Day 12

#100daysofhappy

I am a survivor of Domestic violence.

I couldnt admit it to myself because of an ego I had to kill for humility’s sake.

So I’m talking with someone who knows the man that abused me for months, mentally, emotionally, physically, and more recently financially, and the person I bumped into happen to reveal something about him.

He was recently attacked. Stabbed more like it. And since she in the words of this person, pay what she weigh, and is obviuously used to being the pants in the relationship she wasnt playing with him so she called him and he was sent to the bank to get her money to bond his own attacker out of jail.

I asked the obvious question. Why?

The person conversing with me said, you know who you’re talking about right? What is his main issue with women.

I said oh, he put his hands on her, and the person nodded.

There was that small thing inside of me that wanted to gloat. Happy that he was getting back his just desserts. 

See. I was a good girl/woman. 

Jay-Z voice: they say you cant turn a bad girl good, but once a good girls gone bad. shes gone forever.

Until I met Christ.

I just got off the phone with a friend of mine that i was closest with 9 years ago. I could remember running home. Doing the first thing I always did when I got home and calling him soon after. Being the owner of the barbershop he worked in he was always available to rant about life, and the differences between the midwest and the east coast his life of luxury allowed him to travel between, and hip-hop. Mainly hip-hop. Before Christ, hip-hop was the love of my life, E. Badu style.

Waaay backkk. ooooh ooooh ooh. Way back, yeaaaahhh!

Anyway. We talked. I fell in love. But I am a lady. I will not force myself on a man. A man that finds a wife, finds a good thing. If he doesnt find me then I am not presenting myself to him. I knew he was interested. And since he was ten years older than I, established in life, teaching me more than I ever thought I would learn I assumed if he was really interested he would be blunt and direct with me.

I am blunt. And direct. I have no problem letting a person know I llike, love or am interested. But chivalry ain’t dead. Women just been killing it with all their forward advances. 

My grandmother, who has been married to my grandfather for more than fifty years, and been with over sixty has been training me ever since she got her hands on me. Shes my fathers mother and my mother kept me away from them, for some reason.

I digress.

My friend, he never told me of his interest. But just called me to tell me he is getting married. He let me know had I chose him. Well whatever. I didnt. Ain’t no woulda coulda shoulda. He reminded me of what a good woman I am. And how awesome our conversations would be. I told him, i am a conversationalist. I love to converse. And when my daughter got in her feelings about me being on the phone, I told him. He understood that she wants me all to herself. From what he said, he once wanted me all to himself too.

See.

I never dealt with men who weren’t about something.

My misguided, and grieving heart chose a man who would abuse me and lead me to my demise. 

The woman who had everything going for herself lost everything.

Lost my home, lost my personal belongings, got kicked out of school because really, I couldnt concentrate on studying. I was carrying the secrets most survivors carry daily. I had never been with an abusive man a day in my life. Well maybe I had been with an abusive man. But, back in the day, the same man that would black eyes, would cry in my lap. He abused others. Never me. I thought I was the type to change a man, not be rearranged by one.

Because when you love, you receive love in return.

So maybe it was my fault. Maybe I compared the man who abused me to the men I knew before. He didnt make as much money. Or have an entrepreneurial drive. He had too many babies in comparison. Maybe I didnt love him.

Strike that. Its not my fault. I can no longer carry the burden of someone who has spent the last five years trying  to get me and the rest of the world to believe that it is ever anyone else’s fault for the abuse. If you did it, own it.

So. here I am. Looking silly for all my missed opportunities. The men I knew beofre. The men I would not pursue because of my ideals. The men I let get away because most days I didn’t even know if I wanted that whole family life that was going to interfere with my goals in life. The men that were amazing catches to have!

But were they missed opportunities? If someone didnt have the nerve to let me know they were interested in me, as a woman did I really miss out, or did they?

Here I am looking back at the man I chose, and didnt allow him the opportunity to mistreat, and abuse me for long until I made the choice that was best for me, and still has me wondering when my car gets vandalized repeatedly if that is still him trying to intimidate me.

But this is the thing. Why would I worry? I can’t forget after my second retreat, I got a scripture. 

Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength,
always ready to help in times of trouble. 

Yes. I no longer worry about who wants to hurt or harm me. I know now they answer to God, quickly sometimes it seems. I have heard about their troubles sometimes out of their own mouths as they get ready to bless me, and God did say He would make enemies foot stools right?

Proverbs 24:17 Don’t rejoice when your enemies fall;
don’t be happy when they stumble. 

But he isnt my enemy. He was once the person I loved more than anything else.

Obadiah 1:12 “You should not have gloated
when they exiled your relatives to distant lands.
You should not have rejoiced
when the people of Judah suffered such misfortune.
You should not have spoken arrogantly
in that terrible time of trouble. 

See I won’t any longer complain about how my life is making a turn around, and about what I lost. Its a fact. I accept. But I am working to make the necessary changes. But i once gloated about his demise out of bitterness, anger, spite and revenge. 

now I just pray. 

and show gratitude. Thankful really. I almost cried when my friend told me he was getting married. But i had to think real quick would he have been my spiritual head? would he have been there to pray with me? would I have this relationship with Jesus that in the middle of the chaos I live in, He has taught me how to pave a way of peace for my daughter and I. In our wilderness experience much like the isrealites learning how to worship God my Father, after being in Egypt, bondaged up, far too long.

Gratitude!

Phillipians 3:8 Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ 

I only lost what will only matter on this earth, to gain what will last eternity!

James 1:2 Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 

Joy. These trials have begun to pass. But the joy i received learning how to lean on God with all my heart, and not lean on my own understanding has been quite a priceless experience!

So yes. I am a survivor. I am sure you are too! and what a blessing it is to survive a storm designed to kill you and your purpose for the world.

So I continue to tell my stories, to uplift and upbuild, because I know it wont be like this always. Keeping my eyes fixed on Jesus, because thats what I was created to do.

So I move on. Walking in love, and forgiveness. Because that is what these past few years have taught me how to do.

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