Tuesday, June 28, 2011

How I got here: Forgiveness...

Last night I  had a dream I was still with him. I've had these dreams before and I always wake up feeling relieved that it's just a dream. Then,  I thank God for this life and for saving me from that one. There is something missing though.

So, here is a story and for the first time there is forgiveness at the end of it.

I was 19 when I caught his eye. He was 22. He was in the ARMY and when we were married, I was my age. No more, no less.

Back then I thought if I was more mature,  pretty, skinny, funny, lovely...

maybe then he would cherish me. I was so many good things but he still hit me--painting me black and blue with color and so many things I was not, with words.

So, I became the girl in the back row with the lame excuse for the black eye and swollen nose. Nobody called me out and I was thankful in my own way. I was now a symptom of him and no longer the girl I once was. I became withdrawn from friends and family but deep inside I was screaming for someone to rescue me.

I thought I could change him if I lost some weight or cleaned more. I did more but he never got better and so, I wasted months playing Russian Roulette by hand with a man who was really a lost boy. Then one day, I decided to rescue myself.

Finally, I got to that place...

Me staring at myself in the mirror and verbally telling my reflection,

"He could kill you with those hands."

Hands that had been around my neck the night before and then, I left him standing outside our apartment. His eyes red from promises made too late but this time I knew he couldn't keep them.

Suddenly, that life was gone...

but it wasn't erased. I've held on to it, all these years and it hurts every time I remember.

but forgivness can shade the pain and so...


I forgive you and I'm letting go of what you did to me. I pray you found the help you needed and that your free from your anger.

Joining Emily here for imperfect prose today.

15 comments:

Nancy said...

"I was now a symptom of him and no longer the girl I once was." These are haunting words. Only Jesus can work the kind of forgiveness you've written about here.

I've missed seeing you here.

Wanda..... said...

Alexis, you are so blessed with talent, courage and honesty, I'm sure you and your life are cherished now. Forgiveness will only make it better. I have missed you. Your post has made me cry, not for you, but for my own blessings. My oldest granddaughter is to be married Saturday to someone, who I know cherishes her. Thanks for the lovely post, Alexis and the feelings it brought forth!

journeytoepiphany said...

I was abused in my first marriage. You have penned the feelings of a wounded woman well. Keep writing, and forgiving...

Kara said...

I'm so sorry...
My heart broke for you in this.
But ending with forgiveness...I'm so thankful.
Appreciated you being willing to share such a vulnerable place of hurt, with a glimpse of the hope and healing that can come from God's outstretched hand.

Misty said...

i still struggle to find forgiveness on the daily level for a different abuse, but your words here resonate with me. there is such, such grace in the ability to forgive (as we have been forgiven, no?), as hard as it is sometimes. this is a hard and heartbreaking read, but a good one. thank you for sharing.

Brian Miller said...

whew this is a hard place to come too...forgiving the abuser...i am glad you are free of it and i too hope he got the help he needed...thanks for the raw real honesty...

lori said...

So thankful you were able to get out of that relationship and now that you are able to give forgiveness so that you can find life. Beautiful :)

Ostriches Look Funny said...

I'm glad you're back. I'm glad you're MORE than your age now and in a different life.
:)

amy said...

you are beautiful, beautiful. God is so good. thank you for sharing your story.

Leslie said...

wow. your words are powerful. i'm glad you are free...

Barb said...

Oh, Alexis, your courage and talent amaze and move me. In the brevity of your prose, I can see the future: It's bright with hope and happiness. Welcome back, my friend! (If I were writing on paper, you might see some tear stains...)

emily wierenga said...

oh, my dear alexis... how i've missed you. and how this struck me hard. that you had to go through this... that you had to endure his hands around your neck, the black and the blue, the wondering why... and to see him as a lost boy... i will pray for him tonight, and you, and this beautiful act of forgiveness. you are lovely. i'm so glad you are free.

Vicki said...

I am so proud of YOU! Forgiveness is the most amazing and wonderful thing. It sets you free. It sets him free. FREEDOM!!!!

Jodi said...

"but forgivness can shade the pain and so..."
yes it can!!! Thank you for this, you brave, beautiful woman. I am rejoicing that God has returned to you what the locusts have eaten. What a testimony of strength for your daughters, and the man He's blessed you with now. Your story is identical to my daughter-in-law's before she met and married my son. There are many young women out there who need to hear this.

Rachna Chhabria said...

I am glad to see you back, Alexis. Forgiveness is indeed a divine attribute. Its sets you free.