In the United States we celebrate Independence Day on July 4th. This day is in commemoration of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Courageous men worked together to create a separate nation from England. Most of the men that signed that document gave their lives, fortunes or what every it took to change the world. A great day in the life of a victim is the day they declare independence from their past. The day they will do whatever it takes to change their world from victim to survivor to thriving. It is on that day that the hardest battle they ever fought will begin. Until that moment, their abusers and their past will push them about however the whim may be but on independence day the victim takes responsibility for their self and say, “No More.” This is when they get into counseling, reading self-help books, joining support groups, setting goals, taking back their power. Just as on that fateful day in 1776, Independence Day is just the beginning. Which day is your independence day?
2 thoughts on “Independence Day”
Sometimes I feel like I have to declare each new day as Independence Day.
The morning I put my lil’ 4 line “No Contact” note in the mail to my MN “Mother” decades ago: It felt as if the weight of the world had been lifted from my young shoulders. My “Independence Day” came about because I *accepted* what WAS, not what I desperately wanted, worked towards and hoped to some how achieve: A mutually respectful relationship with my “mother.”
I had no idea that morning I would set off an OVERT decades long Scorched Earth War on the part of my “Mother” against me that continued until her physical death. I had lived with her covert tactics for years. There was no technology, no “self-help” industry (which seems to me to often be “Let me help myself to your $$) and no support whatsoever. I knew no one who had a “Mother” like mine or who struggled as I did for years. Everything she did post NC reaffirmed my decision as the chronicity and severity of her pathology became yet more fulminant. I knew nothing about “Smear Campaigns,” Retribution, PIs, In-Person Ambushes etc. There were no Stalking Laws at that time and ROs were considerably more difficult to procure.
Sometimes I think it’s truly a gift we can’t see the future. When I started this journey I had no idea what lie in front of me or what an adventure it would be in every way. I was exhausted, had absolutely NO self-confidence and was running on empty in every way. I simply wanted Peace. I was long past being angry. I had been placing distance both geographically and mentally for the last few years. I started taking concrete steps to limit her ability to reach out and poke me at her will. Initially, I grappled with a huge amount of guilt as I was acting in direct opposition to all “The Rules” of Crazy Families I had grown up with and had been ruthlessly socialized to accept. It truly was a struggle. I just knew I could no longer keep doing what I was doing: If my presence wasn’t helping-and it wasn’t, either of us-my absence wouldn’t hurt.
My “Mother” spun my basic right to self-preservation as a form of Retribution against her. By removing myself from the on-going conflict, I had somehow irreparably damaged her; she was “The Victim,” me, her Adult Child “The Perpetrator.” I was, “Brilliant but emotionally immature”-this, in response to the various awards and commendations I received post NC she could no longer milk for the Halo Effect. I was “Mentally Unstable,” a recurring theme she used to stealthily destroy my first career. She continued to carefully set IEDs that went off periodically through out the rest of her physical life in my life. She was very affluent and her resources could buy any “service” she desired or could conjure up including an “unfortunate accident” for her “DD.” Nonetheless, I never relented on NC. I happily married my late DH, was heart-breakingly widowed quite young, started a new career and was very successful doing what I loved.
I don’t believe the adventure my life has been would ever have been possible without NC, despite her on-going Terrorism. I’d rather deal with a Terrorist occasionally than to *ever* pay the price of having them in my life on THEIR TERMS ONLY and in direct opposition to what I know to be Right, Just and True. I have never regretted that life-changing decision, although there are others I would change if I could.
I’m old now and I know I have been an extremely fortunate woman: It all started with a decision based on Reality and a short note that heralded my “Independence Day.”