The girl who helped me see my own worth. She doesn’t know it yet, but she saved my life when she was just a newborn baby.

I can remember so clearly sitting at one end of the hallway, next to her sleeping brother’s bedroom door, while my abuser slept peacefully at the other end, in what was then “our room”. He had just threatened to slap me minutes before if I didn’t “shut up the baby.” My freshly born baby girl. I got out of bed with my baby and sat on the cold floor at the end of that hallway, in severe pain from one side of my cesarean stitches breaking, and nursed her until she fell back asleep. The bathroom door was cracked and the light trickled across her beautiful peaceful face. She was so innocent and new. I thought to myself, with the hottest and angriest of tears streaming down my face, “I can’t let her grow up thinking that it’s okay to be treated the way he treats me.” To be abused physically, verbally, mentally, and emotionally.

I thought of how much worse it could get and how she and her older brother would see it all. I held her to my face and quietly cried into her neck. Whispering a promise to protect her and her brother and that I would find some way for us to get out safely.

And I did. I got us out just a couple long weeks later. It took having a daughter for me to see how dangerous my situation was, to see I am worth way more than how I was being treated, to actually get the courage to take that terrifying step and leave. She’s five years old now and often gets upset with me for having her as my second child, instead of the first, but she doesn’t know that she was sent to me when I desperately needed her most. She was sent to save my life. My special girl. My guardian angel.


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