Sunday, March 6, 2016

Who Is Liz?

Who is Liz? Well, that sounds like a "Who the hell is she anyway?" type questions, which makes me giggle.

But really, who am I?  How many hats do I wear? What's my life (read all past blog posts and you'll know!)

I'm sitting at work today, and I open my Notes app on my phone to make a list for a Walmart trip after I leave, and I find a note that I wrote a few weeks ago, but have little memory of. Then it hit me! I had just fallen asleep, and I woke up with this deep need to make a few notes about who I am. What makes me, me! Today, I want to share those notes:

-I am first and foremost myself: Elizabeth Marie (Adolph) Kimbel. I was born February 10th, 1989 in Shady Grove, Maryland, one county over from where I grew up, in Prince Georges County.

-I was born to Charles (Charlie) and Laura (Holder) Adolph, the oldest of what would become a 4 sibling household.

-I attended school in PG County from first grade on, until we left Maryland in my "would be" sophomore year of high school.

-My father died of a massive heart attack when I was 12 years old, in May of 2011. It was the most devastating moment of my life, because I lost the most important person in my little world, and equally gained freedom from someone who could have ruled my entire life (and essentially did, even after death.)

-(Please see all past logs to understand) I was sex trafficked and exploited (both self and pimp controlled) for a total of 3 years, 9 months of that spent on the streets. This has become the epicenter of my life, because as a recovered Survivor of domestic child sex trafficking, it's become my heart to work in the anti-trafficking world.

-I moved to Mayville, Chautauqua County, New York when I was 15, weeks after my pimp had been arrested and was being tried in court. I was devastated, traumatized, and filled with anger and rage. Even still, I met my two best friends. Kristen and Drew. I married one of them.

-After a long series of abusive relationships, drug addiction (sober from cocaine 11 years, pills 9 years!!) I dropped out of high school officially, moved out on my own at 17, worked 2 jobs and 14 hour days, and gave up being angry at the world, at God, and at myself.

-On a beautifully sunny day in September, I married my best friend after being together for 3 weeks, and it was the greatest decision of my life.

-Drew joined the Air Force, we had babies, took custody of my brother (another of the greatest decisions I ever made!), I recovered from the bulk of my trauma, and then we moved back to New York after living in Tucson, Arizona for 6 years.

-I lost all contact with my mother through a series of angry arguments, a life time of her inability to take care of her children, and my inability to forgive her. This still hurts me every day, and I still forgive her everyday. I doubt we'll ever speak again, or that my children will ever know her. This has shaped me into the mother I am today.

-I received my GED in 2012, attended college for Medical Billing and Coding and graduated in 2013, worked in a nursing home, and left because I was also building my career as a Survivor Mentor and Advocate, left that as well to move home, and now I work as a DSP with some amazing humans, for some amazing humans, as well as working in a DV shelter with more amazing humans.

-I come home everyday to the 3 most amazing humans though. My husband of 8.5 years, Drew, who remains my best friend, my lover, and the father of my beautiful babies. My babies, Genevieve Charlie(6) (who has her own hashtag #shitgenevievesays) and Dominic Andrew (4.5). I talk to my baby/brother Paul daily, who has my mama heart in knots most days, but also makes me incredibly proud of the amazing man he is.

So that's it. That's who I am. That's my life in a few short paragraphs, but who the hell am I really???

-Well, I'm a fucking feminist, with the mouth of a dirty tattooed sailor with 6 tats of my own. I work my ass off with an ever growing work ethic (and perpetual laziness always tempting me).

-I love listening to Irish punk rock, gritty Delta Blues, and any other genre that hits my soul for the day. Some days it's The Distillers, others it's Tay Tay.

-I love dancing: in my kitchen, with my husband, my babies, at work with our seniors, or in the yard by my damn self.

-I crave books that stick to my soul like thick oatmeal sticks to my insides. I want to cry and laugh and laugh cry. Books are everything, and I desperately want my babies to love books, else I'll have failed as parent.

-I paint. Anything. I fucking love it! It's become my happy place, and I can get lost in it for days. I paint because I want pretty shit, and I don't try to get better so I can be a pro, I just want prettier shit.

-I always thought that working with victims of trafficking and domestic violence would make me a better human and mother, but it's been my experience working with seniors that live with develpomental and intellectual disabilities that have done that. I know I'm a better mother and human because of what I do everyday at work.

-I exaggerate about little things, stupid shit with no consequence. I take big things very seriously and honestly. There's an invisible grey line for me.

-I feel sad and lonely often, but I'm equally content and happy, to the point of happy tears, with my life and all those in it. I need my alone and sad time, to feel the range of emotions I have a right to feel, but if I were more spontaneous and less lazy, I'd have less time to be sad.

-I thrive on recognition. No matter how big or small, I want to be given credit.

-I'm sensitive and I cry at the drop of a hat. I don't like criticism, and I take things hard. HOWEVER, I'm also easily paranoid, and I would rather cry about it for a week, than for someone to avoid telling me something, and spend a week being passive aggressive, because then I just get pissed. Go ahead, just let me cry please.

-I'm also paranoid that I'm highly obnoxious and unlikable. I care a lot about my likability.

-I'm nosy as fuck.

-I try to love myself daily, and usually I can convince and even exude my sexiness and desirability. By the end of the day, I'm too tired to give a fuck.

-I often daydream. I love living inside my own head.

-I'm flaky and unreliable. I never remember making commitments, and I feel guilty as soon as I make any, because I'm either going to flake, or become anxious and miserable about having to follow through. I love my people though, and would do anything...even if it takes me forever. I always hope my good intentions are enough, and that they mean something. Probably why I require recognition to be happy, so that when I do follow through, I know people are happy.

-I have a driving/making appointments/anything to do with talking on the phone anxiety. Paralyzingly.

-Speaking of paralyzing, I'm TERRIFIED of zombies and deep dark water. And any scenario where my children could be harmed or killed. I have the worst nightmares about losing my children.

I feel like the above describes all the bad about me, but I also feel that this is my transparency. I'm also an artist, a girl who loves glitter and motorcycle boots. I wear a lot of black and floral. My head is full of beautiful designs, for everything from canvas to bedding. I love painting my nails, eating chocolate, watching shit TV, and being with my friends and family. My children go everywhere with me, but they're becoming more independent. they need me less, but still need me. My husband and I are finding one another again, making time, and loving every moment. We're still broke, and scared, and unsure, but we'll be ok, because we always have been. I miss my brother like crazy, and I want to hug him and make life better and less scary, but I can't, so I listen to his music and watch his movies, and then I talk to him about them, because I know that's as important as listening to the shitty details.

I am me. I am Liz. I am beautiful, and smart, shit, I'm pretty fucking sexy too. I'm sad and happy together all the time. I will be for the rest of my life. I could be labeled as a "wife, mother, sister, sex trafficking survivor" for the rest of my life, but I'd really rather just be Liz.

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