I was finally matched with a counselor early in 2015, it may have taken longer because I rejected and denied the words domestic abuse to characterize my relationship. After all it was not the version of "abuse" I was familiar with and the other big reason for 15 years I had rarely been right, so despite my honesty in life believing my own credibility was extremely far fetched at this time. It didn't take long to see the "unhealthy" relationship I had been a part of for so long. Weekly I made the drive to the shelter for an hour of my life that always seemed to go by too fast...one on one, week after week I began to gain confidence in me and more importantly each gained week of space from my situation, watching and listening I saw the depth and the reality.
Each trip often had a time of the most recent devastating lie uncovered or I can't believe someone would... which caused a goal of attack which came directly from My Father's Table. My bounce back rate. Her words at that time of the process, "I don't think you can manipulate yourself enough to not be shocked by what you are learning, these are not small things. They are big." My goal became hear it, process it, grieve it and bounce back keeping the detour from my living as short as possible.
I was dedicated to healing and recovering. I became more open about my domestic abuse counselor to friends and more importantly proud. Shame and guilt began to fade and gave room to acceptance, forgiveness and healing. I could gauge my healing on my ability to walk with my head higher not looking at the ground and also by my sense of safety around others.
Since July I have only met with my counselor 2 or 3 times and my most valued time was the last week of 2015 after celebrating my best Christmas season ever. I drove to the shelter, announced my visit, waited for the gate to open and proceeded into a building thanks to my mother and a couple others I was never forced to live in but that was ready to take me in with one phone call from me. I had no idea that meeting would give me the best words to end my painful 2015...
"You don't need me anymore".
I told her my greatest fear has been finding it again and shared how this year was a grieving process and how space allowed me to see the reality without the confusion.
She let me know that those that heal don't find it again but those who don't find it. So I do believe my post a while back was true... Those tears are healing and the less and less they appear over the situation the more and more healed.
I am grateful the scars will remain as they are the testimony to the journey but more grateful for the upcoming 2016 and all it has to offer to a woman who has done the painstaking work to heal the wounds and gain the knowledge to never be a victim to such a lifestyle again.
Today I close the door to the past and open the door to the future taking all the wisdom and friends I have gained.