The Be Brave ride took its toll on me emotionally. I am hurting inside. It was one of the most empowering things I have ever done. It was a mission I was on and I wanted to be heard for so many. You could say I was, however there is a part of me that feels I was treated like some woman riding a bike. I guess I was some woman riding a bike. However I came with a big voice, a mission and one that I will never give up on. I think when something is part of you, and you tick because of what you believe in, you cannot all of a sudden turn that off. You wouldn’t be yourself. There is no better person to be, but you.
When I finished Be Brave challenge day 4, I was greeted by news crews at Parliament House. I was also met with a big smile and cheer from my sister, who was waiting patiently for my arrival. To fall into her arms at the end was amazing and something I will never forget. There are so many emotions to share with just that moment for me. Don’t forget she is my sister, her father, our father, sexually assaulted me, and she turned her back on him to support me for the rest of her life. I know you would think, well so she should do that for me, but it truly is difficult for family to deal with child abuse and people forget it is something that affects everyone. I am grateful for her mindset and for seeing what is the right thing to do. Because to stand by an abuser would only give them more power, and we don’t need them to have the power and the voices, we need that.
Not long after being interviewed I was taken into Parliament House, the back entrance. I felt pretty special from that moment. Although it was quick to change. I was met by Tony Abbott in his office. I was happy he kept his word on meeting with me, and we instantly spoke about bikes. I guess that is pretty natural as the bike was in his reception area of his office and had made its way on all that nice smooth Parliament House floor, along with my cleats! We then moved into his office and his body language mid way through our conversation said it all. He was nodding in the direction of no, and pretty much disagreeing with setting up more support within the government for children at risk of abuse. It was to be expected I guess. Although one can hope for change, and I am that one that hopes for it.
I believe I am not alone in this hope.
I also believe that the one person in power that actually makes change happen will be a bloody legend.
Derryn Hinch was next, and he had been following my story and ride on social media. He knew I was coming and he made time for me. Well, he actually had me aware of his meeting request whilst I was in a news interview outside. The body language was great, and you can see by the images he was interested in everything I was saying. There is so much happening at the moment and I really feel someone needs to step it up. The things happening in the news are heartbreaking, and it answers the question of why I wouldn’t take my father back to court. There is no justice for victims, and by the latest happenings in the news, these bastards are getting get out of jail free cards if they have a terminal illness. But that child and family will have pain for the rest of their lives, and they will fight to be brave whilst he walks free to abuse more children.
They don’t stop at one child.
I am not sure if my own voice and bravery can ever make a difference, but I do know I am not giving up. And I am still hopeful to sit with the Prime Minister of Australia one day. I may not set foot in a court room ever again against my father, however I will keep my legs moving, my voice loud, and moving forward to help form change. For now, I hope that Derryn Hinch keeps doing more from the inside of those Parliament walls, and Tony Abbott stands up and starts nodding the other way. I may just have been a woman that rode her bike for child abuse awareness, but I am also a woman that has faced child sexual assault, survived, lived and now fighting for others to be brave.
I am the best version of me.
be brave. H