Thursday, October 4, 2012

Through the darkness

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Can we just get something out of the way?

I came back home in August.

If you’ve been reading my blog, you probably already know this. Because even though I didn’t explicitly say that, I’ve been painting walls and cleaning out the basement, and those generally aren’t things one does in a safehome.

I wasn’t sure how or even whether to address this on my blog. My decisions in regards to our safety the last couple of years have felt like something of a revolving door: leave, come back, leave, come back.

The truth is that I’m making decisions based on a lot of ever-changing factors: safety, finances, health, the kids’ school schedule, current legal activity (or inactivity) and, of course, my gut instincts. I put them all together in a pot and try to sift out the best course of action.

But really? I’m making decisions in the dark. Because the one factor that impinges most upon our safety is one I can neither anticipate nor control.

But I’m home now. It’s not a secret. There are those who think that’s not a good idea, but it’s the decision I’ve made based on all the various factors. It’s the decision that feels right to me.

I often have an internal debate about what I should and should not say on my blog. In the end, I generally end up just saying it. All hail transparency. It’s the easiest and most comfortable thing I know to do. To not tell the truth of what’s happening in my life takes effort. I’m tired of expending unnecessary effort.

There will always be things I choose not to write about because they impact someone else’s privacy. I have written very little about what my kids have gone through, what they still go through. I feel protective of their privacy.

I’ve been thinking today about all the women who live in the shadow of violence. Every day, they must make these decisions. To stay or to go. To confront or to appease. To talk or to stay quiet. How much simpler life would be if none of this was necessary.

We, as a society, have this sense that there are all these resources out there, ready to guide women who find themselves in situations of violence. There are DV shelters and advocacy groups, there are laws protecting our rights, and there is a justice system to enforce those laws. But still, essentially, these women are out there doing it on their own. These resources are not so much guides, as lights along what can be a very long and lonely path. They bring us some comfort and perhaps illuminate the way for a short time, but the journey is ours to take.

I have watched so many women – virtual friends and acquaintances who have found their way to my blog – walk this very path. I have watched their trajectory of healing. The shock, the fear, the confusion, the anger, the coming home to oneself, and finally, the peace.

October is DV Awareness month. Today, I raise my glass to all the women in the world who are making decisions in the dark.

If I told you that you were taking the Hero’s Journey, you would look at me skeptically. Because who has time for such abstract notions when your day to day decisions are primal and immediate? Your life is a mess. You feel like everything that was secure has dissolved. Like you have walked a hundred miles and somewhere along the way took a wrong turn (relax, little known fact: all roads lead home). In short, you feel like you are dying.

You’re not dying. You are in the belly of the whale. One day you will emerge. And when you do, you will find that no one will ever again be able to knock you so off balance. Because here’s a secret about the tyrants of the world. They will always give a wide berth to those who are standing in the center of their own power.

Keep walking.

Soon, the light will break through the trees.

Just keep walking.






21 comments:

  1. Amen. Beautifully said Kristin. I was speaking to an ex law enforcement officer recently and she reminded me that the best way to deal with a threat - human or animal - is to front up to them and look them squarely in the eyes. I agree, and I wish for all those women who are still suffering in the darkness of hatred and evil, that they find their strength to keep going. When you going through hell , as they say, you need to keep going. Vix x

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    1. Vix, that makes a lot of sense (about looking a threat square in the face). It's like those documentaries you see where the lions (or whatever predator) go after the weakest animal in the herd. x

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  2. Yes. Just... yes.

    Much love to you and all who are reminded by your gentle guidance.

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  3. Your post really resonates with me today. I have lost a friend this week to DV. It's all very fresh, raw, and inutterably terrible. I'm so very sorry for what you have to go through.

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    1. Edwina, I just clicked through and read your post and the news article. I'm am just so very sorry. There really are no words. Sending love and light your way. xo

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  4. The Hero's journey! I Like it!
    If asked if you would have wanted your life any other way? Would have made another choice?

    In hindsight I know that it was all worth it (making the choices I have made, and deciding to leave), and I like the person I have become! I would not change a thing about the dark times!

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    1. Karen, I don't usually think about 'what ifs' like that, to be honest. What's done is done. I don't regret it, though. As you articulated so well, we would not be who we are today without our experiences, however dark. I've grown a lot as a result of all of this. I have my two beautiful children. I'm more at peace in my own skin than I ever was. So no, no regrets. x

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  5. Wishing you strength and peace on your journey

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  6. All hail to you and your power. Long may it guide you and keep you safe.

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    1. Thanks Steve. I really hope our paths cross one of these days. It would be an honor to meet you.

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  7. Beautifully written K. So glad you kept walking and will no doubt keep doing so x

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  8. Wow, Krisitn! I love the line that you wrote: "...those who are standing in the centre of their own power." - that is a message that I hope my daughter carries with her as she grows, and develops friendships and relationships on her own. She is turning 13 in a couple of months, and I have been thinking of messages that I would like for her to carry with her as a part of her internal dialogue, and I just love your quote, it is so empowering. By sharing your story, and your writing, you are helping to educate people and changing so many lives. Thank you for being such an amazing inspiration and role-model. Take Care. *HUGS*

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    1. Thanks Kelly, what a kind thing to say. You're such a great mom. You're always thinking of your kids. I love that you are thinking consciously about what messages you want to impart. I think that's so important. I still remember the things my mom told me, about life and how to go about it, when I was that age.

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  9. Beautiful words hun from someone who I really hope realises just how inspiring and amazing she is.... you xx

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    1. Sonia, that's really beautiful. Thank you. xo

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