As 14 February rapidly approaches, are you looking forward to this day of romance? Or, do you wish it would just go away? Then don’t: this one’s for you.
“You are very powerful, provided you know how powerful you are.”
For years, I studiously avoided Valentine’s Day. Now, I’m free of my abuser. This one’s for me – and you.
My abuser made Valentine’s Day depressing. In the latter years, he either forgot or ignored it. Occasionally – when he wanted to sweeten me up – he’d suggest going out for dinner, but I made excuses to avoid it. It felt wrong to pretend that everything was hearts and flowers in our relationship, when my heart was broken anew almost every day.
This Valentine’s will be the first I’ve spent as a singleton, since my teens. My first instinct was to ignore the day (and silently grind my teeth at every loved-up couple!) but instead I’ve decided to celebrate it. After all, this time, I can think about my needs, hopes and dreams – not just his.
How I’m celebrating
Today, I’m renewing the promise that I made to myself when I escaped my abuser: to stay away. It is better to be single than to sacrifice myself to an emotional vampire, a physical bully, an adult-child.
I’m reminding myself of all the things – big and small – that I’ve gained since getting out. Here’s just a few:
- There will be no disappointment for the things he didn’t do – and no pain from the choices that he made, either.
- I can enjoy time with my beautiful child, without worrying about my abuser having a meltdown.
- I can talk to my friends, and nobody will give me a hard time about it.
- I can go out if I want to, or stay in if I prefer – he can’t make me feel bad about my choices.
- I can read until I fall asleep, without someone complaining or demanding.
- There will be no chaos, no scenes, none of his drunken or drug-fuelled escapades.
- There will be peace, and quiet, and love.
This year, I’m going to enjoy them all! I’m reclaiming Valentine’s Day. This one’s for me – and for you.
I wish you all a happy and safe day.
What are your plans for Valentine’s Day? Are you celebrating, or waiting for it to pass by? Will you make a promise to yourself?
ALSO SEE: Lessons from the wreaking ball of domestic abuse, in What my abuser taught me.
© Avalanche of the Soul, 2013-14