Here I begin a story, my story. The story of a young woman
who never gave up.
My story begins at the age of 15. A young lady not sure which
direction to go, pregnant with a child and having no idea
what to do, but yet the happiest I've ever been. Going to
school, having my own household and what I thought or at least
knew as the perfect man. At the age of 18 I decided I needed
more, I thought life was supposed to be a fairytale. The question
is whose fairytale? I gave up a life, which anyone would see
as a beautiful life, to live freely, happy, or so I thought.
Two years later I decided to start a new life, a new relationship.
At this point of my life I didn't believe anything or anyone
could move me. I met a man that for the first year and a half
was perfect. Well, I guess it was my own illusion. The man,
which I thought was my best friend, became my worst nightmare.
I woke up one day and realized I was a prisoner. That particular
day my batterer sat in front of my door on the floor and for
absolutely no reason said "You're not going to work".
Of course, me being the person I am, I refused to see that.
We argued and eventually I had to physically fight back, often
being hit with a closed fist a couple of times. From then
on I guess it is an opening, a door for him that is. It was
constant physical, emotional and mental abuse. You're probably
asking if it was that bad why didn't you leave? Well, easier
said than done.
At this point in my life I was pregnant with my second child
and was hospitalized due to health reasons for about 3-months.
I felt I couldn't do it alone, I thought well he's not a good
man but he is a good provider. I tried convincing myself "today
I'm leaving", but today didn't come.
My second child was born May 8, 2000. My precious millennium
baby! And that day I swore never again was I going to deal
with nonsense. August 10, 2000 I woke up and said "No
more", waited till he left, packed my things and children
and left! But that's not where my story ends. A week later
I returned for my belongings only to find him sitting on the
living room with a 45mm in his lap! He said if I left again
he would kill himself. My reply being, "go ahead"
and I started towards the door. But of course it wouldn't
be that easy. He dropped the gun and pounced on me. But this time was different, different from any
other, I fought back, I couldn't take it anymore. Let's first
say myself being 5'4 150-lbs him being 6'2 160-lbs I gave
it all I had. But I know one way or another I was leaving
by myself. I caught myself being the aggressor. All I can
remember saying was "Not This Time". By the time
the police arrived, he was in a corner of the livingroom in
a fetal position! By this time the police were so tired of
coming they said, " It's about time", and helped
me grab the rest of my things. I floated for about a year
and finally found a place and a great job. At this time I
felt nothing could move me. Well that's where I was wrong.
I was going into the parking garage one summer morning and
I saw someone pop up from in front of the parking garage,
"guess who"? I stopped, as tempted as I was to run
him over with the car. I don't know but I felt I should give
him the chance to explain himself.
After a year of thinking ok we are not going to be together
and I have to move on, I met a wonderful man and was very
happy. My life took a horrible turn. He wanted to return.
My worst nightmare was to become reality at this point, knocks
at the door at all hours at the night and phones ringing.
"What should I do? My boyfriend doesn't want to deal
with this anymore, I'm all-alone. So I do what I do best,
run! Friday, I packed a bag and left for the weekend, to return
to an empty apartment. I had nothing, all my belongings and
documents gone! As I sat there crying, the phone rang, I heard
an odd quiet then,an unfamiliar calm to a voice very familiar,
"Next is your face, when I see you no one will recognize
that pretty face. I'm going to shoot it off".
In a state of panic I called a friend, lets call her "T".
She gave me the number for Safe Horizons Hotline 1-800-621-HOPE
Domestic Violence. Now how could I tell a perfect stranger
what has happened. But somehow I did and a pleasant voice
on the phone talked me through it all. She let me know I wasn't
alone and that there are places for women like me. She continued
to connect me to a place called the Urban Women's Retreat.
Once again I find myself telling my story all over again and
realized I needed help! The woman then embraced me, showed
me I didn't need to continue this horror story I've lived,
and made me realize I was a true survivor.
I tell my story very summarized but in depth enough to let
all women know, there's always a way out.
You're beautiful, you're wonderful and you deserve it all.
Don't let anyone tell you differently.