Why I am Damaged Goods

I am a 22 year old single mother of 3 kids under 4, (wow, what a mouthful). When I think of my recent adult life, for the most part, I am blessed. I have 3 beautiful babies, I am healthy and well. I am capable of working, going to school, learning a trade, traveling the world. I am capable of doing most tangible things on this earth, and for that, I am grateful.

We all know that those aren’t really the things that define us, though. Those aren’t the things we lay awake thinking about at 3am; those aren’t the things we shed heartbroken tears over. Those are the things we use to cover up deep insecurities and jagged scars.

Take a look at my Facebook page, or my Instagram or Snapchat. I look happy, I look strong, I look confident. You can see that I’m a proud mom. You can feel my love for my family. But that’s just it.. We all have secret battles that we’re facing, and unfortunately, I feel like mine is a popular one. It’s common. It’s become… a norm.

A year ago, I was pregnant with my 3rd child when my husband (and father of my kids) left with another woman. Yes, he left me. I didn’t get that glorious feeling of kicking his ass to the curb, I got that miserable feeling of abandonment and shame instead. I lost all control over everything; my emotions, my sanity, my financial stability, my livelihood. Sure, I posted selfies with powerful quotes and I made posts about “moving on.” I even covered up the tattoo with his name on it on our 2nd wedding anniversary, as if to prove a point:

“I am soo, over you. I don’t need you.” Take that, right?

Wrong.

I was only doing what I felt was expected. In today’s world of strong women, how weak do I look if I’m heartbroken over a loser? An adulterer? A man who has no regard for moral decency? I received many accolades, many women calling me ‘inspirational’ and ‘strong’ and ‘courageous.’ I had a hard time believing any of it, and that’s because inside, I wasn’t “over it.” I would have given anything to be ‘under it’ again.

I’ve struggled a lot. I’ve struggled so hard to get over that man… so much so, that I believed him when he said, “It won’t happen again.” I’ve struggled so much that I was weak to his touch, I was putty in his hands; “Maybe if he’s reminded of what he’s missing, he’ll crawl back.” Maybe if I were more like her, he’ll love me again. Maybe.

I’ve recently, finally realized how sick that is. How twisted. Why couldn’t my inside match my outside? Why couldn’t I just tattoo over my heart, like I could his name on my skin? I will probably never know the answer, but what I can do, is speak out about how I really feel.

I recently reread through a blog post that I wrote on July 13th, 2015. It’s titled, “Why I Have Forgotten My Husband.” It talks about how becoming a mom had drained my energy to be the loving wife I needed to be, and reading it again gave me a sense of pride that I had lost when he left.

It was the first time that I’ve really compared what I had (and lost), to what he had and gave up.

He gave up a woman with poise and grace and a fear of the Lord.

He gave up a woman who fought tooth and nail for her marriage.

He gave up a woman who sacrificed every day of her life for him.

He gave up a woman who has dreams and goals (and a real way of achieving them).

He gave up a woman with unsurpassed loyalty.

He gave up a woman who loved him unconditionally.

I’m still struggling to comprehend where my self-worth went, how long ago I lost it. I have been okay with being hit, sexually abused, psychologically controlled, emotionally drained, manipulated, lied to, and cheated on. These experiences have forever changed me and how I will love.

I now consider myself damaged goods, I don’t feel strong, or resilient, or inspirational.

I feel battered.

They say you can’t miss something you never had… so why am I missing genuine love that I never received?

My reason for this post is to say that yes, it has been a year of ongoing pain for me and my family. I may post things on social media joking about my situation, or seem like a confident woman with her crap together, but I’d rather just be honest with the fact that I’m not. Not even close.

I am a battered & damaged woman, and that is okay.

I know that I’m not the only one who has experienced heartbreak, or abuse, or loss of any kind. I’m not the only one with pain hiding behind their pristine profile pictures on Facebook, or silly filters on Snapchat. We all have something, and I pray that this reaches the right woman at the right time. A woman struggling with self worth, or abuse, or inner turmoil.

You are enough.

You are more than their opinion of you.

You are better than abuse.

Your love is more valuable than the pain you’ve received.

In a fast-moving culture where everyone demands acceptance, our fake smiles shouldn’t be so taboo. We are all worth more than that. After all, the phrase is ‘damaged goods’ for a reason. Maybe it’s good that we’re all a little damaged.

#damagedgoods

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9 thoughts on “Why I am Damaged Goods

  1. Pure Glory says:

    You are not damaged goods. You are created in the image of God. Your ex is the one who is damaged because hurt people hurt others. May your wounded soul be healed of all of its trauma. Katie Souza at expectedendministries.org has a series on her web site for healing the soul. It is also on YouTube. I have been going through her teaching and getting healing for the traumas in my life. It has really helped me. Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Robin says:

    Thank you for sharing your story. I myself lived a life in denial for many years. I have been married for 12 years. It was not until 4 years ago I stood up for myself and moved out of our home.
    The mental, emotional, and psychological, and physical abuse can take a toll on a person health.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Kimberley says:

    Krista, it’s ok to be hurt, ok to cry. You are right, we as women take so much, we take it and take it and take it some more. We all have reasons for putting up with the garbage we do, until it’s time. Your time came and you will win. Heaven help the girl he left you for, my bet is she will learn to regret her decision to be with this dumb a$$ jerk.

    Like

  4. bologna2bethlehem says:

    I am struck by your maturity. At twenty-two, you may feel like you are all over the place, broken and damaged, but you have yet more discoveries to make. Your fake smiles and selfies are modern social trends, but they are also your pieces being put back together. I look back at my worst year, 1996, and see myself on vacation – a 9 day vacation in Jamaica no less – and think, ‘Wow! I must have had a good time, look at the smiles, the pictures, Ocho Rios, Dunn’s River Falls, etc., etc.’ But I was so completely miserable following the death of the love of my life. I hated every moment I was there, wishing I could crawl into a hole and die. But over the years, I was able to reflect on those days and others, and see that I had moments of sincerity when times were good, when times were fun. As I pieced those moments together and found that they added to my emotional recovery.

    You are building upon yourself, and I might add, you are doing an exceptional job. You say that you lost your self-worth, but as you bullet point all that your ex lost, you reclaim your value. It was there, but it was numb, shocked, scared. Now, you are reclaiming yourself and in doing so rebuilding your own emotional strength. These are the steps we must take if we are to recognize the sunshine again. Some don’t have the fortitude and end up wallowing in despair until some vice overtakes them completely. You are on a healing road and the example you are setting for your children is outstanding.

    Yes, he left. But you were so outstanding, so loyal, so dedicated, so committed that you poured all that you were into the relationship and watched yourself self-combust when he walked out. You may or may not know yet, but you have been called to peace. And from this vantage point, it seems that you are gaining that healing and finding your peace through the power of your words.

    These words are our medicine, our therapy, our healing. My WP blog is bologna2bethlehem, but my website is JessVaughnWrites.com and I just published a collection of spoken word poetry called Cuts On Me. In it, I do my purge – the pain of sexual threat, assault, date rape, harassment, puberty – all of it along with disparity of women in society, at work, in the media; then the loss of my father and my love and my childhood best friend and my first crush, etc., etc. I was drowning in the cuts – my emotional pain – and this book was my turning the page on it and moving forward finally.

    You ARE strong. You ARE inspiring. So I say thank you for this post. And I leave you with the lines of one of my poems:
    “Woman-girl, lift up! For far too long your shoulders
    have bent forward from the weight of
    the despair of injustice, inequality,
    mistreatment, ignorance,
    devalue, degradation and disregard.
    Straighten your posture,
    clean up your face.
    Did you forget or have you never heard
    that a blessing was put upon you
    to cause the continuation of Mankind
    from generation after generation,
    from the beginning of human existence
    until today?
    Do you even know your worth?
    They – all those whom you reproduced – speak down to you
    so your eyes are so filled with tears
    that you can’t see your way out,
    see your way through, see your way up,
    but Sister, Mother, Auntie, Cousin, Friend,
    Hold your head up.
    Don’t bow to the whispers in the corner.
    Your place is in the center of the room…

    Ms. Bordering Beautiful, keep holding your position with shoulders held high. Keep holding your place in the center of the room, and do not give a second thought to the whispers in the corner. Let them stay in the shadows. Your audience is captivated by you. Well done!

    Like

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