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Take away from a tough week

The week of 11/22/2013 was to be one of my toughest weeks I’d face in a very long time. It prompted me to write Reflections found here: https://aghostdancer.wordpress.com/2013/11/18/reflection/

My plan was to read this aloud as my voice to show him I’m not afraid anymore. The truth is I am still afraid. This man, this animal is part of me. He is the darkness inside me and the reason for my nightmares. He has to this day not openly admitted his sin against me, nor offered an appology.

This week offered lessons learned and more.


These past four days have been full of life lessons, surprises and twists. I’ve learned greater strength is asking for help then standing alone. I’ve never been able to face the man I stood before on Friday. I’ve always had to submit a written statement in the past. I saw this as my weakness for many years.

Sometimes weakness is pride in thinking we have to handle everything alone. This week I learned strength is admitting you’re weak. Strength is asking for help and knowing we’re all scared of something. I am scared of this man.

I’ve always admired my brother Martin for his strength it seems he isn’t afraid of anything. He read my entry reflections for the parole board. I had to leave the room near the beginning of him reading it. Because I left I missed my brothers tears when he finished reading.

It seems even the man I’ve admired my entire life feels pain and knows weakness. He presents this facade of always being so strong but as I learned this week even the strongest have burdens they just can’t bare alone. My brother Martin cried when he read reflections. It’s not weakness to know pain and admit it openly.

Another lesson was trust. Trust others will help when asked. Trust your family and true friends will come even when they aren’t asked during your darkest moments. Mine has never let me down.


My father read my post and felt my pain and without thought of himself booked a plane ticket and came running. I didn’t expect him to drop everything and come. I didn’t ask him to come and help me he just knew.

My brother Martin took the day off and came with me as well. He read my statement and struck fear into the man of my nightmares. My brother wasn’t asked either he just came. I was surprise how quickly those who loved me came to my aid. In person, in prayer and in spirit.

When you listen with your heart light pours into the darkness from every corner of your life. Light came to my darkest hour and in my weakness I found strength in others. Strength in prayer, strength in family and strength in myself. Strength enough to admit I am weak.


Faith alone is not enough when darkness comes. You must trust the light comes stronger and faster. You must know when you are weak there are others who carry you. I am Spartacus but even I needed help in this battle. Even the strongest knows pain, fear and weakness. In those moments we learn who we can count on and what it’s like to be vulnerable. In those moments we learn the meaning of grace, trust, love and strength.

The strength of my family is immense. But it pales to compare to the strength of my god. He carried me that day for my knees were to weak to carry my own weight. He brought my family here to me as much to remind me he was there as to show me his strength. He showed me my blessings and for that I know even in my weakness I am strong.

I am Spartacus and with my family, my god and my faith none will wash me from this life even when I stand injured and weak. My former champion known as pain has been replaced with love.

In my darkest hour I found my brightest moments and in my deepest pain I found the will to move forward. In my doubt I found hope and in weakness a new strength.

~Michelle Styles – December 1, 2013