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  #1  
Old 02-02-2009, 08:07 PM
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Default The bright spots along the road...

We spend a lot of time examining the warning signs of potential abuse, the patterns of abuse, the struggle to break free and the potholes in the road after we do escape it but I think we should also talk about those nearly magical moments when we realize in some way, large or small, that we're healing, recovering, even thriving again after getting out.....


When I left the guy who broke my jaw, I moved in with my mom... a few months later, when I'd saved up some money and we thought it would be safe, I moved into my own place (different apartment, same complex )... When I went to the grocery store to stock up my new pad, I looked in my cart and saw it full of food I like, soap that smelled good to me, pretty dishtowels and almost started weeping with joy right there in the Safeway.... for the previous several years, I'd bought only food he liked, Dial soap (He preferred it, I hate the smell) and had to use cut up worn out bath towels in the kitchen because dishtowels were "a waste of money".....The realization that I could buy what I saw fit for my home was overwhelming... and good, so good.

What's your favorite "Wow! I'm me" moment?
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  #2  
Old 02-02-2009, 10:43 PM
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I know how silly this sounds and I think I've mentioned it once before, but for me Lebeau, it was sleeping in a brand new set of sheets that HE'd never slept in for the first time!!!!. I was soooo happy that first time. There have been many moments since then, I've almost replaced all the stuff that either he had damaged or was left behind when we ran now but that one sticks in my mind. Ebay and second hand or "thrift" shops I think they are called over there have been FANTASTIC!!!. .
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Old 02-03-2009, 08:17 AM
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OMG- New bedding is HUGE! It's like being reborn! That does not sound silly at all... and in the States, we use "second hand", "consignment" & "thrift " almost interchangably- if the store benefits another project, it's a "Charity Shop"
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Old 02-03-2009, 03:54 PM
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Well by any other name...... They are GREAT, a tight budget and a LOT of necessities are NOT a good mix but I found this type of store a HUGE help. Ebay has replaced a lot of stuff too. My home looks NOTHING like it did before!!!. I am driving and doing LOTS of things I couldn't do with HIM around. But not any of these things can hold a candle to that first night in fresh sheets. Thanks for this thread Lebeau, it has come along and reminded me just how far I have come at a time I REALLY needed to remember.....
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Old 02-03-2009, 04:36 PM
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When I left my husband, there weren't any real moments, because I fought him (with words) and never let him take away my personhood. The second abusive relationship, 6 years ago however, the first thing that felt extremely good was hearing a police siren go by and not worrying about whether or not that was him being chased in my truck!
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Old 02-03-2009, 07:17 PM
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Thanks for this thread Lebeau, it has come along and reminded me just how far I have come at a time I REALLY needed to remember.....
That's lovely! My goal was to offer the newer members, still struggling with the first steps, a glimpse into the simple, silly, happy things that await, but you're right, it's good for us "veterans" to look back at these things, too.
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Old 02-03-2009, 07:28 PM
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YAAAYYY!!!. I'm a VETERAN!!!!!!!. This is another highlight for me!!!. WOOHOOO!!!.
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:05 PM
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I spent about a year during my marriage building this amazing dollhouse. It was absolutely gorgeous and really represented all the lonely nights I spent home alone while was out doing his thing. It was really my pride and joy.

After I moved out the dollhouse occupied a table in my bedroom and was still my favorite possession. The night he came into my apartment to "talk" .... he became upset when I told him it was too late to talk it over. He looked me in the eyes while he smashed in the roof and attic of that gorgeous dollhouse.

As my head was recovering from the beating I took that night, I started piecing that dollhouse back together but it became apparent that it wasn't ever going to be the same. It took me almost a year and a half but one night I was sitting in my bedroom looking at the house and realizing that it wasn't something beautiful that I was proud of anymore. It was the embodiment of the abuse I had taken from this man and it sat right there in my bedroom reminding me every day.

I called my three best friends up and we put that dollhouse in the car and took it down to the river. We carried it up to the train tracks that cross right over the falls and tossed it in. The way I felt when I watched that house getting smashed to bits in the waterfall was absolutely amazing. It was cathartic.

*yes, I am building a new one!
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:15 PM
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That is among the saddest and most beautiful portraits of a moment I think I've ever read... thank you for sharing it with us..... and when you get the new one to a point that you feel like it's taking shape, would you please share some pictures?
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:35 PM
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THe 1st bad relationship was with my girls father, I can remember the feeling when I sat on my parents porch and for the 1st time in along time felt like the world had been lift off my shoulders.
The second one was when I spent my money on what I wanted to spend it one and did not have to justify it with anyone.
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Old 02-11-2009, 12:21 AM
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HI, I've been checking in on this thread, and appreciate everyone who responded!!!. I was soooo hoping this one would take right off.... I was REALLY looking forward to reading pages and pages of happy thoughts - BRIGHT SPOTS- come on guys, I know we've all got at LEAST one, gimme gimme, I NEED this right now!!!. There are so many bad things going on around me, the FIRES on top of all my own personal stuff.... I sound pretty selfish I know, but..... GIMME!!! Once again, thanks for this thread LeBeau AND your impeccable timing....
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Old 02-11-2009, 05:20 AM
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Hi everyone.. yes I'm a newbie who neglected to post in the intro thread :-)...
The things I remember enjoying the most....

  • Being able to listen to a sad song and not burst into tears.
  • Knowing that my sleep would never be interrupted again by a drunken idiot with fists raised and ready.
  • Watching what I like on TV
  • Re furnishing my home and knowing that he had not sat on it, slept in it, or seen it but, mostly could not break it.
  • Knowing that I am now able to provide a safe and secure environment for my children to grow up in.
  • Above all the most exhilarating moment for me was the day I was accepted into university, something that I would and could never of imagined I would be capable of doing a few short years ago.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:13 AM
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Here's another one, free! I have clients again, and I don't have to worry that my ex will be out in the arena soon either commenting on their breasts or deciding he doesn't like them so I can't teach them.
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Old 02-11-2009, 09:27 AM
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Buying music *I* like, without a nagging little voice warning me that I'd be criticized for both the expense and the choice.

Going out for an afternoon of window shopping and not coming home to an interrogation about how each moment was spent- to whom I spoke, for how long, what was said, what did I buy, why did I eat lunch in a cafe when there's food in the house...etc.
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Old 02-11-2009, 01:10 PM
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Going to the furniture store and choosing a couch *I* liked without having him and the sales lady laughing at me for thinking it would match my drapes.

He was always good at involving others when he belittled me -- that proved that obviously I was the one with the problem, not him.
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Old 02-11-2009, 02:02 PM
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Thanks Ladies, what a lovely way to start what promises to be another TOUGH day!!. I REALLY appreciate this!!!.
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Old 02-24-2009, 05:21 PM
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I'm just on the road to finding me again.

I was NEVER allowed to cook with my ex - that was her parade. In fact I had no control over the food at all.

Now I cook for my li'l family (partner and stepson) on my day off every week. Sundays too! And I cook what we all like, not just for 1 person's taste.

Even the cat likes my cooking when he can scrounge some.

I love that I can peel the vegetables and eat some as I chop. Not because I'mm hungry, not because those nibbles are my meal, but because they taste soooooooo good and I like 'em.
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Old 02-24-2009, 05:23 PM
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Oh, and you know what?





















I DON'T LIKE THE BURNED BITS BEST-AND I DON'T HAVE TO HAVE THEM
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Old 02-24-2009, 05:54 PM
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Funny thing, mooshy . . . I was a professional chef for years and years. When my abuser and I first got together, he loved my cooking, but also liked to do his own. By the time the relationship turned really bad, he was telling me I didn't know a thing about cooking. He would stand over the stove, drunk, for 3 hours to make one meal that usually had too much flavor.
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Old 02-24-2009, 08:09 PM
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It's weird how MANY similarities there are, our first "date" (he never actually left, except to go get more of his stuff or get drunk), was me cooking him dinner which he professed to love. After about 2 weeks I never got to cook anymore, I didn''t know what I was doing apparently!. I HAD to be on hand, to get the stuff he needed ready, to clear up as he went, to have EVERYTHING prepared, you know, read his mind and know what he wanted next or I was accused of laziness and disrespect (which I was anyway - he told me everyday!). Now I cook what ever I want, clear up when I feel like it (sometimes the dishes wait til MORNING - geez I'm a GROT!!! ha ha), If I don't feel like cooking I now have control of the money to order in!!. THEY are all experts at what we DON"T know, which according to them is everything. Now we need to be experts at nothing more than getting on with our lives. I just LOVE this thread to bits!!!.
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Old 02-24-2009, 08:31 PM
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I stopped cooking of my own accord during my first marriage - cooking is, for me, an act of love and my heart just wasn't in it, so I would make sure there were mixes and sandwich fixin's and such, but maybe prepared 4 meals in the course of the last year we were together- One of my dearest friends, whom I met near the end of that marriage, was shocked to learn after 4 or 5 years that I am a terrific cook... it took me that long to regain the desire.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:48 PM
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Glad you got it back LeBeau... Cooking can be very therapeutic I find..... Well, if you are into it, which I am most of the time. I think he knew that, it's why he took it away, that and the fact that like you I am actually pretty good at it, why I cooked for him that first time - I was showing off!. Look where my vanity got me!!!!. HA HA HA.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:52 PM
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Mine started telling me he was better with horses than I was . . . of course, he could barely ride, and I'm deep into 20 years of training but . . .

and then there was driving. The only mark on my license for the last 20 years is there because one of my stepdaughters *borrowed* my license and ran a stop sign. He was in for his 3rd sentence-able DUI. But he was a better driver than I was, lol
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Old 02-24-2009, 11:41 PM
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Yep, THATS what I'm talking about!!!. They know EVERYTHING better than us, so they SAY!!!!. They SAY a LOT, in fact, they hardly ever SHUT UP!!!!. Well mine anyway.... (hehehe I'm doing a nice little job of not shutting up myself!!!). (just came back to add, it's cool, I don't have to shut up now do I ?!?!?.)
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Old 02-25-2009, 12:05 AM
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No... you do NOT have to shut up!

You can speak your mind, play whatever music you like, watch whatever movie you're in the mood for, at whatever volume suits, eat when, where and what you damn well please and wear whatever feels good at any given moment, whether it's a sexy little black dress or ratty sweats and a torn up concert T!
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