 22 years old, a single mom to a 2 year old and little did I know about to become competently dependent on opiates.  

Febuary 6th 2010

Febuary 6th 2010

I started receiving a prescription of Oxycodone 5 mg to use 6 times a day from my doctors, for pain. Whoa! This magic pill would not only dull my pain, but numb me of all sadness I felt relating to how in a year I had lost my house, marriage, health, job & my ability to finish school.

My disability payments were only 60% of my normal wage, which made paying rent and all of my bills difficult.  Rae and I lived in that apartment for just under a year before we had to move back to my Grandmas, where Roland was living. 

Back to being bullied and picked on, it was hell again to say the least. I was very sick, severely depressed, and my weight started to increase. Even tho I had been diagnosed with Lupus and placed on medicine to help control the symptoms, I was told I wasn't actually sick, lazy and didn't want to work.  

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             September 30th 2010 - Reaching back to 250lbs+

             September 30th 2010 - Reaching back to 250lbs+

Thankfully, just a few month before in May I had met a woman named Darcy. Her and I became very good friends and after living at my grandmas for a few months in misery, she invited Raegan and I to live with her in the Winter of 2010  

 

2010-2011 Obese, Angry, Poor Me, Doped Up Haze- Life with Darcy

Darcy  quickly became my best friend and confident. She never allowed me to loose faith in myself and always believed in me. She gave me unconditional love and support when I was at one of my lowest points. 

Raegan Picking flowers at Darcy's Summer 2010

Raegan Picking flowers at Darcy's Summer 2010

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She was concerned with my health and wanted me to just focus on trying to get it in order. I did this and the doctor became my full time job. When i wasn't going to the doctor I was kept up in bed in a great deal of pain. I became a very negative and depressed person.  To put things into perspective I was a girl who once loved to get dolled up and go to concerts, and soon couldn't leave the house after doing my hair and makeup from pure exhaustion. I began to resent people who had their health, and felt sorry for myself.

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During this time I smoked cannabis on and off, but because I was going to a pain clinic and UA'ed often, I didn't medicate to the point I needed for fear of being kicked off the opiate contract.    

In a short time I was completely dependent on the narcotics I was prescribed by the pain clinic. By the end of my time their, I was receiving 150mg of oxycodone, 90mg of extended release morphine a day, in addition to "as needed" instant release narcotics for when it got really bad. I also took more when I could get my hands on them because the withdrawl was so bad and I had convinced myself I needed them. 

 

                                           March 8th,  2011

                                           March 8th,  2011

I was also seeing a psychiatrist who prescribed me adderall for ADHD, Xanax for Anxiety, ambien & trazadone to help me sleep and a multitude of depression medication. From my primary and specialists I was on Plaquenil and bouts of prednisone to suppress my immune system for Lupus, amitriptyline and sumatription for migrains, Flexerial for muscle spasms, and Gabapentin for nerve pain. I was also prescribed zolfan for nausea, loradadine and Omeprazole to control histamine for Mast Cell, norvasc to induce circulation for Raynauds, Vitamin D & C to counteract deficiencyI used lidocaine creams and patches, multiple inhalers for asthma and a nebulizer to help me fight bronchial infections. I was given injections, usually steroids in my joints,and epidurals in my back. I had also been diagnosed with Vitreous Degeneration of the eyes. 

I was suppose to be managing my illness, but had let the narcotics consume me. I became very detached and spent the majority of my time in bed caught in the cycle of opiate dependency.  In August 2011 I moved back to Phyllis's after a falling out with Darcy.

I was very depressed being back at Roland's and would go threw my prescription in days. I spent my time going to doctor appointments, and hanging out with Brock, love interest from high school who also used prescription pills. Besides time spent with him, I closed myself off from others. I was   

 

October 7th 2011

October 7th 2011

December 2011

December 2011

November 5th 2011

November 5th 2011

 

2011-2012 HARLANs & SOBRIETY  #MedicateMe -

We lived at phyllis and Rolands, but I spent a great deal of time with my daughter at my friend Harlans in Saint Paul. He was also a pain patients due to a bike accident that took his leg and damaged his entire body. 

            Feb 7th, 2012 Mall of America                   Photo by: Harlen Doorman

            Feb 7th, 2012 Mall of America

                 Photo by: Harlen Doorman

                 March 25th, 2012 @ Harlan's with Dakota!

                 March 25th, 2012 @ Harlan's with Dakota!

    Hiking in Stillwater MN             April 29th 2012

    Hiking in Stillwater MN

           April 29th 2012

He knew about my home life and always allowed Rae and I to crash on his couch. His nephew and Rae became good friends as Harlan and I bonded over medical issues, our love for music, and motorcycles.  

I started to frequently use cannabis in 2012 time because it was one of the only things that did help the pain. Yes, I was still taking narcotics, but due to tolerance those werent actually addressing the pain, it just kept me from withdrawal. In fact, I felt like it actually increased my pain.  Come to find out, that's actually true too! (Read how you can be in more pain after taking narcotics here). So, after testing positive in one of my routine UAs at the pain clinic, my prescription was pulled. I tried go to a  methadone clinic to help with the withdrawal, but after 2 days of frantically trying to get to the clinic before the withdraw began, I decided that life wasn't for me. On June 17th 2012 Alane helped me get a hotel room for a week so I could go threw the worst of it in peace, because during this time I was living back at my grandmothers where Roland was. I went through a very scary withdrawal that I felt symptoms from for over a month. It was so severe I remember thinking I just wanted to die. Excessive vomiting, diharriah, stomach pain, hot sweats, and cold sweats.  I was never able to get comfortable and sleep. It was awful.  

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I spent that summer being active, and making some amazing memories with my daughter.   We did anything to get out of the house and away from Roland. Many days were spent at water parks,  play gyms and the lake swimming. This is also when I started to eat healthier. Pretty soon I was feeling better then I had ever remembered and lost a great deal of weight. It was obvious replacing  opiates with cannabis, changing my eating habits, and being physically active was what my body really needed to thrive.

          Just before swimming at Lake Elmo                           July 9th, 2012 

          Just before swimming at Lake Elmo

                         July 9th, 2012 

              September 9th, 2012 Valley Fair

              September 9th, 2012 Valley Fair

          Lake Calhoon September 10th, 2012                     Photo By: Brian Collier

          Lake Calhoon September 10th, 2012

                   Photo By: Brian Collier

I started vocalizing how cannabis was helping me through Facebook- Here is a  post from 2012.

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                  Working at The Upholstery Shop in Saint Paul September 5th 2012

                Working at The Upholstery Shop in Saint Paul September 5th 2012

I was having a difficult time being in the house with Roland, had become very depressed and desperate to move out. Since I had been feeling better in the past few months, I attempted to work so I could afford  my own place again. In an attempt to get my own place, I tried to work again, reupholstering furniture , but that lasted a few months before my 4th and 5th fingers would go completely numb and stop working. It was painfully obvious I was too sick to work, thus couldn't financially take care of myself or my daughter. I felt like a complete failure I applied for social security, hoped for the best but was denied.  

 

 

           2013-2015 the death of me,      the life of me 

January 18th 2013

January 18th 2013

I was still struggling significantly with joint pain and issues so I saght help of a Rheumetologist. After examining my joints and skin, she referred me to a geneticist at the University of Minnesota. By January 2013 I was diagnosed with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome.  

Ehlers Danlos Syndrome is a connective tissue disease that affects the collagen. You can think of collagen like the glue that holds your body together, and is the main protein that provides structure and strength to your body. Those with EDS have a defect in the collagen that makes it very weak and elastic causing issues where it can affects the skin, joints and blood vessels throughout the body leading to fragile and stretchy (hyperelastic) skin, unstable and loose (hypermobile) joints, and fragile blood vessels and body tissues.

When I  received this diagnoses I felt great of relief because I finally had answers. To this point, I had gone my entire life being told by Roland and in the last couple years now by my Grandma that I was making up my pain for attention and because I was lazy. Finally, I had validation and answers.

I went to high school with (alis) but we didn't talk until he reached out to me on Facebook in January of 2013. I was just diagnosed with EDS and being testing for other issues relating to. I made a post regarding my health, and he asked me to have a drink. I agreed & met him soon after. Soon we became exclusive and I didn't feel so alone. I was still depressed, but was feeling good about being off narcotics and the idea of a life with this new man who wanted to be in my life despite all of these health issues. I felt so lucky to have him in my life.   

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I was still living with Roland, very miserable and wanted a way out. Pat said and did all the right things. He came with me to doctor appointments, saying things like he would always be by my side through whatever this illness threw at me. By May 25th, 2013 we found a 2 bedroom townhome in Eagan MN and we moved in together with my daughter Raegan. Within days I received my first beating. it only got worse from there. 

 After he put his hands on me he would offered me narcotics knowing the work I had just done to get off of them. I was weak, sad he was this angry violent person and felt trapt in this situation. I was also in a great deal of pain from the beatings along with the progression of the disease, and soon I agreed. I eventually got back on a prescription of narcotics from a different pain clinic and quit using cannabis so I could give clean UA's.  

I also receiving adderall and Xanax from my psychiatrist, but they would be gone soon after I got them filled becuase Pat would take it for himself. Little did I know Pat had a prior meth addiction and adderall is one compound different from meth, (check it out here!) so his was very attractive to him. Looking back I think I think had a lot to do with his anger issues. 

I got pregnant in the winter of 2013 and became very afraid. I was scared to see what he would do to a crying baby, then due to stress, had a miscarriage. We move out shortly after in January 2014 and Raegan and I moved in with my friend, Katie. We had been friends since high school and she had recently become a single mom.

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While at Katie's I spent a great deal of time reflecting on life and thinking about how I was going to fight this illness. I stopped taking narcotics again, and soon it became my full time job to go to appointments and see specialists. I had many tests done and was prescribed bracing (seen below) to literally hold me together. I struggled greatly with circulation issues to the point where extremities went numb and stop working. This was something come to be diagnosed at Cryoglubinemia- literally when your blood clots due to coldness. I was also diagnosed with Vitreous Degeneration, and found out I have a leaky heart - all of my valves regurgitate blood because the flap doesn't completely close it off. All of these conditions are directly related to having faulty collagen from Ehlers Danlos Syndrome.

Knowing I had EDS was a great help . I learned that if I built strong muscles around my weak joints, I would lessen the chance of injury, thus be in less pain. I worked vigorously and was amazed at the results I had when I combined cannabis with fitness.  I could actually fight the pain long enough to complete my routines, and come back the next day to build more. This was amazing. The more time I put in, the more strength I had.  This is when I realized how critical cannabis was for me in my health and wellness journey. This is also when I started to share my health journey on Instagram.

  

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Looking back it pains me to write this, but Pat and I continued to have a friendship and see each other during this time.  After all he had done, I was still desperate for his love and affection. My only excuse for this is I was incredibly insecure and had no self worth. I also had a hard time "abandoning" someone if they are asking me for help and promising they will change. I think this is my fatal flaw- I truly believe everyone has the ability to change thier life, and I am gullabel enough to believe someone when they express they want to do this.

 --Picture Pat and i?

I was living off child support, and government assistance while waiting for my application for disability to be reviewed for social security. This meant I had just under $500 a month for my daughter and I to live off. This caused stress in the home and I had little money to contribute to bills. I helped around the house, with her son and dad who was a stroke victim and would come stay the weekend. Still, this got too stressful for the both of us and Raegan and I moved back with my Grandma in May of 2014.

Phyllis had now gotten her own apartment and Roland wasn't living in this space. This made me incredibly happy and I finally felt like I could focus on fighting this illness and heal from my relationship with Pat. without being in a tioxic environemtn. I also started advocating for cannabis at the MN state capitol. My days were spent working out and reading for hours on my grandmas deck.

May 7th 2014

May 7th 2014

I started advocating for cannabis On May 6th 2014 when I showed up at the MN State Capitol. You can see and read my full testimony here. It became my mission to help educate other about cannabis and help influence positive policy change so everyone has safe and legal access to cannabis. 

Things were going great! I was volunteering for multiple cannabis organizations, and was feeling stronger by the day and happy to put more space between Pat and myself.

 

May 7th 2014

May 7th 2014

May70th 2014

May70th 2014

 
                               This is at my grandmas apartment where I spent the majority of my time doing physical therapy exercises and reading.                                                                                                                                 June 15th 2014                         

                               This is at my grandmas apartment where I spent the majority of my time doing physical therapy exercises and reading. 

                                                                                                                              June 15th 2014                         

I had a social security  hearing and  was excited at the thought of not being financially dependent on others due to my illness if it went in my favor. I was so close to getting my life worked out, then Phyllis, my grandma, told me I was not welcome at her home, only Raegan was and brought a police escort in to remove me. To this day I couldn't tell you why, because we were getting along better then we had ever  previously.To say the least I was heartbroken and confused. 

Raegan and I packed our things and bounced around staying at friends for a few weeks. We utilized libraries, parks and the community center.

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I  applied for apartments months earlier and checked the status of those applications. Nothing was available yet, but we were  first on the waiting list for a 2 bedroom that was about to become available in October.  This was still a couple months away, and I couldn't continue to let Raegan bounce around until then. I broke down and allowed Raegan to stay at Phyllis's while I remained homeless and went back to Pat who was staying with friends at the time.

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We stayed at his friend Tony's cabin on a lake in northern MN from August- September. Things got very bad. I remember thinking I wasn't going to make it out of that alive and I wasn going to be burried at that lake.  The only thing that stopped him was when his friend called him and begged him to stop, because the neighbor upstairs could hear everything and had told his friend, if he didn't, he would call the cops. I was so depressed, and stopped my fitness routine. I wanted to be with my daughter, but I was trapped in this place. 

Darcy's PCA Training Certification

Darcy's PCA Training Certification

In October 2014 I was notified that Raegan and I were approved for a 2 bedroom apartment in Saint Paul. After a long 2 months, we were reunited and moved in to our new apartment. She was as happy as she ever had been and excited to start new. Just a few weeks after we moved in I was awarded social security disability that came with a large back payment, close to 50 grand. I put a hefty amount down on a car, and made sure my daughter had a great Christmas. Darcy and I had reconciled our friendship and she became my Personal Care Assistant who helped me with daily tasks like cooking, cleaning, and taking me to appointments after receiving hours by the state.  

My  Legacy I bought in 2014.

My  Legacy I bought in 2014.

Initially I told Pat he wasn't welcome to live with us.  Then he got a DWI on 10/6/2014 and  called me from jail, begging for help. He was aware of the money I was about to receive and how I just got my apartment. Perfect for him since his mother told him he was not welcome at her place because he and her husband didn't get along. His mom even took me out Halloween costume shopping, when I had nothing and told me how I was her sons only hope. She begged me to help him and between the tow of them, I allowed him to move into my apartment and serve out his sentencce at home. This sentence almost became my death sentence.   Beccause  his mother and family refused to help,  and he told me I was his only hope and begged me not to abandon him.   She took me out shopping for Halloween costumes and told m I was pats last hope to get his life together.  So, reluctantly I agreed after he promised he was done drinking, would get a job, go to anger management and never put his hand on me again. This forgiving nature and my ability to always see the potential in others  Unfortunately these were empty promises, and soon, I was afraid for my life again. 

Christmas 2014

Christmas 2014

Unfortunately these were empty promises, and soon, I was afraid for my life again.

December 2014

December 2014

Darcy and I  had mended our friendship, and she became my PCA. We spent mornings doing physical therapy, yoga, listened to Lana Del Rey and Beyonce. But even with my efforts, I was still digressing. Things had gotten so bad  I was given a loaner wheelchair in December of 2014 as they built my custom chair. 

Things with Pat were getting more violent by the day.  One instance comes to mind when Darcy came into work and there was blood on the walls from the previous nights incident.  She begged to go to the police and get help, but I wouldn't allow her to.  At this point she told me we couldn't be friends anymore, she couldn't stand by and watch him do this to me. And as quick as she came back into my life, she was gone. 

I know, you are probably asking yourself- "Why didn't you just call the cops?"- well, I didn't think that was a safe option. I was consuming cannabis at this time and he would threaten to call the cops himself and tell them where my medicine was in my apartment, in my possession. Because I lived in Minnesota and flower cannabis was not allowed in the medical program, I  could be charged criminally, CPS could take my child, and worse yet, give her to Roland.  This was my biggest fear,  and he knew this and played into it.  He also had other narcotics hidden throughout the apartment to keep this control in his favor since his name wasn't actually on the lease. My home became his trap house and I was the fall guy. I knew at this time the only way he was going to leave was by choice and that wasn't going to happen till my money, nearly 50 grand, was gone. 

As soon as my money came, he spent it as if was his, even "borrowing" it to his family and friends  so he would look like such a great guy. Anytime I would question him, it would get physical. And after every altercation he was right there with some pain medicine to help me forget as he would nurse me back to health. It was a sick cycle. In retrospect I am know he did this to keep me ignorant to what was going on around me. 

Fall 2015

Fall 2015

About this time was when Raegan was diagnosed with EDS, as it is genetic with a 50% passing rate.  She started physical therapy, occupational therapy and swim team to help build her muscles.

Between my daughters diagnoses, seeing that wheelchairs everyday, and wanting to put space between Mat and myself,  I stayed very motivate and spent minimally 4 hours a day on building muscle.I was also motivated by the fact I was taking my daughter to Disney that following October, and wanted to be in that chair as little as possible. These reason collectively became my why and what motivates me to never give up! 

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By August 2015, my money was gone, and he left. I may have been broke, but i was free. I was the happiest I had been in years, and the strongest physically I  had been to that point in my life. I continued to workout, and I started dating Ghalib

 

 

Ghalib August 2015 

 

Ghalib was a friend of Mats and came looking for him becuase he owed him money. I told him he was no longer living their or allowed in my home and we bonded over how Mat cheated both of us. We became friends and eventually lovers.   Ghalib was tall, dark skinned and had green eyes that melted me.

I loved kayaking, doing PT in the park and anything active with my daughter. I grew stronger, happier, and by August 2015  my money was gone and he left.  I have not seen or talked to Pat since. 

Pretty soon I was dropped off a loaner wheelchair  in December of 2014 as they took measurements to build my custom chair.

Shangralia- acid a new girl 

 

 

Picked up November 9th 2015

 

At the end of my time with Pat I had multiple

My health was still getting worse, and 

Wheelchair dropped off winter 2014, Picked up November 9th 2015

 

"

 

Dropped off wheelchair. Started taking opiated again bc pat would beat me up then give them to me. 

August - Sept 2015- life Changing- Pat left, Shanghigh 9/15- Khalied-

july 2015- started fit cannabis girl faceboook page and wrote first blog of my comeback story. 

Continued to advocate for cannabis with MN NORML, MN Legal Mariajuana Now, MN Womens Cannabis Coalition, testifying, reaching out to state legislatiors, etc. 

 

Oct 2016- Packed my daughter and I and moved to CO for safe clean ACCESSIBLE access to cannabis

 

Spring 2017 - Filled LLC for Fit Cannabis Girl and Break the Stigma Fitness - Cannabis Inspired activarewear clothing, education, and most recently now a media company, and BtSF a Cannabis friendly fitness facility where people have the ability to learn about and partake in cannabis therapy exercise. 

Volunteering with CO NORML & Meeting Danny- 

Summer 2017- Open Break the stigma fitness

 

Danny destroying my home- taking the car 

 

 

 

Disney World- 89, 90, 

DisneyLand 94

I broke my wrists- 1994 - 

Separated in 1997- Soon after beth died. She would soon turn to drugs. He would turn to alcohol and soon after heavier drugs as well

1999 July 6th- Divorced from Roland