For millions of women and men who are sexually assaulted every year, recovering from that incident can feel like an uphill battle. One Central Texas woman is rebuilding her life after an alleged sexual assault.
For months Savana Everett had the gut feeling she was being stalked at her apartment by a neighbor, so she moved to a different unit. Not long after she says she was sexually assaulted with a weapon. She claims the attacker was the same man who she says initially stalked her. With a suspect arrested and charged in her case, Everett is working to reclaim her life.
Your home is supposed to be your safe haven, but Everett's looks much different these days.
Everett said, "I ended up here because my home got taken away."
Her peace of mind vanished on May 29th, 2021.
"Now I have to look at the scars on my body from that taser. You know, he left marks on my body that I'm probably going to have for a really long time," said Everett.
Everett said she left the home she created with scars on her skin ... taking what she had left to her parents' trailer.
She's pushing through her trauma, steadily trying to get back on her feet.
I'm happy I survived it but now I have years of healing that I have to do
Everett said, "I have the worst insomnia now because it happened when I was sleeping, I woke up to it. I'm still recreating who I am. I'm still trying to find my body. I don't feel comfortable in my skin anymore, half the days I want to crawl out of it."
Misty Biddick- Executive Director Aware Central Texas said, "Sexual assault survivors experience post-traumatic stress disorder anger guilt isolation they feel responsible. They feel responsible for their own victimization."
Everett's trauma echoes hundreds of others in our own backyard. Organizations like Aware Central Texas work around daily to raise awareness.
"Violence thrives in silence, so we have to keep having these conversations. We need to talk about these hard things in our community," Biddick said.
Everett is turning every which way to heal including family, books and music. However, she knows one day her own body will feel like home again.
"Every seven years the skin on your body is completely replaced so in seven years you are going to have skin on your body that that person never touched," Everett said.
Everett hopes sharing her story will inspire other sexual assault survivors to speak up and get help.
Everett, said, "Get your justice. Tell everyone that will listen to what happened to you because that's your body and nobody deserves to take that away from you."