I could talk about the election today and what a mess it has been but I think enough people are talking about it. I decided the only thing I wanted to mention is that I’m proud to see over 4 million people vote for Gary Johnson. I know that’s not even close to being enough but it was noticed. I’m so happy to know I was not alone. Today, I wanted to bring more light to sensitive subject.

I wrote a blog a while back telling part of my story ( https://angelacampbellblog.wordpress.com/2016/09/28/this-is-not-your-place-no-this-is-not-your-playground-its-my-heart/comment-page-1/#comment-127 ). As the quote says above, I’m not ready to read every chapter out loud. It’s mostly because a lot of the people in my life still don’t know all of the details and I’m not sure I ever want them to. Some things are just better left unsaid.

Yesterday my husband surprised me with an appointment to get a tattoo. Yes, I’m a tattoo lover! This one has so much meaning to me and is the 2nd most special piece of art that I have on my body (so far). My husband knew how much this meant to me and didn’t want me to have to wait a few more months to get it. October was a reminder of what I lost and how I almost completely lost myself.

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This tattoo is located right above my ankle. I know it’s hard to tell in the picture. In case you’re not that familiar to what this means I thought this would help…

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I relate to a lot of those listed above but it only covers a few reasons why people are getting this as a tattoo. Survivors of abuse and rape also see it as a way of saying that their life isn’t over yet. An abuser attempted to end or control their life but they did not win. What the heart represents is my little secret. I am a survivor of mostly verbal and emotional abuse. Believe me when I tell you that it’s just as painful as being punched in the face over and over. To be quite honest with you, I would have rather taken the punches over what I dealt with.  Any form of abuse leaves the survivor with guilt, shame and believing they are completely worthless.

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After 6 years, I still struggle with those feelings. I don’t believe they will ever fully go away. I don’t believe that I would still be here if it weren’t for those few people in my life that helped me through it. They stood by me when I was at my worst. I would fight them and yell at them and be completely horrible to them because I was not worth the effort. My son was the only exception to this. Around him, I was his normal happy mommy that could never do any wrong. He was the one person I couldn’t let down or disappoint in any way. I am forever grateful to those people and I hope they never forget it. I can only imagine how hard it was for them to stay by me during those times.

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Instead of carrying regret and bitterness I try my best to use my story in a positive way. I am stronger now because of what I went through. I’m still working on the forgiveness part. I can only hope it happens one day.

This year was the first time that I publicly spoke about my experience. For years I just wanted to hide it away in a small, locked box inside my heart. I realized that it wasn’t doing me any good just chilling there. It wasn’t doing anyone that came in my path any good either; especially the ones that had been through the same thing. That’s why I decided to make my story known. I don’t do it for pity. I absolutely hate pity. Seriously, if you know me you know how much I hate it. I did it because I want others to know that they are not alone no matter how alone you feel. I want them to know that there is help out there and people aren’t just saying that to make you feel better. I want them to know that their life does mean something and they are important. I share my story in hopes of helping someone else overcome their monster.

I will wear this tattoo with pride. I had an abuser, he tried to defeat me, control me and turn me into his puppet but I survived, I’m still surviving and I will continue to survive for the rest of my life. I’m walking proof that he did not win and that my will was stronger than him.

As always thank you for reading and please never be afraid to reach out for help!

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