That time again…

It’s around about the anniversary of when I left the abusive relationship.

Usually I use this date to reflect on all the massive obstacles we’ve overcome. How far we’ve travelled as a family and me personally.

This year though , for some reason I was stuck in what I hadn’t done . I’d not gone back to university , I’d not found the perfect home , I’m not settled in a love of my life relationship , I’ve not done any of the things that the me trapped in that misery had promised herself she would do.

I know why. Absolutely. The me trapped in an abusive relationship ,almost laughably, was a bit naive . She thought when she left and shut the door behind her it would all be over . Done.

She didn’t realise how hard freedom might be . How tiring battling with your own brain ,programmed by someone else would be . How exhausting feeling you have to prove your truth to the world would be. How determined and pig headed and brave I’d have to be just to get to the point where I was healed enough to have that brain reprogrammed to think as me , not the me he told me to be .

So yes I’ve been a bit hard on myself.

So I’m going to be a bit self indulgent if that’s ok and just think of what I have achieved since leaving all those , so many years ago now .

I’ve raised good people

My 2 sons have now both left school. In the dark days when they were little and we were stuck inside I taught them to read before they started school. I was criticised of course for “boot camping” them but they bloody loved it . They’re both intelligent lads ,but more than that they are good people. Obviously mum bias comes into play here , but other people compliment their manners and how they behave towards other people . I personally – mum bias in full throttle find them great company , witty and fun.

I had to have played my part in that.

I’ve kept on keeping on.

It’s hard ,life after abuse. You pick up so many habits that are seemingly impossible to break. You are questioned and you are tested and goodness me you come so scarily close to giving up (If you are currently in an abusive relationship please don’t let the fact it’s hard afterward put you off leaving. Shit , nothing is ever going to be as hard as what you’re living now – it’s hard but so worth the work and you’re a warrior I know you can come out the other side)

You do come close to giving up. For one reason or another that thought crosses your mind. Then you realise that freedom is worth it and you put your head down and you fight another day , and as days go by the days become less of a fight and more of a life.

I’ve helped other women

I think I have , I hope I have .

I get messages from women who have read this blog and that goes right back to when it was an anonymous little blog that barely anyone looked at. The one by far and away the most common is women saying that I’ve helped them realise it’s not just them. Abuse is isolating. It’s often still after leaving shrouded in shame. Women identifying with my ramblings and it helping them feel less isolated and alone well that’s just the best use of my time.

They’re the big things but there are little things too:

We have disco and karaoke nights at home and we can be as loud as we like.

We have celebrated the kids birthdays absolutely without repercussions from a jealous man upset the attention isn’t on them.

I’ve slept in a bed with a man and I never thought that could happen.

I have close friendships and have lowered my personal barriers .

I wear what I like , sounds silly but you can’t imagine how huge that is.

I write this blog.

I can nap.

I can read.

I can go to the cinema or theatre or out for dinner whenever I like.

I can go to sleep when I want.

I can be affectionate and hug and hold hands with a man.

I can sing round the house .

I can watch the trashiest TV shows imaginable .

Though I can also watch Question Time without getting shit for thinking I’m clever when I’m a “thick, stupid bitch” ……bloody hell watching QT is no sign of intelligence…

I can make small talk with strangers .

I can holiday alone…oh and compared with ‘holidaying’ with him it’s absolute paradise !!!

We have taken back Christmas!!!

I have learnt how easy it is to fall back into toxic relationships.

Also though I’ve learned how to cut out toxic people , be that friends or family or anyone who doesn’t make a positive impact in my life.

I don’t think I’m fat.

I don’t think I’m ugly.

I don’t think I’m stupid.

I embrace my flaws , I’d not be me if I weren’t a bit dozy and absent minded.

I can express my opinion.

So that’s actually a pretty big list and I’m sure there are many more . Freedom can be a tough journey ,but after surviving what you have tough isn’t so scary .

Many years ago. A Doc Martin boot in the face was a final straw . It wasn’t an unusual act. It wasn’t rare . My reaction was though. For that I am just so grateful and relieved and yes the journey was (and some days still can be ) tough. So bloody worth it though!!!

I’m going to celebrate with a solo date to the theatre ,dressed how I like whilst making small talk to strangers !!

Well done me

Mission Mindfulness

Tale of Mummyhood
Cup of Toast

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Lucy At Home UK parenting blogger



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35 thoughts on “That time again…

  1. Knowing that it’s not just you, there are others who’ve been in that situation and been able to move on is so powerful. I always hope your posts find their way to others who need it. (Particularly at the moment when domestic violence incidents are influenced by how football teams perform)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What a list Kelly. There’s nothing to berate yourself for at all. This is fabulous to read and it must have been incredibly empowering to write. Big respect to you lady x Thanks for sharing with #tweensteensbeyond

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Kelly it’s so lovely to read how far you have come and what you have achieved for you and your whole family. This is a great moment of reflection and one I feel privileged to share. It’s important sometimes to give ourselves a big pat on the back because all these things we do for those we love can be easily overlooked. Well done. #TweensTeensBeyond

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Well done indeed. Acknowledging any and all successes is part of building up confidence in yourself and helps to quiet the critic who would like to jump in with the list of shoulds. I love your list especially taking back Christmas
    #bestbootforward

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You’ve achieved an amazing amount. You should feel proud, for what you’ve done for you and your boys, as well as the people you’ve helped along the way. It takes immense courage to leave and a whole lot of strength to stay away. Like you say, your brain needs time to heal and you need time to learn to love yourself in the way that you truly deserve to. Keep going, it sounds like you’re doing great. #blogstravaganza

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I hope that you know that you are my hero. I think I’ve said before about how I had a similar, emotionally abusive relationship and knowing how hard it hit me and how difficult I have found life after it, I am in total awe of you. We put so much pressure on ourselves to have this perfect life but that fact that you’re making a positive journey after the crap means you are succeeding! Thank you for joining in with #BestBootForward, I always enjoy reading your posts. Keep on keeping on!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you for being brave enough to share your story, hopefully it will inspire other women who are in toxic relationships to take the plunge and move on #satsesh@_karendennis

    Like

  8. I’ve never been in this situation or knowingly known anyone in a relationship like this to have any kind of understanding what you’ve been through, but reading this post gives me an insight into how far you’ve come, and the things you can do that I take for granted #tweensteensbeyond

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I LOVE THIS!!!!!! You are an amazing woman who has gone through so much and now you’re out of the tunnel and into the light and basking in all its glory!! I’m so proud you’re living the life you wanted for you and your kids!!!!!!
    Thank you for sharing this with us at #TriumphantTales. I hope to see you back next week!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I know I have only seen your journey unfold via this blog rather than knowing you in person, but I felt so proud of you reading this. You have come so far and achieved so much and what you do as a writer, lifting this lid on what goes on and what it’s like to overcome it, is inspirational and vitally important. You’re brilliant! #blogcrush

    Liked by 1 person

  11. AS you have gathered I am sure by now, Kelly, I love your posts and am delighted to read the positive things you have elaborated on above, rather than going too hard on the things you haven’t done. I have to quibble with the notion expressed by one of the comments above about the connection between domestic violence and supporting football teams — for the vast majority of us, football is something to be celebrated and enjoyed. People who are going to be cruel and nasty might react badly to their team’s defeat and lash out, but surely these people would do that in a million other ways and are only using the footie as an excuse? I know you love the football yourself, but I would like to see that connection between footie and violence nailed for what it is: the crimes of a few tainting the passions and positive experience of the vast majority. Bring the football home! #BlogCrush

    Like

  12. You should applaud yourself! Great job taking on a life that YOU want with choices YOU get to make and how wonderful to know/ hope you are helping others who are struggling and facing the same thing. #blogCrush

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Sending you hugs, my god you are a strong, amazing, inspirational woman & mother. I hope you enjoyed your solo theatre date and i hope the next 12 months bring you more and more happiness along with maybe ticking something off your list xx

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Reading your post really disgusts me the way that you were treated and that there are people who think this is an acceptable way to treat others. Thank God you got out of that situation and now have so much to count up as successes. Your two year anniversary reflection is interesting in that you feel you haven’t achieved what you wanted, I think many would identify with slipping back into a place of self reproach so it’s such a brilliant idea to turn that around and write this post. #blogcrush

    Liked by 1 person

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