Some of the most difficult things I've run into since working outside the home are hearing about and having to deal in some way with the atrocities done to children.
As a dispatcher, calls and visits to the police department dealt with neglect and abuse of which I would never have closure. A dispatcher hears things at the worst and seldom hears about outcomes.
As a newspaper reporter, I see public court files with heart wrenching stories.
Having come from a traumatic childhood myself, I have struggled with C-PTSD. This situations always bring back something I'd rather not remember. Thankfully I've experienced healing I've been able to share with others.
If you've been following me for long, you may already know, but I'll try to briefly share to bring everyone else up to speed.
I was a teen pregnancy. My mother left when I was a baby and I did not meet her until I was eight years old. My father was an abusive alcoholic. My step-mother did not like me. I found out in adulthood that my dad had an affair with my mother when my first half-brother was born. Since I looked almost exactly like my mother, I'm sure it was a constant reminder to her of his infidelity. She and her family were not unkind to me, just unloving.
At about the age of five, I was sent to a Vacation Bible School. I remember the message like it was yesterday and it is the same message I have used in leading my own children to the Lord. I gave my heart to Jesus, because I didn't think I would live to grow up.
Other than a few VBS and Sunday School visits, I was not raised in church or in a Christian upbringing. I was raised to be a new age medicine woman and could do tarot cards, automatic writing and over the phone readings at a young age.
I moved in with my drug-addict birth mother at the age of 10 and watched her get abused by several men. I had a job of some sort from the age of 11 to help feed myself and purchase my necessities.
While I attended church as often as I could, I also made several mistakes of my own. By age 15, I had been smoking, drinking, was no longer a virgin for several years and I was ready to end my life. Setting in a totally out of the way place, where no-one would find me, looking at the knife, I made a decision. I made the decision to stop surviving and start living. I quit smoking and started on my way to recovery. With lots of help and support along the way coming from unlikely places, I began to overcome the destructive lifestyle I had been raised in.
Thankfully the Lord blessed me with a wonderful preacher's son. I had my last alcoholic beverage three days before we married nearly 30 years ago.
With much love, Paul's parents taught me the Bible and helped nurture me in my relationship with my Creator. We've been blessed with a beautiful family which we have diligently nurtured in the Scriptures.
I'm proof that no matter how bad the situation, children don't have to choose the same path they are brought up in. I loved my parents, who had many good qualities, but I didn't want to live the life they did. And I definitely didn't want that for my children.
My recovery has not been easy. I still struggle with a lot of issues. It breaks my heart beyond belief when I see other children go through horrific things. But I have learned to turn my experience into a message of hope for others. I am now thriving and others can too.
Here is a poem written by a friend and mentor who also went through abuse as a child and has ministered to children and families who have struggled through atrocities:
Justice for the Abused?
but, alas, it is squashed like a bug.
For the child, the molested, the abused,
their pain is shoved under the rug.
After all presented evidence
and scary court rooms day after day,
still the victim sees no justice,
for the jurors have their way.
The victim is still hurting,
even though the parent will deny
the truth of the molestation.
Some parents don't even ask, "Why?".
The victim thinks "Why did I bother
to tell what the abuser did?
No one can help me now, I bet,
the horrible truth is well hid".
The victim obtaining no justice
trapped in the web of defeat
will endure the disgusting abuse
the abuser will assuredly repeat.
One thing is of value.
The guilty has been accused.
Perhaps it may help to soften the pain
and bring healing and strength to the abused.
The victims may become survivors,
through counseling, love, and prayer.
To find each day worth living,
and learn their pain to bear.
Justice means: to uphold what is just,
to give a penalty as deserved,
to punish the one who has done the wrong.
When is justice really served?
Will the abused ever find Justice?
Will they ever feel any relief?
How will You listen when they tell?
Will You react in disbelief?
Written by a Survivor, Donna Mae Carrico, February 27, 1992
Please pray for the precious ones who are struggling to survive through domestic abuse. It's happening everywhere. I know part of the reason I was able to have victory and find freedom was because of those praying for me. Prayer is powerful! While we cannot stop others from excising their free will against the Creator and His creation, we can pray for protection over and help for the innocent.