Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The lessons I learned in the years I lost.

It has been a very long time since I have written anything personal about my self. Almost ten years to be exact.You all may be wondering why now, why have I decided to spill the beans to all of you on what has been happening in my life. Well a lot has changed for me, in more ways than I could have ever imagined. 
This is the first step in me Finding out who I really am. 
Please be kind, as this post contains my personal life and experience. If you have something negative to say. Keep it to your self. 

Have you ever felt that you were alone in this world, even when you are surrounded by people who claim to love and care about you? I have, on many occasions felt as if I was just a ghost drudging through this endless ocean of life. Invisible to the people around me, I got tired of life and the life I was living in. 
I don't want to go into full details on exactly what happened, or what exactly was said because Honestly.... I haven't healed those wounds inflicted on my heart just yet. 
However I will share a little with you....

Over the last eight years I have completely lost who I thought I was, and allowed others to place their idea's of my worth upon me. I allowed others to belittle, breakdown and destroy all that I was. 
I gave up everything I once had held dear to my heart, my friends, my family, my love of dance, school, work. If your mind can think of it, I probably gave it up, and for what you may ask. 
Well... for Love, at least what I thought was love. 

Like all Love Stories they have to start some where, Mine starts at a place called Tabella's. 
Almost 9 years ago, I met a man, (I will leave his name out..well.. because it simply doesn't matter.)
At first I was hesitant to give him my number, but he assured me that he was not like the other guys I had dated, and for some reason I believed him. Maybe it was his rich accent, or his dark skin and chiseled features, or the tone of his voice and the way he approached me. Either way I caved in and gave him my number.  

Our relationship was just like any other, we were young, careless and free. I was just 19 at the time, and he (quite a bit older) 30. I thought to my self, finally I have found a "MAN" some one who is done with the petty games boys play, and I need not worry about much. He had his life together, he had a job, a few cars, his own place, not that these things really mattered to me, (for those who know me on a personal level, and know where I came from and how my life was before this point... I will leave all that for another post.) I was just happy to be with someone who truly cared for me. After a year into our relationship I helped him open his own business, I had absolutely no business experience, no idea how to run, manage, pay, book-keep anything. Up until this point I had only ever worked retail, so I did research and helped him set everything up. It was a learning process for us both.  

Together we ran this business for a little over 7 years, but now I am getting ahead of my story....

There is a reason why they say not to go into business with your loved ones, its hard and put unneeded stress on the relationship...
 Don't get me wrong, as a person my significant other during this time, wasn't the only one who made the relationship hard. However our cultural differences made it difficult to see eye to eye on things. Our relationship was one filled with resentment, mistrust, and dishonor. I can not say that I was a saint in this relationship, but the amount of mental abuse I took from him, regardless if he was aware of the hurt he was doing pushed me to the edge. 

 I recently came across an old journal of mine, from the beginning of my relationship with him. I guess at some point fooled myself into thinking that things were fine between us. However when I read over what I had written just two years into my relationship I was ashamed that I stayed as long as I did. I was ashamed that I had allowed some one to take over every faucet of my life.
I spent seven long years believing I loved this man, but in reality I was just so far in, so comfortable, that I just let it all slide. 

Starting about a three years ago, at age 25, I decided to change that, I enrolled my self in community college, I started engaging in my community at school. I made new friends, and a glimpse of true happiness began to shine through. Then the most unimaginable things happen to me, to my family.
My Father passed away, I was completely heartbroken, the man who had raised me, cherished me, was gone. It had been three months since I had last seen my father, the news of his death stripped every thing I had just built up away from me, and I was tossed back down in the pit of darkness and depression once more. 

I know that it seems insane to most, but during this time, I seriously contemplated killing my self. I wanted to escape all of my pain, all of my worry, all of my sorrow. I knew that if I had gone through with it, I would have only hurt my family more.
My relationship at the time did not help either, all though at first my ex supported me in my time of need, he slowly began to tell me that I needed to move on, and get over it. This coming from a Man who had also lost his own father, destroyed me. One can not easily forget or move on from a parent dying, that pain lingers in the heart for eternity.

This is when things started to get really bad for my relationship. The trust issues came once I returned to school, mind you while enrolled at Edmonds Community College I was taking 25 credits a quarter and didn't have much time for anything.  I took hybrid classes, if I wasn't on campus, I would be on my computer. That alone caused most of the issues, "Me" being on my laptop all the time working on home work. Which is what I was doing, but "He" thought I was on Facebook, or something else talking to other people. No matter how many times I reassured him that I was faithful, and guilt free of talking to other behind his back, it made no difference to Him.  

Anytime we were invited to a friends get together or outing, he would decline, stating that he was too tired to attend. He would tell me that I could go if I wanted, but that if I went he might go out and do something on his own. It put me in the position where I had to choose Him, or my friends. 
Many people might think I made the wrong choice, but I choose my friends. They have been here for me long before he was, and they are still here now.  Things progressively got worse for us, our relationship was hitting rock bottom. He constantly threaten to leave me, stating that if I didn't change that he would leave. He had done this a number of time, but only once had I actually packed my things and prepared to leave. He begged me not to go, saying we could work it out and that we shouldn't waste the 6 years we had been together. I agreed to stay, but I had warned him that if he continued to threaten me by saying he would leave that he would have to be prepared to do so. 

Even our intimate relationship started to suffer, and to be plainly and painfully honest, I just didn't want to be intimate with someone who didn't trust me. I felt that his jealousy, was a cover up for his own wrong doing, and I didn't want to take the chance of getting something, since it was impossible to know if he had been with anyone else.   

He started going out more to the clubs, and would be gone all night, no phone call,  no nothing. He would walk back in smelling like booze and hard liquor. Claiming that he had left his phone in his friends car all night. I didn't want to argue so I let it go, and just went to sleep.  We grew further and further apart, and he started doing more and more things on his own. Then it happened, he started accusing me of cheating on him, every time I went anywhere. 

Things continued on like this for the next two years, I finally graduated from EDCC in 2013 with three degrees in Business Management. During all of this we still had the business running, I originally enrolled in school, so I could help make sure everything at the business was legal and on par with Washington state operations laws.
 Shortly after graduation I applied to University of Washington and Seattle Pacific University. I was  accepted to SPU and I decided that I would enroll during the Fall to work on my BA in International Business. My relationship started to break even more, now that I was commuting to Seattle from Renton, every day for school, I worked full time at the Business we ran and attended school full time. Towards the end of the first quarter at SPU, Ante Up was formed, and I joined and became a founding member. 

I was super excited about joining and going to practice every Friday night, however my significant other was not so thrilled. He claimed that I was building a new life with out him, and that I had all these new friends he knew nothing about. He told me I joined as an excuse not to be home with him. 
Which was not true, We worked together, car pooled together, and did everything together, I just wanted one small thing to my self. 

This single decision, is what set me on the path to planning my escape from my relationship. It sounds horrible I know, Plotting an escape.. you might be asking why didn't I just up and leave. Well if you scroll back up to the top of this post, you would see that I had nothing, Everything I had, my house, my income, my car, my life, revolved around this single man. I had to start setting stone for me walk across to be on my own. 

I moved both of us into a family members house, because I knew if things ended I would have at least a place to stay, I applied for a job on campus, and luckily got one fairly soon. Due to Business and legal issues one of my significant other cars was under my name, I legal possessed the car. 
Then one night it all came crashing down, a small little argument pushed into a full blown attack on each other. 
Then those words came out of his mouth " Why don't we just end it then!"
I agreed.
 He stood there dumbfounded that for once I actually meant it.  I told him to take his things and to leave. I was done, done with all the belittling and mental abuse he put me through.
I finally found the courage to stand up for my self and no longer allow a person to dictated my life and happiness.
It was by far one of the hardest things I had ever done, but I could no longer lie to him, or my self. I just didn't love him any more.
I watched him pack his things, and leave. 
That night I went to sleep no longer afraid, no longer ashamed.
That night.. is night which held all the lessons I learned in the years I lost. 

-That Girl Rika

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