HEALING A CHAPTER.
Last year, was a year of growth. HUGE. MASSIVE. GIGANTIC. GROWTH. After years of hiding and trying to pretend a chapter never existed in my life. In 2020, I opened up and revealed every single damn page of that book.
When I was in my early 20’s, I found a home video from when we were younger. My Mum was behind the camera. I was front and centre, probably the age that the Twins are now - singing the Batman theme song at the top of my lungs. Suddenly, the video camera is placed down on a table, still recording “Quick girls, pack up all the toys.” Within an instant her voice was shaky and filled with fear. He did that. My biological father. Everything had to be, in it’s place - perfect. If it wasn’t, expect that there would be hell to pay.
I was 3 years old when my Mum said no more. No more to domestic violence. It was a Sunday night, my Grandma (my biological Father’s side) came over to our house unexpectedly and my Mum opened the door to see her arm in a cast with a sling. My Grandma never confided in my Mum about what had happened. It was an unspoken conversation. Both of them knew. My Mum knew in that very moment that if she did not leave, she would find herself in the same situation that my Grandma did with my Grandpa. Years filled with torture, years of domestic violence. The very next day. As soon as he left for work, she packed our suitcases. And we were out of there. She was scared of the unknown but it was a necessary step for our protection. It’s kind of a hard situation to explain, especially when you are born into domestic violence. You feel shame, embarrassment, guilt, envy and even hope. I always hoped he would change, but he never did.
I still remember the first Christmas after we left. He picked us up for Christmas Eve. Mum let him know that we were to be home by a certain time. The cursing began immediately as soon as we got in the car. We drove across the West Gate Bridge he threatened to drive off clocking a speed of over 180km per hour. Somehow, we made it home safely.
The next day was Christmas, he appeared first thing in the morning to apologise - not verbally but financially. He was very wealthy. In some weird, way, he thought “things” would fix everything. He walked up to the fireplace and looked at the mantle filled with happy photos - there was no photo of him. That's all it took. 0-100 in a second. Frames were smashed, couches and chairs were thrown across the room, there were punches and knives. I remember running to my Mum's bedroom, hiding under the bed and dialling 000. The police came and he was arrested. I was only 4.
This is just one story, one reason of why I'm doing what I can for Share the Dignity - hope. To help women in need. I can't imagine how hard it was for my Mum to start from scratch - fleeing domestic violence. You can leave. There is always hope.
There is power in healing. But there is also so much pain and no shortcuts. You might take 2 steps forward but then you suddenly take 3 steps backwards. I was born into domestic violence but my past won’t define who I am. I’ve made that choice. As @khadija_gbla said to me yesterday “You aren’t just surviving now. You’re thriving.”
I am so honoured and proud to be a @sharethedignityaustralia ambassador. Share the Dignity is an Australian Charity bringing dignity to those experiencing homelessness, domestic violence and period poverty through the distribution of period products. @rochellecourtenay You inspire me every day to stand up for women that do not have the strength to stand up for themselves - a position my Mum would have once been in.
You may have seen us with these little pink boxes. What are they? They are a FREE period pack which has six tampons and two pads in it, they are dispensed from the Dignity vending machine. The machine is there to help women, girls and those who menstruate. Share the Dignity have installed the Dignity Vending Machines in areas where those experiencing hardship can easily and simply access them right across Australia. Share the Dignity purchase and supply these @libraausnz period packs aka Pink in the vending machine!
Whilst, I created this space with Little Miss Period. A space where young ladies can be equipped with all the knowledge and products to ride the Period rollercoaster with a clear goal to feel inspired, empowered, educated, confident and supported. I also recognise a strong need to give back. For each purchase of a Little Miss Period Box, we will purchase a 'Pink Box' to help those experiencing homelessness, domestic violence and period poverty.
“Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it possibly, without claiming it, she stands up for all women.” — Maya Angelou.