I still remember just as if it happened yesterday. I was a young girl innocently sleeping in my beautifully decorated Holly Hobby bedroom. Life was good. Not just good, but really good. I had friends up and down Adams Street, a bike I loved to ride, and Petunia always had a new litter of kittens to dress up like dolls and play with. To say I was happy was an understatement.
But that night changed everything. For some reason I woke up with a start. Not a dream, not a noise, there was nothing I could see…but I could feel an evil presence…lurking in the shadows someone was there. I lay in bed scared to death. Scared to move. Scared to even breath for fear that whoever was hiding would notice I was awake.
I prayed and prayed not knowing what to do. I could still feel someone in my room and this feeling went on for what seemed like hours. Inevitably I stirred and turned in my bed, attempting to protect myself under the covers. That is when he revealed himself. It was almost as me moving in my bed was invitation for him to come lay beside me. Even though I knew the man I did not KNOW the man. Evil presided, the devil was inside him, this was NOT the person I knew.
This was not a dream, this was real, this was the beginning of a horrible nightmare beginning to unfold. How in this lifetime was I ever able to get over traumatic experiences that seemed to haunt my soul forever? Unfortunately whether I like it or not, each experience I’ve had has shaped the woman I am today. However, I will not let abuse define me. I have thwarted the very fiery darts of Hell and I have won. I am still alive, I am still trying, I am still pressing forward.
I heard at a Fireside last night that Hugh Nibley (famous scriptorium) said in the fifty years of his studies that the most important lessons are simply to Repent and Forgive. This rang true to me. You see, I have a testimony of repentance and forgiveness, as these two things have been the key to my very survival.
Now as I think back to that scary and traumatic time in life I can rescue that little girl. I can run into her bedroom, pull her out of bed, put my arms around her, and tell her that I love her. You see, through forgiveness the Lord has shown me that all things are possible. Through the steps of Repentance my perpetrator, who is also a child of God, has been forgiven. This brings peace to my soul.