It’s My Story and I’m Sticking To It…

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???

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14 thoughts on “It’s My Story and I’m Sticking To It…

  1. Sue Bishop says:

    I have had the priveledge of know you for quite some time now, and how I LOVE to see Jesus shine thru you! You have taken each experience and grown from it friend! You have truly had some tuff stuff to work thru, but thats what I love about you, you keep seeking The Lord and you turn lemons into lemonade, that is why i love to call you : friend!

    • bspargo says:

      Yep, you’ve known me for quite some time, as in MANY years, but numbers still are not important to this story, right! thanks for the encouragement to start writing the story. I figured that I better do it before you did it for me. Love you, my friend!

  2. karen says:

    Bobbi,
    Your words are so powerful always. Their is a balance of intense emotion with a sense of humor and wit to ease the pain. It is so profound the strength of spirit that you have nurtured through all of this. I love that I have gotten to share this time and see that spirit soar. All those meetings when you would slightly smile and just “agree” with what Ric said. Then you “spoke” your heart one night and cracked a glass ceiling …words flow from you with confidence and beauty and yes, oh so much courage. Thank you for taking me on your journey. You inspire me to be a better person. Plus I want to be your agent for your book!

    • bspargo says:

      Wow, Karen! Thank you! Your comment was spoken much more eloquently than I could ever write. Heck, I should just tell you my story and let you write the book. I am happy that our individual “hells” have caused our paths to cross. I am happier still, that we are continuing on life’s path, together! Big virtual hugs coming your way…

  3. susan says:

    Hey Bobbi
    I look forward to reading more. You have a gift and I am so glad you are willing to share it with us.
    It is a wonderful thing when God provides instruction to his children. It is an inspiring thing when they respond as well as you do.

    • bspargo says:

      Thank you, Sue! Remember, this is supposed to be a two way conversation. I look forward to hearing your stories, too, my long time friend!
      Love you!

  4. Barb says:

    Yes, I too have felt the pain of many sexual assaults. my stepbrother first began entertaining himself with my sister who was 7 and myself at the age 9. This continue for four years. Since my stepfather worked nights and my mother during the day, we were left home alone alot. Yes, my step-father was asleep in the house but waking him up could leave as much emotional damage as the assaults. We both were threated daily of getting beat up if we told. I cried alot during these assaults, but my poor sister thought the attention was normal. My sister endured so much more abused than I did. When I was young, I could not understand why she would get lots of present from my stepbrother and I would get none. Later I found out that she continue her abuse with the neighbor boys and even my real brother. I did acquired a terrible violent temper from this abuse, but through the love of Christ I know where my anger is and let God tame it. Later we did tell my mother, so wrong of an idea. She blamed herself for working alot and tried to kill herself and my stepfather called us sluts. I went into a marriage with a great man sent from God. Paul is patience and waited on God to change me. Great news: God healed my wounds, my heart and tame my wild temper. Thank you God for restoration!!!

    • bspargo says:

      Wow, Barb… I have to say I was overwhelmed with compassion for you as I read your story. I was at work, (on lunch break, of course) but sitting at my desk wiping away tears. For one who felt this was to open of a forum to share, you probably shared some of your most painful memories. Sharing this story took some deep courage. I wish I could give you a big loud standing ovation and then a huge bear hug! The end of your story is the most awesome part. The “what God did” for you, he will do for others. Thanks for sharing and bringing hope to those who have been in the mire where you were, but have not yet found a way out. I too, say, “Thank you God for restoration”!!!

  5. Dear Bobbie,

    Being that I only got to meet you after you had Paul in your life and your kids were also back on tract, I have to tell you that GOD has done an amazing job. The person I know is healthy, hard working, intentional, full of laughter and joy, very determined and a go getter. But Hearing your story shows that even with these childhood traumas and abuse you have come through this and still choose to not let it run your life. Confidence might be a struggle?? But I do see a very loving confident lady who loves good food and wine. I love keeping in touch with you on Facebook. Thank you for sharing your story. I think your stronger for it.

    Amy

    • bspargo says:

      Hi Amy,

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Actually, it is Ric that I am married to and yes, God has done an amazing thing in all of us. Still has a ways to go for us, but I know that he is big enough to get us to the place that we need to be. Of course, confidence would be a struggle. I feel like I am getting naked before the world and I know that is not a pretty site! I do love good food and wine, but as the story unfolds here, I hope more of me is seen than that. I Know I am stronger because of my experience. Hey, I did check out your blog again. Good one! You should post a link when you write a new one, so we never miss it.

  6. Sherry says:

    Oh Bobbi
    No you are not alone at all !!! I have the utmost respect for you !! And I love you very much!! We have all dealt with our demons in many different ways, alcohol, drugs, divorce it’s all been a part of my life until the last 5 years !! Now my daughter has inheirited the gene from her father ! SO we just keep on praying and fighting the battle !! But what we go through i our life makes us who we are today and be proud of that !!!
    WE all love you !!!
    Sherry

    • bspargo says:

      Thank you Sherry! I wouldn’t trade any of it, if that is what it took to get me to where I am today. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone though. Wish we could learn from others more often, rather than having to do it the hard way. I know you can relate to much of my story from your own experience. I never stop praying, hoping. One day our kids will get it. I have to keep believing that. Love you!

  7. Stacy says:

    You are a strong woman, and I am proud to know you. We all have had our struggles (some very similar ones). They make us stronger by not letting them define who we are, they makes us survivors! I look forward to taking this journey with you! Much love, my friend. xo

    • bspargo says:

      And thank you to Twitter since that’s how we got to know each other! Of course, building the relationship through food and wine has been lots of fun, too! No, the past does not define us, but it has had a huge role in shaping who I am. If I could go back and change anything, I don’t think I would if it would leave me in any different place than I am. I’m happy with the “me” that has emerged as a result of my story. I know we’re survivors. We are stronger and have a lot more compassion for others as a result. I’m anxious to hear your story one of these days. Maybe you will visit Phoenix soon??? Much love to you, Stacy! Thanks for your encouraging words!

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