“I’m so happy for you and proud of you!”

Here is my recent interaction with the child victim advocate who was such a precious part of my story of sexual abuse (some information removed for privacy).  I asked for help in finding her as I hoped to thank her. It brought so much peace and joy my spirit to have been able to thank her and have her respond. There just aren’t words to express it…  ♥

My letter:
Hi Michelle! I’m not sure if you remember me but I was sexually assaulted when I was 13/14 years old. My abuser was sentenced to 2yrs in jail on 3 or 4 counts of sexual abuse I believe, and had to register for 10 years following his release. You and I met a few times to go over what happened and some things you said helped me in so many ways (like me laughing when I told you about what happened and how you told me that it was normal and common to have nervous laughter after having experienced what I did).

I experienced so much confusion during what happened to me, but even moreso after it was over and once I learned that all of it was a lie and that what he did was so wrong and awful. Now that I’m an adult and my oldest is 11 years old, I see even more how wrong it all was. I’ve been processing through what happened to me a lot recently and I’m just really thankful to have had you as my advocate. You are a name and face that brought a bit of calm and normal and understanding to a confusing and dark situation.

I don’t know if you know exactly who I am with the information I’ve shared, but it was just really important to me that you knew how valuable you were during that time in my life. I’m now married to a wonderful and loving man. He walked that journey with me through the sentencing of David and has been so gracious and patient with me as I’ve processed through the distorted messages I received from the year of abuse I endured. I’m pregnant and we’re very excited. All of my children have a Mama and Daddy who are educated in and dedicated to keeping them safe from child sexual abuse and I credit that in large part to you – the one who helped me see myself as a victim and empowered me to walk through overcoming that from the very beginning of meeting with you. I’m a survivor of having been broken but being fully restored. 🙂 Thanks for being a huge part of that.
Bless you!

Her response:
I do remember you, and I actually do remember telling you that nervous laughter is very normal and common.  I’m glad that I was able to make a difference during that most difficult time in your life.  I guess I’ve been doing this so long that I lose sight of how much I probably do help people and hearing from you all these years later just really warms my heart.  Thank you for thinking of me and letting me know how you are and that you are doing well.  I’m so happy for you and proud of you!
Thank you again for reaching out,
Michelle

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