The Calm During the Storm

It’s me again, Britt the bassist.IMG_8774

So, it’s been awhile. Almost everyone by now knows that I was in a very abusive relationship for several years. I write about it from time to time, mention it on social media, etc… What I don’t talk about very much is one particular incident that forever sticks in my mind. With all the people around me coming out as abuse survivors, I figured I’d cut to the chase so they know they aren’t alone in what they lived with.

There was a moment in time where I was pretty certain I wouldn’t live to see the next day. This was probably the one time it hit me the most that I probably wouldn’t get out of this situation. I was living in Orlando in a house with numerous other roommates and my ex. I had graduated from college and had been job hunting for months, but nothing was coming in. It was a really dark time for me, as I was used to doing very well academically and wasn’t used to the constant silence. My ex on the other hand was playing more shows with his band and was out nearly every night. Sometimes I’d tag along, but I felt like the invisible person in the back of the room. It wasn’t fun to me and I felt that if I was going to be alone, I might as well be alone in the comfort of my own room.

My ex had started developing a major drinking problem by this point. He would drive drunk after shows, showing up at random hours of the night. This night in particular, he hasn’t come home so I went to sleep. Later, I woke up and found him passed out drunk on the couch. I was livid. Not because he was drunk or came home late, but because yet again he was out driving drunk and putting people’s lives in danger and with my car. I woke him up, yelling about the drunk driving. I admit, it wasn’t the brightest thing I could have done, nor the nicest, but at this point, our relationship had already started crumbling and I was beyond pleasantries.

After he had gotten up, angry of course, I went back to the room to go to sleep. He followed me, screaming about how insensitive I was and how I was a hindrance in his life. I was tired, fed up, and not thinking straight, so I said I was done and leaving. I started packing my stuff and naturally, he knocked and kicked everything over all while looming over me. After the screaming and threats didn’t do enough for him, he began shoving me and blocking me from leaving the room. The next part is a little hazy for me as I tried to block out what I could. I mostly remember being kicked, a lot. I was shoved to the ground, right behind the bed and kick in my ribs for what felt like hours.

Every time I tried to stand up, I’d feel a blow to my rib cage and fell back onto the ground. The part that really made me believe that this was it was when, among the screaming, I tried to get up again and he stomped on my back. The air was knocked out of me and my face went flat onto the tile. He kept stomping on my back, any attempt to move was held in place by his foot. Then everything started to feel cold. I don’t remember seeing any blood, but I could see the bruises on my limbs and feel the stiffening in my spine. At this point, the thought that came up was, “If I were to die right now, that’d be okay.”

His screaming for me to die was so quiet and muffled. I started getting tunnel vision and couldn’t feel my arms or legs anymore. In a weird sort of way, it was peaceful. Everything I could feel was cold and quiet. If I just died right here, I wouldn’t feel the pain of the bruising and potential breaking of bones tomorrow. I wouldn’t have to deal with the drug use, alcoholism, theft, lying, manipulation of me and everyone around. I didn’t have a job. I didn’t have school anymore. What was there left to hold onto? So, I laid there on the cold tiles and closed my eyes. I wanted to sleep and knew if I kept my eyes closed just long along, I would be able to sleep.

Then there was a loud booming sound. I looked up towards the door, my roommate had just broken into the room yelling at my ex to get off me and that he was calling the police. My ex charged at him, screaming that he would kill himself, and I pulled myself onto the bed. In my manipulated brain, I begged for the police to not be called and that I’d take care of it. I’d give anything to call them myself now, but I was scared about what would happen if they showed up.

After my ex calmed down, he sat on the bed and went through a list of everyone he blamed for his “horrible life”. I took the blame. The blame of him being drunk and attempting to kill me. I knew that was the only way to get him to calm down enough to stop attacking me or anyone else. He cried about how horrible we all were to him and left to go sleep on the couch. I went to sleep in the fetal position as it made the pain from the bruising lessen a bit.

Not long after this situation was the final attack the led to me leaving and going to the police. I can’t quite remember if I have written about that situation yet, but if not, I’ll write soon on that. Now I realize how much I would have missed out on had I let go. I wanted to so bad at that moment, everything felt peaceful and easy, but there was still so much more I needed to experience and I’m happy to still be here, talking to you now.

If you ever find yourself in this situation, and can do so safely, leave. Get out as soon as possible. You can always talk to me if you need comfort and the number for the National Domestic Violence Hotline is 1-800-799-7233. They can help you, and you can be happy and safe.

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