Do you know people who live their lives to the best of their ability? People who ignore, or try to ignore, the images and trauma from days gone by that endlessly seem to haunt them? Going a step further, do these people you know try to move forward with their lives but either their decisions, or random ‘coincidences’ crop up that lead them down paths they’d rather not revisit? I know people like that. I know you do too. We all know people like that. I’m talking about damaged people striving to make it through each day, one hour at a time.
However, damaged does not mean uneducated, simple, stupid, or hare-brained. Damaged implies that somehow somewhere in that person’s past an experience, or set of experiences, affected the person so vividly, so intimately, that the experiencer’s spirit cracked in some way – if only a hairline fracture. A break is still a break and these types of emotional breaks lead to damage; people who have to fight their way through their inner crossroads and re-engage themselves with life, or specific parts of their lives.
A person we all know and love that could easily fit into this above definition is Halle Berry. This stunning Hollywood actress, now also a producer, witnessed her mother being abused at the hands of her husband (Halle’s father). All little Halle and her sister Heidi could do was watch.
Imagine witnessing abuse that inflicted wounds, bruises, and the like on the person you adore the most. Now imagine being helpless to affect change in that situation. This was Halle’s youthful plight.
We fast forward to Halle’s own young adulthood and we see that unconsciously she replicated the circumstances she witnessed at home through her choices in relationships. In the early 90’s, Halle was abused by one of her boyfriends. He struck her so hard she lost 80% of her hearing in her left ear. As Halle moved forward in her life, she adjusted her choices and became more proactive about protecting herself from abuse. She chose men who did not physically abuse her; they mentally abused her. As we all know, with damaged people it’s like peeling back the layers of an onion; it takes time to heal. But healing is something Halle actively engaged in.
Halle said: “I never had to run to a shelter, but I did choose the wrong partners. Not always good men. Luckily, in recent years, I have been smart enough to hit the door when violence even becomes a possibility. That is something I will not tolerate.” [See more at: http://bossip.com/193327/halle-berry-my-boyfriend-hit-me-so-hard-i-am-still-deaf-in-left-ear/#sthash.GSplU6Is.dpuf]
Through the years we’ve watched Halle battle her childhood demons through her relationships, through her movie roles, and more recently through her new TV show, Extant. A wonderful thing to note is her role as Cat Woman. To me, it is a significant role where the idea of rebirth into something and someone stronger and more confident was key to the development of the movie’s main character. (I won’t discuss the movie reviews, or the quality of the movie Cat Woman; that would be the subject of an entirely different article…)
Another important thing to note is that in Halle’s spare time she volunteers at a nonprofit called Jenesse Center, an organization that provides a system of support of those experiencing domestic violence.
“Before I’m Halle Berry – I’m little Halle growing up in this environment, that damaged me in some ways, she says. And I’ve spent my adult life trying to heal from that. I think I’ve spent my adult life dealing with the sense of low self-esteem that implanted in me. Somehow, I felt not worthy.” – [See more at: http://www.frequencynews.com/wordpress/gossip/gossip-fix/halle-berry-talks-domestic-abuse/]
Halle is the epitome of a damaged person working step-by-step to become successfully whole. Why do I care so much about Halle’s plight other than we are both Leos? Because, I am a damaged person myself. I’ve had a childhood I’d rather not repeat and I too work day-by-day to create a live worth living. Instead of heading for the lights of Hollywood, I found my solace in the written word. I write stories about damaged people who, like Halle and I, strive to become whole once again.
In my new book, Fury From Hell, Detective Jennifer Holden is a damaged person who experienced domestic violence in her home via a family member who she murders in self-defense when she was a teenager. Det. Holden must now move through her life trying to atone for the double guilt she feels. By becoming an NYPD homicide detective, Holden thought she had found a way to outrun her demons. But they caught up with her…literally. Unwittingly, Holden is possessed by a demon named Fury Abatu who avenges the wrongful death of women but the price is steep – their souls.
I love the interplay between good vs. evil. It is the basic age-old plot that never runs dry. There are so many elements that intrigue me mainly because we have to make choices each and every day that pit our will against this same backdrop. We all have a white angel on one shoulder and the red devil on the other. Each of them whispers in our wee little ears and in each moment we must make a decision to act.
Halle always had the potential for greatness. Halle always strove to make better choices and she has. Today, she is the producer of Frankie & Alice a story about a go-go dancer with disassociative identity disorder who has 3 distinct personalities. This is the epitome of a damaged person and it is based on a true story.
The woman behind this story today is a successful college professor but we all know she still has her own demons to fight every day. Just like Halle and I do. Just like you, and our friends do. We’re human. We have issues that we want to ignore. We listen to the red devil sometimes. We let evil win. But then, we get stronger and fight back. So does Det. Holden. But when you’re fighting a 700-year-old demon from Hell things are not always as they seem. Bigger guns have to be pulled out.
Here’s to wishing Halle many more fabulous wedding anniversaries and sincere well-wishes on the birth of her son, Maceo Robert Martinez.
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