At the ages of 5 and 7, my younger sister and I were removed from our mother’s home and sent to live with our paternal grandparents. As a kid, I exhibited the classic signs and maladaptive coping strategies indicative of early childhood trauma. My behavior became more extreme and self-destructive as I got into my teen years.
Although on the outside I appeared to live a fairly “normal” life, inside I was full of self-hatred and a deep sense of inadequacy that stemmed from being a survivor of abuse.
Years of talk therapy yielded little relief and no measurable behavior change. After 14 years of battling mental illness, I began to accept that depression and anxiety were a way of life. Soon after, the quality of my physical health began to mirror that of my thoughts.
In 2013, I was diagnosed with celiac disease. Even though I adhered to a gluten-free diet, my health continued to decline. I experienced brain fog, chronic fatigue, IBS, and joint pain. My depression and anxiety had spiraled so far out of control I would rarely leave my home. Conventional medicine provided me with a handful of pills, a lot of debt, and no answers.
In 2018, I began rewriting my story and living a life of purpose. After five years of tirelessly researching and seeking a variety of treatment modalities to help relieve my symptoms, I was able to regain my health through an integrative approach that included functional medicine, customized nutrition, and trauma-informed therapy.