Let’s get serious for a minute.
Some 14 years ago, I was robbed and assaulted.
I may have written to you about this in a previous letter but I’ve been moved to share again and with a different lens.
The details, I will not divulge much into. But the lessons?? Those will be thrown like punches and daggers in a fight.
I was a teenager and still in high school when this happened.
Yours truly was assaulted first and then robbed. There were 3 men. One targeted my mom, one targeted me and the other for just in case…?
A man wearing bulky rings punched me in the face in my right eye. I felt my brain shift as my head jolted with the force of the assault. I was in complete shock.
I managed to get away from additional punches. Little did I know- he followed me to cause more harm I suppose…?. But with a loud cry from my mom and what I consider divine intervention, this man and his cronies left with the spoils of their hard work.
A gun was also included in this disaster. I don’t need to delve into the kind of trauma such an experience can cause.
What they took
My sense of security was wiped. The notion that we were relatively safe was a false reality and that incident gave us that rude awakening.
Of course personal items were taken. However those were materialistic.
I had no peace after. I barely slept and panic attacks were served with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
My level of trust that humans were good went from 10 to 0. That notion has since changed in the last 5 years or so.
According to the doctors, nothing was broken or damaged beyond repair. — because of the impact, I sustained external and internal bruising in and around my right eye. I had a scar below my eye for months. My eye was blood shot at least 4 times from burst capillaries. Though the ‘physical’ healed, I was scarred for life. Psychological scarring is real.
My eye felt like a beaten egg and my entire being felt like tenderised meat. Imagine how I was on the emotional and psychological scale.
According to the police, those thieves deserved the full brunt of the law and that justice would be served. — but after statements were taken, there was no follow up on the case. No further communication with my mom or with myself. Don’t get me wrong, we really dreaded any follow up but we knew that our case went straight to file 13 to gather dust. Where’s the comfort in that?
According to school, I had to get over the incident eventually and continue with my life. This was inferred, of course. After all, there were kids with bigger traumas and they handled their pain better than I did.
I did not go to school for close to two weeks.
Fear crippled me. When I returned to school, I was on edge. I struggled to focus and also keep my shit in one place. I recall excusing myself to find the restroom and bawl.
I was picked up and dropped off for months on end. My usual commute on the regular bus was axed.
As I engage in introspection:
Of course, I am aware that my experience is nothing compared to another but that’s just it. It’s my experience and it was f*****g terrifying.
A series of unfortunate events
One week later, we learned of my grandfather’s passing by heart attack.
Eight months later, we learned of my uncle’s passing by murder.
One thing is for sure…Life was really dishing it out. No real time to process pain and engage the stages of grief properly. She (Life) was throwing all the punches.
All the punches.
Lessons in Assault
I have struggled with lessons that could or have come from my assault. Like, how do you really take lessons from such an experience? But, it’s me so I have some lessons to share.
1. Shit happens. And, there’s literally nothing we can do about it. Well maybe there is. You take that shit, roll all up on it and learn while you do. This way, you can share with others – tips on how to roll in your metaphoric shit. – Sounds like a best seller to me.
2. Life will literally punch you in the face and threaten you with a proverbial gun just because.
How you process that assault will determine if you continue to live your life or if you become a recluse and try to hide from it. That is no way to live. Your life is defined by the experiences you encounter. With a lack of experiences, the dash between your birth and death would be for naught.
3. Material items are replaceable. No matter how cliche this statement is – the fact remains that you can replace the material. Don’t sweat it too much if your possessions are taken from you.
4. Your fear will either cripple you or push you forward. After the incident, I was afraid to leave the house. I was deathly afraid. But I now use that fear to guide how I approach life. I am more calculated in my moves and I am more aware of the people around me.
5. Express gratitude in the worst of times and the best of times. I could’ve been seriously hurt and we could’ve been killed. But we were spared. I was and am grateful for the support and love we received. I am gratfeul to be above ground.
It’s always a good day to be above ground!
Take nothing for granted.
6. “Until the day you die, nothing you go through will kill you” – Alvin Day.
Went through rough times? Assaulted physically or spiritually? Guess what? You didn’t die!
Dress your wounds and enter the party called life.
Have you ever been assaulted? How are you coping? Are you okay?
Has life punched you? Did you punch it back?
Signed with love,
The Suburban Girl