The evening was dark as she made her way down the road to town. Ashley knew what she had to do today. Being a housewife in a terrible situation, she knew she had to abandon the life she had. The feelings of being trapped were overwhelming.
Her desperation to get out was killing her soul. She had ran out of options in this town of nothing. She was all alone and felt hopeless. There had to be somewhere to go to start over where he couldn’t find her. Ashley had to find that place.
Following her dreams, she fastened her pace down the road to freedom. She had no idea where she was going, but she had to get away.
Her only other option was staying and him killing her. Ashley did not believe in killing but she wanted to live. The abuse was escalating, getting worse each day. The verbal abuse cut through her like a knife. The physical abuse had left so many scars she had lost count. It was going to end with him killing her. She had weighed all her options and leaving was the best choice.
Ashley had no family or friends to turn to, he had ruined those relationships over the years. She felt so alone as she made her way to town. All she had with her was a backpack with clothes and all of her important papers. The nearest Domestic Violence shelter was two towns over. She would walk if she had to, just to escape for her life.
It had all started with one blow up and his anger got out of control. It had escalated to daily abuse and broken bones. He was always trying to break her spirit as well. But she was leaving and never going back.
Ashley had her own dreams that she would never be able to achieve with him. Now she was going to start over and pursue those dreams. She finally felt a twinge of hope, an optimistic look at her life. The dreams that she had given up on, mainly because he had told her for years she would never be anything and that she was nothing. Now she would prove him wrong. Why did he have to be so mean?
As she was walking, a woman in a car stopped and offered her a ride. Ashley was grateful, she was exhausted and going on pure adrenaline and fear. Ashley explained where she was going and the woman took her to the shelter. As they drove, the woman told Ashley about her own experience with abuse. It made Ashley feel less alone to know others have gone through her situation.
They slowed down and turned into the driveway of the shelter. Ashley thanked the woman and she wished Ashley good luck. Ashley had taken the first step just by leaving. Now her life was going to change for the better and be positive. Ashley wouldn’t die at the hands of the man who said he loved her. She entered the shelter to start her new beginning.
-By Lola Hornof of Michigan