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I knew it was over

Started making phone calls to get out of hell.

When I was still on the floor, and you left the room, slammed the door. Something had snapped in you. You had gone too far. But I only knew it was over when you started calling my cell phone. Ten feet away on the floor, I was too spent to answer it. Too many fights. Too many bruises. Too many mornings when my throat was raw from trying to reason til 3 am. You were bigger. You were stronger. And during the next painful year of marriage counseling, you kept reminding me to be good. Not cause a scene. Let you
back home. The counselor asked me, Why didnt I call the cops before? I said, I Didnt want to go there. After all, you had a great job, and were well known in town.
Finally, finally, I filed for divorce two months ago. No one understands, wants to accept why. "Maybe you imagined the abuse, " they said at church. "He must be under pressure." "One must forgive and forget."

But I am a journalist by profession. It is my job to observe, take note, report with accuracy. Backstory is my specialty. What was the context? Why did it happen? Who is responsible?

I thought I was responsible for your anger. I absorbed it, willingly, kept it all -- twenty years of lies and emotional putdowns, constant belittling, to myself. I wasnt as good, as powerful, as well known as you. But guess what? I am as good, as powerful, as well known as you. Because my experience is wellknown by many, young and old, the world over.

We are survivors. And we will never again be left on the floor, or crawl into a safe corner of the room or cry ourselves to sleep.

I have the children with me. Living alone without you is better than living in helll with you. I am safe. I am happy. I am loved. Thank God for His Grace which lead me out.
Your cell messages gave it away that night: "pick up
the damn phone!" you said. Well, I did. The next day I picked up the phone, started making phone calls to get out of hell. And I havent stopped.

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