I’m supposed to write a book. A book that tells my story. A story belonging to many women. All of us are hushed by the same scars, the same terrors past or present. I’m afraid that I may disappear into a sea of depression if I write it all down. An abyss of dismal memories locked in buried tombs of my past. I wonder why I allowed myself to live in such misery. I wonder why I allowed my daughter to witness such horrors. Is that the reason she’s chosen a similar path? I wonder. I’d give anything to go back and start again. To slam the door shut on what was to come to prevent where my path has led.
I’m seriously contemplating writing a book to save as many others as possible from the same fate. To remind them what real life and love should look like. To show them that loving yourself is most important of all. But I continue to procrastinate and wallow in worry. Hiding behind walls of work and peeking around corners of shame. To truly share what life was like in those times may be unbearable. My blinders were thick as concrete back then. I forced myself to see flowers growing in a garden full of dead roots. Those that truly loved me saw clearly, whereas I only saw the haze of his gilded halo. On the good days, I was blinded by his sun. His cape of darkness enveloped all things in its path on the bad days.
I’ve written a few pages of a book about domestic violence. Each time I return to finish it, I stare at the letters on the page until they get larger and larger until only the letters – I.D.I.O.T. are the only letters left, staring up from the page at me, so I stop. A tiny version of myself stamps the word ‘Sucker’ on my forehead. So, I shovel up all the horrific memories and hurriedly push them back into my mind’s deepest darkest corner and re-bolt the door again. I tell myself; sure, I’ll write again…maybe later. Then I glue back on my painted smile and go on with my daily life.
I wasted years of my life that I can never get back in that relationship. I’ve got to write a book to warn others to back away from this fate. I must pull back their blinders until all the light lucidly floods in and the glass becomes so clear that you can crash through its reality even on a good day when they are on their best behavior. Because that’s what does it; the good days. The good days redirected me and resurrected my reasons for staying. So, I’d obediently refit my blinders back on top of my black eye at just the right angle so no one could see the struggle. When I looked in the mirror, only a wispy shadow of myself would look back, too ashamed to look me square in the eyes. So, my swollen eyes looked past the abused version of me and reached for the concealer…again. Concealing my confidence into a black hole in the milky-way the longer I stayed.
I’m going to write a book someday so that people everywhere will understand that love shouldn’t hurt. To show young people that purple bruises, black eyes, and bloody red noses should never be a part of the equation. Controlling how you cover your outer shell is exactly that, control. Monitoring who you speak to and how you speak to others makes them a puppeteer and you a puppet. Hands of anger plus your temple only ever total abuse and can never equal love. No matter how much you use the good days to round up, you’re still dividing yourself from the true sum total of unconditional love and happiness.
I’ve got to write a book.
If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233). Advocates are available 24/7 in more than 200 languages. All calls are free and confidential. If you’re not in a safe place to speak out loud, you can start a mobile chat with an advocate through their website www.thehotline.org, by clicking the “Chat With Us” link.