I know I have explained what I believe to be the things I did or didn't do that contributed to my exploitation but there is a psychological aspect to this story that played am important role. I have touched on it here and there but it is actually a big part of what happened. To be manipulated one must be vulnerable to that kind of thing. I have said over and over that I was vulnerable but now I'm going to try to explain how I got to be that way.
I have always taken my responsibility to the breed as seriously as I take my responsibilty to my horses. This certainly added to my stress during this time but my strong sense of responsibility is also what guaranteed my horses would be fine even when my recovery ended up being protracted and difficult.
Too bad I didn't realize this when all of this was going down. Belief in myself would surely have affected this outcome but there was already a lot going on that allowed me to be manipulated and doubt myself Moe than I already did. With my confidence further erroded, I became fair game to all those who exploit the weak. I was now a prime target for Jessica and her predecessors to reek havoc in my life.
As you hear the details of her story here, you may wonder how I could tolerate such behaviors. I wonder that too as I reread what I have written. Then I remember the content of the speeches I have given on battered women. They read like this.
No one tolerates another coming up and punching her in the face or breaking an arm. Getting to that point is a gradual process. It starts off with little things. An insult, a pinch, a bump, a personal slight, etc....repeated over time until a tolerance, an acceptance builds up...and the abuse grows as the victim's self esteem diminishes and the perpetrator's confidence grows.
As I used to say in those speeches, self esteem is not a stagnant thing. You are either building it up...or it is declining. Like a garden it must get sunlight, water and fertilizer to thrive. Without any one of those things the garden suffers. That's just the way it is. There are plenty of studies to support self esteem is much like the garden and, as such, must be tended.
What happened to me follows that theory. The experience with Angie Miller, Richard Galarza and my own daughter and granddaughter tore my confidence to shreds and broke my heart...and with that my self esteem plummeted.
When I wrote those stories, I pointed out the things they did that undermined my confidence and shattered my self esteem but I don't think my treatment of those issues was as comprehensive as the resulting problems actually were. That omission was not deliberate but more about the fact I was yet to realize the extent of the psychological damage perpetuated by their tactics.
Making that trip to Nationals in Tulsa by myself, taking on the lawsuit and winning back Storm while acting as my own attorney, all served as reminders that I am capable of being a strong, determined woman but there had been a lot of damage done to my self esteem that I was yet to realize so those accomplishments alone were not enough to heal the wounds I had experienced. Also, while those accomplishments were certainly something to be proud of, they all had a down side to them as well.
Then there had been Solidare's last pregnancy which had resulted in her loss which had taken its own particularly painful toll considering the injury that killed her was a result of handling by Richard Galarza during the con that took Storm.
The loneliness I felt at nationals was a precursor to the intense loneliness I felt in the hospital which in turn amplified the isolation I felt just lying on the couch for weeks on end. It all probably triggered the horrendous abandonment I experienced as a small child.
As you can imagine, the lawsuit triggered counter measures by Angie and Richard. As recently as two weeks ago, I tripped across yet another lie they told to discredit me. It is hard to imagine it has been over three years and I am still dealing with their crap. While I understand I cannot control their BS, it is still wearing and considering I was a long way from rebuilding what had been destroyed when I got struck down by this cancer, this crap takes its toll too.
When the illness began. I couldn't have been at a more vulnerable place psychologically. My self esteem was wobbly at best and the extended hospitalization knocked me into the downward slide which is how someone ends up tolerating behavior like what happened here.....beginning with Kelly Panowicz. Each new assualt knocked me down that much farther until I ended up as a woman I no longer recognized.
From the inside of this mess I would say what I lacked was an advocate. When Lindsay battled brain cancer that was my role. I protected her from any and all who didn't have her best interests at heart. Lindsay was just a child and she struggled with her self esteem even with me fighting every step of the way to protect her. A day didn't go by that I wasn't acting on her behalf.
Now looking back at what happened here I think only an advocate who recognized the dynamics at play could have saved us from those lurking in the shadows waiting to utilize our assets for their personal gain. Unfortunately such programs do not exist. Maybe that is why the exploitation of the elderly is the fastest growing crime in the country. This story with Jessica, and for that matter Kelly Panowicz and Crystal Baker, is typical except maybe for the horses. It doesn't matter what the vehicle is for someone like Jessica to gain access. What matters is the fact she worked her way in and took advantage from day one.
Because so much of what Jessica said turned out to be lies, I have no way to know truth from fiction about anything she said (which actually applies to all of these women). I only know for sure is what happened here. I will try to distinguish what I know from things she told me. Many of my conclusions come from putting the pieces together. When there is evidence to support my conclusions, I will relay that. Like with all my stories I will try to give my readers all the facts so you can draw your own conclusions. If you agree, see something differently or think I have missed something, I would appreciate it if you would share. I am trying to heal from these assualts on my psyche and for me that means understanding the how's and why's so I don't make these same mistakes again.
So now you have my understanding of how I tolerated what comes next, put on your seat belts. Even with the understanding writing about Jessica has made me physically ill. The only good thing that has come from these experiences is that I have learned how very different I am from these people. That is a good thing.
To be continued......
A Whole New Meaning to Moving In....