How I overcame abuse and chose happiness
Kintsukuroi: “to repair with gold.” The art of repairing pottery with gold or silver and understanding that the piece is MORE beautiful for having been broken.
Abuse was commonplace in my household, and I seemed to be the focus. I’d come home from my dad’s house with bruises and cuts, and even a cast once or twice, just to spend the next week being broken by my mom. She never noticed the evidence or the tears on my face from being physically and sexually abused by him. She just made me feel worthless because I was always in my room. Or she’d yell at me for waking up screaming in the middle of the night. I tried talking to her once or twice about how I was feeling but she’d just explain that I was the reason it was the way it was. Mind you, I wasn’t even 10 years-old yet.
I started cutting after my only good friend committed suicide. I took responsibility for that too. I tried to end my pain on several occasions. Things didn’t really ever get better growing up. The one thing that did change though was I stopped going to my father’s house. The last time I went to his house I was 12. His new son was two. I told him that if I ever found out he did anything to my brother; I would destroy his life. I wasn’t allowed there again.
I “moved out” of my mom’s house when I was 16. What that meant was I’d sleep at the park near my school whenever I couldn’t find someone’s couch to sleep on. I finished high school without anyone ever finding out. My senior year I got a job and started saving a lot. I finally got my own place to stay just after graduation. I lost my job six months later. Luckily I had a girlfriend at the time whose parents liked me so they let me sleep on the couch for a couple weeks till I got myself on my feet. She kept me going for a long time. She was all the motivation in the world. But then she left me via a text after four years. I died that day, or at least it felt like it, and I tried to make it come true.
The next few months I spent reevaluating my life, trying to give myself any reason to live. Then one day, after spending a week being really stupid, I woke up. I watched the sunrise and the sunset sitting at the beach. That day I came to one realization: I want to be happy. I really did. So that’s what I did.
How did I escape what seemed inescapable?
Goals: I would write my goals down on paper and accompany each goal with how completing that task would affect my life. This helped me prioritize my tasks because I could see how much value I placed on the effects of accomplishing each goal. It also helped me stay on task because I could see the affect I could have on my life by finishing each goal.
Music: Having something in my life that I could put my all into was an amazing escape. I picked up any instrument I could get my hands on. This was the most beneficial tool I could have found. It provided a sense of accomplishment, gave me something to take my mind off of the pain, and kept me growing. I believe learning is one of the best escapes someone could use.
I was broken, but today, today, I am beautiful. I know that I want to be happy; so all I do is let it happen. I see how lucky I am to have made it this far and life is only getting better. Each day I take time to just be happy. I watch the sunset, or I stop and look at a flower. I watch people laughing and playing at the park with their kids- and I know one day I will be there.
I missed out on this thing called “love” as a child, but now I feel like love is bursting out of me any time I let it. I have learned to love the little things because the little things are always there and can never be taken away by anyone. I have learned to love the roller coaster called life because the times I have spent hurting have made me into this. I AM BEAUTIFUL BECAUSE I HAVE BEEN BROKEN.
I love you all, thank you so much for letting me share my story.