"The falcon and its omen for change. My desperate pray for guidance, and the attack," said Carmen Tarleton, reading a passage from her new book.
"The title is, 'Overcome: Burned, Blinded, and Blessed,'" Tarleton said. And those who have read it say it's a story of tragedy and triumph.
On June 10th, 2007, Tarleton was attacked in her Thetford home by her then estranged husband. He beat her with a baseball bat and doused her with industrial strength lye, scarring her body and permanently altering her appearance.
"I had gone back to that night, I don't now how many thousands of times," Tarleton said.
But instead of burying herself in sorrow and self-pity, Tarleton wrote her story down -- Including the night that changed her life forever. "Even though it was difficult -- and there were times when it was very difficult -- it allowed me to tell it, put it on paper, put it in book form, and I could let it go," she said.
The mother of two is now doing things she has never done, like learning to play the piano. She said her life has a purpose, thanks in part to a strong network of friends and family. She has been speaking out against domestic violence, becoming a role model for others who have suffered terrible abuse. "You can completely overcome traumatic situations and go on with your life and have a great life and I wanted to be the example of that," she said. "I have forgiven. I've overcome it. I don't have to deal with it. It is taken care of and I look at today and what I want in my future."
That includes 2013, a year that Tarleton is looking forward to, continuing to tell her story and appreciating the little things in life that are often taken for granted. "With the book, and hopefully my face surgery, I just feel like it is going to be a big year. It is going to be a great year," she said.
Tarleton no longer lives in the house where the attack took place. Another sign she has overcome and moved on. As for the book, it's due out in March and she said she already has another one in the works. And she also has started ablog.