Between a Rock and a Hard Place
Every marathon that has ever been run; every mountain that has ever been climbed; every journey that has ever been ventured; have all begun with a single step. For most of my life, that first step has either been in the wrong direction, or fear has kept me from ever taking it at all. It seems so much easier to just remain motionless in the uncomfortable hell you know than to step out into the vast unknown where anything can happen. You can fail. You can have your heart broken. But the thing that is most certain, is that you will never know what might have been, if you never take that step.
I am not a victim
I am not a victim. Read that again and say it out loud. I am NOT a victim! If you’re like me you hesitated before you said it, if you even said it at all. The truth is there is a coward within me, that prior to saying those words, wants to argue the facts. But I’ve been abused. Ive been rejected. Ive been abandoned. The list gets longer. I have been beaten up. I have been damaged. I have been raped. As the minutes pass you will convince yourself that, no, I am a victim. This guy doesn’t understand all I’ve been through. He cannot comprehend the depth of the pain I’ve endured. And each time we convince ourselves, of that horrible lie, that we in fact are a victim, we become the victim again. And again. And again. Ask yourself this question. If you are the victim, then who is the victor? Every time we speak that lie or think that lie or convince ourselves that we are the victim, we essentially stand and clap for the bully, the abuser, the rapist, the thief. You see, nothing enables or empowers a bully or an abuser more than knowing that their abuse has had a lasting negative influence on your life. It’s in their nature. To be relevant, to be acknowledged, even if it’s in a negative light. Like the high school kid who adds notches on his belt to memorialize each sexual conquest, an abusive person wants to remain memorialized in your life. They want you to have trust issues. They want you to be afraid to love and to not feel worthy of love. They want you to be afraid of the dark or get anxiety from a text or call from them. They narcissistically lust the idea of never being ignored or forgotten. They want you to feel damaged and think that no one could love you. They want you to remain their victim for the rest of your life. And of course, you will. Unless you change your mind. Unless you change your thinking. YOU WILL ALWAYS BE THEIR VICTIM! But there is something the bully doesn’t like. Something that the bully fears immensely. Something that the abuser never wants to see. They never want to see one of their victims get up from the dirt, dust themselves off, and keep fighting. Nothing makes a bully more afraid and nothing can suck all the heart out of their chest like a “victim” who doesn’t just lie down and comply and die. I am not a victim. Everything that conspired to destroy me did not succeed in destroying me but succeeded in giving me a more focused purpose. It succeeded in revealing the victor inside of me. It succeeded in making me stronger and wiser and more empathetic and less afraid, because now I know, I conquered it once, and I will conquer it again. So thank you to all the abusers and bullies and cheaters and control freaks and liars and manipulators and narcissists who beat me down, rejected me, abandoned me, brutalized me and tried to destroy any good I had in me or believed about myself. Thank you, Because you brought out the beast in me. You showed me that I can get through this and you helped me see that there is no quit in me. My daddy left me when I was little, but I am not a victim. I was physically and sexually abused, but I am not a victim. I was served divorce papers on my anniversary and had my kids taken away from me but I am not a victim. I was gossiped about and slandered and lies were spread about me but I am not victim! I am not a victim! I am not a victim! I am a victor. I am an even more empathetic warrior. I AM NOT A VICTIM. You have no more control over me or how I think. I am done enabling you and empowering you to keep me down, hold me back and locked inside your prison of fear and anxiety and shame. I am not a victim, I am a CHAMPION, and this dark, cold world will feel the wrath of my warm laughter and fear my smile and run from my love and trust and hope. So thank you, to all you cowards, you narcissists, you abusers and bullies. Because of you, I am so much stronger than I ever was before. You beat me down, you ground me to ashes. But here I am roaring in the face of all your adversity. I am not your victim, I am a Champion! So who are you?
The elephant stood tall, unashamed and bold. It stared me in the eyes without flinching, without blinking. I became fully aware that I was locked in a stare down contest so I casually looked away as if I was unaware of its intentions. It was too strong, too magnanimous to even try to stare down. I tried to divert my attention. I distracted the thoughts and directed the conversation toward the weather. That is always a good, solid easy path. Certainly not the rage filled mine field of religion and politics. A calm peaceful middle ground where even if you disagree on it, no one is that passionate about it to blow up, stomp out and lose touch. “It looks like rain again today”, I said with a confidence that was built on the foundation of the dark rain clouds overhead and the low crackle of thunder in the distance.