I know A Woman.
A Woman endured abuse from the time she was small.
(When all you know is abuse, it is only natural to marry an abuser.)
A Woman sought shelter with her child.
A Woman was a quiet shadow - a church mouse.
A Woman was full of apologies.
A Woman’s eyes were filled with pain.
A Woman’s body was tense with self protection.
A Woman was unsure.
A Woman was afraid.
A Woman was apologetic. I'm so sorry, so very sorry.
A Woman had done nothing wrong.
A Woman kept her head and eyes down.
A Woman shed painful tears.
A Woman felt fear as tangible as her bruises.
A Woman received encouragement.
A Woman’s self doubt was suffocating.
A Woman allowed others to plant seeds for her and trusted they would grow.
A Woman steadily, steadily grew.
A Woman slowly lifted her head, but not her eyes.
A Woman accepted praise, (but only a little).
A Woman trusted the safety and intention of her environment.
A Woman breathed deeply.
A Woman accomplished her goals.
A Woman lifted her eyes.
A Woman met my gaze, (and my heart nearly burst with pride).
A Woman has slowly come back to herself, (and maybe found herself for the first time).
A Woman’s eyes no longer search the faces around her anticipating cruelty.
A Woman no longer speaks of the man she feared in whispers.
A Woman faces a custody battle.
A Woman fights a war for the child she loves and the Woman she has become.
A Woman returned from a preliminary hearing. “He did a character assassination.”
I anticipated a look of fear and ready tears.
A Woman met my eye and smiled. “I don’t think the judge likes him very much.”
A Woman pointed out the flaws and weaknesses in him that she had been blind to before.
A Woman Laughed at his ridiculousness.
A Woman Laughed I tell you!
Heaven be Praised!
I laughed with her.
My soul sang a hearty Hallelujah.
The verdict is not in.
But A Woman has won.
She has won.
I weep happy tears.
These victories are hard earned and too few.
A Woman will never return.
And that is A Woman’s greatest Victory.