A little less serious
Name: Fenella McCall
Where are you right now- tell us what you can see?
I’m in a little place called Somers, down on the Mornington Peninsula. I can see the ocean. It’s beautiful. We are so lucky here in Australia.
What did you have for breakfast?
There’s a few different components. First, I made scrambled eggs with chopped homegrown oregano, marjoram and fresh chilli. Then I made a mushroom, tomato, zucchini, spinach, stir fry with tarragon, thyme and oregano. With a side of avocado and gluten free toast. It was delicious and I had seconds.
What are you usually doing at 11pm?
Sleeping for sure! Although now I’m in semester one uni, I will probably be up most nights reading.
What is something most people don’t know about you?
Some days I wish my job was an animal massage therapist. I have a special bond with animals and usually am able to make quite erratic animals calm within a couple of minutes and a good massage :)…
A little more serious
Tell us a bit about your story? What defines you?
I guess you could say I’m lucky to be alive. Not to long ago, I was shooting up heroin daily for years on end. On March 14th 2017 I will be 22 months clean. It’s been a long road. I have grown up with anxiety, depression and substance abuse issues since I can remember. I have always felt extremely different from everyone around me. Like no one ever understood. I never felt ‘good enough’ for this world. Always feeling like I fell short. I have been to a couple of rehabs with the last one being a 10 month stay, up at a place called ‘The Buttery’ in Byron Bay. I learnt so much about myself and my thinking, however I still relapsed after that stay. It took losing a best mate and a baby from an unplanned pregnancy within a week of each other for me to finally get desperate enough to change. That was in May 2015. After that, I somehow found health and fitness, which has in turn given me freedom. Freedom mainly, from myself. A chance to start again. I am also now studying Psychology at Melbourne University and plan to work with people with addictions. I feel very blessed. Unfortunately, many heroin addicts never get clean. My partner, who I have been with for 9 years, will be 3 years clean in April. It’s incredible.
What inspires you?
Honesty. I find honesty the most inspiring quality of all. People being real. We live in such a fake world where so many people wear masks or pretend to be something they are not. I think that’s what I really struggled with for so long, but have slowly learnt to accept it. I am also inspired by people around me. Everyday people, doing the best they can with what they have got- if that makes sense…
What has been the biggest challenge you have faced in your life?
The biggest challenge was leaving my partner and family for 10 months to go to rehab. I really didn’t want to, but I knew I had too.. I was so scared. At that point, I didn’t even want to live anymore. I was scared that rehab wouldn’t work. That I would be a lost cause. But I went anyway. I wasn’t allowed phone contact for 12 weeks. Not knowing if he was okay was so hard. I left and he was still using- I wasn’t sure if he would also go to rehab. After 12 weeks I got my first phone call with him and he was 10 weeks clean. I couldn’t believe it. I cried so much that day. It gave me the motivation to stay there another 7 months and try my very best to find my own happiness and life again.
How did you overcome that challenge?
This may sound weird but I’m going to write it anyway. I started to have faith in the universe. In something, bigger and more important than I was, you know? I just prayed to the universe to get me through the challenge. One day at a time. I started to have faith that everything was going to be okay. That it would all work out in the end. That honesty was the key. Not being afraid of who I am or who I was, but owning it and working with it… I think that is what has helped me the most.
What is the biggest lesson you have learnt?
That I am not alone. That there are people out there who understand and I can relate too. That it is okay to have flaws and imperfections. That beauty comes from within. It isn’t external. That doing my best IS ENOUGH. That I AM ENOUGH. 🙂
What would you tell your 15year old self?
Try not to do anyone else’s thinking for them and don’t worry about what others think of you. They are worrying about what you are thinking about them (if that makes sense). So just be yourself.
What is your biggest life tip?
Make HEALTHY choices. Mind, body and spirit. Mental health, physical health and emotional health are so so important. Do the best you can to make healthy choices.
What do you think is the biggest issue facing women today?
I think one of the biggest issues for women is being listened to and respected. I still think there is a common belief that ‘men know better’ in a lot of areas and it can be very scary for a woman to stand her ground. At the end of the day- we are all human.
What do you think is the biggest opportunity for women today?
I think we are becoming more empowered and able to stand up for ourselves. More women are becoming managers, business owners and CEO’s, however there is still a long way to go.
What message do you want to share with your community?
To be open minded. To listen more and judge less. To speak from honesty. To take risks and not live in fear. To do something you love for joy not do something for money. To LAUGH and to CRY- both as important as each other. To speak up when you need help. To reach out when you are not travelling well. To spend more time doing hobbies and things that make you feel good. Oh- and to cook more food in the kitchen!! I think that has been one of the greatest gifts from being clean. Learning how to cook healthy and nutritious meals.
Finish the sentence This Is me……I am Fen. I am enough, just as I am.