Author, Shannan Mondor will be having a book signing and sharing excerpts from her new book, ‘How in the Hell did I get Here’, on September 20, at the Weyburn Public Library. In her book, Mondor courageously takes the reader on a journey by sharing the effects of her abusive childhood, and then as an adult, to mask her pain, how she made destructive life choices that ultimately led her down a road to mental illness and addiction. Upon finishing the book, the reader is filled with encouragement as the story is a detailed account of how Mondor overcame her inner demons, made new healthier life choices, and is now paving a new road and helping others. 

Discover Weyburn had the opportunity to sit down with Shannan to discuss her book, and like the journey she fearlessly shares on paper, Shannan bravely shared with us the importance of discussing the difficult topics of mental illness and addiction. 

“How many of us put on a chameleon suit just so others will like us, so many of us do that, how many of us have a family member that we do not get along with and we stay quiet just so there is peace within the family, we stay quiet and then the feelings get buried deep inside of us and that’s not good,” shared Shannan. 

Looking back on her life of addiction, Shannan explained how she now sees certain life lessons kept repeating themselves. 

“I could actually see, wow, these learning lessons, that was the biggest point with all of my experiences, what did I learn from it, a lot of those lessons, those experiences, took me a long time to get, and as you can see in my book, they were repeated over and over until I actually got it,” said Shannan. “I am at a point in my life where I have definitely learned all those lessons and none of them are going to be repeated.” 

Stigma is often attached to addiction, most who recover go on with their lives and only share their private journey with those who are closest to them, we asked Shannan why she chose to write a book for the public to read. 

“When the pandemic first started, people were posting things to social media and there was a video that really triggered me, and still angers me to this day. Parents were homeschooling their children, and there was this one particular video where the mother is laughing and her daughter is pouring her a glass of wine and it’s not even noon, I was absolutely shocked and appalled that that was happening,” shared Shannan. “With social media, people were talking about drinking, and then the increase of alcohol sales and then the increase of suicides, and everything was negative, so I started to do these videos. With each video, I started to get stronger and stronger, and I started to reveal more about myself, and it was from there that I thought, I’m going to write a book and I knew it wasn’t just about me anymore it was definitely about my journey helping people. 

Shannan takes time to reflect on how drinking is often considered a social norm and is often glamourized and even encouraged.  

“Our culture has definitely made drinking very much a part of our culture, it doesn’t matter where you go now, there’s sip n’ shop to encourage the drinking, salons and barber's shops offer alcoholic beverages, there’s the paint nights that give you a complimentary drink, there’s nowhere that you go now that there isn’t alcohol pushed upon you. What bothers me the most, is that we are bringing children up in this society to think that this is normal and this should not be normalized.” 

“I want my children to realize that they can go to a party, or an outing and they don’t need to have that liquid courage, people need to start bringing their feelings to the forefront instead of hiding them, and that’s what alcohol does, it hides them, it numbs them.” 

Shannan's story offers hope and encouragement, and is a great example that it is possible to break the cycle of addiction, recovery is possible, and if one is willing to do the work a more fulfilling life is available.

While Shannan’s book signing will take place on September 20 at 6:30 at the Weyburn Public Library, this is by no means the end of her journey. She has begun writing a second book called, ‘Who in the hell do they think they are? – Eliminating Negative Family and Friends to Keep my Sobriety’. In addition, she is launching her own podcast in October 2022 and has now kicked off her own Life Coaching Business called, ‘Fear Fighting Consulting & Inner Works’, more details can be found on her website here.  To order Shannan's book you can go here.