A little more than three months ago, my little crumbling world fell apart.
I never thought it would’ve ended like that. I thought I was doomed to suffer in a different way. Isolated. Unable to communicate. A burden, a pathetic excuse for a person. But whatever higher power just kept finding new things to take. And I made the mistake of letting my guard down.
That fight was worse than all of the others. The screaming got louder and I tried to block it out. I tried, I swear to god, I tried.
A little more than three months ago, I sat in my sister’s room next to piles of laundry in the dark. That was when I told her what name I wanted her to call me. Now or never, right?
It came in waves, the pounding on the door, the screaming like a banshee. I covered my ears and cried a bit. My mother tried to take the door off it’s hinges next.
My sister tells me we sat in there for hours. That we snuck out once to use the restroom and grab a charger for my nearly-dead phone. Mother must’ve heard us, because I remember the next part clear as day.
The door being slammed against again and again and again and again. The gap was so wide I could’ve stuck my hands through it, and the sound of the screamed threats still keeps me awake.
My sister stood outside with me while the police explained everything to someone.
The next morning, I was back there.
A little more than three months ago, I had the worst breakdown of my life.
I guess that’s saying something. Don’t get me wrong, I had a lot of shitty ones before, but this time was so much worse. I sobbed so hard I couldn’t breathe, I was choking on my own tears while my sister held me, protecting me from that woman. That woman was screaming at me, denying everything, every hit, every insult, every moment just like this. She told me what a good mother she was while I finally understood what crying uncontrollably meant.
A little more than three months ago, I left home.
A little more than three months ago, I walked out the front door with a suitcase, my backpack on my shoulder and tear marks on my face. A week later I came back to help my sister with her stuff.
A little more than three months ago, I sat in a hotel, wasting my summer clicking through Pinterest and messaging my online friend. Late night drives, long walks and solitude became my closest friends.
Four months ago, I wanted to die.
I stood in the shower for hours every day thinking “God, please don’t let this be the rest of my life.” Losing hope, losing myself. The day I planned to do it, we almost got into a horrible accident on the freeway. In that moment of pure fear, I wondered why I was so scared if this is what I had wanted all along. The fighting got worse, I began raking my nails up and down my arms. As though it would somehow make it all better if I could take the blame. If I could make myself bleed, maybe someone would see what they were doing, and they would make it stop.
Four months ago I sat by the water, wondering if I made the right choice to stay.
Today, I‘m laying in my bed in a home with people who love me, and who never put a hand on me. Today, I’m surrounded by the most supportive, kind and understanding people I’ve ever had the fortune to meet. Today, I have people who understand me. Right here, right now, I’m planning Halloween stuff and decorations for my new room.
Things aren’t perfect. She is still around. Still coming up with new ways to hurt me from a distance. I’m still left to pick up the pieces and deal with the trauma, but I don’t have to do it alone.
Today, I am loved.