Virginia Godina-Ortiz’s Success Story
At our Hope Luncheons on April 21st and 28th, we welcomed Virginia Godina-Ortiz to share her personal story, from her experience with Advocates Against Family Violence and using our services. As we welcomed a group to introduce them to what AAFV is and does, she shared how domestic violence affected her and how our organization helped changed her life.
Hi, My name is Virginia Godina-Ortiz. I’m a mortgage loan officer for BOTC and have been in the banking industry for the last 25 years. Most importantly I wanted to let you know the reason I support and help this organization as much as I do. Whether it’s to help at the Walk of Hope or help with the Faces of Hope Luncheon or to sponsor an event like this one, I try to be as helpful as possible; and I’ll tell you why.
I was a victim for 18 years, scared to go home after work. I wondered if I was being followed by my ex-husband or if he was going to get home drunk. I worried about work the following day. Will I have to call in sick? Will I have to cover any bruises up?
His concern was that if I worked and earned my own money and have contact with the public I would have the courage to leave him. He made it very hard to continue my career in the banking industry. It was so hard, but I made it. I did everything possible to keep working hard and climb the ropes.
I remember calling in sick a few times because the bruises were just too visible and too dark to cover up with make-up. What was I going to say at work? Of course, I would make something up to say. “I was playing with my kids and I got hit with the ball” that was my favorite. So my co-workers believed my “stories” and pretty soon I had a nickname. My nickname became “Rocky” and to this day, I still have that nickname. Its funny now, but I’ll tell you what; it wasn’t funny then.
I’m not a victim any longer, but a survivor. A survivor because I had the support I needed to get me past all of the negativity and the control he had over me. I had great support from family and good friends. I believe that the services that are provided today by this awesome organization are amazing. If I had the same resources back in my day, I’m confident to say that I wouldn’t have been in this abusive relationship for 18 long miserable years.
Lastly, I encourage you to help, support and become an ambassador of this great organization and become involved. There are many ways to help. Domestic violence knows no race, age or financial stability. It’s really hard to face alone. Although together with your help, we can all make an impact. I’m so proud to be a part of this organization and you will be too.