A couple of weeks ago I was talking to my girlfriend about Mr. K. I was telling her what a gentleman he was and how I really liked that he was raised right. I told her that he was a good guy and just normal. I told her that I never had normal. I told her how I’m just enjoying the normal. He’s not perfect. Don’t get me wrong. Everyone has something, but he’s just a good person.
She asked me what if we got into a serious relationship, would I stop the weekly dinners at his parents? Nope. She said, “No, I mean you both are serious and in a committed relationship. You would let him go?” “Yes” I replied. It is their tradition. I told her that I would never interfere with family tradition and I like that they do that. She smiled and told me that she thought it was weird that he has dinner with his parents weekly. I smiled at her sincerely and said, “No, it’s not weird.” She asked, “It’s not?” “Nope” I told her. “It’s normal. We’re broken so normal things seem abnormal to the broken.” She asked, “So, that’s what it is?” “Yeah” I sighed.
I then went on to explain that there are three types of people in the world: broken, broken and healed and never been broken. I told her that Mr. K has never been broken so his being and doing normal things seem weird to those that have been broken. Let me break it down further:
- Broken People – People that have suffered a traumatic life altering experience whether through health crisis, death or violence. They were fundamentally changed by that experience in some way, shape or form. The memories are still there. The pain is still evident. The scars can be seen by everyone. They will either be aggressive and have anger management issues or they could be hiding behind the pain with numbing items such as drugs (prescription or non-prescription) or alcohol. They are still bound by the chains of pain.
- Broken and Healed People – These are broken people (see definition above) that have received helped from the pain and are healed. The scars have healed and they are able to cope and deal with their brokenness. They’ve sought counseling and grown in their faith. The combination of therapy and their faith has allowed them to look at the pain as traumatic but they’ve learned how to cope and not let their past darken their future. They’ve broken the chains of their painful experiences.
- Never Been Broken People – These are people who have never experienced a traumatic event that shaped their world view or experiences. They have problems like everyone else, but thankfully they have never been broken.
There you have it. I am in Category #2 and thankfully I am healed from my pain and can talk about it without shame. Without feeling like I’m being judged or looked at awkwardly. I hold my head high because my faith and therapy have allowed me to get past the sexual assaults. I have a voice that I want to utilize to educate young men and women that these experiences are horrific but they will not define the whole of who you are. Only you can do that. Only you can want to heal. It takes time and it will get easier. Just know that I know and I will be here.
I’m thankful that I’m in category #2 and Mr. K is in category #3. It means that I can value and appreciate the normalcy of us. I can sense his uneasiness when I discuss the sexual violence of my past. I can sense his concern when my eyes tear up as I discuss the prison pipeline that we are creating for our young girls that are also suffering violence. I can sense his admiration when he says to me “I’m happy you shared your story with me. You are the most brilliant woman I know.” I smile.
I tell him that all I do is advocate for those who feel they have no voice. I am healed by the grace of God, but I will always remember being broken. I pray continually for everyone and especially those who are broken that they find the peace that they are looking for. Our world would definitely be a better place as a result of it.
Until next time loves!