If this isn’t a story about my life, I would think the next chapter was intentionally written to add more drama because what happens next definitely seems like a plot twist.
As previously mentioned, SJC continued to harass and stalk me after our break up. I began receiving a barrage of text messages from him which ranged from apologetic and remorseful to hateful and unkind in an instant. One text message SJC sent hit a disgusting new low and was very telling about his true character. When it became apparent to SJC that he was no longer in control, it caused him to unravel even more.
A few days later after receiving this text message, I found out I was pregnant. That’s right, I was with child! I was so conflicted with what to do next and needed time to think. When SJC first found out, he welcomed the news but that quickly changed since he was now casting doubt that the baby is his given his unfounded accusations that I was cheating. In true contradictory fashion, SJC went from not believing the baby was his to then wanting me to have an abortion. Since it was my body, my choice, SJC did not have any perceived control so he decided to once again violate my right to privacy by telling my friends and family that I was pregnant before I was ready and willing to say anything. It was especially frustrating since at that time, I was not sure what direction I was going to take. But after careful consideration and much thought (not to mention receiving divine signs), I decided to keep my baby. After telling SJC of this, he ultimately decided not to be involved and went about his life in Malibu while selfishly ignoring any moral obligation to his unborn child as well as financial commitment in paying back the loan.
Meanwhile, my life took on a different path. Here I was a pregnant single mom with no job. Talk about being a tragic cliché. I never thought I would be alone and pregnant at almost 40! I was embarrassed and scared at the same time, but I didn’t have time to feel frightened. I went into auto-pilot and started to look for work which I luckily found. Things were starting to look positive as I was struggling to get my head above water for my family. There were some adjustments to our family life but my son and I pulled through and were there for each other. At first, he wasn’t overly enthused about having a sibling since for 12 years, it was just us. Also given the situation, he was definitely confused but as the weeks and months progressed, he started to accept the impending new addition to our family and became my rock!
Although going through my pregnancy alone was emotionally and financially devastating, I feel that my unborn child gave me added strength to move forward. When it came time to deliver my baby, I reached out to SJC to give him the opportunity to welcome his daughter into the world. He chose not to be there. All in all, although she was not planned, my daughter is truly a blessing! In looking at her, I see a lot of my former self in her. She is strong, independent and fearless. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that everyone tells me she looks EXACTLY like me. After the abuse, I continue to this day to find myself again. It helps that both my kids remind me about my inner strength and self worth.
Surviving abuse is difficult and challenging since domestic violence knows no boundaries. Physical, sexual, emotional and financial abuse does not discriminate and can happen to both men and women, young and old, rich and poor regardless of race or color. It will take strength, support and determination but the important first step is to break the silence and ask for help. It took me a long time to reach out for help and I would strongly encourage that if you want out of an abusive relationship to start by telling at least one person.