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Are You Ready to Tell Your Story?

Loving Yourself


 

“For all those who believed me, and for all those who didn’t.  It can’t be easy hearing things you shouldn’t.”  Icarus X

This little girl kept reminding me that NOW is the time to let it out…it is time to play!

“Loving myself is the most important thing I could ever do for myself.”

As I share this story with you, I want to be clear that I am not writing it so that you will feel sorry for me.  A “poor me” attitude does not cut it for me and is not part of the motive and drive to share this with the world.

I look at it this way:  I have one of three choices I can make:

  1. I can let it destroy me and leave me paralyzed.
  2. I can let it change me to become or continue to feel less than and angry as well as destroy my dreams.
  3. I can let it ignite my life and become a force for change.

I can honestly say there have been different times and stages in my life where I have chosen one or the other of the choices above, in fact, I have chosen all three!  I suspect it is this way for many of us who have suffered the pain and suffering of abuse.

What I will say here is that for me, forgiveness and loving myself has been the answer.  I acknowledge my own role in what I am about to share with you. However, know too that there are the blessings, gifts, and understanding that comes our way, no matter how dark, if only we let it come to us.

Know that forgiving is not about forgetting what happened, or condoning the actions of another.  It is about moving forward, healing and expanding your life in a way where you truly live!

I am not a trained therapist, I hold no degrees in psychology, and I am not equipped to counsel others who are struggling to break free.  I am not qualified to offer anything but the sharing of my own experience.  It has been in the telling of my story that I have been able to rid myself of the nagging depression, the anger, the debilitating self criticism and find inner peace and healing.

It certainly has not happened overnight, know that time is a healer and that it does take diligence to open your heart to healing.

I have put off writing this book for several years, even though I named this book, and reserved the website www.TheWomanILove.com several years ago.

This is a tough story to tell on so many levels.  I have had to put aside the worries about what others will think of me if I tell my story.  I have had quite a struggle with how it will impact my family.

I have tried many times to ignore the promptings.

I have chosen to tell this story because I know and understand that there are many who have experienced abuse.  I hope this story will help to show that we can rise above our “story” no matter how many years you lived it and no matter how gruesome it was…IF you have the will to “make it so.”

At the heart of this book is the deep desire to share and support others who have suffered abuse in the hopes that my story will give hope.  If I can help even one person to have the courage to rise above a horrible situation, it is worth it to me.

Abuse comes in different forms and different degrees.  Mine came in many different forms.

As I weave this story of shame, humiliation, abuse, near breaking points, confusion and flat out mind numbing fear, I have chosen to change the names of the important people in this narrative.

Each of us has our own journey and while we each experienced abuses from the same source, we are all uniquely different people, handling our pain and our recovery in very different ways.

I always thought that as a family those of us who survived would remain forever close.  That has been a near impossible feat, as we have all processed so differently from each other.

For my sisters, blame, finger pointing and denial is the way to cope.

For my brother, immersion into religion and work consumes his life, as the pain is often too much to bear.  My brother has lost two children…I am not sure many of us could feel whole and sane after enduring such grief.

My mother, now advancing in years, has grown stronger, and healing is taking place.  It’s been difficult to accept her role in not protecting her children…in letting it happen. And yet, she too was a victim.

I will not go into graphic detail of what happened, as what I do share is going to be graphic enough.  I also need to protect both the child…and the woman in me.

I remember as a child of eight, making the decision that I would not and could not, any longer remember everything that was happening to me.  I refused to remember.  It is a self protection mechanism that kept me alive.  Sometimes today, I feel I suffer from that decision because I always have quite a time being able to convey a conversation I have heard.  I feel it relates directly back to that decision I made so long ago.

As a child, and into adulthood, there were rules so abundant that it was mind splitting.  Even more, there were stark contradictions, rampant hypocrisy, and a damaged soul that made choices for his life that adversely affected all who came near.

And so my story begins.

In order to heal, I must love myself.  If I do not forgive both myself and those involved in this story, I lose.

Given the dark pains I’ve experienced, nothing is more generous and loving than the willingness to embrace grief in order to forgive.

I’ve decided that I can no longer desire to keep this boxed away, and set aside.  It has to die.  It has to be grieved and released in a powerful decision to not simply survive but thrive. I simply MUST love myself!

“Don’t let the darkness from your past block the light of joy in your present.  What happened is done.  Stop giving time to things which no longer exist, when there is so much joy to be found here and now.”  Karen Salmasohn

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