Two years ago I went to the police to report historic child abuse that took place when I was 5 years old. This decision ended up taking me on an incredibly painful and emotional journey. I had to open Pandora's box and look my trauma full-on in the face. The long legal build-up was intense and the wait for a trial date weighed heavy on my shoulders. Some didn't know what to say. Others took a took a step back*. I have grace and understanding for both of these responses. This is hard, hard stuff to get alongside. I'm forever grateful for those who metaphorically and literally stood by side - for loved ones old and new.
It took 15 months before a date was set: a week-long trial at the Crown Court in May 2018. Trial by jury. Devastatingly, my abuser was found 'not guilty' for 8/9 counts. Eight out of nine. The jury were 'hung' on the 9th count, so no result or resolution. Perhaps I just took too long to come forward. And I was one of the luckier ones - I had evidence. They'll be no justice for what’s been done to me.
But I'm still REALLY proud of standing up for the little girl I carry around
inside me. I'm glad I literally took the stand. I was called a
liar by the defence many, many times. I am not a liar. But here are some of the
lies I battle with everyday:
- It is my fault, it is my fault. When bad things happen to me, I deserve it.
- I am unlovable
- I am disposable
- There are no consequences for those that hurt me. No one cares.
But EVERY DAY I choose to SPEAK TRUTH over these
- I am wonderfully made (and a pretty awesome human!)
- I am accepted, significant, and treasured by those who love me
- I am not damaged - I am whole and beautiful.
God has given me a heart as big as the moon and I am healing, slowly. I could not have done this without the love of those who care for me. It has many times lifted me up from dark places.
So...I want to raise money for NAPAC, The National Association for People Abused in Childhood. This is the UK's leading charity offering support to adult survivors or all types of childhood abuse. I will be setting myself - and also accepting from others! - some challenges to help me raise money throughout this year. Including via:
- a 12 hour dance marathon
(please join for a shift!)
- a fitness challenge: 500 burpees!
- An all-day sing - no
talking allowed, I'll have to sing everything I want to say
If you would like to set me a challenge - or actually get alongside me for one - I would be deeply touched. If you would like to support me - in any capacity (financial or emotional) - I'd be grateful.
It was too late for me, but it might not be too late for
someone else. Help me channel this defeat into something good. I chose to respond to hurt with love and good things. Come help me shine and thrive in 2019.
*my heart and arms are always open