You can only fly once you are willing to give up the safety of your cocoon.
“Am I strong enough?” I think to myself. If I make this decision I know my secret will be out there for the whole world to see.
I have been thinking about it for a while; going public. Telling people my secret. No longer hiding.
I have thought about it before but this is different. This feeling is stronger. The only way I can explain it is that it is like a huge pressure inside my chest. Day by day, week by week, it builds up more and more.
The more it builds the worse I feel. I feel like I might explode at any moment and just blurt it out; “I am a victim of childhood sexual abuse!”
I have tried to silence it. For weeks I have been telling myself that I’m not ready. That speaking up is too scary. And yet the feeling is still here, stronger than ever; “I don’t want to hide anymore”.
I feel tired. Tired of the questions; “why don’t you see your family anymore?”, “why do you have PTSD?”, “Why were you off work?”. I am tired. I am tired of making excuses. I am tired of hiding my truth.
Why should I have to? I haven’t done anything wrong? I am a victim. I was a child. I am innocent.
Why should I have to hide my wings? For without them I would not have flown above my past. They are the strength I am becoming. They have helped me find my voice.
It has been hard. Finding my voice has taken me years. Reporting him was the first step. Now I have developed my voice, I am not going to stay silent. Staying silent would be like quitting before the miracle happens.
I am getting stronger. Like a butterfly I am growing and changing. I am finding my true colours in life.
The butterfly is proof that you can go through a great deal of darkness and yet become something beautiful. Beauty can emerge from something falling apart.
I am finally finding my purpose. That is to become a voice for those that cannot speak for themselves. I must become a voice for the victims of childhood abuse. I must share my story, my truth, to raise awareness and stop it happening to someone else.
My wings already exist. I just have to use them!
“My secret; I am a victim…..and survivor…..of childhood sexual abuse”. I finish writing the facebook status and hover my finger over the “post” button. Doing this means no going back. Everyone will know.
“It is the right decision” I tell myself “You are ready”.
I hit post.
Almost immediately likes and comments come flooding in. “I had no idea”, “you are so brave”, “I am so proud of you”, “you are doing the right thing”.
I breathe a huge sigh of relief as I feel the weight of my secret slowing lifting.
Then suddenly I feel tears in my eyes and I am completely overwhelmed as the reality of what I have just done hits me. After twenty years I have found my voice. I don’t have to hide anymore. Whether I have good days or bad, I no longer have to hide.
Sometimes you must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar. You have to believe in your wings, take a leap and learn how to fly. It is never too late to be who you are meant to be.
Writing is my gift. So is my voice. I will use both to speak up and to raise awareness about childhood abuse. I will use both to raise awareness and stop the stigma of mental health. I will use my gifts to help save others.
That is my purpose. I know it. I can feel it.
I am finding my wings so that I can begin to fly and be on my way.
Yes I am fragile but I am also fierce.
And I am slowly beginning to transform!
Thanks for reading
** Image courtesy of Google Images **