Easter Anxiety

Easter Anxiety

This weekend is Easter. I HATE Easter. First of all, I’m an atheist and the entire idea of a zombie Jesus is nothing short of ludicrous. But the real reason I despise this holiday is the excruciating memories it brings. Four years ago on this very weekend, my sister hosted a bridal shower that I was obligated to not only attend but pay for out of the GoFundMe proceeds I received after my abuser torched my house. Mind you, I received LESS than half the proceeds and the arsonist himself took the majority of the funds. But in good faith, I paid for the event and attended with the intention of making the bride’s experience a memorable one despite my raging PTSD and anxiety.

Also invited to the event (as my family can’t do bridal showers without inviting all the men in the family) was my now ex-husband, the man who 3 months prior had doused my home in gasoline and set it ablaze. He’d killed my dog and almost succeeded in killing me. But fortunately for him, he’d caught himself on fire and ended up in the ICU, thus creating compassion and support from his family (including MY relatives). I knew the man was crazed because he’d stalked, intimidated and threatened me since the fire. But knowing I wasn’t supposed to “make waves”, I accepted that he would be in the same house as me that Easter weekend.

What happened that weekend was nearly as traumatic as the blaze that violently ended the life I’d always known. My relatives treated me like an outcast and made me feel unwelcome at the party that I paid for. My abuser assaulted me and then threw me into a brick fireplace. And my family judged me for MY behavior and blamed me for being victimized.

I learned that weekend that I DON’T MATTER.

I survived the weekend, but my scars are still fresh four years later. The person whose bridal shower I paid for uninvited me to her wedding and my family actively participated in my public shunning by attending the wedding without me.  Since then, I’ve struggled with suicidal thoughts and so far one attempt.

I’m not afraid to die. In fact, at this point, I think I’ve earned my chance for peace. But if I die today, tomorrow or next week, I’ll never have closure. I’ll never know why this happened and I’ll never forgive what I can’t understand.

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