Bianka was with her biological father and his girlfriend when she fell down and scraped her knee, it hurt so she started crying like most 7-year-olds would. Her father’s girlfriend gave her some beer and said, “This will make you feel better.”
“From a young age I thought that Alcohol, or another substance, was what was going to make me feel better,” said Bianka.
Her Biological father would take her out every weekend and spend thousands of dollars on her to make her feel loved and accepted.
“It made me feel like I fit in and it made me feel like people would accept me for what I had.”
As she was growing up Bianka had a recurring dream about a shadow. With time she realized that these nightmares were closely related to the memory of a trauma that she had suppressed.
Dealing with so much at such a young age, and feeling like her father wasn’t there for her like she needed him to be, was too much for Bianka to cope with.
“Going through the pain of my dad not being there for me, me calling him wondering where he was, what he was doing, him promising me he’ll be there on Father’s Day and him not showing up, gave me the wrong idea of how people should love and how people should act toward one another.”
When she was in the 4th grade she heard in a rap song that people drink cough syrup, so she went and stole some from the store.
While it didn’t really give her the effect that she was looking for it helped to get out of her own head. It was then that she felt love and acceptance and even though it wasn;t a person giving it to her which Bianka been searching for that feeling her whole life.
“After that I got with the group of friends that knew about Xanax, that knew about OxyContin, that knew about all of these. Hanging out with the people that I felt had the same issues as me, I found a place that I could finally fit in.”
Around 11, Bianka started smoking OxyContin, she was crying every night and acting out. It was around this time that her mom had started to figure out that something was going on.
Her addiction quickly escalated after she started buying her own OxyContin. The pills were expensive and she found that Heroin was a much cheaper substitute.
When Bianka first experienced Heroin, she didn’t even know that’s what she was doing.
“Someone actually told me that it was … weed resin and that was the best weed resin I ever had in my whole entire life and I had to get more of it. I loved it, and I still do to this day or I wouldn’t have gotten high.”
Heroin gave her a feeling of confidence that she hadn’t really felt before. She felt like she could do anything.
Bianka started working at Tilted Kilt Pub & Eatery, that’s when her addiction took a turn.
“That’s when things really went downhill. My manager would have me, on the clock, go buy drugs for me and him to get loaded at work … I was totally fine with it because he got me high and I was making money for getting high, so what better job could I have?”
After graduation, Bianka moved in with her boyfriend.
“I started lying, stealing, I stole from my parents … I didn’t care about you; I didn’t care what good you had done for me, all I cared about was that next high. All I cared about was that needle in my arm.”
Bianka’s family refused to enable her, anytime she was using she was not allowed to live with them. Although they were there to support her emotionally and still on speaking terms, they wouldn’t give her financial support.
Her family staged an intervention after her mom found out the extent of her addiction. During the intervention, Bianka agreed to go to a rehab facility in California.
“I lasted about 48 days and moved to the phase two of the rehab and I ended up relapsing with one of the girls there.”
After everything that had happened Bianka felt like her life didn’t have much hope. That’s her purpose in life was to get high and kill herself.
“I believed that the pain that I caused my family, I just felt like they would be better off without me.”
Bianka was living in San Bernardino behind a Walmart. She resorted to robbing people and stealing cars to get the money she needed.
“The area that I was in there was a possibility that my life would be taken from me at any minute for the drugs that I had, for the food that I had, for the shoes that I had. That’s just how it was where I was at.”
Bianka and a few people she was with were in a stolen car and saw an older couple coming out of a restaurant. The man had a gold chain, they decided to hit him and take the chain so they could go pick up.
This is one of the choices that Bianka still feels bad about today.
“Deep down inside I imagined if someone did that to my grandparent and it still, I wish I knew who this old man was so I can give him back what we took from him.”
The cops came and searched the car, found the drugs and arrested them.
“I started crying in the back of the cop car. Not because I was going to jail but because I was going to eat, because I didn’t have to wonder if I was going to wake up alive the next morning.”
The Start of the Journey to Recovery
While Bianka was in jail something changed within her.
“I got on my knees and I prayed, I didn’t know what I was praying to necessarily, but I prayed that I can stop living this life because I didn’t want to be this person anymore. I wanted to be able to wake up and not have to chase the high. I wanted to wake up and hug my mom and hug my little brother and hug the man who raised me, my dad. [I wanted] to be an aunt to my niece and a sister to my sister – I just wanted my family back.”
Sitting in jail gave her the opportunity to think about everything that happened, everything she did and it made her want to get sober even more.
Her charges ended up getting dropped and she was released.
“I saw my mom’s face and tears just started streaming down both of our faces and it felt that like in that moment in time, I was born again. I wish I could save everyone out here that is going through what I went through so they can have the feeling that I do… You can do this if you put your mind to it, I believe in you.”