365 Days of Domestic Violence Recovery: Days 13-17 Finding my Path

I take the path less taken, not because it’s something that I have to, but because I wanna forge my way to my goal. The picture you see is the path I take to go to my classes. It’s Dawn for me. It’s the end of the cruel harsh night. Something that lasted for so long.

Ever since I left my relationship, I realized I wasn’t myself. I wasn’t the person who I wanted to be. The Independent, driven, motivated, and passionate person I once was. That was taken away from me.

If I have said it once, I will say it again and again. The Divine Comedy is my favorite piece of literature. In the story, Dante places himself in a fictional journey through hell, purgatory, and paradise. Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. Through my experience I have placed myself in the Inferno, where I had to experience the pain and hardship. I had to see only the wrath of one. My abuser wasn’t my guide though. He was the environment I was in. He was the pain and suffering. The fire and the brimstone. I knew I had to traverse through the hardships in order to escape the Inferno. My guides were the people that actually cared. The ones who would spend hours talking to me on the phone. My parents, my friends, my advisors, my family. Those were the ones that helped me escape the flames.

I know find myself in the reflection state in the Purgatory. Where I’m slowly climbing the mountain to recovery. Where I build myself back up to where I once was.

In the story, Dante shows that Purgatory is a mountain, where the souls of which traverse up to reach the summit, and reach paradise. The kicker is, you can only travel during the day. For if you travel at night, you cannot progress forward and you end moving back.

I find that the night represents myself in a state where I feel the trauma from the events of my past relationship. Every time I think about that situation and I try to move forward, I find myself moving backwards. In order to progress, I have to do so when the time is right.

The night is over, and the Dawn has begun. It’s time to make a move to change my life. The trail is in front of me and I have to keep moving.

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365 Days of Domestic Violence Recovery: Days 6-9 and 12

On June 7th, 2019, I made the choice to escape my house, and escape my abusive relationship. I ran out of my house, barefooted, and to the emergency post with the blue light. I can not believe that it has been almost 6 months since I left my abusive relationship.

I ran out, pushed the emergency button, and I removed my self from my abusive relationship.

From the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel, The Great Gatsby,

He stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious way, and, far as I was from him, I could have sworn he was trembling. Involuntarily I glanced seaward – and distinguished nothing except a single green light, minute and far away, that might have been the end of a dock.” (Fitzgerald)

Although the green light represented money and wealth, that blue light was my green light. My freedom. My arms stretching out to finally grasp it.

I use the blue light to represent freedom, and I am constantly looking, reflecting, and chasing my blue light. My freedom from the fear of what my past relationship was. To find my happiness.

This is the thing that I am constantly thinking about at night. I sometimes wish I could go back to that light. When I walk past it on my way to class, I’m constantly reflecting as to what that symbol was. It was my escape and my future for me. I’m constantly chasing after it. Just like Gatsby did.

The blue light I see is my goals. I reach out to try to grasp them. In order for me to do so, I can’t just keep grabbing and reaching for the light, but use the light to try to guide my life and to navigate through the tumultuous waves of life. Just like the ships did for the green light.

“Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that’s no matter—tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther…. And then one fine morning—So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.

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365 Days of Domestic Violence Recovery: Day 10-11 Dreams

Imagine having a dream where you relive the worst experience in your life. Imagine that you can feel everything, like you’re not even asleep. Imagine then waking up with your heart beating out of your chest, your throat hurting, your head raging. Imagine this being part of your life every single day.

To quote the critically acclaimed childhood movie for millennials, Shrek, “By day one way, by night another. This shall be the norm.”

Essentially at night, I’m facing the experience e every time I close my eyes and prepare to sleep. There are days where it doesn’t happen, however, they are rare. Last night in particular I had went to bed feeling normal and ok, and I wake up with the panic attack to end all panic attacks.

In the past couple of months, on top of the fear of the incident happening again, I’m also trying to avoid the dreams. Avoid the nightmare. Avoiding the thoughts. It seems to be the only option I have. However, I’m learning ways to control the dreams, and to process them as not real.

The mind can be a scary place, especially for survivors of domestic violence. Although, I can never fix the problems, I can move forward and process the feelings and emotions that come with. Counseling and therapy help, but they are useless if I don’t apply myself forward.

Dreams are scary, but reality and fantasy are different.

If you’re suffering through something similar, please don’t be afraid to reach out. You’re never alone in this situation and you will always have help and support.

If you or someone you know is facing a situation of domestic violence, please do not hesitate to call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.

365 Days of Domestic Violence Recovery: Day 3&4, My Support System

Today was something that was a very heart warming of a day and continues even tomorrow, because I appreciate my friends immensely. Being with my friends is something that is one thing I have found make me forget what happen to me.

My longtime friends were always there. My friend Becca, who intially took me out to make forget of the situation.

My friend Haley, who i would call to talk about subjects because I needed to focus on something else. Who I would also call and talk to every time I broke down.

My new friends Doug and Todd, who I met at a LGBTQIA+ retreat, and have made me feel part of their family. I have been so close to them, and have helped me through this tough time by offering an ear when I need to talk. A place to stay when I felt scared to be home alone. They have been a real great group of friends. They also introduced me to my new friend Jaime, who has shown me that I need to let loose, and just have a good time.

My parents have also been very active in helping me make sure that I am doing well. My parents have shown me that in times like this, I need to remember who I am and who I once was, and try to work for the dreams I sent long ago.

Everyone of my friends have been so amazing and I couldn’t be so thankful to have you in my life. This post is to thank you for everything you have done. I love every single one of you.

365 Days of Domestic Violence Recovery: Day 2 Reflection

Where does one mind lead to when dealing with an abusive actions? How does one remember a person after such an event? Who do you talk to when you’re dealing with such a heavy subject? All of these questions are answered via one word, reflection.

Four months ago, I remember coming home from a long day of work. It was midnight. I had just completed a 8 hour shift. I walk into the room to find my abuser sitting on the couch. He was upset over something, and didn’t tell me why he was upset. I didn’t think anything of it. I was ready to go to bed. I didn’t want to have a fight.

That’s where the end began. I was dragged out of my bed, hit across the head, beaten, and strangled by someone who I thought loved and cared for me. Flash forward to my escape. The officer who came to my rescue. The person who would help make sure that this wouldn’t happen again. The one who saved me by getting me into an ambulance and getting me to the hospital.

That night would forever change my life. I remember sitting in my hospital bed, the abuser sending me texts upon texts filled with empty promises, apologizes, etc. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t know what to do. I was overfilled with emotion. This person had lied to me, betrayed me, and made me feel worthless without him. I knew what I had to do. I blocked all forms of communication. I knew this had to be done. In my heart I knew I had to be done. As much as it pained me, because I was in love with that person, I knew I had to protect myself.

Abusive relationships don’t end on their own. They are like a disease. They abuser is a like a disease. They take your money, your health, you well being, your emotion, and they feed off of it. They put you in a place where you feel hopeless, and can lead to the death of you. I had let the disease fester for so long, that I didn’t even think there was a problem.

However, if the grief of dealing with the emotional abuse wasn’t going to kill me, he would physically do it.

I’m so thankful that I got out, and that now I am able to live my life and to be my own person.

To anyone dealing with an abusive relationship, the only way the abuse stops, is to leave. There are resources for you. For more information call 1-800-799-7233. There is help for you and you don’t have to do it alone.

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365 Days of Domestic Violence Recovery: Day 1, Getting Reacquainted with Myself

Today I start a year’s long journey. Something I need to do. Something that will forever help me become the person I once was.

For two years of my life, I lived a lie. I was becoming someone who was trying to please another person. I became someone who fell head over heels for someone who would take my love and use it to their advantage. Someone who would take my love and to better themself. In June of this year, it came to a head, and it lead to myself having to go through the struggles of dealing with the after affects of what happens when you’re in a Abusive relationship.

Today I take my life back. I want to share with you day by day of my journey of recovery, finding myself again, and becoming the person I want to be. No more lies. No more excuses. I will document every feeling, every emotion, every event, and every triumph. For my life has just hit the accelerator and I’m going to take off once again.

I hope you will join me on this journey. For it won’t be an easy one. However, I hope to highlight the importance of Domestic Violence survivors and their stories and to help put an end to domestic violence.

“You can tear me down, hurt me, bruise me, and even send me to the hospital. However, you have just given me my voice back. My freedom back. You have no power over me anymore. I am me and only me. No one will ever bring me to that state anymore.”-myself sitting in the hospital bed.

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