Each May, Queensland marks Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month to raise community awareness and to send a clear message that violence of this sort will not be tolerated. To honour the vital work of our women's refuges, we would like to share the story of one of our client’s from Majella House.
THE BEGINNING OF A NEW JOURNEY, MY STORY
On the end of 2014 my feet started walking towards the light, but my heart and my head were telling me something else, “Where am I going? What am I doing? Go back it’s your home. Why am I taking my kids away from their home and warm bed? My kids won’t have a father because of me. He's my husband and I’m going to miss him.”
Even though all those thoughts were running through my head, my feet wouldn’t stop walking. I kept looking back at my house but I kept walking forward. We arrived at a small motel at midnight, cold and tired, I felt sick in my stomach, scared and so nervous.
As we got into bed I looked into my eldest daughters eyes, I could see she was so nervous and scared, yet she put a smile on her face and said, “Its ok mummy, its ok”.
The next day, after a sleepless night, I woke up early to get the kids ready and feed them. I only had a few snacks with me that I managed to throw in my bag from home. I had no money on me and no ATM card. At the time I thought, “How I am going to get through this?”
DV Connect found us a place at Ozcare’s Majella House. To get there we had to travel by taxi to the train station, then by train to our final stop where someone would meet us.
Looking back now I don’t know how I managed to get to the train station by myself with three children, two suitcases, two carry bags, a baby backpack, a normal back pack and a pram.
A support worker picked us from the train station and as we made our way to our new place the self-doubt kicked in. We arrived at the refuge and to my surprise we were taken up to one of the units and she said, “Welcome to your new home.” I couldn’t believe it; I thought I was going to be sharing a house with other people.
From that moment on my new life with my kids began.
I’d be lying if I said it wasn't hard, it was bloody hard. I had my up times, down times, angry moments; moments when I wanted to go back to him, missing him and crying. Every day I was thinking, “How am I going to do this? How am I going look after my kids with less money than I had when I was with my partner?”
We spent Christmas in refuge but it was the most amazing day. Never in my life had I been a part of something so special or received any gifts for that matter.
The kids started school and my baby started taking the bottle so I decided to start studying. I knew that I had to do something so I could provide for my children.
If it wasn't for Majella House, I don't know where I would be now. Thanks to all the support workers and the coordinator as they each played a part in my journey along the way. They encouraged me, empowered me and challenged me when I needed it.
Now my journey is has come to an end and my kids and I are so much stronger and we are heading in the right direction. I'm walking away with a certificate in my hand of which I am very proud, it was one of the happiest moments in my life.
As I leave Majella House another chapter is closed and another one is beginning. I don't have enough words to express my gratitude to everyone at Majella House but to say that I'm truly grateful. We will miss them all so much but we are excited to begin our new life.
This lady was in refuge for 7 months and within this time she achieved and learnt so much. She met every goal that she set out to achieve. It was an amazing transformation and journey for this family where they can now live a life without violence.