A terrifying knife attack in her home.
This lady lived in South Africa for many years and was the target of a premeditated robbery.
She believes that her long-term maid was in cahoots or had been bullied into tricking her, to allow ‘a friend’ to enter her secure home. During the brutal attack and robbery, she believed she would be killed. Threats were made to her life. She feared rape. She feared Aids.
Police and the psychiatrist remarked on her strength of character after the event. She did respect the fact that her body was in shock and needed time to heal. She was prescribed medication but chose to stop taking it after a few days.
However, her home, her ‘place of beauty’ was now a place of fear. She put the house on the market at the end of that week and she and her husband had moved home within a month. In South Africa, moving house is straightforward.
A year later whilst out driving, she recognised the man who had attacked her. She calmly ignored him and reported the fact to the police. He was arrested and eventually the case was dealt with. The trauma of attending the court was awful for her. She was mixing with the likes of child rapists. These child rapists hold the belief that if they have sex with a child this will cure them of Aids. This was a very traumatic episode but she undertook no medication or treatment.
As a result: She left South Africa to come to Britain to feel safer. This has been a very positive move.
She does not waste her time being unforgiving. She has moved on.
Fear was the issue. She is careful and aware of this potential pitfall and does not dwell on the past.
She emphasises that she is most definitely a survivor, not a casualty.
She states that shock has a physical effect on the body and we should be respectful of that.
She is cross when people might suggest she must have been attracting the negative into her life. Living in South Africa is hazardous in many respects. She was happy. She was successful. She had a lovely house and was starting a new business. The event came ‘out of the blue’.
As soon as she had moved to her new apartment in South Africa her life turned around and many good things happened. She was in a good place. New doors opened. Successful business opportunities came her way. The fact that she came to Britain to deal with her fear is just part of her journey.
Her message: ‘I am in a good place. Do not dwell on the past. Be strong.’
When I wrote my book Survive and Thrive after Trauma in 2012 a section shares interviews with those now thriving after an emotional challenge. Those I interviewed who shared their message will have continued along their path of increased learning, self joy and self awareness. We are not alone; should we choose we can learn from others, take and use information generously shared, be encouraged and in some cases, be enlightened.