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I had promised my brother [ Dylan ] that I would make sure that we got out alive, i carried so much guilt because he did n’t live, and I did. I felt like it should have been the other way around. I handled all of that in very unhealthy ways. I started drinking at age 13, smoking marijuana and hanging out with older people. I was trying to numb everything. And there was a possibility that my dad might die. I did n’t know what to do.
It felt weird being in a house with my dad and his girlfriend with none of my brothers, i was just so alone. He was a truck driver, so it was very seldom that we saw him. But that’s how he paid the bills. I also became really sensitive about my weight and the things that I ate. I think it was a way to punish Shasta Groene. I developed an eating disorder at a very young age. If I ate, I made Shasta Groene throw up. I then started self-harming. I was hiding a lot from my dad. And then he got throat cancer. He almost died from it. So much has happened that I never fully got to heal.
There were so many times in my life where I gave up on certain things, looking back on them today, I wish I never did. I ’d probably be a lot further in my life than I am now, even though I am far … But I did n’t know how to heal. I did n’t know how to grieve. I do think it’s important to start the grieving and healing process. Otherwise, you ’ll just keep living your life, not realizing that there are parts of you that are falling behind. It’s OK to struggle in your life, but it’s the resiliency that matters.
The day before, he was telling me that he wanted to take me to North Dakota and meet his mom and family, at that point, I was trying to earn his trust and make him believe that I did n’t want to leave his side. I would tell him that I wanted to show him all the places I grew up in, where I went to school because I loved school, where I used to hang out, basically show him my life because I had no family. That made him feel good because he felt that I trusted him. He felt that he was learning about my life and getting to know a vulnerable part of me. I was just trying to manipulate him.
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