OK, so remember that I said I wanted to be open here, in hopes that it would help someone else. Today, I am doing that. We all have struggles in life and often the tendency when things get really tough is to isolate ourselves, bury the pain and try to move on with life. We can feel pretty alone that way. Since we won’t talk about our ‘junk”, we don’t always realize that there are others out there that are experiencing the same kind of “junk”. Our own little world becomes just that, a life consumed by our own little world. I’ve spoken about the band aids that we use to cover our wounds, but we often don’t allow them to heal. I’ve learned that talking and sharing is healing, thus, my post today. Just hoping you’ll still love me in the morning.
Here goes, you know the long story… It all started when I was born, some years ago now. (Numbers aren’t important in this story.) I was the firstborn of five. We weren’t well off, but had what we needed and were well cared for. Practically raised in church, three to four or more times a week, that’s where you would find our family. I am very thankful for parents who did the best that they could with what they had, plus some. Besides their own five to deal with, we often had foster children in our home and I can vouch that between all of us, we kept “adventure” happening for my parents. Amazingly, they live to tell about it today.
My story is not so unusual until the teenage years. There were many events and details that I will share at later times, but today, for the purpose of getting to know each other a little better, you get the nutshell version. Why would you want to know anything about me? Well maybe you don’t, but my purpose here is to build relationships and that involves getting to know each other. I just get to go first because it’s my blog.
My first job at the age of 14 was a paper route. I delivered the local news, hot off the press. After school each day, I strapped the clumsy bag to my bike handle bars, along with my ring of paper route cards and hole punch. F.Y.I., I was a very stylish looking paper girl at the time.
Getting out into the world means that you get exposed to things. There are some pretty nasty people out there and one of them had their eye on me. One day on my paper route, I was assaulted and raped at knife point. That day had a huge affect on the rest of my teen and adult years. A single event took me into a tailspin journey of negative, life altering decisions, all because I kept the event hidden. I was afraid. When I came home crying and muddied, my excuse to my mom was that some kids had jumped me on a path I took through the woods. I never revealed my secret until years later. We will leave that as a discussion for another day.
The rape led to an intense need to feel better about myself. I worked hard to gain approval from others. I took responsibility for everything that went wrong around me as if it was my job to make it all better. I got involved in several bad relationships which included two bad marriages to alcoholics and addicts, naturally followed by divorces. The marriages involved all forms of abuse. I’ve been physically beaten, verbally degraded and had knives thrown at my head while I screamed, just so someone could be amused. I’ve slept with a knife hidden in the bed railing, just in case I would need to protect myself. I’ve known the fear of saying the wrong thing at the wrong time, looking and dressing the wrong way, smiling at the wrong time. I understand the betrayal of someone who is supposed to love you, sharing that love with another, more than once. Yes, those will also be other stories for other times. Let’s just say this. I’ve truly learned most of my life lessons the hard way.
Following the divorces were the single parent years. Struggling to raise two kids and provide financially on your own, as many of you know, is not easy. Trying to do the teeter totter balancing act often puts you on the end of the board with your but on the ground. Then life throws a boulder hitting the other side of the board and throws you spinning, uncontrollably through the air. It can be scary, lonely, overwhelming… Again, more stories for another time.
Hold on a minute. Don’t feel sorry for me. It’s going to start getting better. The knight in shinning armor part is coming, and no, the armor is not really just tin foil. Yes, a story for next time…
Anyone out there relate to any of this???