“Say something bitch, yeah I got the knife now.” The words rang loud as I lay pinned down to the ground, while my son’s father straddled me. His sweat dripped onto my face as his dark brown eyes filled with rage, pierced my soul. As my back touched the warm sand, it seemed as if my heart was beating a thousand beats per minute. Through my tears I asked him, so you’re just going to do this? So you’re just going kill me in front of my son, because he is watching. I had to say something. I didn’t think about it as I attacked him with the knife, I just wanted to be out. I was 17 by this time, but in my spirit I had a strong feeling of tiredness. It pained me to look to my right, only to see my son yelling and screaming at the tender age of two. He watched as his father held my life in his hands as if he were some type of God. On that day, my son’s grandmother wasn’t there to stop him, like she had so many other times. His best friend wasn’t there to stop him, as he had often done so many times. No one it seemed was there, but I was wrong. I wasn’t ready to die, but I didn’t want to continue to live with him in my life. I had finally had enough.
Suddenly, someone yelled out his dads name and he dropped the knife. The police and ambulance were called. The paramedic came first and checked me over. I was advised to leave because I drew the knife first. According to the paramedic, because I didn’t have any wounds on me and he had wounds on his chest, I could have been arrested. I left his house with my son in a daze, but thankful that I was still alive. I thought that was the end, but he wasn’t done. Although, I maintained my distance, I would still see him in the streets. He would attempt to start fights and make threats of violence towards me.
As time passed on, the scars healed and my attachment to him lessened. My love for him was a lot harder to let go of. I really didn’t understand at that time, just how traumatic the relationship was. I am eternally grateful that I survived because I know many women that weren’t so lucky. I gained so many lessons from that relationship; most importantly, the ability to recognize signs of an abuser. Unfortunately, I also became verbally abusive. My mouth had become a vicious weapon. I was filled with so much bitterness, anger and pain. As years passed, the physical abuse that I endured and my issues of abandonment built up. The undoing of the abuse was a very long and sometimes painful journey. I received my breakthrough many years later. One day while at home, I became so disgusted with myself. In tears, I yelled out to God that I needed help in learning how to love the way He does. I needed help to become a better person, one that was capable of building people up instead of tearing them down. My change did not come overnight, but with His help, I became committed to being a better person. Today, with much confidence, I can say that I am that woman that I cried out to become. The woman that speaks life and one who looks often through the lenses of compassion. I’m not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but I am adult enough to right my wrongs in the event I do offend.
I firmly believe that even our negative experiences in life do not have to break us. In fact, negative experiences can be the driving force behind us becoming who are truly meant to be in life. If you need help, please don’t suffer in silence. Reach out to a trusted individual and gain your freedom. Self-love is the best love. Thanks for allowing me to share my story with you. Take care.
Janet Michelle, xoxo