We are well into the month of November and wanted to take the time to give thanks to many for continuing to support Herstory in its ever-growing and evolving platform. What started as a space for Cristal and I to unpack our own truths around trauma from sexual assault, became an outlet for other survivors to do the same. We have come across countless stories and realities both similar and different from our own experiences. One thing remains constant, we are all more than overcomers, we are no longer victims, we are indeed survivors of some of the harshest realities we could ever imagine facing.
This reflection is coming from a place of empathy towards those still processing, still hurting and all in all still healing. This year alone has forced me to come face-to-face with my healing in anew way...the part I wasn’t motivated or inspired to share. These were the parts of my story that still hurt when I sat with moments long enough. It was in these moments, I had to get real about where I was on my journey, and be okay with the fact that I wasn’t okay. I felt like God was unveiling another layer, a deeper more complex version of myself that I pushed so far down; I allowed the superficial versions of healing and wellness to supersede the stuff deep down I wasn’t ready to face yet.
The journey the last 11 months has been strenuous spiritually speaking, as I spent a lot of time I prayer, and fasting. I sought therapy and close and trusted friends to lean on deeply during a period I can more simply express as symptoms of post traumatic stress. I had some intense and close relationships near me that triggered a wave of suppressed emotions tied to the night I was assaulted; I had NO idea existed. Once the hurt surfaced, I had a choice in that moment: conceal and run from it, or face it head on. Like the Israelites trusting Moses to get them through the Red Sea and out of captivity, I too had to trust in God through this season, no longer avoiding, or distracting myself from it.
I can’t say I particularly “liked” the process God has (and perhaps still having) me go through, but I love Him for trusting me with it. His grace truly was sufficient to carry me through day by day. Some days were easier than others. While others, I sulked, laid in bed or cried uncontrollably at any given time. I was being purged from so many people, and so much pain I felt like I was losing myself. Perhaps I was, or should I say, I did. I lost the part of me that wasn’t serving who I feel like today. I am by no means in a completely hurt-less state, but I’m identifying myself less and less with the girl who settled, and the young woman who didn’t trust her own voice. I have learned a valuable lesson this year in the mere fact that healing is not linear.
Your journey may come in waves, and have crooked paths, some detours, and u-turns, it is far from perfect. But trust that GOD is doing a GOOD thing in you. I am finally seeing the light. I’m finally walking with more assurance that I know, could only find in Christ. NO ONE held me down or kept me up like Jesus. I’m just so grateful that no matter the step I am on in rediscovering, unpacking and revealing more of me, He is right there by my side.
To those on the journey, take it from a ex-self-proclaimed-perfectionist...there is nothing “perfect” about mending a broken heart, mind or spirit. While you journey, be patient and be kind to you, it does get better. And if you find yourself in a place where “better” seems too far away, surround yourself with people with love you, who speak life into you, who will cheer you on when you want to throw in the towel and be done with feeling all together. I’m grateful for my people, I’m grateful to God I’m here still to say “thank you” for the process before the promise.
Loving you and sending you all the light God’s grace does possess;
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.