I walked out this morning and breathed deeply. It wasn't hazy or humid or balls to the wall hot out for the first time in a while, certainly since July has rolled around. I drove through the farm, the backroads of Beltsville and NASA, with the sun filtering through the trees. I even turned off the radio. It felt nice.
I've been mulling around this post for awhile, talking about the lightness of the heart or soul. For much of my life, I didn't experience such a thing. Most people who know/knew me saw that I was a vivacious and upbeat person, but it was usually only extended to my exterior life, because once I entered my house, it was hell on earth. That's a phrase used quite a lot, but for abuse survivors, they know I don't exaggerate. My life was stolen and fed back to me in small, censored pieces. I wasn't allowed to lounge around all day Sunday, devouring a stack of library books. I wasn't allowed to go out with friends because if I asked permission (even after I turned 18, I still had to ask permission) when my father was in a manic mood, I was verbally abused for even thinking of having friends.
It was hard to readjust. I was away at college, but he could still email/call/visit and try to control me. Stealing my life back became a necessity that I don't think I even understood at the time or knew how to verbalize. I feel, for the past six months or so, that after hacking through the abuse, the therapy needed to cope with said abuse, dealing/healing with my GAD, learning to communicate in a healthy way with friends and family, I want to sing and cry with joy.
Having a marriage in which my husband that writes me notes saying "I'm so glad we have made a commitment to a non-violent relationship because that is so important in a marriage" makes me want to fall to my knees and thank whoever I need to that I don't have my parent's marriage. And something as simple as deciding to pick up a pizza for my husband and BIL after work and deciding to get something from the liquor store is a simple joy to me. Owning my life, owning myself is such a simple but complex joy that I will never take for granted ever again. Nor is it something that anyone can take away from me ever again.