Because I Keep Dying

Please give a warm welcome to Nikki over at Mama Sanctuary.

We believe here at stories that some stories are difficult to tell, but they should still be told. We warn you that some of the subject matter you read below this line may be upsetting to some readers. We are posting trigger warnings accordingly.

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[TRIGGER WARNING] : This is a true story submitted to us that deals with graphic topics such as of rape, violence and childhood sexual abuse.


From: Nikki at Mama Sanctuary

I shared this for the first time in June 2014. It was a doorway into healing, but as time has lapsed, I realize  It will never part from me. I’m a little stronger and braver as time marches on. I am in the process of transitioning from victim to victor. These are very difficult knots to untangle. But these knots are the fabric of my being. I don’t actually know who I am without them. Who was I supposed to be? I have a young daughter who helps me understand who I could have been…

Because I Keep Dying

I started dying when I was very young.

During a time when personality and temperament were being formed, pieces of me were robbed by the calloused hands to tender places that decided I was his to take from. He took a sense of value and replaced it with the sense of commodity; I was a toy. My essence died when I was 18 months old.

When I was seven years old, I’d grown into a little girl with shadows behind my eyes because that part that was taken left a space where life struggled to find its way; and it contaminates the whole, like one bad apple can rot a whole box. With shadows behind my eyes and a sense of freedom robbed that I did not understand, another set of hands would sit me on his lap and my little body was his playground. And I was frightened, but I didn’t know why and I didn’t understand why this didn’t feel good at all. He was the adult and we are to respect adults, aren’t we? And he killed me with his hands, but somehow I was still breathing.

Another murdered me with his words, as he explained in far too much detail the way he wanted to cut my clothes off and have his way with the nine-year old body underneath. A violation that made me feel stupid for not understanding why this behavior from men didn’t feel good and shouldn’t I know or respond in some other way? I was shocked speechless and leaned on the counter and giggled a nervous one and jutted my hip out a little. I really thought there was something wrong with me for not responding differently, but I will pretend I’m just a little coy.

And when I was 11, another staying at our house, invited himself into the bathroom while I’m taking a bath. He closed the door behind him and assaulted me with his eyes, watching me; examining me. And he explained with far too many words the most appropriate way to wash my budding body and why it was important to do so.

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I just keep dying.

When I was 16, other kids seemed to know a whole lot more about their bodies and the thing that was supposed to happen between boys and girls. But I was naive and felt stupid and didn’t understand why I didn’t or couldn’t fantasize about boys or men when the man next door asked me about it while he was masturbating in full frontal view of me. What is wrong with me for not being able to feel anything but horror at the sight and thought of the male anatomy? At this point, hormones were turned on and internally I felt the attraction to boys, but was scared to death of them at the same time.

I must have a target on me.

Because there was another one would keep grabbing my backside in the hallway at school and touching me inappropriately whenever I would walk by. I would eventually complain to the guidance counselor… who did nothing.

And then there was that other guy… I felt trapped… he forced me to use my mouth…not for words.

And a friend’s dad came over with an agenda, it seemed, as he pinned me up against the wall and breathed his wretched breath into my face and against my neck as he raped me with his words. A movement outside the door saved me from his words becoming my reality.

And another who would go on and on and on about my friend who he would love to marry and treat like a queen, but me…he could totally throw me down and F* me silly, but she… she was a queen and worthy of respect and adoration.

And that time that I liked a boy and he liked me back, but he wouldn’t date me because I was a virgin. So I gave myself away, and he still didn’t want me.

The dead corpse of my soul was surrounded by a body that was good enough to take, but never good enough to keep.

And I just keep dying.

Somehow when a dying little girl becomes a woman, the tables turn and she’s no longer a victim, but the cause of her own circumstances.

The one who would speak filth into my ear as I was trapped onboard a large gray vessel out to sea, and when he pinned me into a corner of the pantry and grabbed handfuls of whatever he wanted…?

That turned into my violating his black rights, not one of a man violating a woman’s.

And that date rape…because I invited him into my house?

And the ones who have lured me in with their kind words, not to have me, but to take me. But I listened and trusted somehow and responded and should have known better.

And the rape of my soul…because I responded to a man who pushed all the right buttons, but had no interest in me, just the response that would feed his ego and appetite; betrayal of my own instincts and natural responses. But when I met all the other women…my insides turned out and that was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I have officially been destroyed.

These are not the only stories. The violations go on and on and on. Four decades of offense and I just keep dying.

And I want to relate and wonder if anybody can see me. And I wonder who I am that they see because I’ve only ever known myself to be a commodity to be consumed and thrown away when done. And I don’t understand what has been so wrong with me and why do I seem to have this target on me?

And I am dying to know who I am.

And I am dying to know how to be free.

And I am dying to know if a man could ever love me for me.

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23 thoughts on “Because I Keep Dying

  1. When I first found this in our Stories inbox, tears filled my eyes reading this story.

    My heart aches for you Nikki, but you expressed this so beautifully. We are all fighting for you here at Stories. & We are in your corner. I hope in some way sharing this today brings you peace. You certainly deserve and have earned it.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. There is nothing wrong with you. You are perfect. Your words cry out and we are listening. As a mother I keep thinking “where was her mother?” I wish I could hug the child you were and protect you. I wish you could have known men who would have protected you and kept you from those who harmed you – the true men and boys out there, those who aren’t monsters. I wish you peace, joy, and love that you deserve. Thank you for being so brave to share your story – through sharing you heal and help heal others as well.

    Liked by 4 people

      • Juliette, I was thinking the same thing, “Where’s her mother?” I have a 13 month old girl who is the most beautiful star in my sky, and as I read your words, Nikki, I tried to think of all the ways I could support and help if your story was hers. Thank you for sharing with us your story – your little girl inside is a beautiful star, too.

        Liked by 2 people

    • Juliette/Sahara,

      I have a 9 year old little girl and every day of her life I have held her closer than most seem to hold their children because the question about where was her mother? May be answered as simply as this: She was in the other room. We cannot be with our children 100% of the time. Predators lurk around every single corner. For whatever reason, I just happened to be found at each of those intersections. I don’t understand it; I can’t understand it. But as a mother to a daughter, my experience has taught me a thousand ways education and awareness are just vacant. So much is taken for granted. Nobody wants to be afraid of their environment everywhere they go. It’s no life to live and I certainly don’t want to instill that kind of fear into my little girl. But without the experience, people just don’t know. I spend a lot of time talking to my daughter about her personal boundaries and safe people and I try to do so objectively. It does help that I have others in our life who encourage and validate the same conversation so it doesn’t all come from me. These conversations provide her a vocabulary and awareness that I didn’t have. Because kids don’t know how to tell when something is off, because they’re too little to place discomfort into proper context. If my abuse started when I was 18 months old, my education began before I could complete a full sentence. Unfortunately it was the wrong kind of education. Have the awkward and uncomfortable conversations with your children often so they have the proper vocabulary around personal safety and boundaries.

      Thank you ladies, so much, for your encouragement. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This is sad and its unfortunate that you had to go through this.
    Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev words come to my aid that people who inflict such things on others are sick and ill from within and once you start pitying them (I know its difficult ) you can get over this feeling of being a victim.

    Feeling victim miles away from the tormentors indicates that they still rule the victim’s mind. They are still victorious and the person is still vulnerable and helpless to let them win.

    On this International Womens’ Day, let us make a vow. We are as we are and we accept ourselves fully. No one can judge us, not even we.

    Love and light

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Reblogged this on The Matticus Kingdom and commented:

    Nikki is sharing over at Stories That Must Not Die. She writes a heartbreaking yet possibly triggering account of repeated sexual abuse by various individuals. The first time happened when she was in her single digits. Each occurrence has stolen a bit of her soul and she wonders if she can be loved. I say the answer is yes. Please hop over if you are able. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

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