It has been a long journey, and a journey that I know will never end until the day my real father takes me into his arms and welcomes me home.
I am not exactly sure when my journey began. When I was born I guess. I have heard the stories many times over. How my dad hit the doctor when I was born because I was a girl. He wanted another boy, and I was raised knowing that.
In the first baby photo that was taken of myself, I am already bruised. For what, I don’t know. It might have been because I cried. That was something that was never allowed, and only brought pain. I learned very young to stuff the tears. My father was an alcoholic and abused all of us in every sense of the word. I only have a few memories of him living at home before he moved out when I was ten. The memories that I have are painful ones that have brought me many nightmares and flashbacks. When my dad moved out, my mom became an alcoholic and my brother took his place in abusing me until I was about sixteen when he moved out. I only have a few memories of his abuse as well and like with my dad, are just as painful. I became a bulimic when I was around fifteen. The first time I threw up was immediately following an oral rape. I continued to throw up for the next three years. I began self-injuring sometime around eleven or twelve. I had many different methods, but my primary one was cutting. When I was about thirteen, I decided that I didn’t want to be me anymore. I stood in front of the bathroom mirror repeatedly screaming “your dead” over and over. I changed my name before I ever left the bathroom. I was no longer me. I attempted suicide many times, and my mom never saw it. She never saw anything. When I was eighteen, I attempted suicide yet again because my brother had announced that he was going to move back home. I knew if that happened, the abuse would begin again regardless of the fact that I was now an adult. I found myself in a mental hospital for a week. My dad came to see me while I was there and told me that my mom had attempted suicide as well and was in another hospital. He convinced the doctors to release me into his care, so I went home with him. He taught me how to use a gun before I was allowed in the house. He told me it was so that next time I decided to kill myself, I could do it right. Shortly after going back to my mom’s house, my boyfriend asked me to marry him and I said yes. Not only was I getting out of the house before my brother moved back in, but I would be moving two states away. We were married and on an airplane three months later, a week before my brother moved back.
I escaped the abuse, but it took me many years to find God and a good therapist to guide me through the memories and the effects that followed me from it. I wish I could say I am free from everything, but I would be lying. At forty years old, I still self injure even though I don’t cut anymore. The anorexia and bulimia come and go, but the battles are getting farther and farther between. I know there will come a day when God will totally set me free from these things. He has already set me free from so much through friends and therapists. I no longer have a lot of the fears I once had. I am still afraid of things. I am still afraid of spiders, men with beards, prayer, the phone and other things. God will deliver me from all of those fears too in his timing. And you know, I finally got it. God really loves me. He really does. He loves me as I am. He even loved me as I was. He was there with me in the middle of all my traumas, and he cried with and for me for what I was going through. And he is going through the healing process with me. We are not alone in this. We are all survivors.