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Micaela's Attack Relief Fund

$6,000 of $12,000 goal

Raised by 109 people in 3 months
Walking home from work, Monday August 20th, I was attacked by a man intending to rape me. This is my story:

I was working near downtown Charlottesville caring for a man with cerebral palsy. On Monday, I was scheduled to work a double shift. On my way back downtown for my night shift at 6pm, I noticed a man riding my bus that looked odd. He was wearing blue medical scrubs but with no identification and not carrying anything. I thought he might be mentally ill and proceeded to dismiss it. On the way back from work, very tired, a little after 9:30 I noticed the same man and felt that was a little off but something that sometimes happens in a small town. He was walking ahead of me and I turned onto a different street. After walking about a block I felt someone walking up behind me, I turned around, and it was the same man now running towards me. I knew then what was happening but had little time to react before he ran into me.

After that, things are a bit of a jumble. He knocked me to the ground hard. He told me he was going to rape me. I screamed for help, screamed and screamed and fought to hurt him and get him off me. I ripped his shirt, tried to gouge his eye, and push him off of me with my legs. He hit me hard, in the face, several times and choked me while I fought. I tried to fake relax hoping his grip would lessen and he hit me harder, two or three times. Then he picked me up to drag me into an alley and slammed my head into an AC unit, almost knocking me out, then hit me again. I realized I might die or be seriously injured at this point, but I was going to keep fighting until I lost consicousness. He threw me down into a corner and I punched him twice in the face, cutting open my knuckles on his teeth. I screamed for help again and he let off me and walked out of the alley. I saw which way he went. I was trying to get to my phone in my pocket to call my husband for help, which I did while ambling my way back into the street. A man from across the street beckoned me and told me he had called 911 and the police were on their way. I told my husband where I was and what happened on the phone and sat down. Within minutes I had given my statement to the police, my husband was there, and I was being loaded into the ambulance. This picture was taken by my husband, on the way to the hospital:

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Soon after arriving to the hospital, the cops told me they had detained someone matching my description and if I was willing I could go ID them. I agreed and made a positive ID on what I saw - the same man, wearing the ripped scrubs shirt. Later, the detective told me he was a registered sex offender that had already done time for rape.
News Report of the Incident 

A lot of people attended me that night, and took care of justice as well as my health. What everyone said was the same. That I was tough. That I had done something brave, something to be proud of. That what I had done had likely saved other women. I put a stop to something bad, I fought, and I survived. I was strong. I could even use my experience to help others. I was loved. All good things.

At the same time, I have experienced what may be the most terrifying thing I've ever had happen to me. Something in any womans' top three greatest fears. I am still in a lot of pain and disoriented. My body was bruised internally and externally and am still regaining full use of my right hand. I'm not sure if I have any longterm physical damage and may have to have additional medical care. I have had emotional breakdowns I couldn't control since the event. I don't know what fully healing (mind, body, heart, and soul) from this is going to look and feel like, and it seems to be a long term process. I feel my life has changed.

Me 9 days after the attack:
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I am asking for help to feel safe and feel like I am making progress in my life, despite this challenge and set back. I am being helped with medical expenses and lost wages by the state**, and also with long term counseling. I am being supported and loved by friends and family. There are things outside of my means of support that I feel would help me greatly in reacclimating myself to society and would help me get back to work with confidence and ease.

A Car and Going back to School

I'm asking for $3,800 to purchase a decent used car, taxes and registration for it, and six months or more insurance. I truly do not want to go anywhere at night without a ride. I would like to be able to access my thereapy with the Sexual Assault Resource Agency with ease and travel to and from work without fear or anxiety. I've been a pedestrian for over two and a half years and I've had enough of it, and now have a vetted phobia of riding the bus.

I'm also asking for $1,200 to "go back to school" and enroll in a program to become an minister in the Alliance of Divine Love. I have wanted to do this program for over three years now. Being enrolled would make me feel a lot better about my life, that it is moving foward towards my career goals of security and divine service. I have my own business as a hands on healer and spiritual guidance counselor and this program would give me experience and counseling to help me be strong and confident in providing the services I do. It also grants non-profit status and federal protection to someone who practices spiritual healing modalities.
ADL Ministry Website 

**Update - The remaining (and added) $7,000 of the fundraiser goal is for life expenses and time. I will be refunded lost wages by the victim fund for one month of missed work, which is less than what I need to cover my life expenses, and which will not be come for several months. Right now, at week 5 post-attack, I am coming to realize what the impact of the attack has been on my life as a whole, and I am seeing that the work of healing myself on a psychological and emotional level is going to take some time. I would like to assist myself by allowing the process of undergoing trauma therapy and reintegration into my life to be gradual and easeful rather than forced.

For many years, I have been working to understand the human condition and learn techniques and information that can benefit our species. As I was just approaching having some financial and life stability, I was violently attacked and set back in my efforts to have and maintain gainful employment and keep my head up in the midst of my own personal struggles. I feel very tired becasue of this and like I need to let myself be seen in this situation, and ask for help openly.

Please help counteract the violence that happened to me by assisting me in becoming more stable, more successful, more supported, and more safe in light of it. I want to use what I've experienced in my life, my talents and abilities, and my connection to spirit to help others and create a safer place for us all - and I need help in my recovery to do that.

Thank you for sharing my story and assisting any way you can.

Blessed Be.
<3
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Hello All,

I have been taking some time to integrate the changes in my life that have occurred as a result of the attack and also learning what is needed to move forward for myself and my family.

When I started this, I did not know what to expect or what I would need as I was still living in the heat of trauma. As a result, I underestimated and did not budget what I would need financially to recuperate fully and move forward towards pursuing my goals. I just added the bare figures for car and school and threw it out there, without any real plan or consideration for the future. I was hurting a lot and knew I needed to do something soon if I was going to do it at all and that feeling was what dictated my fundraiser structure and message.

Right now, I am integrating and restructuring what my fundraiser is about and what it's ultimate goal is - how far I have come, and what is still needed.

As a result of this fundraiser, I have been able to purchase a road worthy car, complete with registration and a few months insurance. I am monumentally pleased with this and it is effecting my life positively, allowing me to go to therapy and run errands without fear and unnecessary stress. I am also blessed to have covered the cost of living needed for me to take time off work, and to recuperate and heal. My life expenses, however, were not something I accounted for in my original fundraiser goal and as a result I have not been able to apply for the ministerial program I originally outlined in my story.

My sense after the attack was that I had been fighting an internal battle for years against various abuses and traumas, and while in the heat of working as hard as I possibly to could to overcome and grow through these difficulties I was brought down and injured beyond what I had previously known. I knew I would need outside assistance to have the time and energy I needed to recover.

It has been hard to write this update. I'm ashamed and feel guilty for not representing myself clearly in the first instance, and for not asking for what I really needed. I did not ask because I did not know. It has not been easy for me to feel that I could actually have what I need. The only reason I launched this in the first place was that I didn't care anymore about being seen in a state of vulnerability and had no hope or fear of the getting anything out of it.

Because of the resulting success, I look at things differently now. Could I have the whole of what I need? Is it okay to still be vulnerable and share it with others? Is it okay to still ask for needed assistance even though I already did it once? Are my goals and needs worthy of being met, and of gaining support from others?

According to everything I believe: the answer is Yes. I deeply want people to be able to know, and to ask for what they need. I have been strongly independent and been an example of that, and now I am learning to be interdependent and I also want to provide an equally worthy example. So many people struggle with illness or injury and it needs to be okay for people to ask for help, or else - how will we heal?

I cannot say I have fully recovered from my attack. I wish I was already there. I wish it had never happened in the first place. I wish it didn't happen to anyone, or that such evil didn't exist in our world and we didn't have to deal with it. I wish I could say I am able to do everything I want now - but I can't.

I can say that every day, I am improving and healing by degrees. Every day I am doing something positive for myself, and shedding the pain and negative effects of the attack ounce by ounce, bit by bit. I have months and maybe years to go before I can really look back and say, "I'm healed."

The time I have taken from my last update to now has been time I have used to find out how I really am doing, what the future of my healing looks like, and what my plans are going forward. The goal increase of $12,000 now stands as a more reasonable request that includes and firmly supports: acquiring the car, my further education, life expenses, and transition into sustainable employment coming out of my attack experience, which can carry me and my family forward into a new, stronger, more resilient, and protected life of abundance and prosperity. Please help by sharing or offering support as you are able. I appreciate all who have read this and contributed so far and all that uphold the work of healing and helping others who have experienced what I have.

Thank you so much,

Micaela
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Dear Friends, Family, Donors, and Interested Parties,

I am living in a state of perpetual gratitude.

Today - my capaign reached and exceeded it's goal of $5,000 before having even been posted a week! I am excited, amazed, and relieved and I feel very very blessed and grateful to everyone who has taken notice and donated, shared, and commented on my fundraiser. These funds will allow me to purchase a reliable vehicle and begin a new course of education which supports my long term career goals of healing and benefitting others.

However, if there is an oppotunity for me here to make financial head way on such things as getting ahead financially and putting money towards the business I share with my husband of doing energy work and spiritual guidance - I would like to open my arms wider to recieve and I am wondering how best to do that.

Gofundme sugguests expanding my desired goal - and I think it's a good idea. I just want everyone to know that my dreams are already coming true - and I have always been happy to do the work "myself" and that what I receive beyond what I have requested will further the causes I am working on:
- to developing myself as a skilled energy healer
- to forming an non-profit dedicated to spiritual growth and human well being
- to spreading information about the understanding and healing of trauma
- to the prevention of violence by spreading non violent communication and compassionate social action
- and to healing, strengthening, and benefitting my family, community, and circles of light that I am a part of, that created me and prepared me to face my attack with strength and resilience

I'm going to rest on this a bit and I may expand my goal to something I would consider heretofore outrageous. If you see that happen, please know my framework and aims.

For the Highest Good and In the Greatest Degree Of Love! <3 <3

Thank You,
Micaela

PS. Also, My story is being covered by Courteney Stuart on CBS19 in two parts, which I was interviewed for yesterday. It heartens me that my story and campaign is being made available to more people and is being carried forth in a way I find to be accessible and honest. Thank you to all who shared, because that is how I was contacted. Blessings.
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Greetings All <3

I am grateful beyond words for the support I have and continue to receive from you. I have litterally said, "Holy Mackerel," out loud at least five times in the last two days. I released this story and fundraiser to the world but three days ago and my life has changed again already - for the better. I am improving physically more and more each day. And I do feel that I will make a full recovery, whatever that may be...

In other news, the more I learn about the person that attacked me and some of the circumstances of the attack the more I wonder about the long term process of digesting and integrating the experience in it's fullness. What does that even look like? I feel I am being given a considerable creative opportunity as a feminist, a woman, a mother, a human interested in human welfare for all people, and as a peacemaker, to be clear and visible with my experience and what I am making of it.

Through the graces of your sharing - I was contacted by a reporter for CBS19 who was interested in sharing my fundraiser and also interviewing me about my experience.
The link for what aired tonight is here:
http://www.cbs19news.com/content/news/Accused-Attacker-has-Previous-Convictions-492342201.html

Something basic about this is that people are now able to see and comprehend what I personally experienced rather than a short blurb about the incident. The issue of sexual abuse and abuse in general are life long investigations for me. The primary understanding being throughout my life that, because of my femaleness, I have been under threat in a sometimes subtle and sometimes frighteningly overt way... And as I have entered the world as an adult, independent woman, those threats and overtures of violence have become a lived reality. My thought at the onset of the attack happening was, "Oh my. It's finally happening." The experience of what I used to see many women (who were not me) named and unnamed - going about living thier lives - and suddenly interrupted by irrational and inhumane acts against their very person.

*Deep Breath*

In my pedestrian freedom, for the last few years, I had not wanted to acknowledge it. I didn't want it to be MY world. Somehow, I thought, I'd just stay safe out of will alone. I enjoyed night after night of travelling through town by myself, peering about with awareness, but also simply enjoying being in my body, headphones blasting, alive and with purpose, travelling as it pleased me. I enjoyed being able to move where I wanted to, when I wanted to, as needed. For work or pleasure.

I was truly fearless for a time, and it was blissful. I had a lot of fun running around my block or visiting nearby parks. I felt no harm could come to me, I was protected.

Then, an interruption.

Coming from then to now provides a challenge. First, dealing with my body's own response - not wanting to visit locations at all, especially not alone. And some fear spurts just from the fall of night. Also, mistrust and fear of people that looked like my attacker... These are natural and rational after a significant physical trauma, and I'm not suprised or really concerned by them. I'm just curious. I'm curious how things will be a year from now, or five years. I wonder how it will matriculate through me, and I wonder about society.

More updates to come...

Love and Great Thanks,
Micaela <3 <3
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Hello people <3
I had my time with my daughter for the first time since the incident today. Saturdays are my days with her and we did not get to have last week because of my attack and because of her father's continued disservice towards me and our Mother/Daughter relationship. We both had nightmares after having an unexpected lapse in our visitation.

Nonetheless, our time together was precious and she sought to assist my healing in the dearest way. She told me she, "loved me more than tv shows and candy." Which I nearly choked on tears over. For a parent this being the highest of praise and best of medicines...

A deeper motivation and reality of this fundraiser is being well enough financially and materially to support having increased custody of my daughter, which I lost some years ago due to poverty, domestic abuse, and lack of information. My daughter and I both long to be together but it is clear that will not happen without legal persuasion. I was not sure how or if I wanted to tie this in, but today is Saturday, and it's still a real situation for me, and I'm too tired of it to be silent anymore.

Please keep sharing <3 <3 Love and Blessings All
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$6,000 of $12,000 goal

Raised by 109 people in 3 months
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