What I really wanted to say today, but couldn’t find the words to say…
Our Relief Society lesson today was on sexual abuse, so it has been on my mind all day. It never ceases to amaze me how much my life has changed. 8 years ago I was just starting counseling… I knew that happiness was possible, but I didn’t know that complete healing was. I figured (I was only 19 at the time) that getting married and having kids would make me happy!
8 years ago, the pain of the abuse was so bad. It engulfed my every waking second. It didn’t help that I was still living in it. My two big turning points were telling Sister Parker and then eventually opening up to Joy about it. Telling Joy was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I remember how encouraging Hayley was about it all. Wow, thinking back to when I wrote Joy I remember all the feelings I had: scared that Joy would reject me, fear that Joy would tell me it’s not big deal, terrified if my parents found out I was seeing her, let alone if they knew what I was telling her, and so many other mixed emotions.
As I sit here, bawling my eyes out, I can’t help but hear James, he would always asked me, What are those tears saying? How amazed I am to look back and then see where I am today. Never in a million years did I think this healing was possible.
I thought that me being closed up was just a part of who I was. Today we talked about how sharing your story makes it lose it’s (negative) power. I still feel like my story has so much power to it (but in a good way) and all the bad in it is gone.
Something else I realized recently, this December it will be 20 years since my mom died. How is that possible? That just makes me feel old. It’s another pain that I didn’t think could be healed, but it was. Having been raised in the LDS church I never doubted that I wouldn't see her again some day. But the circumstances (and trauma) surrounding her death made it unbearably painful.
None of my healing (or forgiveness) would have been possible without the guidance I received in counseling and the healing power of the Atonement.