I did not recognize all of the cycles I went through after coming out of an abusive relationship until watching a friend go through the same thing.
It is a process and does not happen overnight. It also seems that the longer you were in it, the harder the process of removing it from your very soul can be.
I always figured I had it together when it came to men and I remember the first time my friend called me to help her leave after her man had beaten her up. I remember me wondering how any woman could let a man do that. Needless to say I am no longer that naive about the hows or whys. When you watch yourself do it and take it, you realize that you could be an abused woman and any abused woman could be you under the right circumstances.
The process of getting out is a reversal of getting in. You go from surrendering all your power to your partner back to reclaiming it for yourself.
All of the bottled up anger you carried against them when you were unable to fight back, you want to unleash it on them in one fell swoop and you are hoping death is the result. You finally have to admit to feeling so dark that you are not sure if you are really you, but it is you.
As much as you are enjoying the peace of no arguments in your house and no drama, you are waiting for the shoe to drop. Wondering if you can really hold out against their constant calls, the guilt trip they are laying on thick, the reminder of all your failures, threats to expose you to the world and you wait.
You wait. Wait to see if your courage is going to hold up. If you can really sleep with both eyes closed and ears shut, without waiting for a phone call or a knock on the door to tell you they were arrested, in a fight, or worst dead.
The biggest fight is not against them. It is with yourself. Because you are still fighting to figure out which way is up. Do I deserve to feel this safe, this happy, this peaceful. Your very spirit is so used to being embattled, it begins to attract the same negative energy to you again, through friends, through encounters with the ex and you must now fight against it all.
Your spirit has to be retrained to accept the peace and well being it feels as normal. You spend a lot of time checking yourself in the mirror to see if the life you have now is really yours or if someone will show up to tell you that its not. So you wait. You wait him out, you wait yourself out and you wait out time…Because time is the only thing that will bring the healing and the recovery.