As I’m looking back through the years, I’m noticing that I’ve been a “work in progress” for a long time. I mean – complete remodel. Do we ever really have our crap together? What does that mean? Does it mean we will never have any unstable moments in our lives? No more sorrow. No more anger. No more pain. No more confusion. No more heartache. Nah, it doesn’t meant that. I’m only 45. I’m going to go through more strife. The odds dictate it. As far as being “in progress” – well – I think I always will be. I don’t see that I’ll ever completely get over the trauma and abuse BUT I feel better, and I am coping better, and I have happiness about my future. I am in a much better place than I was in 2010. In 2010, I spent a lot of time saying things like the below (actual posts from Facebook).
January 4, 2010: (Jenny) is wondering when things will actually become easier. Sigh.
January 9, 2010: What you see is what you get today, so don’t look too hard for hidden variables or other weird issues. You might have to convince a few friends to just accept the situation at face value.
January 10, 2010: Things have to change and I’ve begun with baby steps. I can do it. I know I can
I’m just going to stop for a minute. I remember how I felt at this time. I thought I was going to lose my mind. I had to get out. I was completely dependent on him for everything. That’s how he wanted it, and I didn’t want to rock the boat. After I got laid off at my builder job, I then worked for a company that went under, and then I temped for a while, but he made sure I wasn’t around men, and if I was – he made sure to let me know I was a whore because clearly, I couldn’t control myself. NOT THE CASE, but he made me feel like the worst person on the planet. Thinking back to that time makes me so sad, and it makes my stomach hurt.
January 10, 2010: Maybe one day I won’t have to hide.
January 11, 2010: I wonder if today could get any worse. Sick. And, lost my job, all in one day. I guess it could be worse. Back to the drawing board. And, the amazing thing is… the exact words were… “You are an excellent employee, but you’re not healthy enough”. Wow.
I have to stop here. The above post seems innocent enough, but that day was by far one of the most traumatic days in the history of my life. I had just gotten laid off from a telephone bank where I sold tires. I was using my cane at this time. I didn’t have a car and so he picked me up and took me to work every day. That day, I was upset because I had lost my job, and since it was a temp job, they had no obligation to me. I threw an Arizona Tea can at him because he said something rude or horrible (super usual) and I wasn’t in the mood that day. He then took my head and shoved it into the space between the driver and passenger seats. I don’t know what that’s called, but I couldn’t breathe and he would let me up. I was gasping for air. I thought I was going to pass out. He told me that it was my fault he did that because I was out of control. There was more yelling and screaming after he let me up.I can still feel what it felt like to scream as loudly as I could. It was epic. But it didn’t matter. It didn’t stop him. I have no doubt I probably banged my head on the window. He was either going to let me out or I was going to bang my way out. I can’t remember a time I felt so trapped by him. I wanted out of the car. I yelled at him to let me out, and he wouldn’t. We turned into a development and I jumped out. Today, that development has condos. It’s weird to drive by it. I now remember that it was MY car we were driving, but I didn’t care. I wanted away from him. As I was trying to jump out, he grabbed my ponytail and yanked me back in the car and I lost it. I was so angry and in so much pain. He kept telling me it was all my fault and that I shouldn’t have tried to get away from him. He stopped the car and I got out without any further injury. I didn’t want to get back in the car. I was determined to just sit on the side of the road forever. I was less terrified and more angry at that time. I was crying and crying and crying and wondering how the hell I got to that place. It wasn’t the first time he was abusive.
I knew I had to do something different for my son and daughter and me. BUT, I knew I had to play it safe and slowly work my way back to myself. When I got home, my children knew something was wrong. I don’t know what they remember today, but at the time they knew he had hurt me in some way. I went into my bathroom and tried to comb my hair, but he had pulled a lot of it out of scalp, so it took a while to get all the loose hair out, if that makes sense. The brush just kept pulling loose hair out. I was devastated and embarrassed. My daughter walked in the bathroom while I was brushing my hair out and crying. She was so sad and she told me she hated him. I believed he was all I deserved. I had loved him since I was a teenager. He absolutely had power over me from the time I was 16 until I was 39. I was married twice during that time, but he was always in my mind. I just wish I would have listened to myself when I was 16. She was wayyyyyy smarter than my adult self who let him back into my life. I hadn’t seen him for years, and he tracked me down, and it all went downhill from there.
He never lived with me and I couldn’t be more thankful for that. My home was my safe haven, and it was the ONLY place I could lock the door and he couldn’t get in to get me. He wasn’t close with my children because I didn’t want him to be close to them. Anyway, moving on.
January 13, 2010: You can only be ok with yourself, if you make better choices and, even if they are hard, know it’s the best thing you can do, and hope that the ones you love, will see the difference, in time.
January 13, 2010: In time, they will see, I’m serious, and that’s all I can hope for. To be forgiven for the mistakes. To be forgiven for not being the person I know I am, on the inside.
My family and friends were so angry with me. They didn’t know the extent of what was going on. I didn’t want them to know. I was afraid and worried that he would hurt me. He told me more than once that if I left him he would kill me and then himself. Or he would simply tell me my children would be left without a mother. UM…. I felt trapped. I didn’t know how to get away. I lost some friends along the way. Getting away from an abuser is not as easy as people think. BUT, I understand why they think that way. Until you’ve been in that situation, it just seems unreal. I look back at photos and just see a sad and empty person. No real smile. Just surviving. There’s no joy.
January 15, 2010: I’m ready for normalcy. Anyone else? (-:
January 16, 2010: God, grant me the serenity To accept the things I cannot change; The courage to change the things that I can; And the wisdom to know the difference.
January 16, 2010: Life is funny. Sometimes, it gives you all the signs you need to move forward.
January 16, 2010: And, I’m mean. Wow, couldn’t be farther from the truth. When it all comes down to it, I still don’t want to see anyone suffer…
January 19, 2010:All I can say is that big changes are going to happen in my life, and for the first time in a long time, I’m excited to be making choices…. Just want safety, stability and peace… and, now I know what needs to be done. Good night, FB.
January 20, 2010: A song comes to mind…. “Mama, I’m coimin’ home.”….
January 24, 2010: Sometimes, you lose them forever…..
January 27, 2010: Life is too short to wake up with regrets. ♥ So love the people who treat you right. ♥ Forget about the one’s who don’t. ♥ Believe everything happens for a reason. ♥ If you get a second chance, grab it with both hands. If it changes your life, let it. Nobody said life would be easy, they just promised it would be worth… it.
January 30, 2010:And, I’m off to Salado/Temple for the weekend. Hanging out w/ Mom. Such a peaceful place to be!! (-: But, first, got to cut my nephew’s hair. Get my son out of bed and get ready myself!
One of the hardest parts of my time with him was that he made me feel guilty about being close with my Mom. The other was lying to everyone around me. I was driving home from work today thinking about memories with him. I used to say that when we were happy, it was like a dream, but when it was bad, it was a nightmare. But, in the past few years, I’ve realized it wasn’t happiness. It was still survival no matter how you look at it. If you’re reading this – making excuses for him or her, I hope you figure out you deserve better. NO ONE deserves to be physically, mentally or verbally abused. THAT ISN’T LOVE, FOLKS! That’s control.
I’ve listed 2 of many resources for Domestic Violence. I know people would say – how do you NOT know? It’s pretty easy when the abuser is telling someone that they are horrible and no good and physically hitting them. You forget who you are after awhile. But, it’s gradual. I woke up one day and was amazed. But, it’s 2018 and I’m OK. I live an entirely different life now. It can get better!