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When dealing with abuse there comes a time when even the strongest individual starts to believe what is being said to them. You allow the abuser to stick their finger in your face and tell you who you are. For me, it was a fight of how can this person who is supposed to love me and protect me, not see me for who I am? How can I make him see the real me because he is wrong. and I stubbornly pursued to change his mind for over 20 years. In that time I lost myself. I lost my passion and in the end I lost hope.

He beat me verbally, emotionally and sometimes physically to my knees to keep me down. He wanted me on my knees. He never wanted to see me soar to my fullest potential. Even at my weakest times, I was still stronger than he was because I did NOT attack him personally the way he attacked me. I did not bring our children or others into our issues and I continued to smile and try to do good in the world when my world at home was hell.

You win at life by kicking and fighting your way through all that life has given you. You win by working through that horrible relationship with your husband, wife or parent and letting go of their ideas of what you are. I should’ve taken control of my life a long time ago. I would have my bachelors, possibly my masters but I let a toxic person tell me I didn’t need it. I did it to keep peace. I let him keep me down to make him feel better about himself. I can blame him all I want but when you work through everything you have to accept the blame is yours for not fighting back. Because whether it is life or another person, it knocks you down at times and the only way to win is to change your own destiny.

I let him knock me to my knees. I finally looked up at him one day and said “Get your damn finger out of my face. You have no idea of who I am inside or what my abilities are. Let me tell you something, you love football so much? Then you know, winning is done by moving forward and I have no room for cowards in my life. I’m moving forward without you.” I never looked back. He told me I would fail. He would not let go. He kept his foot in the door of my life but I never questioned my decision no matter what he threw in my way and I forgave myself for not standing up sooner. I stood up and the minute I took control of my own life, no matter what it cost or how hard it was, I won.

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