I’m sitting in front of my therapist and I realize I sound like I’m ticking off the details of my housekeeping schedule. Ok….that’s not true because it wouldn’t have taken the full hour for my house…but nonchalantly we began talking about an argument I had with my now 6 year old daughter insisting we had a wiener dog named Mickey before that was black.
We never did and I explained that she may remember a wiener dog, because we had two. Nacho and Libby.
Her 8 year old sister came in and caught the last part of the conversation.
“Yeah and Old Daddy shot Nacho so Momma got me Libby.” She confirmed nonchalantly.
As I begin to tell more of the story to the therapist about how I heard Annie screaming for her dad to “Stop, please Daddy NO!!!!!” I rounded the corner to see her and her dad on the front porch. Nacho was in the front yard and Old Daddy had a gun. A neighborhood dog was mating with Nacho and he claimed it was just going to be a warning shot to scare the other dog off. I screamed “No” because I already knew what was going to happen?
We raced to the vet with Annie holding her crying dog. We agreed on the story that Old Daddy was just target practicing and it was an accident. The doctor confirmed that the size of the bullet and precise placement assured her death and we said our tearful goodbye to Nacho.
I already knew the cycle of abuse and knew he would give gifts and false excuses. On the drive home, I jumped on the internet and found her a long haired wiener dog named “Libby” for sale and I paid asking price of $600 in front of Annie.
We came home announced the untimely death of Nacho and I held up Libby and said “But we knew how bad you felt about her not having a dog after such a tragic mistake, so I got her this one to make up and say sorry.” My eyes challenged him to veer from the cycle. He didn’t. Predictably.
Libby came up missing as well. Predictably.
Nonchalantly….just as I told that story to my therapist….we get in the cycle of devaluing ourselves so much, we come to believe that the horrific is the normal.
Sticks and stones may break my bones, but the hands and words of an abuser will haunt you forever.
How can you respond and gain back your value?
Ok so you feel scared, isolated or ashamed. But, God commands us to “bear each other’s burdens.” God knows what you are feeling and says the bestie solution is to be surrounded by people who are going to help you start finding your value again.
God already knows what is going on. (Matthew 6:8) So tell him how you are feeling and allow Him and the people He will place in your life to nurture and comfort you.
DO NOT respond back with anger, self-defense or manipulation (like how I did by continuing the cycle by the purchase of Libby) I should have acknowledged honestly to my daughter what happened. Told the vet the truth….but I had gotten to the nonchalant acceptance of my life. Don’t go there. Get out. Now.
Don’t become nonchalant about your abuse.