What Scars Are For


I was re-reading a previous blog post today, Why Does It Matter, found here http://levinemommy.wordpress.com/2013/12/07/why-does-it-matter/ and this song came on at the same moment I started reading it. I felt myself sliding downward, almost sinking back into a depressed mood that I’ve been doing a good job of climbing out of recently. Why does my hurt and suffering matter? Why does trying to put one foot in front of another matter?

Until I heard this song.

Its a new song for me, off of Mandisa’s recent album. One that I really haven’t listened to, only the one or two singles I’ve heard from the radio.

I got your message God. You are strong when I am weak, when I have doubts and fears. You are my all in all, you are everything. And I want to share with you why:

What Scars Are For
by Mandisa

These scars aren’t pretty
But they’re a part of me
And will not ever fade away
These marks tell a story
Of me down in the valley
And how You reached in with Your grace
And healed me

They remind me of Your faithfulness
And all You brought me through
They teach me that my brokenness
Is something You can use
They show me where I’ve been
And that I’m not there any more
That’s what scars, that’s what scars are for
What scars are for

Erase, rewind
Wish I could every time
The hurt, the pain cuts so deep
But when I’m weak
You’re strong, and in Your power I can carry on
And my scars say that You won’t ever leave

They remind me of Your faithfulness
And all You brought me through
They teach me that my brokenness
Is something You can use
They show me where I’ve been
And that I’m not there any more
That’s what scars, that’s what scars are for

I see it on the cross
The nails You took for me
Scars can change the world
Scars can set me free

They remind me of Your faithfulness
And all You brought me through
They teach me that my brokenness
Is something You can use
They show me where I’ve been
And that I’m not there any more
That’s what scars, that’s what scars
You show me that’s what scars are for
What scars are for yeah
What scars are for (What scars are for)

I’m Back!


…I’m back!

You may have noticed a few posts come up on my facebook or twitter feeds recently. I apologize for those – I wasn’t aware that taking them from my private posts to publically publishing them again would re-notify people that a new post was done. So you probably saw one after another after another. Sorry!

Good news, I had court yesterday, my final court date with #hewhomustnotbenamed or contacted. It went really well, the best I could have hoped for. Exactly what the defense attorney I consulted with said he would try to get for me. No contact with him or his wife, and my case is on the STET docket, meaning its postponed indefinitely. At any time me or the State could have it opened again (not likely to happen without me doing something stupid like exactly what I’m not supposed to do-contacting either one of them) during the first year, and after the first year it can only be opened with just cause. After three years it can be expunged and cleared from my record. There was no trial and I have no conviction on my record.

Since contacting him is the only condition, I feel like I’m free to bring my posts back up and blog *almost* freely. I wont be stupid about using his name (and have gone back into my previous post that was directed to him and x’ed out his name).

Better news, I’ve been doing well lately. I’m living at my sisters now, in their guest room. Since May’s hospitalization I had a setback thanks to self harm, which led to my 4th trip to the hospital. This one was much shorter as it didn’t involve suicidal feelings or actions. However, because of the cutting, I did lose my place at mom and dad’s. Insert trip to crisis bed center here. I think it’s similar to a halfway house, except there was no coming and going from the home.

I’m doing better, more positive, more upbeat. Feeling closer to my normal self. But I’m not going to sugar coat things and pretend everything will remain fine forever. I know I have a lot of work ahead of me, a lot of healing and focusing on myself. I’m praying a lot, doing yoga, walking and will even be attempting biking soon, if I can remember how to balance. I’m going to a women’s Bible study and hope to join a life group soon as well.

Until next time,
Amanda

Homeless


Twelve days ago I tried to end my life by overdosing on blood pressure and sleeping pills. I spent two days in the ER and ten days in a psychiatric facility. Yesterday I was discharged. They transported me to a women’s shelter as I had no where to go following discharge.
In order to protect himself and my children, my husband is not allowing me home until I am healthier and more stable. My parents have their own reasons for not taking me in, as do my siblings, extended family and friends. Or I imagine they would, if I had the guts to ask all of them.
Last night was eventful, to say the last. My first night there and I got written up for something I didn’t know was a rule. Apparently you can’t listen to music even with headphones after the lights go out. Too bad I had already fallen asleep while listening.
So today is day one in the shelter. The neighborhood seems pretty good, near a major hospital, but far removed from where my life has been for the past few months and even further from where we were living for the last eight years. I was able to venture out to get a few prescriptions filled and have to return tomorrow to get two others that weren’t quite ready to be filled.
I’m on night two in the shelter, which thankfully has been uneventful. I’m an observer and quiet, its part of my personality. But I recognize that people may take the quiet on looking as being nosy or even judgemental. I’m doing my best to keep my head down and keep to myself. Once I start feeling comfortable, I may even start opening up and make some new acquaintances.
I just keep praying for an open mind and a humble heart. And to trust God completely with where I am physically and emotionally, and to lean into him instead of away from him.
Wish me luck for the rest of tonight and tomorrow. I’ll be looking forward to getting a ride to church from a gal I’m looking forward to getting to know better, and feeding my soul at church tomorrow evening.

What’s been going on…


I’ve had an active few months.

I survived the peace order hearing. It was super stressful and I needed a xanax, but I did it. Huge Thanks to my pastor for not only being there to support me, but to drive me as well! I was such a bundle of nerves plus going somewhere I’ve never been before does not bode well for me driving.

We were evicted from our home. Well, we moved before the courts said we had to be out, so does that really count?  We left Montgomery County and came up to Baltimore County. I could say it was to be closer to family, better schools or better jobs, but that’d be a lie. So I won’t. A friend at church connected me with a fellow church member who had two spare rooms in his basement. Yep, that’s right, or family of 6 is squeezed into two bedrooms. But to be accurate, we have free reign of the home, except for bedrooms, and is been pretty good sharing the space and having large family style dinners (7 kids and 3 adults crowded around one table is a hoot!)

I got a job and am working again. Technically, I’m employed by a temp agency, but I’m placed at a non profit in the city. It’s working out really great so far and I’m enjoying my time there. Counting down the days until this temp position goes permanent!

Also haven’t found a primary doc for me or the kids yet. And I’ve got this painful hernia that keeps reminding me is there and will have to get taken care of sooner rather than later.

I’m preparing for my criminal case next month. Yes, I’m being accused of criminal harassment. How, you ask? Because of contacting hewhoshallnotbenamed back in July and December asking for a meeting to get some questions answered and to get closure. Oh and I threatened to tell, not hurt but tell his family the truth about what he did to me. My summons came in the mail today. As you can imagine, I’m over the moon and cool as a cucumber. NOT! I’m flipping out and trying desperately to hold it together.

Last but not least, I’m back in my every few month cycle of “I’m being attacked on every angle” and the rape is the only thing on my mind. I’ve set up new providers here for weekly therapy, but am still trying to find a psychiatrist and will continue to go down south until I can find one.

I’m back to fighting the urge to cut, struggling to get through each day and feeling like I have no support. I barely have anytime for myself and when I do, I don’t want to think about the painful past. I’m going to take up writing again, but am likely to keep it private since I have a network of spies watching my every move. Yes, spies. Likely his lawyer and the District attorney’s office, watching for anything to make it easier to paint me as insane. Oh and my mother in law so that she and my husband can gossip about me Bains my back and continue commenting about how worried they are about me yet refuse to do anything helpfulto support me.

Farewell


Hello friends and followers,

I’ve been forced to make a tough decision. Because of certain people reading my blog, my therapeutic tool is being used against me. I am forced to close this journal down in fear of my expressions of anger, fear and anguish being used against me in the coming months. I’ve loved blogging and loved the opportunity to be open and real about the difficult situations I’ve faced over the years. For those I’ve been able to connect with, fellow victims or survivors of sexual assault, I’ve treasured your support and love. To those suffering from depression and ptsd as I am, keep your head up and have faith, things DO get better.

To the certain someone reading to check up on me, #hewhomustnotbenamed, I disapprove of your lawyer’s request to infringe on my first amendment right. My blog is my therapy. For me, my friends and family and my personal supporters. How dare you “come in” to my sanctuary and tell me what I can and cannot write about. We both know the main focus has been on you and your effect on my life. I should be able to say whatever I want about you without using your name. But the risk of criminal action coming against me is too great, and I will remain strong.

Much love to everyone else on here. I hope you all continue to do well. Know that my thoughts are with you.

Take care,
Amanda

What do I do?


Jon wants his wife back, the companionship and relationship we once had. I want that too but I feel that before I address that I have to get stable and sane again. Isn’t that what anyone would suggest for depression or personality disorder or whatever it is they think I have.

Until today, my doc and therapist at PHP were in support of me continuing with trauma work, having more stable time under my belt before moving into reprocessing. But today they’ve changed their tune and want me to table all of this. I don’t think I can do that with the amount of flashbacks and length of them. They are coming out for a reason, it’s something that needs to be addressed. To dismiss this, just as everything in my life has been dismissed as unimportant is like telling myself my feelings and my personal space do not matter and that anyone, including Ryan, has permission to use and abuse me. That I don’t matter as a person with feelings and emotions.

I’ve got to stand up for myself, even if it’s nine years after the fact. Why does no body see this, how important it is to me, to let myself be heard? Its about me having a voice and using it. Talking control back into my own hands and not letting it stay in his hands.

Preparing for court


I had a psychotic break mid December and was not in my right mind when I recontacted Mr. Kafer, threatening him. But I never threatened physical harm. I only threatened to verbally tell his family and employer about what he did to me, the rape nine years ago. In my mind if I must live with the pain of the event and the police won’t believe me to press criminal charges against him, he should have to live with some discomfort by explaining his actions to the people closest to him. Regarding releasing my book, I exaggerated a bit. It is a twenty page document I wrote detailing what he did to me, including everything I remember from the experience and how it has affected me years later.

The psychotic break consisted of three suicide attempts over the course of two nights and a voluntary two week inpatient stay at Adventist Behavioral Health from December 17 through 31. I have been enrolled in PHP from January 2 through today and should be discharged from that program sometime next week.

The rape, he provided me alcohol while I was underage. I believe he put something in my drink because after two drinks I was feeling drunk. I had drank previously and had built up a tolerance, so it would have taken four to five drinks to get me feeling the same way. When I was semi-conscious he removed my clothing, tied my wrists to a lamp attached to the wall and raped me. When I began shaking, likely a reaction to the drugs he used, he stopped what he was doing, untied my arms and covered me with the blankets on the bed.

I originally reached out to his then fiancé to let her know what he did to me and suggested she think about the person she was set on marrying. When she asked me to leave her alone, I did and have not contacted her since.

I contacted Ryan over the summer after seeing he was a member of the church I was thinking of rejoining and has been encouraged by the greeters to investigate the online means of connecting with fellow parishioners. I asked him a few questions, wanting to get closure on our history together.

I contacted him using linked in’s messaging service because I was still seeking closure. I’ve been in therapy since November 2012 and am still waiting to finally address the trauma. I was hoping he’d sit down with me to discuss it since it was seeming Bowles that is ever get to the trauma in therapy. When he emailed me back I took his requests under advisement. I finally replied to him at some point during my psychotic break or leading up to it.

I have spoken with my psychiatrist at the PHP program before receiving the papers from the district court, who believes my response was because of me not being in my right mind in the time leading up to my three suicide attempts on December 15 and 16th.