- Date Added:
- October 5th, 2013
Shattered, but broken pieces can fill many souls!
October is awareness month for many things. I feel compelled to share my fiancé's battle of loss, how it has changed her, and bring awareness to Domestic Violence at the same time. I will start by saying that although I only met her best friend once, through Keri's tears and her dedication to stop Domestic Violence I feel inspired to make a difference, and yet at times I am at a loss through the tears as Keri finds her way back into this world.
Keri is a fighter, she is a survivor of domestic violence. I met her and watched as she guided people toward making better life decisions. She was a great listener and have amazing advice and was looked up to by many and yet she never allowed people into her world. Keri was shy, afraid of rejection, afraid to allow people close to her and had 2 roles, she was a mother, and a provider. Keri didn't date as she didn't believe in bringing men in and out of her son's life. Her work life was not mixed with her personal life because she felt that complicated things. When she divorced her husband she divorced her friends and felt like that was what life had in store for her until she met Sandra. They shared a patio in an apartment and were instantly connected at the hip. Sandra went to Texas every summer to see her other best friends but other than that they spent every day together except holidays.
Sandra had a special birthday Christmas... Keri always said only angels were born on Christmas. Sandra and her boyfriend got engaged on Christmas her birthday and planned for a 2011 July wedding! Keri still speaks of it as the most amazing time of her life! Everyone came from Texas, New York, all over the country. We stayed at a hotel casino and as a wedding party had the most amazing bonding experience. In her words it was magic!
They went on their honey moon and then after 4 years of being almost roommates they moved in with her dad to save money so they could buy a house. Keri never liked her husband and quickly found she wasn't really welcome at Sandra's family home because of the lies her husband had told. Keri spent hours crying grieving saying she felt like she had lost her best friend.
Keri's birthday came and went, they had plans to go into town but her phone didn't ring, and her phone calls weren't returned. 3 days before Thanksgiving I was on the phone with Keri and she was in a pure panic... She kept saying Sandra and I have never even had a fight, I feel it something is wrong. I talked to her through the night as she left face book message after face book message! At 7:05 Sandra's mom called her, Sandra had been in a horrible car accident 3 days before Keri's birthday. The family had decided not to tell anyone because Sandra didn't want certain people to know.... She didn't mean her best friends. Keri spent the next week by her side! I remember how angry she was that Sandra wasn't being taken care of... She washed her hair, shaved her legs, and even shaved her armpits! When Keri arrived Sandra was sitting up in bed crying, she was all alone and was about to go into surgery. The room was empty of anything to entertain Sandra and so Keri went and bought her essentials; lip gloss, deodorant, a journal, smut magazines, a deck of cards.... Things just things to make her comfortable. Keri also went with her to surgery while they inserted a tube in her side to blow up her lung.
Sandra was released to go home after being split from top to bottom and the longest stay ever in ICU! Keri didn't see her much after that she never answered her phone, remember she was a blamed friend based on her abusive husband. In July Sandra came and spent a few day with Keri as her dad and step mom had kicked her out. At this time she was 5 months pregnant, they had no income, no home and Keri later learned were living on MRI rations. Sandra was fine to stay with Keri but her husband hated her and felt Sandra got crazy ideas when she was with Keri... He referred to her as white trash. They stayed with his parents.
Keri was in a wedding and September was full of showers and bachelorette parties. Sandra's baby shower was October 5th and Keri hand made everything along with her sister in laws. It was an amazing day! The pictures make Sandra look beautiful!
Keri left out of town for a wedding and returned the 21st of October. I remember she drove straight to Sandra's house! It was the last time Keri saw her alive. On the 29th of October her husband shot her in the back of the head with a shot gun killing her and the baby that was due any day. It was 3 days before Keri's birthday! I have never seen someone so shattered... She helped pack Sandra's home carefully stepping over the place her body had laid for 16 hours before it was removed. Keri flew to Texas to put her friend and baby Sierra to rest.
Since Keri came home she has suffered from severe PTSD, anxiety, depression but with that came a desire to save the world! Keri started a web page which averages 200 hits a day and opened a Facebook page. Her employer fired her while on medical leave and she has no money but she invests every dime into saving the lives of those who are to afraid to speak out! 51 countries follow her website! Only 10 countries in the world recognize Domestic Violence as an issue! 81% of her face book followers read but don't comment! The work Keri is doing is saving lives. She is an inspiration! I watch as she will stop and talk to anyone and has gotten in her car and driven across state to sit face to face with women who need help and stays with them till they have resources and a hand off!
Keri believes Sandra gave her the strength to face her own fears that she had stuffed down for 7 years. In fact Sandra was the first friend Keri allowed into her life after her own situation. When she speaks she will tell you that she was dying inside and Sandra woke up her spirit saved her life and taught her how to laugh again. If she can give that back to one person she said she has made a difference in the world!
Thanks for reading Keri's story!
In honor of Sandra Kay Perry & Baby Sierra taken October 29th, 2012