#WhyIsStayed Being AvaBella

#WhyIStayed & #WhyILeft: AvaBella's #DomesticViolenceSurvivor Story

Tuesday, September 09, 2014Ava Bella

Ironically, my youngest son said to me just last night, "if you could just remarry my daddy, then we could all be together". He went on to ask a series of questions to get clarification as to who, what, where, when, and why. My son is about to be 8 on the 20th of this month and my oldest is 9, but 7 years ago, I knew this day would come. I knew the questions would come and back then it conjured up a million dreadful thoughts and tears and extreme stress. How was I gonna be a single mom? Who was gonna love me? I was terrified to get a divorce.

Then this week the #WhyIStayed hashtag is all over the place. If you are not aware of this very necessary and delicate trending topic feel free to google the hashtag. I don't want to be the one to name the names, because it seems like we only get up in arms about domestic violence when its someone famous. But check this out, when I was in the shelter their were women their from million dollar homes, the street, crack house, public housing, section 8 recipients...and guess what, when we walked through those doors of the shelter, we were all the same.

Here is my story...

I have to pause for a moment in light of the #WhyIStayed movement and explain to you all why I go so very hard... I got a second chance-that is why!

One night with hands around my neck and oxygen leaving my body, I pleaded with God to allow me to live. I promised that if he let somebody, anybody walk through the door, and stop him from killing me with my baby, a toddler then, looking on from his pack-n-play, I would finally leave.

#WhyIStayed, was because I was sure nobody would be with a woman with 2 kids, I wasn't that pretty anyway, because he cheated on me-those other women had to be better than me. I didn't want to be a failure. I wasn't being a good wife and I just needed to support him better than I was, because he was having a rough time...and honestly, to sum it up, I was just plain scared.

#WhyILeft was because I'm a fighter! I'm a queen! I am so talented and beautiful inside and out that one day some warrior, king, knight in shining armor is going to see my fearlessness, my gifts, my spirit, feel my energy, and it won't intimidate him. I knew that one day whoever "he" is was going to honor me and my commitment to my sons, my future kings, and understand what it means to provide. More importantly than all that glorious fairy tale ish...I promised my sons at birth I would always tell them the truth, I wouldn't hide behind anything or anybody, I would show them what true love was, and what to look for in their future mates. I would set the example no matter what anybody else did.

In the years since divorcing my ex, I have been a spokesperson for Rose Brooks Center, an advocate against domestic violence, as well as an advocate for female entrepreneurs in my city. The reason I go so hard is because life is short, but I got a second chance that night. Please continue to break the silence of domestic violence against ANYONE!!

In Kansas City, Missouri Rose Brooks Shelter has tons of resources for domestic violence victims. There is shelter, individual, and group therapy. Their website is rosebrooks.org and their 24 hour hotline is: 816-861-6100. The National Domestic Violence hotline, for my readers outside of KC metro, is: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or go to thehotline.org/contact.

Watch the video below to see a little more about my story...

Here are some other amazing survivor stories...

About Ava...

Ava Bella is a singer, songwriter, and author originally from Kansas City, Missouri who has spent the last 3 years playing dates around the US alongside international acts like Morris Day & The Time, Estelle, and Luke James, Hip Hop artists like icon Masta Ace, DJ Marco Polo, The Knux, and GLC, as well as mentors @KCPL and James Christos(both of The Anarchy Movement). Now a touring musician and MUSICpreneur, she's also acted as a consultant to indie and unsigned artists and labels as CEO and founder of Assilem Music & Media Group, an advocate for minority female business owners as CEO and founder of Majestic Refuge Nonprofit, and self-proclaimed fashionista as owner of The K&A Boutique. 

Learn more about Ava here: AvaBellaMusic.com

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