The amazingly talented Dolly Parton once stated, “Storms make trees take deeper roots.” I think that can also be said for humans. We all have been through stormy periods of our life, some storms lasting longer than others. For many, domestic violence is like an ongoing storms that fails to subside. However, when the storm passes, you have much deeper roots and are able to overcome many obstacles that once held you back.
After I shot this photo, I asked her to write about her past. Below is what she said:
“I remember the overwhelming sense of relief as I escaped. No more walking on eggshells, hiding bruises, constant insults. I knew it would be hard rebuilding life after but it was so worth it. Finally free from that grip....Freedom! Free to be me, free to find my way without fear, hurt, heartache and pain.
To all the survivors and those that feel trapped and want out......you are beautiful. You are strong. You are worthy of self-respect, dignity, love the right way.
Getting away isn't easy, but I can promise you that it is worth it! Reach out to other survivors, to the resources out there.
There is a quote from the book ‘Why Does He do that,’ that I clung to afterwards. The quote read, “When people conclude that anger causes abuse, they are confusing cause and effect. Ray was not abusive because he was angry; he was angry because he was abusive. Abusers carry attitudes that produce fury.”. That quote helped me to realize it wasn't me and what I did. It was him and who he was.”