I was in an abusive relationship for sixteen years. I knew it was abusive. I lived in shame and secrecy. I was embarrassed that I allowed the abuse. Even though I knew it was wrong, I kept shoving those feelings down. I read articles about abuse, I listened to religious teachings of forgiveness and redemption. I kept it all a secret. The point of this isn’t to place blame on anyone, even myself that this happened. It’s to acknowledge the awareness that I knew something was wrong, but I ignored it. I’ve gone back and read journals of the time I was dating my ex-partner and I can see now so many red flags that I ignored as a naive young girl because I just wanted love.
I’m on the other side of my abuse, but I am still processing and healing. I think back on all the times I knew things weren’t ok. I can identify the feelings of discomfort in my body, and all the times I ignored or justified things. I didn’t trust myself.
I believe we are blessed with an inner wisdom, an inner knowing. Sometimes it just feels like a gut feeling. There are times we listen, and times we ignore. I’ve been confused many times if my senses are truly leading me in the right direction. Is this nagging feeling just fear, insecurity, or anxiety? It’s hard to know. I’ve been able to use retrospection and look back on times in the past when something didn’t seem right. After time and perspective I’ve been able to gain a better understanding of what exactly those feel like and to pay attention. I do best when I quiet my mind, meditate, breathe, and really listen to my body. My wisdom is there, deep inside, it speaks to me. Listen to your inner wisdom.