1. Fear. I feared for my life. Wherever I go, I was afraid he would follow me. I peeked out the window and hid behind the trees. I was terrified that he could come back.
2. I felt like I would never be the same again. My psychological pain had become physical. I had chest pain; my heart was pounding.
I was in pain physically. I could not climb the stairs, I was breathless. Her violence had made me physically ill.
3. My self-esteem was shattered. I didn’t have anymore. I was anxious, I was afraid of everything and I listened to everyone except myself. I was angry with myself for letting it break me. I was going to be unable to trust myself for a very long time.
4. I had lost my dignity, I had lost myself. I had to relearn how to live as before, but the road was difficult. I saw the end of it, but despite my efforts, I couldn’t reach it.
5. I had nightmares, which seemed to be real and cruel. I woke up screaming his name and asking him to stop in the middle of the night. I cried before falling asleep because of the things he had done to me.
My dreams were just a projection of the fear I lived in – the fear that he would return.
6. I was on edge. Everything overwhelmed me. The smallest thing made me cry. At the time, it seemed insurmountable. As if it would never go away because my heart and soul were unable to bear more pain.
I was like a delicate flower left at the mercy of a freezing winter – a simple breeze could have torn me apart.
7. Each person I encountered was a potential threat. Not only did I fail to trust myself, but I also failed to trust others. I scared people well, because I was not ready to let anyone come into my life.
Life seemed too painful, too heavy to carry on the moment, and each person I met participated in this feeling. That’s how I saw it.
8. I was trying to hide the pain, contempt, rage, and anger that kept growing inside me. I was trying to be normal. I was trying to be happy. So I simulated a smile, but my eyes told the real story. My eyes were telling the truth.
9. I no longer knew what happiness looked like. I hadn’t laughed sincerely for a very long time. I hadn’t been myself for a very long time.
10. I was on my guard. I couldn’t let the others come near, lest they hurt me. He had broken me and put me lower than the ground.
He had drawn me into his darkness and now that I finally saw the light, a glimmer of hope, I would not have let anyone put this in danger. So I erected high walls, which nobody could knockdown.
11. I couldn’t get out of bed. I did not want. I felt safe, away from everyone. I rejected people who loved me and my anxiety had become my best friend. We were together all the time. I was a step away from depression. Anxiety kept me trapped for a very long time.
12. I felt judged. I felt like people were looking down on me and commenting on my life in secret. I felt guilty for needing time to heal as if I had done wrong. But I got tired of all these people who had no idea what I had experienced.
13. I needed someone to tell me it was over. I needed to be reassured. I needed someone to tell me that everything would be fine. I needed to know that from now on I was going to be safe.
14. I apologize for the smallest thing. I felt like I was responsible for everything that happened around me, I immediately said that I was sorry; even though I didn’t have to do it.
I used to take on all the responsibilities in order to avoid being abused, to avoid nervous attacks, and to calm him down. Everything was always my fault because if it were otherwise, I would end up paying the price.
15. I felt like I needed someone to keep his promises. I was fed up with lies and disappointments. If someone were to lie to me, I still preferred that he disappear.
16. I’m going to need time before I can love again. I don’t know when I’ll be able to. Maybe tomorrow, maybe the day after tomorrow, maybe a year from now.