I once spoke as a survivor of domestic violence at a locally held rally for the acknowledgement of violence against women. At the close of my speech, I introduced the book you are about to read. I also read the poem on the following page. The poem is titled Haunted and I believe it reflects the sum of a battered woman’s experience.
I personally hope this book will bring a better understanding to its readers regarding the harm domestic violence does to the emotional self. Many women I have counseled were in unison on a certain verse that is commonly heard regarding domestic violence. The pain of physical abuse heals; it is the emotional pain that can do greater damage.
I wish to express that this book was written for all those who have been abused, whether the abuse was physical, sexual, or emotional. This book was written for survivors as well as those who are still being victimized. It was written for the families and the friends who love them. It was also written in memory for those who have lost their lives by the hands of their abusers.
No one deserves to be abused. No living creature that shares our world deserves it. We must recognize we are all extensions of life and realize life’s fragility. We must fill life with love and appreciation. It is this on which I base many of my thoughts and prayers.
CREATION OF THE BOOK
Origination of this work began with Bill Goss who told me to begin writing what I know about. He taught several self defense classes at the Jacksonville DV shelter where I counseled. I learned he was an established author; and I was curious to learn all I could from him. His comment initially held a blank slate. What would I write about? I imagined phrases floating through my head, “Hello, my name is…” “I’m a domestic violence counselor and this is what I do…” I was lacking a beginning.
In just a few short days, I found myself recollecting my first abusive relationship. I revisited a past of increasingly wretched memories. I recalled the craziness I felt. I re-experienced the numerous times arguments and violent confrontations would arise. I remembered the poems I had written throughout the relationship. They were my only outlet during that time. I rediscovered how they were also my stronghold in allowing me to see the abuse for what it was and understand my emotional response to the many behaviors.
I thought about the continuum of emotions I, along with the clients I counseled, experienced as well as the emotional roller coaster. I thought about my own counsel to many of the women, the difference I could see reflected back to me through some of the women’s eyes. It seemed to be the ‘Ah-ha moment of clarity’ or at least the beginning of it; and so I had the beginning and direction my book would take.
For the next six months, I researched a variety of emotions through reading numerous books, jotting down notes and compiling pages of information to provide reference at some later time frame. During this time I also dug through all of the poetry I’d written to that point, separating all those with meaning to the chapters I would write. I wrote the book over the following eight months post research, carefully placing the referencing notes and poems throughout the chapters. When I was finished, I asked a few people to read it for editing purposes and others to provide professional endorsements if they found it deserving.
While this was taking place, I had purchased a guide to publishing houses and began submitting query letters. I quickly learned most would not look at an unsolicited manuscript. I purchased another book on finding a literary agent. I was accepted by two different agents. For the next four years I worked with those agents, each for a two-year period. All I kept getting in return were stacks of rejection slips and an excuse of there not being a market for the book. I couldn’t believe it. How can there not be a market for the book when the problem of domestic violence is still prevalent?
I ended up accepting the fact that maybe this book wasn’t going to find a voice after all. I remember feeling deflated, a former victim and now a survivor, but one seemingly without a voice. The book remained on a shelf collecting dust for an additional year while I toyed with the thought of self-publishing. I researched that avenue and decided against it.
One day I woke up. I felt the need to take a personal inventory of my life. I realized something was missing. I realized what was missing was my dream of having this book published and return to my love of writing. I pulled the book off of the shelf and dusted it off. I re-read the book, the professional endorsements and realized I felt it was good enough to get out into the world for those who need it. I realized I wouldn’t accept it’s sitting on that shelf collecting dust. I would persevere in finding a publisher and taking another chance. In March of 2014, I found Legacy Book Publishing. After submitting sample chapters and receiving feedback, my book was finally accepted for publication.
I remember once having an interview with a person in a field I was going to follow after graduating from college. I remember his asking me what the key to success was. He told me it was simply one word. He asked if I needed a few minutes to think about it. I told him I didn’t. I knew the answer. I told him the one word was perseverance. His smile said it all. I was correct.
I wish to thank all of my readers for your interest in this book and taking your time and money to purchase and read it. I truly hope my book will inspire your voices and strength to assist you all in finding your own journey of healing or reaching out to help others. After all, these are two of our human existences important missions in life. Please feel free to leave a comment in the comments section of this site. You may do so anonymously. I wish you all love and light.
Dive even further into the understanding of the author, Lauren Makarov, by reading more about the details of Reflecting on Domestic Violence – Understanding the Emotional Aftermath from “The Description” page of this website . Learn more about the thought process, role, and purpose that Lauren Makarov intended this book play for others, and what drove Lauren Makarov to fulfill this book.