This weekend it is a celebration of new beginnings. If you are Christian, it is Easter – the day Jesus rose from the dead. If you are Jewish, it is Passover. The holiday in which they celebrate freedom from slavery.
If you have been in any kind of abusive relationship, whether as a child or as an adult, the day you left is a day you should celebrate. It is your Easter, your Passover, your New Beginning. It is cause to celebrate for you have thrown off the chains of abuse. You stepped into a new life.
Some of us had to flee with nothing but what we wore. We stepped out into the world with nothing but our desire to make a better life for ourselves. Give yourself a moment to celebrate the strength you posses.
Some of us gave up relationships with others who supported our abusers and did not believe us. We lost mothers, fathers, grandparents, friends, and so many others. Give yourself a moment to celebrate. Your courage to continue to fight for your own safety is stronger than those who refuse to believe what deep down they know to be true.
This weekend, I signed a lease, received my keys to my new place. I am taking yet another step in my quest to celebrate my New Beginning. I’ve never lived on my own. I’ve never had a place I could truly call mine. I’ve never been the person solely responsible for the bills, the cleaning, the everything. I’ve never had a place of my own that I could decorate however I wanted to decorate. It is as liberating as it is scary. But I can tell you I celebrate each day of my independence.
So often we get caught up in our day-to-day struggles, we lose sight of just how strong and courageous we truly are as survivors. We’ve faced the worst betrayal, abuse, and backlash. Yet here we stand – strong, courageous, intelligent, beautiful women who will let nothing stop us from achieving our goals ever again.
So, this weekend while you celebrate whatever religious (or non-religious) holiday symbolizing a new beginning, don’t forget to celebrate your own personal new beginning as well.