Cracked Wide Open to Gifts
My journey through a relationship with a man in the witness protection program who I feared was the catalyst to my growth.
I had two beautiful children with this man, and I was the shield of protection for them. I was committed to doing whatever it would take to protect them. I would stay under his thumb for many years, living in fear of him. He intimidated me on every level of my life, whether it was being followed, watched by cameras in house, or through penetration of my computer and phone. He always knew any new friend I had and their information, too.
He used his words to cut me down, threaten me, and kept everyone around me at bay. He penetrated every aspect of my life to instill the fear. I would be with him sexually on demand because it was what I had to do to survive. Eventually, I would become encapsulated by the fear in a paralysis that would cause many years of being stagnant and stifled. It was like I was webbed into a cocoon that was intricately woven, and eventually I just couldn’t move. It was a mental prison where the fear perpetuated more fear, and of not knowing if I would survive physically or mentally.
Many years in this situation cracked me wide open to forgiveness, unconditional love, courage, and to loving myself. I learned to listen to my most important guidance system, my intuition. All the tools that I learned helped me survive day in and day out.
This experience has made me realize that there are many forms of abuse: Intimidation, mental abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, and being controlled and manipulated.
There are different degrees of it but, it all is abuse. I was ripe for an encounter with this type of person, as I didn’t have a solid foundation of loving myself. I always looked on the outside to feel complete.
I honed in on listening to my intuition for survival. I learned to listen to the different vibrations in his tone of voice, so I knew his mood. It helped me read him and how to act around him. I watched his mannerisms, his eyes, his facial expressions. I watched every person around me as I wasn’t sure he was not going to just get rid of me. It was the constant thread of fear running through me that sharpened my intuition.
The path to forgiveness started when I got breast cancer. The cancer was not scary for me because my fear of him was so much greater. It made me realize that I can’t keep filling my body with the anger, hate, and frustration. I was not hurting him; I was hurting myself.
I was not going to survive this situation with him if I did not forgive. I kept thinking of my kids and the fact that they would be subjected to what I had already experienced with him. I felt I was going to wither away filled with these heavy toxic thoughts that ran through my mind and filled my body every moment of my days. I just knew that it was a time to make a change. While I dealt with my cancer, he let up on his intensity enough that it was the perfect time to practice forgiveness.
The unconditional love started coming inside of me when I started to stand back and see the situation for what it was. He was molded by his own nuclear mafia family, as well as a bigger outside mafia family. He was also not treated very well by one of his parents. I felt like he was brainwashed and spiritually unconscious. He really didn’t have a strong chance of making a peaceful and loving path in his own life. The pillars were strong around him to perpetuate the mafia lifestyle.
Courage is a work in progress. It happens one step at a time and gains momentum over time. It took a lot of courage to really look at myself and to come out of being a victim. I really had to go inside—very deeply within—following my heart and intuition to make moves that would take me out of the situation.
It is courage for me to write, speak, and look at beyond the ego. It was taking the mask off and getting down to the wounds that needed to be fixed and made whole.
What I learned that could help others is that it is key to love yourself 100 percent. Life is getting you to pay attention to loving, embracing, honoring, and respecting yourself. It all goes back to the relationship you have with self. It is truly the most important one that you should have in your life. You should work from the inside out to make changes.
People may show up in your journey to get you to wake up and love all parts of you. The most difficult relationships are the ones that make you grow and heal your wounds and bring light to your gifts.