Dear Universe, God, Great Spirit, be you one in the same,
I spent the day asking myself, “How do I save myself?” Derailed by the knowledge that my rapist had begun to follow me on social media, I grew insular and afraid. Unable to fully articulate how it was that I felt and what it was that I needed, I demanded space from everyone around me either implicitly or directly. I took my time to cry and to feel the sutures that were ripped open by the resurfacing of my perpetrator. Feeling helpless and alone, I took to heart my therapists’ challenge. That perhaps this was the part of my heroines journey where it seems I have been defeated. My enemy stands above me believing he has won, and it is the time for me to reach for the thing within me that allows me to rise from the dust and finish the fight.
I wept into my pillow for hours comtemplating the probable answers to this question. I scoured the Internet for words but I couldn’t even solidify a feeling, and emotion, a search term. I was lost and all I knew was that I had to figure out a way to get up. Staying down was not an option.
Ironically, it was the realization that there was no plan B that jolted me a little bit. I remembered who I was. I am the woman who focuses on her goals almost single-mindedly and marches towards them with fervor and purpose. Only it felt like I was stuck. I could not move forward because I was emotionally tethered to this man, this act, this pain. Suddenly it became very clear “how” I was going to save myself. I was going to have to let go. I was going to have to tell myself a different story. I was going to have to accept what happened as part of my personal narrative and perhaps most difficult of all, I was going to have to forgive.
I have to forgive myself for my actions and inactions which contributed to that night. I have to forgive myself for the way I chose to survive. I have to forgive myself for the way I chose to heal. I have to forgive myself for the stress and mistreatment I’ve subjected my body to. I have to forgive myself for the beliefs I formed about myself as a result of being raped. I have to forgive myself for the beliefs I formed about myself for my anxiety and PTSD. I have to forgive myself for all the things I thought I should have known but only just learned as a result of this experience.
And God, here is the part where I really need you…I have to forgive him. I do not yet know how that happens. But I know I covet my peace and freedom from the paralyzingly hurt of his actions too much to remain stuck there. I have to move on for the serenity of my own soul.
So I petition to you, God, show me how to forgive that which I consider unforgiveable. Teach me how to grow from this experience so that it acts as fertilizer to my rich earth. Guide me through remembering the kind of person I want to be, the kind of person I have the potential to be. My purpose requires my focus, my passion, my heart and my light in its purest form. Help me to free it from this black hole. Help me to escape the pull of negativity, self destruction and darkness.
Without you, Lord, my efforts are futile. With you, all things are possible. So I am going to put my trust in you and choose to believe that my heroines journey is nowhere near over. And the plans you have for me surpass even my wildest imagination. My wellness is instrumental to my utility as a vessel for your work.
Help me to heal myself, to save myself so that you can use me.
These things I pray with an open and gracious heart…