It has been close to 30 years since I was first struck by the man who would become my husband. After numerous brutal beatings, three children, non-stop threats of murder if I dare leave, in addition to my own prayers for my life to end so I could be free of the abuse…somehow, I survived.
The depth of my fear, fueled by my hate, gave me a pinpointed focus to raise my children and upon the last turning 18… get the hell out! Well, that time is upon me.
I’ve been counting down the days for way longer than I can remember. Once they became a realistic number, I thought to myself… this is about to get real. FAST! Then before I knew it, the days went from 365 to less than half of that number, to within the same calender year and now… mere weeks. Now, mental preparation.
There is still so much to get done before I go. Loose ends to tie up. People I want to explain my inevitable absence to. And then there is my family. I allowed my sister and mother to enter into my secret life and read my blog. When they had a full understanding of my life thus far they seemed genuinely distressed over what I had been through. My parents had only known about one episode early on but I did a good enough job hiding the life I endured that they had no idea it continued, most especially not for 25+ years.
Since absorbing that I most definitely do intend to go through with my exit plan, my mother and sister seem (to me) to be more concerned about what they need to do to protect themselves than they are about anything I will be going though. The words, “how can we help” have yet to be spoken. As these last days are closing in, these words, or lack thereof, have shaken me. Although I do have friends that have offered their help, I can’t help but feel very much alone. I’ve been taken back to a mental state where I need to fend for myself, and fear has kicked in. Worst of all, every specific I had planned for this exit, I now feel unsure about. I’m second guessing, feeling anxious and deciding whether or not I need to make changes.
On another note, I work from home. I guess that being helpful or hurtful is up for debate but the point is, I work. And I do so for many hours a day. Yet, like many, many others, I live from check to check. I have been able to put some money to the side for this event. However, I did not start doing so until the end date was too close for comfort realizing I was broke. So yeah, my resolution…save something…anything! I am very much aware that is not nearly enough. This has added panic on to every other emotion I’m feeling.
How the hell, where the hell, what the hell…am I going to do? I do not like borrowing. I’ve had to in the past and it’s just so uneasy for me. I know I’m not the only one that feels that way. Unrelated to financial issues, when asking for help – on any level – I’ve been let down more often than not. So even being here right now, asking, begging, is surreal. This is so uncomfortable and I apologize for even attempting to have the audacity to think anyone….everyone… doesn’t have a million other things more important to donate money to than me.
I am not even close to a special case. There are so many of us. Abuse victims. And although I haven’t felt like a “victim” for a long time – due to my abuser’s very painful rheumatoid arthritis (lucky me) – Now, I am just a victim of my own poor financial planning. I don’t even know where to start in asking people to donate, or what an appropriate amount is to ask for. All I can think of is that if I can afford to pay rent for at least six months, then maybe I can be less stressed about the initial “hiding” period. My son will be with me and I am not going to be ready for either one of us to be out and about, at least not for the first month or so. I need to make sure we are completely safe.
This is going to be the hardest thing I’ve ever pulled off. If there is just one aspect of it that I don’t have to worry over, I would be beyond appreciative. Once I am fully free, paying it forward will be in using my voice and being as loud as possible for those of us that are still in hiding. It has been 30 years since I was abused by someone who claimed to love me, and it is clear that this epidemic is far from over. It’s not even close to ending with me; there are so many others out there. Every anonymous account needs a voice. A new fight I look forward to getting into head on.
For those of you who find it in your heart to donate anything to me… I thank you in advance and will be forever grateful. If you are unable to donate, please share this on your social media. Many thanks to those of you who donated. XOXO