In Memory of Kay

like a lion in a cage


~~My Dearest,

Remember when I was the strong one in the
family, the dominant one, the one who could survive anything?

I was the one who left home at nineteen for
life on Carnivallife in Miamilife of sin.

I was untroubled, single, joyful.

I was immortal.

You were already with him then.

You were already strapped down
like a woman in bondage, like a lion in a cage.

You already had a baby on the

You were already drinking &
dying inside.

I knew you’d never bloom with him….I knew
your petals would remain tightly closed with him.

I knew what I knew.

Yet, what could I do?

Somehow,  he always made you stay.

Somehow, he always  broke you down, broke you down, brought you to your knees.

Saying you were nothing without him, less
without him, small without him

Didn’t you know?

You.    Were.   Everything.

He belittled you with his toxic tongue.

He manipulated you with his promises.

He was nothing.

Didn’t you know?

You.  Were.

I was the one who sensed your depressions
and darkness…

Even thru the miles that separated us.

We were one person from the same womb.

The same blood.

The same childhood.

The tree of the tree, the root of
the root.

You told me every secret, every nightmare,
every transgression.

“I wish he’d  just die.
I wish he’d just leave me alone.    I
wish he’d just

He never did.  He never fucking fucking did.

My heart is heavy.

I carry it around all day long,
all night long,

inside my dreams.

I’ve learned I’m not the strong

I’ve learned  surviving takes

everything. you.  have.

I’ve learned that once the roots are born…

They never diminish.
Kim & Kay.

My sister, Kay, was murdered by Mike Peterson 587 days ago.  Everything changed.  The light shines differently now.  Much differently now.

800-799-SAFE (7233) or at TTY 1-800-787-3224.

In Memory of Kay

CLick Here NOW if you are being physically abused, verbally abused,

emotionally abused, belittled, diminished, finacially abused,

sexually abused, or  minimized in any way…>>pink lips A Safety Plan to Get Out Today

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  • Reply
    January 12, 2012 at 6:12 pm

    You might not feel strong Kim, but you give me strength. Sending love.
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  • Reply
    Alison@Mama Wants This
    January 12, 2012 at 8:10 pm

    It takes a strong person to survive a tragedy like the loss of your beloved sister. And sharing, writing about Kay? It gives others strength. xo
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  • Reply
    January 12, 2012 at 9:06 pm

    I read your blog all the time, but rarely comment. As a victim of abuse when I was younger, I am forever grateful to no longer be in that situation. Still, I have my own demons to battle. My not-yet-three-year-old daughter asked me the other day about scars on my arms, legs, and stomach that are reminders of the years I spent self-harming in an attempt to deal with the pain. There is no easy way to explain those to an adult, much less your own child.

    Please know that I am keeping you and your family in my thoughts and prayers. Your words are an inspiration to me, and I hope that your writing helps someone else who is struggling to escape from violence.
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:17 am

      I am pleased that you got out of your abusive relationship.
      I only wish Kay would have Long Ago.

      Sending you love. Xx
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    Helene Abbott
    January 12, 2012 at 9:37 pm

    YOU ARE STRONG, you are also sensitive, unselfish and upfront. You have certainly lived and the memories you made with Kay live on in your heart and the hearts of your readers….You are living in a different way now…just keep on sharing…love your blogs…

  • Reply
    January 12, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    You are one of the strongest, most loyal and loving women out there. You are a SISTER – and Sister’s ROCK!

    Hugs to you, always~
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  • Reply
    Vidya Sury
    January 12, 2012 at 10:37 pm

    I mourn with you, Kim. And pray for peace. Every one says “think of all the good times” but how to do it when tears are streaming down? I hold your hand, I put my arms around you.

    Love, Kim.
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  • Reply
    January 12, 2012 at 10:49 pm

    Kim – you teach everyone how to be brave. Hugs, Barbara

  • Reply
    Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella
    January 13, 2012 at 4:03 am

    Beautiful poem Kim. I love how you introduce us to a new facet of Kay every time xxx
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  • Reply
    Mandy - The Complete Cook Book
    January 13, 2012 at 4:36 am

    You are a very special person to share the way that you do Kim – I do believe that you are a true spokesperson for woman abuse!
    Beautiful photo of you and Kay – hop eyou have it blown up and framed so you can look at it every day.
    Big hugs and lots of love from Sunny South Africa.
    🙂 Mandy xo
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:22 am

      It is difficult to know what to do after something like this… I still don’t know what the heck I’m doing.
      But whatever is asked of me… I’m willing to DO IT!

      Love from Minnesota directly to S. Africa. xxx
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    January 13, 2012 at 4:45 am

    Sometimes life just sucks. Life is so sad sometimes. Having a rough time right now but your blog helps – just reading your words and what you have gone through reminds me that life goes on. One day at a time. We keep those we loved close to our heart always. I try to remember that they are never really gone – only their shell….Hugs to you…
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  • Reply
    January 13, 2012 at 6:09 am

    Thank you, Kim, for this powerful post and for reminding your readers about how domestic abuse works to take the soul away. Also, for your readers, Ellen Pence, a great woman and founder of Domestic Abuse Intervention Programs, died last week. She was THE pioneer in the creation of the now famous Power and Control Wheels. We all honor her for what she did for women world-wide. Kay suffered. Kay died at the hands of a man who wanted power and control over her soul.
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:23 am

      sending you love.

      Kay’s murder has NO power over her now…& he never should have before this happened.

      I’m angry about that.

      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    Goodness and Grit
    January 13, 2012 at 6:16 am

    Your strength is your ability to help and heal others.

    Thank you for your words, and for being here.

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  • Reply
    January 13, 2012 at 6:45 am

    Your writing is so beautiful and poignant. You are an incredible poet. I don’t have the ability to describe how deeply you make me feel with your powerful words. But I do feel it. I relate to it. In my own way.
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:25 am

      this is my hope…
      that others relate, that the words resonate somehow…somewhere. Inside.

      Love to you, dearest… Xxx
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    Missy | Literal Mom
    January 13, 2012 at 8:01 am

    Wow, what a powerful, heart wrenching post. I am so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing something so important today.
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  • Reply
    January 13, 2012 at 9:12 am

    Kim, We will never forget Kay, you keep her alive in our memories with your beautiful writings.
    We will always miss her, but we will be with her soon.
    Love You More Than Black Horses In The Meadow

  • Reply
    January 13, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Oh, but you are strong…don’t you know?

    Every morning when you wake up and take a breath, you’ve just proven how strong you are. I don’t know how someone survives a tragedy such as this but every day, you make the choice to move forward, as painful as it is. You are stronger than you know.

    And your strength helps others in many ways.

  • Reply
    Karen sosnoski
    January 13, 2012 at 11:14 am

    I don’t know what to say except that again you’ve moved me, causing me to feel the tragedy of domestic violence and the loss of your sister. My heart goes out to you and your family.

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:29 am

      –Sweet, Karen,
      have i told you lately what you mean to me?

      Your words. Your support. Your non-judgement. Your love. Your encouragment.

      Thank you. Xx
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    Impulsive Addict
    January 13, 2012 at 1:33 pm

    Such a beautiful picture. Thanks for sharing this. You are so brave!


    Have a great weekend!
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:31 am

      Hey, Impulsive,

      Not Brave.

      Just living each day the best I can.

      Your hilareous blog helps! Thank you for that. Keep making me laugh. Okay? Xx
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    January 13, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    Just keep talking it out, Kim. You have no idea how many you are helping. Myself included. In the dark of night I sometimes think of your light. Thank you for the honour of joining my tears to your tears, my voice to your voice, my success to your success. Much love and big hugs from my heart to yours. Always xo
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  • Reply
    January 13, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Oh, wow, I visited your site once before, but, didn’t realize at the time you were hurting from such a terrible loss. My heart truly goes out to you. I can’t even imagine the pain you must feel, and the emptiness you are suffering. Thank you for reaching out with a memorial site to heighten awareness for others. I know your sister is smiling.
    Bless You
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:33 am

      Dear Sons,
      Thank you for your lovely words.

      Yes. She is Smiling. I know this.

      Away from ‘him,’ she is smiling.

      Xxx KIss
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    jodi aman
    January 13, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    “I’ve learned surviving takes

    everything. you. have.”

    I am glad you have it and continue it. you inspire other, giving meaning to your sister’s life. As someone who tried to help women escape, I applaud you!
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:36 am

      you helped women escape?

      oooh, how I wish I would have known how to help my dear sister escape from the manipulation & bondage she seemed to be living in….

      And I applaud you for empowering women Xx
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    January 14, 2012 at 7:29 am

    “You told me every secret, every nightmare,
    every transgression.

    I wish he’d just die. I wish he’d just leave me alone. I
    wish he’d just……”

    I don’t know what to say, Kim. A tough read, this one. I truly miss her for you.

    Prayers and Hugs.
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  • Reply
    Lady Fi
    January 14, 2012 at 9:28 am

    Oh, that picture of the two of you melted my heart…

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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 14, 2012 at 9:38 am

      Lady Fi,

      Yes. I love it, too.

      No love was greater.

      Have a nice Sat.
      What will you and Oscar do? xxx
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    Adriana Iris
    January 14, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    i thank you for keeping the message alive. love you and all you do.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 14, 2012 at 1:30 pm

      –And I love you, A. X

  • Reply
    January 14, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Such a tragedy..I do not know what to say..Don;t try to be strong, you are not made of stone…give voice to your emotions…
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 14, 2012 at 1:30 pm

      –Thanks, Anna,

      I shall GIVE VOICE. xx

  • Reply
    Jess S.
    January 14, 2012 at 1:49 pm

    Stopping over from the red dress club or write on edge. I think simply sharing this poem is a huge act of bravery and that you should be congratulated for it. I am sorry for your loss.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 14, 2012 at 2:19 pm

      –Thank you for visiting, Jess. X

  • Reply
    The Girl Behind
    January 14, 2012 at 3:52 pm

    This is a great post – so sad, but great too.

    So many people who are experiencing abuse don’t see it – they don’t recognise the signs.

    It’s so powerful to see you sharing like this. I’m totally convinced that you’re helping people every day who are experiencing these things but can’t see it. I’m sure so many women come here and recognise their own situations and pain. I pray that they take some action and change their situations.

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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 14, 2012 at 5:44 pm

      –Dear Girl Behind,
      I do hope they see themselves.

      Kay never did.
      She thought he’d change.
      He never did.
      He never fucking did.

      THank you Xxx

  • Reply
    January 14, 2012 at 4:04 pm

    That was some poem… and then I found out the story behind it.

    I am so very sorry…
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 14, 2012 at 5:44 pm

      thank you for visiting my mourning… Xx

  • Reply
    julie gardner
    January 14, 2012 at 4:05 pm

    I have never said this here before, but today I am moved to share:

    I have two women in my life right now about whom I am worried.
    They would argue that their situation is not this extreme.


    When does it become so?
    At what point?

    I fear the day we look back and say, “We should have known.”
    And I feel helpless.

    Right now, for both of them, it is words their men hurl. And objects.
    Insults and things.

    One of them has a “safe house” and this scares me.
    The other does not admit to being worried.

    But I? Am.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 14, 2012 at 5:53 pm


      I say to my mom & daddy often..

      “Why didn’t we do something from the very beginning? WHY? WHy?”

      Kay thought he’d change…he’d be “normal,” he’d be a good father, he’d be a good husband, HE’D love and respect her.


      When she finally decided to “Truly” leave him……he shot her three times in the back of the head.

      You see, he did this from behind because he was a coward…and he knew she’d fight him…fight him.

      I hope your friends leave…I pray they leave…

      Hitting with Words is just as horrific as hitting w/ fists…

      I’d give ANYTHING to have my sister back….Oooh, I miss her so much it hurts inside.

      XX Thanks for visiting, dear.

  • Reply
    January 14, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    Love to you sweetie!!! Know you’re thought of by me daily! HUGS
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 14, 2012 at 6:52 pm

      —Thanks for your kind words, Wendy. Xxx

  • Reply
    Words Of Deliciousnes
    January 14, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    This is the first time I have been to your blog, I am sorry for your loss. It is hard to go on sometimes when you have a loss like this in your life. Stay strong. I love your writing.
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  • Reply
    Terri Sonoda
    January 14, 2012 at 9:05 pm

    Hi Sweet Kim…..sending much love from Vegas. Lovely lady.
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  • Reply
    January 15, 2012 at 9:48 am

    Kim, I can’t add anything as poignant as your wonder readers have already said, except that I carry you in my heart.

    On an separate note, the picture of the two of you is beautiful. You have such memories. Hugs, my love.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 15, 2012 at 10:05 am

      thank you for reading my life-long mourning.

      xx Kisses & hugs back

  • Reply
    January 15, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    This line: “I knew what I knew.

    Yet, what could I do?”

    I think this is true for so many. We know the evil, but we feel helpless in combating it. I think that you fight the evil with each post about Kay. It’s a fight that we must all joinr … for the women who are still enduring it and for those left on the trenches …
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    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      January 15, 2012 at 2:28 pm

      –Dear L,
      As Women…We must all fight the fight.

      ZERO Tolerance. Give Voice. Never Be Silent about Domestic Abuse of any Kind.

      Xxx Kiss for you. Thank you for your words.
      My Inner Chick recently a lion in a cageMy Profile

  • Reply
    Kristy @PampersandPinot
    January 15, 2012 at 2:43 pm

    I do not understand the hatred and violence that some people have.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 15, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      I don’t either.
      Believe me, I do not.

      But It’s more about CONTROL. Ya know?


  • Reply
    Tina Shang
    January 15, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    As someone who has been a victim of deception and “toxic tongue”, that was a perfect description btw, your poem really resonates with me. I am sorry for your loss, its seems empty and meaningless to even type that knowing what you have endured. You are a strong woman, and more importantly you are a reservoir of strength for others. I am new to your blog, but will be reading you regularly.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 15, 2012 at 4:23 pm

      I feel quite weak…but I am trying to be strong. One. Day. At. A. Time.

      Xx thank you for your kind words.

  • Reply
    January 15, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    I like you…nay LOVE you and admire you because you are straightforward about what Kay endured and ultimately died from. I’m so glad you speak out like this. But I’m sorry for the pain you carry.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 15, 2012 at 5:57 pm

      thank you for reading my mourning & grieveing.

      I shall be screaming this story out forever….as long as I have breath inside of me….


  • Reply
    Sandy Webb
    January 15, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    No Kim, it will never be the same. I am sorry, but it will not and that is a fact. Losing a loved one changes you deeply and forever. You though, have taken that change and are using it to spread the word about domestic violence and that is a wonderful thing. No, your life will never be the same but it can be good and you will thrive…even in the aftermath of tragedy. xoxo
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 15, 2012 at 10:15 pm

      Never the same…as you know quite well. Never.

      It is almost as if one needs to be resurrected into a new being…

      Love to you, dear. Xx

  • Reply
    Jessie Powell
    January 15, 2012 at 10:10 pm

    I am so sorry. Your poem is so raw with truth that I felt the words as I read them. May your sister’s death be not in vain. May your words save someone else who is slowly dying the same death.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 15, 2012 at 10:16 pm

      thank you for reading my mourning. Xx

  • Reply
    January 16, 2012 at 4:47 am

    You are the strongest an most determined person I’ve ever heard of. Domestic violence must be stopped. May God give you enough strength and helpers/supporters!
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 16, 2012 at 8:20 am

      –Thanks for visiting, Emilia. X

  • Reply
    Lady E
    January 17, 2012 at 1:53 am

    This deeper glimpse into Kay’s story makes me shudder. How hard it must have been for you to see the life robbed from her long before she was killed… To know her misery and be helpless…
    My heart goes out to you Kim. In spite of everything, Kay was lucky to have you.
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 17, 2012 at 6:53 am

      —Thank You, Lady E.

      Mourning lasts forever…. One just incorporates into one’s life somehow.

      xx Kiss

  • Reply
    January 17, 2012 at 8:26 am

    Another beautiful but absolutely heart-wrenching poem. I am always amazed at the size and the strength of that heart of yours, which bleeds constantly out of love for your sister. Kim despite your feelings, you are indeed a strong woman. You may be weary from the eternal strain and pain of it all, but bearing witness to you inspires others. It is we who draw strength from you, even though it should be the other way around. Hugs ma’am.
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  • Reply
    January 17, 2012 at 11:08 pm

    Your poetry is so touching, and haunting. You’re doing a world of good for so many, through your message. God bless you, Kim, and Kay, too.
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  • Reply
    January 19, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    Oh Kim, you and Kay are so beautiful! I read your words and see how already at the age of 19 you were able to identify the signs of spousal abuse. The abuser takes control by making you dependant on him, by making you feel like you are nothing, can be nothing without him. He steps on you, diminishes you, belittles you, and then, after he’s crushed you, comes back begging, making promises he never keeps. He might even bring presents or flowers and he makes you believe he’s going to change but the truth is he never does. It just a matter of time until the cycle starts all over again. I consider myself fortunate to not be in an abusive relationship now, but I know what it feels like to have someone treat you like you’re not worthy, like you’re less than what God intended you to be–perfect in His image. Never again should any woman who’s known abuse succumb to mistreatment. I’m so sorry Kay didn’t have that chance. I’m so, so sorry. Yet, she is helping so many women, through you, dear one. You give her the voice she never had when she was in this destructive relationship. Her experience is helping so many women; it’s making you stronger than you think you are. Because with every post that shares her story, you reach women who think they’re not good enough; women who’ve been made to believe they’ll never amount to anything. You open their eyes to the truth; you provide them with the courage they need to ask for help; to leave the abuser. And that, my friend, is what makes these posts so valuable, so helpful. You do Kay proud, lady. You really do!
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 21, 2012 at 11:46 am

      Your support, love, & words fill me up today. 🙂 XXXX

  • Reply
    January 22, 2012 at 11:18 pm

    I am brought to tears and my heart hurts for you. In spite of your pain, what you are doing by writing about Kay is doing tremendous work and bringing awareness to other women who may be in the same situation you sister was in. You may not feel this way, but after visiting your blog for just a few weeks now, I see a strong woman. Mourning does not make you weak. Mourning will continue until you meet again in heaven. You are strong and you are using your voice for good. xoxo
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    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 23, 2012 at 7:18 am

      Thank you for your kind words. hey ar much appreciated. X

    • Reply
      Kim Sisto-Robinson
      January 23, 2012 at 7:18 am

      Thank you for your kind words. they are much appreciated. X

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