I recently submitted a few micro flash fiction pieces, limited to 101 words each, to a local writing contest and realized that my past once again wheedled its way into my present life through one of my stories. So I changed the character to a male named Gregory and gave him a drinking problem (one that I happily avoided but only due to an allergic reaction to more than two drinks.) I haven’t seen suicide as an option from a detrimental life since my youth, but I gave that to Gregory as a potential solution, yet he doesn’t choose it.
I wrote this story to depict the often futile feelings that accompany the effects of abuse.
I’m at the point where I’m starting to believe that the effects of abuse never leave us, but that doesn’t mean we can’t heal. Properly treated, the scab will eventually heal and fall off, and we can learn to ignore the scar or tap into its beauty, that being our voice that we can find through a form of creative expression or simply through our own self-awareness.
My silver lining has been my writing–thanks to a wild imagination that gave me many breaks, good and bad, during my dysfunctional childhood. Decades ago my stories served as a mental escape, but now I cling to writing as my preferred method of self-expression.
What has been your saving grace resulting from abuse?
Here is one of the stories I submitted:
NO WAY OUT by Carole Avila
Robbed in youth by a putrid uncle, Gregory never found any meaningful connection with his life. He thought happiness hid in decent relationships–however unrecognizable, in an envious body–his consistently flabby, or in utopian health–impossible when forever on knees before alcohol cravings.
His stomach sagged like an overused bota bag heavy with old ale. A wrinkled lobe under his neck dulled any hope of seeing spring again. Gregory knew the solution––simply ignore other people’s opinions, cultivate self-acceptance, and embrace his silver hair. Suicide might have ended his struggle, but fear of pain withered his only hope for salvation.