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So I was a member here 4 years ago & some of you are new to me

Some of you I do remember even though you might not remember me. But I'd like to share a little bit about me anyway.

The weekend I left this site years ago was a turning point in my life. I didn't have a real job, I was selling mostly weed but other stuff too. I lived in a very ghetto neighborhood & one day I looked around & told myself I needed to get out before I end up trapped by that life.

Before I could make the decision for myself.. my house caught fire. Luckily my family made it out but we lost everything, including my pets. I did everything I could to rescue them. I tried running through the front door as the fire was burning but the flames burst through the porch & I immediately realized I couldn't get in that way. So I ran to the backyard & went through the back door. I was hit by the thickest black smoke & I couldn't see more than a foot in front of me but I went in anyway. I held my breath the best I could as I called my dogs names & searched for them while the ceiling was caving in all around me. I only lasted a minute before I started throwing up from the smoke & I couldn't breathe anymore. The firemen got there at that moment & pulled me out of the fire, scolding me for running in but all I cared about was my dogs. When they pulled their bodies out I just broke down.

I left SW that same weekend. It was nothing personal, I was just heartbroken & it hurt too much to interact on any social media pretending like I was okay. I was angry; I was hurt. I just felt like nobody could understand. Sadly, that wasn't the end of the bad luck. The next house I lived in burned down as well, only 6 months later. Luckily that time I had experience & I knew what to do. I only had cats (just one cat who had 4 babies. I've never had another dog since that first fire. I think it traumatized me in a way because I find it very hard to call another dog mine. Perhaps it's the helplessness of not being able to save them that night). But I immediately grabbed a backpack & threw all the cats in it. My sister had a dog & I was able to save him as well. I felt lucky to be able to save them all that time around. I didn't care about anything else that was lost. As I learned from the first fire, everything is replaceable... but life is not.

After losing everything twice in a row I finally felt a fire light under my ass. I left my old life behind, disconnected from the people around me who weren't helping me get anywhere. I finally got a real job where I didn't have to struggle or wonder if I'd make enough money for groceries through the week. I bought my first car & was finally making enough money to buy all the things I always wanted but never saw as realistic for someone like me.

Over the years I've had my ups & downs, had my heart broken from a failed relationship, at one point 2 years ago I even tried to take my own life but I survived. I don't know if I died & came back but I do know that I saw my grandma's arms before I woke back up (I know, call me crazy lol). She had just passed away a week before & that was the day of her funeral. Probably the lowest point in my life as well.

Looking back.. it's only been 4 years since I've been here on SW & it's making me realize just how much has happened in that short time. I say "short" because I almost can't believe how much I've been through in such a small amount of time... It feels like so much longer.

I'm in much better state of mind these days. I'm not perfect & I definitely still have things I want to work on.. but I'm finally comfortable in my own skin & I'm proud of how far I've come. I've never been able to say that before. I know a lot of you might know how it feels, & maybe some of you are still struggling to get somewhere.. but I hope you know that the things we go through are what make us who we are. If I could go back, I wouldn't change a thing.

I apologize if you read all this & feel like I wasted your time.. I just wanted to share a piece of who I've become since I first left here. I'm actually glad to see some familiar faces & names still around. & To anyone who's joined 2018 or after, hey nice to meet you 馃槍

Much love to you all 馃檹
Dainbramadge51-55, M
I was on my way to respond to yesterday's post and I found this one.
I may have some years on you but it doesn't look like I have much life ahead of you.
While I was reading this so many things struck me. I started to actually write notes so I could cover them in my comment. LOL
The first one's kind of silly but I have to share with you being as you have first-hand experience.
I always said that if my house caught fire I would die before I would let my pet suffer and die.
I guess that is just a fuzzy thought we tell ourselves when we have no idea what it's really like. I was talking to a real fireman one day about going into a burning house. He told me they don't go in the part that's burning. LOL sorry this happened to you and I will explain that even more in a minute.
By the way I love reading your stuff. Not just because it is so relatable but your style of writing is very appealing. I like how you convey a thought. Very easy to read.
Okay I guess it wasn't that much later that I wanted to share this with you
I had a lab mix. My first dog and I didn't even want him to start with. Too much responsibility for me at the time. He was pretty much pushed on me so I took him home. For 14 years he was my best friend. The only time we ever spent apart was when me and my brother vacation on our motorcycles.
Very very very long story short I had to have him put down after the little idiot showed me that he could not acclimate to a family life. He was still acting like I was single even 6 years after the fact. It hurt so bad that even around 15 years later I can't talk about it without tearing up.
I write that part and very modestly.
I know what it's like to lose a pet. And I also know what it's like to never want another one because of the attachment and the pain that is inevitable. I will never have another dog because I will never put myself through that again.

Now even though we have already, in the past 48 hours, established that there is a connection between us of some form. Something that you wrote resonated so hard with me because it is an analogy that I use all the time.
If I could go back in time and change just one thing about my life.
I have mauled this over for years and years. We both know why we have thought of this and I will skip it because that would take about a year and a half to write even with talk to text. LOL
But seriously, every time I would ask myself the question of what aspect would I change I come up with the same answer. The same answer I get when someone ask what your three wishes would be. Well there's a slight alteration to that one.
I would not change a single aspect, a single moment any outcome from my past.
In my case I wouldn't change any of that because I would be so afraid it would change my relationship with my kids. I love that just as it is.
Because like we talked about on another comment, if I changed something miserable and horrible from my past I wouldn't have that experience knowledge to protect my kids from now. I'm sure you can make heads or tails from that statement. LOL
You mentioned something that caused me to make another cryptic note that I will touch on.
I'm very impressed with your friends situation. Cutting loose the dead ends is very hard to do even with the ones you thought were the closest.
It's all of the caterpillar shedding the old to become the new.
I know this is a long comment but I guess if I was you I would just say oh look there's another Dain novel length comment. LOL
I have only started to stock your profile so be prepared for more of these very soon. :-)
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Dainbramadge Its funny because when I was young I remember having those conversations with people about "if your house was on fire, what would you save first?". The answers were always things not worth risking your life for at all. Some people would say their phone, some said their PlayStation, or something material in their life that's ultimately replaceable. Fact is nobody ever just said they would get out & not worry about anything. Never in my life did I think of it as an actual event I would have to deal with one day. You know, it's that 'you see bad shit all the time but what are the odds it would happen to you' type of mindset. But fact of the matter is it's gotta happen to somebody. It could be you just as well as the next person.

Never did I think that the one & only thing I cared about would be my pets but it taught me a lot. When everything's burning down right in front of you, you never know what you'd actually do until you're in that situation. When I see movies where someone runs into a burning house or building to save someone it really bugs me how unrealistic it is. You can't actually see anything they way they show in movies. I was squinting as much as possible & still had trouble. Smoke is not fun in your eyes. You can't even take one breath because as soon as you do that smoke is just too much for you to inhale. I threw up instantly. If the firemen hadn't showed up at that moment I would've passed out right there. After they got me out of the fire they took me off the property completely & I couldn't stand to watch the house burn knowing that I couldn't do anything. I walked away & sat on a sidewalk blocks away. When I got back, the fire was already out & that's when they were pulling my dogs out. Both Chihuahuas died from smoke inhalation, but my pitbull died stuck to the door of my room, completely burnt. I still laid down with them, pet them, & hugged them, like they were alive.

I was exhausted but I still found the strength to dig their graves & bury them after. There was a friend there who helped me bury my dogs too. When I would get tired, he would take the shovel & we went back & forth. Fucked up thing is he's the same man who set my next house on fire months later. As if he tried to play on the way that affected me. I still want him dead but he's in prison right now so I can't do anything. Luckily I have certain connections that are making sure his time isn't easy.. I just wish I could do it myself. But that's just the old side of me that still wants vengeance. I'd rather not run into him because I don't want to go to prison over a piece of shit.

I'm getting too off topic though. Anyways the shit both you & I have been through are a blessing & a curse. Its a curse because of the obvious.. it sucks. But it's a blessing because we can speak from experience when we tell someone "hey you shouldn't do that". Like your kids for example. That's why I wouldn't change anything either. Not that I'm trying to compliment myself but would anybody think of me as wise if what I learned was just from movie quotes & Instagram captions? Anybody can repeat something, not everyone can say it with their heart & make you feel it in yours as well. That's a power you have that can not only feed your white wolf, but feed your children's as well
Dainbramadge51-55, M
@ChiefRunsWith40oz where you say that you never know what you will do for sure until you are actually in the situation is very dead nuts on.
There are many situations that I have been in where someone will say if that was me. It all goes back to the fight flight or freeze scenario
It's a hardwired thing. I think that people wish they were all fights but in reality I think there are a lot more freezes out there that wish they were fight. To average Joe schmo fight sounds more heroic. But in reality I think we both know that sometimes flight would be nice.
You talking about movies being so unrealistic when they depict it burning house in the thickness of smoke that it produces. The fact that it immediately took your breath away and there was no recovering from it. It's pretty hard to breathe when you are puking and the only thing you have to breathe in after that or in between pukes is caustic smoke. This too I can relate to. Not because I was in a house fire but because I mixed bleach and toilet bowl cleaner accidentally in the toilet in a very small bathroom. You know that b******* they say about housewives doing that and dying from it? Well it's all true. It is instantaneous. As soon as the toilet bowl cleaner hit the water a clear wall of caustic fumes filled the room. I had already exhaled and when I tried to inhale it burned and stopped me from taking any more in. Almost involuntary. Thankfully the bathroom was small and it was only two large steps out the door. A door that I also slammed shut on my way out. LOL. Turns out that happens to women and they take a full breath of air and pass out immediately and then subsequently they die by suffocation.
I believe that you and I are going to get a lot of usage out of the phrase speaking from experience. LOL.
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Dainbramadge yeah everyone's gonna say that they'll fight but most who say that would actually flight or freeze, they're just saying what they'd [i]want[/i] to do. Its all a good idea till you're actually in the middle of it. I honestly feel like most people wouldn't even have ran into the fire the way I did but idk.. I've done a lot of crazy things in my life. That wouldn't really be the boldest. I just felt shitty that I couldn't actually do what I'd hoped to. I bet most of the people who think they would run into a fire probably also think they'd be successful.. which is possible but it's a lot harder than just thoughts & ideas.

Even the bathroom thing you mentioned is dangerous as hell. Its scary as fuck when you already can't breathe so your body does that natural reaction deep inhale & even then it literally feels like choking on air. Its no joke.
Mamapolo201670-79, F
Two things:

You are a good writer and communicator. Make that work for you.

It's an awful, wonderful story. Keep on keepin' on. You're a warrior.

馃馃馃馃
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Mamapolo2016 I appreciate that 馃 I've always loved writing. I feel like it's one of my stronger suits, although if you heard me talking in person I cuss too much & use a lot of slang 馃槄
Thank you though. We all have a story & none of them are easy. I'm just happy to share mine
PeachesF
WOW!馃様You've sure had some major "growing pains" haven't you?! They say "no pain no gain," and you look like you've made it so far.猸怗lad you got away from selling drugs, that killed my brother years ago. I'm so sorry to hear about your dogs 馃悤馃挃馃惗 and so glad you didn't lose your own life trying to save them! Why did both houses burn down? Were you a "cooker"?

SW has change A LOT since you've been here. I hope you find old friends and make new ones. Thanks for sharing your story. 馃槉馃挀
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Peaches "growing pains" is a great way of putting it lol. I feel like I've gone through a lot for my age but I'm grateful for everything I've learned. I'm very sorry to hear about your brother too 馃ズ I've been in situations where I could've lost my life many times.. I've been in shootouts over stupid things & I feel stupid looking back now. Maybe I simply got my karma in some ways..

But no I didn't cook 馃槄 the first fire was from a candle left burning on an AC unit. The 2nd fire was because somebody intentionally set it on fire. A neighbor caught it on his security cam & that guy is in prison now. I didn't snitch but I didn't have to. He got caught on his own. I still hope I don't run into him one day because idk what I'd do. I let him into my home, looked out for him when nobody else did. I didn't deserve what he put my family through

I'm happy to be back here though 馃槍 the good people are still really great & I like talking with everyone & hearing their stories too
PeachesF
@ChiefRunsWith40oz I'm glad you are happy to be here. That's awful you helped that guy and he burned your house up?! I have major trust issues, I don't let anyone in my house.馃様
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Peaches yeah, since then I have trust issues with anyone being in my home too. Back then my house was like a "kickback spot". That's why I cut everyone out my life afterward. Not everybody is a friend
nightjourney31-35, F
Awwe that sounds like such a world wind roaler coaster. Always remember what you went through and what you are going to go through you are capable of getting through it, no matter how impossible you think it is. So glad you found peace of mind. And i joined the beggining of last yr. So it is nice to meet you馃挄
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@nightjourney very true, we don't go through things we aren't capable of handling. We only choose if it'll knock us out down or give us something to stand on
& Well I'm glad you're here 馃
Miram31-35, F
Nice meeting you too. It sounds like life didn't give you much of a break back then , sometimes we need to silently say goodbyes so we get to find purpose and new beginnings.

I wish you the best in life <3
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Miram I often felt like I couldn't get a break too, at times it definitely felt like I was destined to lose.
Some things force us to grow up though. I'm still changing step by step.
Thank you & I wish you the best as well 馃檹
SW-User
I'm so glad you're okay. It's amazing how life can change, but you are strong and have the right way of looking at it. Welcome back "Chef!"
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@SW-User Thank you 馃 I wanted to give up so many times.. sometimes I actually did. Eventually I decided I didn't want my life to be for no reason. I want to heal. Not just myself but others too.

But it's funny how I went from "Chef" to "Chief" 馃槀
SW-User
@ChiefRunsWith40oz You evolved and now you are the Chief!馃
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@SW-User Lol I like that 馃憣
DearAmbellina211341-45, F
You're still here, for a reason. All those things you went through, though terrible, shaped you in a way that will ultimately make you who you are meant to be. 馃尫
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@DearAmbellina2113 Thanks, I try to look at it the same way too. Life's been a series of fall after fall but I'm kind of thankful for how much I've learned at this point. I've done a lot of stupid things but I'm not an idiot anymore
QueenOfQuirk22-25, F
Thank you for sharing this bc it makes me realise how much my life has also changed since I joined sw
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@QueenOfQuirk it's crazy how much "life" we can fit in such a short amount of time. I hope yours has brought you enough good to make up for the bad.

& On another note you're an old user aren't you? It's cool you're still here 馃槍
QueenOfQuirk22-25, F
@ChiefRunsWith40oz Yup I鈥檓 counting my blessings bc i was patient lol; and true sw is the social media i have been consistent on haha
akindheart61-69, F
That is a story. i am pleased to meet you. that is a lot to go through at your young age. i am glad you came back.
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@akindheart I'm just glad I'm here to share 馃槍 & it's nice to meet you too
Thanks for sharing鉂わ笍. I just joined about a month ago. I'm glad you're in a better place now.
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@SchittsNGiggles thanks, I'm glad there are still new people joining & discovering this place 馃槍
SW-User
I'm really sorry you went through all that but good for you. You did well.
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@SW-User thank you that's appreciated 馃槍 still making it worth it
FluffybullF
Welcome back! You sound like a very brave, resilient person. 馃憦馃憦鉂わ笍
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Fluffybull thanks 馃槍馃 I like being back but I miss some of the people who've left. I get it though, I don't blame anybody for leaving. I didn't even think about coming back until the only person I kept in touch with suggested it
FluffybullF
Nice to meet you, thanks for sharing your story 馃憤馃憦
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Fluffybull nice to meet you as well 馃槍
Scarfface41-45, M
I read that in fast mode, welcome back 馃
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@Scarfface well thanks for reading at all lol it's good to be back though 馃檶
ExtremeNext22-25, F
Did I ever buy weed off you 馃し鈥嶁檧锔
ChiefRunsWith40oz22-25
@ExtremeNext hey maybe that's what I remember you from 馃槀
kodiac22-25, M
iamonfire69636-40, F
I am sorry for all that you went through 馃挅

 
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