Updated: Jun 8
When I was 22 I moved to my current state. It was the only way I could find to stay out of my parent's house.
I stayed at an older couple's house for a week(they were "lay counselors " who had several single girls living in their house). There was not much privacy in my opinion.
One evening I was in the middle of undressing for bed and the lady of the house, without knocking, walked in to tell me something. I felt so violated, even though I didn't even know what the word meant at the time. (The bedroom was in a basement and there were termites or some other kind of insect that would come in through the cracks in the walls. It felt like a dungeon)
I stayed at that house while the person (a widow)who was asked to take me in was making up their mind. When I moved in it wasnt too bad of a place to be but it soon turned bad.
The dog, still a puppy, had lots of energy. I was warned to never hit the dog because it would make them mean. Right away, it planted fear in me. The dog knew it and took advantage. Sometimes she listened to me and most times she didn't. I didn't know how else to discipline a dog without hitting them. The dog loved to jump up and bite me on my back in my shoulder blade area. At times I would stand hunched over so she couldn't. Other times I couldn't do anything about it. I had almost constantly a bruise on my arm or back and sometimes broken skin because of the dog biting me. The lady seemed to have no concern.
The emotional pain was really bad too.
I remember at times curling up on the bathroom floor in the evening, crying for long periods, because the emotional pain was so bad.
I remember at times digging my fingernails into my skin because somehow the physical pain helped relieve the emotional pain temporarily.
I remember one time a close friend came over and we were sitting on my bed. I was so miserable emotionally. After some time of silence she just reached over, put her arm around my shoulders and pulled me into her lap. I covered my face with my hands and wept for a long time. Until I was interrupted by the lady downstairs telling me that someone called and wanted to talk to me...
I remember being so scared of Rosie and not wanting to be bitten again so I stayed in my room. Most of the time I read. One time I made a fleece blanket, using the chest as a table. Other times I would just talk to God and practice listening for his voice because I wanted to connect with him.
I remember the times when the widow lady's single daughter came over. She would usually bring her dog over too. When both dogs were around it was torture. I was so terrified. And both dogs would jump up and bite me. It was horrible.
I remember the time when the lady came back from a funeral in my parent's community and someone told her I was diagnosed bipolar. She insisted that was the reason I stayed in my room. Not that it was the dog. I tried to tell her but she wouldn't listen.
The lady loved to talk. There were times that she thought I couldn't hear her and I'd listen to her talking about me on the phone.
I had a friend who helped me when I first moved into the area to find a place to live and a job. She told me that the best way to stop the fire of gossip was to get a second opinion. By this time I had started looking for another place to live in the area because I didn't want to lose my job.
My friend stayed with me for the last 2 weeks I was there. I didn't know that it was the last 2 weeks, but one evening out of the blue, the lady said you need to move out.
I had nowhere to go. So that night we packed everything up. The next night we went to her sister's house for the night. The day after was my appointment with another doctor for my second opinion. When I got there I was told that they were expecting me at a girl's halfway house that had just opened. I ended up staying there because I had no other place to go. And lost my job.
Now 12 years later, I'm again living with a widow lady. Now I know a lot more about boundaries and healthy relationships. I'm still learning how to see red flags in people.
This widow lady had the audacity when I came to look at the house to ask me if I was sexually abused and if that was why I wear my hair down. The next red flag was on moving day when the lady just took off with some of my stuff and put it in the wash house without letting me know and just her manner in helping unload some of my stuff. My pastor's wife at the time tried to reassure me she's just trying to be helpful. No. She doesn't know a thing about healthy boundaries or respecting an other person's voice. I wish I'd have listened to my instinct but I also needed a cheaper place to live so I was kinda stuck.
She at least doesn't have a dog.
But she has refused to leave me alone no matter how many times I told her to leave me alone.
I do my laundry in the bathtub because I know that if i tried to use the washer she wouldn't leave me alone.
And much more...I wrote a lot about in my red flag blog post....
Now I finally have a moving date. But facing another move yet again is triggering a lot of memories, more implicit than others. Some of the things I do remember I have listed above.
I find myself dealing with all kind of emotions and physical pain because of this. My feet ache. My body aches. I'm exhausted. I feel overwhelmed and disoriented. I gaslight myself. I get so critical and at times furious with myself. I wonder each day if I can make to the end of the day without feeling too horrible. I haven't been sleeping well. I catch myself clenching my jaw and grinding my teeth. A headache. Bone weariness. I feel extra vulnerable. Moving day looks so far away.
Somehow I will get through this. Somehow with a lot of tears. And pain. Anger. Irritability. And trying to listen to my body. It makes me feel out of control at times because the different parts of me and the memories are clamoring so loudly that I just freeze and don't know what to do. I'm told I have the tools but most times I can't even think clearly enough to utilize them let alone remember what they are...
Somehow I get through this. I have a safe place at the end to look forward to if I can hang in till then. Two months looks like 2 years right now and I'm so exhausted.
Somehow. Somehow. Somehow. I'll make it.