When I was a child, I was terrified of you. My skin would erupt with the feeling of a million little bugs running for their lives when I heard your footsteps slinking down the hall. You forced me to disappear within myself while you found pleasure in my flesh, and every time, a little more of my being would fracture. Because of you, I could never fully be comfortable in my own skin as a child. Instead, I was always worried about who would find my dark secret and use it to destroy me. I was never an equal, and the joys of childhood were lost in the game of hide and seek.
As I grew older, my warped and twisted reality grew into a gnarled old tree in the depth of a dark swamp. Boundaries didn’t exist. I let more evil in than just you, and because of it I was forced to do worse things than you could ever imagine…or maybe you could. I was the beast you created, the heir to the tarnished and cracked throne of a long bloodline of evil. I believed I was worthless. I believed my only existence was to be a tool used by anyone who needed to drive a nail further into a heart that once beat with love. There was no light in my life because of you.
Even when God brought light into my life, it was fleeting, only giving me glimpse of what could be if only I wasn’t me. It wasn’t until someone noticed that I was drowning and stretched out their hand that I could finally breathe. I felt like I was free because I was away from you, but the nightmares still haunted the dark places in my mind. I tried to overcome, but every time I hit a wall built of fear, constructed by me made from pieces of you.
As I entered adulthood and began to have children of my own, I found myself in a string of abusive situations. No matter how hard I tried to rise above my station in life my dark secret always drug me back down, pulling me into the murky depths of the abyss. I was unworthy of love, of good, and of happiness. Everything was hard because of you. Everything.
Then something happened. One day after the last time I was abused I hid. I hid in a cocoon of something I saw as safety, but it was really just another version of control, causing me to lose the last little bits of myself.
Then, when I found myself alone, God was the only one left standing by like a sentinel in a hurricane. Through Him, I was shown the beauty of grace and that my scars were only a reminder of who I once was, not who I was becoming. He brought people into my life to show me my full strength. I lit a torch and burned that bruised and broken girl to the ground and everything you ever did to her. I became a phoenix rising from the ashes of the brokenness and terror that you filled me with. The warrior who stands before you today is writing not to tell you that you are forgiven because of rationalizing why you did what you did, but that you are forgiven because I refuse to let your filth fill my pores for one more moment. Your sad pathetic life is a reminder of the bed you have made and are chained to for eternity, while I am free.
That torch I used to set my prison ablaze, I now carry to help other survivors burn theirs to the ground too. In the end, we will all be phoneixes taking to the air, no longer held by the bondage of monsters like you, and when our fire fills the skies, there will be no place left for you to hide.
I am not afraid of you. I see you, and you are dead to me.
As sincerely as I can possibly be,