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Moving On

September 12, 2013

This is a sequel to my most recent post, ‘The Last Shift.’

Being held up at gunpoint in that little store was but the first of three times that my life was threatened. Eight years later, my first husband held a knife to my neck and threatened to slit my throat. Then, seven years after that, I was working in a mental health hospital when a male patient pulled a knife on me, and threatened to kill me.

Enough!

I was a victim in each of those events. But only for a matter of minutes…until the imminent threat had passed and my brain kicked in again and I took action.

At the Dairy Store, I remembered two phone numbers shortly after the robbers fled. The moment I chose to call for help was the precise moment that I stopped being a victim.

Same with the other two incidents…I stopped being a victim when I took action. I personally believe that I was saved by prayer both of those times. It was all I could do…I had no other weapon, so I prayed and things worked out the way I prayed they would. A simplistic viewpoint, I know, but that’s the nuts and bolts of it.

I would love to forget all three of these incidents, but I cannot. The memories have been indelibly etched into my brain. I have to live with them.

My current husband asks why I choose to revisit them. I do not visit them. They come to me.

The memories come back at unexpected times and they bring with them the same feelings of helplessness that I felt when they occurred so many years ago. Some little everyday event, seemingly unrelated, will trigger a memory to rise from the shadows of my mind.

I have no switch to flip to shut them off. I can’t push them back in and slam the door. I must process them before I can lock them away once again.

Lord knows, I’ve done my best to drown them with alcohol or smother them with smoke. I wallowed in self pity for years. Nothing worked. If anything, they got stronger while I weakened.

No More!

These events have changed me just the same as they would change anyone. My history is not unique. We all have baggage. It is not what happens to us that matters…it’s how we deal with it…whether we receive the support we need at the time or not.

I will deal with the memories when they arise but I will not dwell on them.  I will not allow them to control me.

If, at some point, I cross paths with someone who is going through a similar experience, I will do my best to help them.

I am not a victim. I have had my life threatened on three different occasions and I am still here, on the right side of the dirt.

It happened to me but it does not define me.

I do not know why I had to go through these things, and I won’t ask why. I will focus on asking questions that can be answered.  Questions like ‘how can I go on?’

God is not finished with me yet.

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3 Comments
  1. Amber permalink

    Hi!
    Just wanted to let you know that I read every one of your stories. Thanks for sharing them! I appreciate your strength.
    Love,
    Amber

  2. Margaret permalink

    Dang, woman! I can’t decide if you’re lucky or not!

  3. Me neither…but I’m still here.

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