As time went on I hadn’t found myself getting close with any of the girls around me but the adults were a different story.

Staff and I got along, for the most part, some better than others. There was one staff member I got close to quick. Nurse Sheryl. She was the first person I complained to about my meds and even when I gave her a hard time about taking them she never got short with me.

She would often listen to me vent about the problems I was having medical or not. She always had the most uplifting words for me. She had this faith in me I didn’t understand.

I had spent a lot of my life listening to others tell me and those around me all the things wrong with me so it was difficult for me to listen to someone say so much good.

Nurse Sheryl quickly turned into momma Sheryl and had become a bright light in my dim world. She helped me find the confidence in myself that I needed to push myself through the rest of school but was quick to call me out on my bullshit when I was just making excuses instead of legitimately trying.

She would go out of her way for me as often as I needed even if that meant she would come back to my cottage after her rounds to talk to me about whatever my issue was at the time. She always made time for me. I needed that more than I realized at the time. Someone I KNEW was in my corner.

My mother and other family members would tell me that they were there for me and all that good stuff but my mental issues always made me doubt that. I spent most of my life believing that my mother’s love for me was out of obligation and that given a choice she wouldn’t feel that way. Not that I had given her much to love at that point.

With momma Sheryl, though I felt that love and connection right from the start. I may not have understood it but I could feel it, and I was holding on to it for dear life.

 “We are friends for life. When we’re together the years fall away. Isn’t that what matters? To have someone who can remember with you? To have someone who remembers how far you’ve come?” ― Judy Blume