The first time i was sexually assaulted, i was 9 years old. Playing with a toy on the stairs leading to my mother’s shop.
I remember him come up the stairs and rather than go on into the shop, he bent down to say hi to me. But he didn’t just say hi.
I remember his hands moving into my dress as he kept asking me what I was doing on the stairs. I remember the glazed look on his face. his weirdly fixed smile as his hands assaulted me while i hurt.
The sound of someone coming finally made him stop.
The seeds of self loathing were sown that day. I felt dirty afterwards. ashamed. like i had done something wrong. I knew what he did to me was wrong but i blamed myself for many years for not stopping him. for not resisting. not being able to tell anyone.
I hated him. hated him because for many years i saw him almost every day, called him uncle and later on had to listen to him preach while he taught Sunday school. I sang at his wedding.
Those minutes on the stairs changed my life. My self loathing opened the door to more abuse and more self loathing.
The journey towards healing has been slow, sometimes fraught with several relapses but victory came.
I reclaimed my self esteem, my body and i learned to love myself.
I forgave myself and I’m growing to forgive my abusers.
I still get angry sometimes, i still get triggered but I’ve found purpose through my pain.
I’m living one day at a time and I do not hesitate to withdraw to take care of myself when i need it.
forgive me if my story has triggered you in some way. I just wanted you to know you’re not alone out here.
We’ve all been there. #MeToo.