I Will Survive


Leaving Trinidad two months short of my twentieth birthday to study nursing in England in 1975. Overcoming homesickness and culture differences to realise my dreams of qualifying as a nurse and midwife. Our busy lives as a midwife/ psychiatric nurse, working opposite shifts to ensure our children were cared for adequately. The problems ensuing involving my health, and subsequent car accident in 2002, cutting short my working life. Exploring the benefits of alternative treatments to aid management and recovery. Highlighting the importance of positive thinking, and an optimistic attitude to life. Expressing gratitude for being alive.

Finally realizing that having the accident at the time that I did was a blessing in disguise. I felt unwell. My body overworked and stressed. Something more sinister could have occurred in its place. It is in adversity that I learnt to survive by conquering my fears. To be the Victor instead of the victim.

Dedication: Thank you to all those who’ve helped me with the entire production of this book. Leslie Cryer of The Writer’s Bureau. Hayhouse. Reid Tracy and Kelly Notarus, Nancy Levin, and Kinko Hamilton for giving me the encouragement to get it published. To my entire family and all my friends, and to Mrs Valere, my English teacher at St Francois Girls College for the beginnings of my love of English and reading.

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Helen Brathwaite qualified as a State Registered Nurse in 1978, a State Certified Midwife in 1980, and a Registered Mental Nurse in 1982. Helping to influence her life- style choices, as her sensitive body reacted to certain medicinal drugs. Causing tiredness, drowsiness, and elevated liver function tests. Her grandmother had also impacted her thoughts towards the usage of alternative forms of treatments such as aromatherapy, and acupuncture, in association with other conforming medicines, as she was a great believer in homeopathy. She has no previous literary experiences but has been inspired to impart to others her personal story, that they would be exhilarated also.


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