Victory, not victim

For what felt like most of my life, I blamed myself for being sexually abused. Maybe it was my fault that I didn’t stop him. Maybe it was my outfit that one day. Once, he called me ‘beautiful’, and instantly, I felt the opposite: disgusted and horrible. Because of my stepdad, for most of my high school years, I kept and cut my hair short because I wanted to look less feminine, in hopes that he wouldn’t come near me. Only in college was I able to grow my hair long.

I also blamed myself for my biological father for leaving my mother and I. As a result of these thoughts, in the back of my head, I questioned, “Am I inadequate? What did I do wrong?” As a kid, I would tell people my father passed away, but to be frank, I’ve no idea of his presence or his whereabouts. Of course, as a human, I am curious, but I’m not losing sleep over him or my stepdad, but I lay awake at night thinking about how they’ve made me feel.

The feeling of not ever being good enough – or even just enough – is an enormous insecurity of mine.

I used to ask, “Why?”
Why did my real dad leave me?
Why did my stepdad never leave me alone?
Now, I know why.

Life is a book that writes itself without reasoning, only meaning. There are hard lessons we will learn (even though we wish we could learn the lessons in another manner, in a fashion where no one gets hurt and scarred). But, the lessons aren’t as easy to forget when there’s a scar of it to remind you each day of what had happened in the past. Internal growth sprouts when one accepts the past for what it is instead of formulating a tactic to change it. Today, I know I am enough, in fact, more than enough, for myself. To wish I could be someone else is an insult to who I have built myself to be – a notion that has taken years for me to learn and embrace – but better late than never. Thank you for reading.

Side Post
Someone I follow on Instagram, Vanlizza, she too has her own blog, and wrote a beautiful piece recently. Check out her writing! It always blows me away. I learned from her that October is National Depression Awareness Month. I’d like to take a moment to say that depression takes form in different fashions, sometimes it’s subtle and slow, sometimes it’s painful and pulsing, and we should never be ashamed of how we feel, for depression is something that cannot be controlled and configured. If you or someone you know is going through a tough and dark time, here are some numbers to call. Your life matters.

Depression Hotline: 800-273-TALK (8255)
Suicide Hotline: 800-784-2433
Crisis Call Center: 800-273-8255 or text ANSWER to 839863

Graphics all by yours truly.

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