In October, I greeted family and friends for my 3rd Annual Gems & Jewels! As I walked around the room, I gleamed with joy and gratefulness to see my people! I mean, my vision, was happening!! We brought families together again. We laughed, shared stories and talked to our kids about relationships, abuse, owning businesses, saving money, trailblazing and answered all their questions. I was in bliss.
However, when I spoke at another event, a young lady asked me, "What was the worst kind of abuse?", it shook me because I remember being like that young person that negotiated abuse as if one was better than the other. I actually studied and calculated it, coaching myself, " I know I have to deal with some abuse, so which one can I deal with the most." I remember counting the bottles of liquor, hiding the brands that made him act the worst. I knew the number of drinks before the cursing and name calling would happen; the number of seconds I had to duck or prepare to fight.
What I didn't prepare for was an exit. I masked sh** well, for me and him. I remember writing this poem called, "Hands" in my journal. I thought about publishing it in the sequel, " Unmask You Too", but I will share it now:
Honestly, I'd rather you hurt me with your hands,
That pain I can't feel,
I have been trained to withstand
That I can conceal,
But your words, I can feel,
They replay in mind,
They affirm my imperfections every time,
They have made gashes in my brain,
Dragged on tracks of a train
I can feel that pain.
The hits, they become numb,
I can zone out to that.
But the words have killed me,
I may never come back from that.
"No abuse is better than the other, and it will get worse. No should ever accept being hurt to prove your love.", I replied after a slight pause. I admired her courage, her hunger to really want to know what she should do, without blatantly asking. She was careful with her words, but I knew she was asking for what I never could fathom until it was almost too late; the "key" to escape; a dropped "gem" to shine light on her dark situation; for someone to say, "I've been there. It's ok to leave."
Many times, we fear judgment, embarrassment, disappointment of being alone, and the anxiety of finding a new "normal" and safety. We grieve the loss just as we would as one who has passed away, but arm to be prepared for the next attack. Have your prepared yourself for healing, love, peace and protection yet? I'm growing better too.
To those of you that share your story, you are couragoues. I'm proud of you. To those advocate for survivors, hold our delicate hearts and dress our mental, emotional, psychological and the physical wounds, thank you.
To those that can no longer speak or haven't found their voice yet, I give mine to you. 💜
Be great! 🌹