I Kept it all in and Hidden Away from the World

I went to The Haven Retreat having never really talked about the abuse I went through. I kept it all in and hidden away from the world. I had thought that the abuse had never affected me or that I had “gotten over it.” The first day of group therapy one of the ladies in my group started talking about shame. Something in my head clicked and let it all out. All the years of pent up anger, sadness, shame, and guilt came roaring out of me like a lion. For the first time, I acknowledged my pain and did not hold back. That was my reckoning moment and I claimed it.

After the retreat, I went home a new person. I had finally acknowledged all parts of myself. I was finally free of all the secrets and lies. I finally knew who I was and where I was going. I was finally a survivor.

-Erica, Survivor