Note: This is the final part of a continuing story about my healing from childhood sexual abuse. Please read the first part here https://theroamingmind.com/2015/09/21/my-story-breaking-the-cycle/ and continue from there.
There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere, and many of us will have to pass through the valley of the shadow of death again and again before we reach the mountaintop of our desires. – Nelson Mandela
Throughout the years I have grown an appreciation for life. Not only my own life but the life of others. I have been so very fortunate to have the unwavering support of the few people who have known about my struggles over the past few years. Starting with my wife and then eventually to family and a few close friends. Each of those people has given me a reason to continue to fight through the anxiety, guilt and loneliness that has plagued me throughout my growth. I cannot thank them enough for their praise, hugs and open ears that they have provided me. Those little doses of strength convinced me to seek out living my life to the fullest and to seek an understanding of what I have gone through.
While I am nowhere near a finished product and I doubt I ever will be, I need to continually build on the experience that I have accumulated. I can never stop growing by seeking strength in the most unexpected places and times. Living in the now has been my saving grace. I cannot dwell on the baggage of my past and worry about my uncontrollable future. I am far removed from the physical act of my abuse but some days I am still a young boy trying to fight through the confusion. It will take many years for me trust people without limit, I may never get to that place and I need to accept that. It will take more time to rid myself of the guilt. I know with more time and fight I will rise above all of that.
I honestly can say that I would never wish I had a different life. Sure, I have been given a great challenge, but it is one that I know I can overcome. Each and every one of us has a proverbial cross to bear. While mine may have been traumatic, I am still healthy and alive to talk about it. I still have a chance to change the world; I can still make a difference. I have my health. I have an awesome support system. I love my life.
Through my silence, I have felt the pinnacle feeling of despair and loneliness. Now, through my transparency; I have felt that ultimate feeling of freedom that not many people have or will ever experience. I am very fortunate to have felt both extremes. If you happen to be suffering in silence from any kind of abuse or mental anguish. While it is not easy; you can break free from the cycle. You can be you! You can rid yourself of the pain and the guilt. It just starts with one simple phrase: “I AM a survivor”.
Stop being a victim. Be a survivor.
1,001 / 1,000 KMs walked | 44 / 50 blog posts | 17 / 10 books read