It was my friend Neikah who told me the truth. Her words saved my life. With both our feet barefoot on the earth hanging out the washing in my backyard she told me plainly and simply,

“If you don’t take your power back Ange, you’re going to be a victim for the rest of your life.

She was right.

Six years ago I was living in a crazy cycle of abuse, well strapped into my seat on the merry go round of the highly charged sexual honeymoon highs and the sure to follow soul crushing and devastating abusive lows. I lived in the hope things would get better. They didn’t.

I felt completely chemically addicted to the rush of pleasure highs despite the lows of shame that followed.

For years I was unable to break free.

That day at the clothes line Neikah’s words cut through me to the core. I was afraid of my then partner, yes, but what terrified me the most was actually being alone, facing the end of my dream, waking up and being a single mother yet again. It would be many years before I was willing to actually face standing alone.

Those two words, standing alone still disturb me.

For me they are synonymous with death by isolation or death by solitude. I hear Bridget Jones mouthing the aching words “all by myself” sorrowfully on her hairbrush whilst dishevelled in her pj’s eating whole buckets of ice cream and drinking red wine. I’ve felt like that without the ice cream and the red wine. I am slowly learning that being alone doesn’t have to mean being lonely. There are so many to share meals, dances, glances and daily interactions with.

Six years on and I am free of that manic depressive relationship yet I am still learning how to love and how to care for myself. I am slowly learning how to take care of all aspects of my life and care for my teenage daughter.

A lightening bolt of truth jolted through me as Neikah spoke her words to me that day. I remember we had our feet on the softest grass, hanging out the washing in the glorious sunshine in the backyard of my home when she said it out of the blue.

Thankfully, I heard what she had to say. I could have ignored it, but the pain was too much. I had to cut off the relationship to save myself. It was destroying me.

I had two choices, I either took my power or allowed myself to be bullied out of my home. I couldn’t bear the thought of my life coming to that so I did what I was afraid to do.

I took my life back.

My ex had claimed the car and house as his and left my daughter and I homeless after a dispute a few days earlier. I had to call my father in the middle of the night to come over and protect us.

I found refuge in Neikah’s spare room with my daughter for two weeks before I was ready.

When my ex miraculously went away for the weekend I had an opportunity to take power where I had been previously tip toeing around walking on eggshells.

Neikah was right.

It was time to draw a line in the sand. I packed my ex’s belongings in boxes. I phoned the police and took out an AVO. I changed the locks on all the doors. I took my home and life back.

Around 4pm that afternoon a tall, caring, gentle blue eyed police man came to my door with the papers for me to sign for the violence order. I will never forget this day.

It was like the divine masculine entered my life. He was strong, he was calm, he was kind. He was present. He could see me and I could see him. I felt my whole body and the energy in the house around me shift to peace.

A radiant glow of afternoon sun permeated the living room. It was a moment of profound grace in my life.

As I sat with the policeman, whose name I cannot remember, I experienced a deep inner feeling of protection and calm.

I felt so safe in his presence. He gently talked me through the process and showed me where to sign. When we were done he looked at me and said,

“I bet you wish you had done this a long time ago eh?”

I nodded.

He was right.

It was like I saw a man Angel that day. I was a person who for the most part really didn’t feel good about police, but that day this officer melted something that was frozen in my heart.

He made me feel safe.

And then we were done.

I banished the predator and began my journey to wholeness. I am still on that journey, learning how to create safety when the predator within me wants to tease me, tear me down and destroy everything real and soulful I have created.

I have created a meaningful life with my own two hands, work I value and relationships with people who respect me and love me.

Once we banish the external predators from our life we are left to face the inner crazy makers, we are clear to see the inner cycle of abuse and the ravages of the predator who lives inside our mind.

I have had to fight her off too to save my self. It takes some power and some energy to become aligned with yourself.

Neikah is still in my life. She’s a great soul. A fantastic lomi lomi massage therapist too. She was there at my wedding. She was there when my marriage failed and she is still there now two years after my divorce.

Thank god for friends, friends who speak the truth and friends who go the distance.

Before ‘the relationship’ there are friends and after ‘the relationship’ there are friends.

Thank God for Neikah.

Thank God for friends.

Amen.

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