What would you do if you grew up with a strained relationship with parents that extended into your adult life? What would you do if, on top of that, you experienced as an adolescent the laughter of rejection from peers (which we would call bullying today)? Then, what if life added an extremely controlling and (physically, emotionally, sexually, verbally, and financially) abusive relationship with one’s common-law partner that went on for years? What if he took your two young sons and threatened to never give them back until you signed a lawyer’s contract stating that you must obey all he says or else he keeps the children and all the material goods? What if you were beaten so badly that when you called 9-1-1, you were not sure whether you were speaking English or Hungarian? What if you then waited two hours for the police to arrive and they wanted you to hang around until the one who beat you came home so that all of you could sit around and chat?
Would you have the clarity of mind, the energy, and the emotional strength to recount all of this in a book?
Meet the author whose pen name is “EMP.” The book, entitled, It Is Forgiven, is published by iUniverse. In crafting her own story so that others can find a path to freedom, she recounts the details of horrors so strong that most of us could never put them down on paper, in essence re-experiencing the abuse as the words are written and the images play in the mind all over again. The reader gets a look into EMP’s soft heart as she recounts the laughter from peers during her adolescence, a time when we were all so vulnerable and sensitive to rejection:
I learned to speak to myself positively and encouragingly: Every person is a human being, just like me. They aren’t any different, neither less nor more than me. They are people, and I am one of them. (page 17).
EMP grew up in Hungary and eventually made her way to Canada with her two sons, where she wrote the book, published in 2012. What I find most fascinating about the book is the fact that EMP never talks directly about her forgiveness journey with her common-law partner. The forgiveness is seen subtly in her prose directed toward Joseph, the common-law partner. As you read, pay attention to the tone. Never once does the author strike out in anger in any way toward him. She is shocked, deeply hurt, disgusted by his actions, but on every page he remains a person, someone who could be redeemed, someone who could change. Some skeptics would say that the author was seeing him through rose-colored glasses, but you will have to read the book to know this is not so. EMP sees a very flawed human being, someone from whom she had to work hard to attain freedom, and she did. This is not a book written by a naive, denying, give-me-more-abuse person. No, instead, this is a book written by someone who stood in hope for years, was beaten, and found hope elsewhere. And in finding that hope elsewhere, she never threw him away as a human being. That is forgiveness. It is forgiven.