Tag Archive | confidence

Unstoppable

Yesterday, I watched this ad and it struck a chord. The light bulb went on or maybe I had an “aha moment”. Not only because I’m a woman or because I have two daughters but it made me realize how much impact the words of others have on us. All of us. Because of our gender. Because of the color of our skin. Because of where we live. Because of the amount of money we have. There always seems to be someone drawing a line and telling us to stay behind it. Telling us what we can and can’t do.

Sometimes, we believe them.

I love the way Always put this ad together. The importance of letting our youth know there are no limits is something we can’t put on hold.  More specifically, due to the continuing limits placed on females as a society, if that starts in youth, it truly has a very damaging effect on the psyche.  This can lead to decisions that will end up wreaking havoc in a young girl’s mind that may very well change the course of her life.  It’s true, woman have come a long way since the 1800’s and even from the 1950’s but when you continually hear that “you can’t” do something it becomes your truth and eventually you don’t even try.

Self worth has no limit.

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Unraveling

As per the official definition, it would seem, on any given day I am prone to becoming unraveled.  Typically, in the preferable term which would be to free from complication or difficulty.  This is actually on most days.  That’s a good thing.  I have found that by telling my story, not only out in cyberspace, but also with each – real life person – that knows me outside of this box, I am becoming disengaged and untangled from this web of lies that had become my life for so many years.

Then there are days where I become mentally unraveled.  They are few and far between but they pop up every once in a while.  For so many years, I disconnected from the people I cared about and probably needed to be around more than anyone else but because of the life I was living I hid away and secluded myself from all.  Now that I am so close to being truly out there about all of this [once I’m out of here I’m OUT to everyone] and no matter how much of a relief that day will be, I think part of me wants to retreat and take it all back. Hide it all away so no one knows why I left.  Just leave and be free and happy and not have to explain all of the crap that has manifested into becoming this grandiose escape plan.

So I cry, lash out, and cry some more.  Try to explain and not blame and then wish it all back into my mouth so that none of the words were ever said out loud.  Delete the account and voila no proof I actually spewed out all of the atrocities of my life.  So that it would all boil down to one day I just got up and left.  No explanation.  There she goes…moving on.  People could chalk it up to a mid life crisis or what have you.  It wouldn’t matter because I wouldn’t owe anyone an explanation.

But then what?  All of this junk would still be inside of me.  I can’t even imagine having all of this nonsense still bottled up.  I can barely remember what it feels like when no one knew.  It seems like that was a lifetime ago.  Part of a different person’s story.  Something I read about halfheartedly because I couldn’t connect with the storyteller. Ha. If only. Truly though, those fleeting moments when I wish my secrets were still my own happen as if an out of body experience.  I’m not even really sure what triggers those thoughts.  Maybe just in knowing how close I am to being on the other side of the mirror my subconscious plays games with me.

The real deal of the matter is that…it’s so freaking close I can almost touch it.  It’s simultaneously awesome and scary as hell.  The day I’ve been waiting for, for what seems like an eternity, is at hand. Literally – at my fingertips.  The closer it gets the more hungry for it I am.  Salivating at the images my mind paints of what it will be like when I am sitting here writing about how it all went down, smooth as can be.  Background noises of my choosing – or blissful silence.

In the past year and a half, I have allowed six people that know me in the outside world to read my blog.  People I was comfortable with knowing the real situation.  For a while now, I’ve been contemplating whether or not to let my sister and mother in.  I wasn’t sure how well that would go.  I was unsure whether or not it was the right time just yet.  Would I even know when the right time would be?  Should I wait until I’m closer to stepping out of the door?  What if telling certain people at certain times of my journey is exactly what I’m supposed to do?

Last month, I found a letter.  It was a letter my sister wrote to me when I was leaving to go to the battered women’s shelter – way back when I was 21 years old.  Mostly, she had written the lyrics to Mariah Carey’s song “Make It Happen”.  The rest was telling me she loved me and knew I could do this, and how when this passes I will start a new life.  That I would never forget what I had been through but it will be in my past and all of it will make me a stronger person. My sister was only 16 when she wrote this letter to me.  I thought, how sad that my 16 year old sister had to write this to me.  Even sadder was that I was 21 years old and on my way to a shelter for battered women.

When I came across the letter I thought, maybe now is the time I should share this, my story, with her.  After all, I am beyond the embarrassment part of my story.  I think I’ve come a long way in how I’ve told my story and what I’ve learned from my story.  As I started to tell my sister there was something I wanted her to read, I found myself saying…I’m proud of what I’ve written.  I’m proud that I have shared my story and I’m proud of where I am now as opposed to where I was the first day I sat down to write my very first blog entry.  And as I’ve done with everyone else I’ve shared my story with, I sent her the link – and ran. Lol.

After she read it in it’s entirety, she told me how even though she knew some of it, she really didn’t know how deep it was and how long it was going on.  She said how, now, it all made more sense.  The person I am, the way I am – makes sense.  She also said…what a great author I am (still debatable) and that she was proud of me. Aww.  I’m not really sure I’ve ever heard those words – for real. I’m sure they’ve been said. At some point. Over time. By someone. Parents, relatives. Who can recall?  It’s all just fleeting words in a fading memory. This is now.  It’s real.

Above all else, I am proud of myself – as I continue to unravel myself from the past and move that much closer to the future I was meant to have.

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To read from the beginning… my story starts here.

Suppressing Fear

A while back, I attempted meditation.  I only did it a couple of times but it was an enjoyable experience and it seemed like something that would be helpful if I could continue it regularly.  Of course, I didn’t continue. No specific reason as to why. Just stopped. You know how it goes, too busy with work, family, blogging…etc.  Plus, it’s hard to get a quiet time to really focus.  I have a small window before my day gets going and phones start ringing and if I forget then there’s no time to squeeze it in.  Also, there are things that I do for me and my own peace of mind (such as writing) that I’m not into the rest of the household knowing – therefore, less comments from the peanut gallery – and meditation is on that list.

So, out of the blue, I decided on Monday to start again.  I’m working on “realigning my chakras” and I have to say, I’m enjoying it.  Monday happened to be a noisy morning so I put in ear plugs, which really helped me focus, and so I have been using them every day.  For me, it’s a smart move because I can tune right into my breathing and clearing my mind.

This week I’ve been working on my Red Chakra which represents my base aka my foundation. The meditative exercises I’ve been employing deal with understanding the source of my life energy.  Not only from my current state but what has been passed down to me through the generations.  I’ve been focusing on Renewal; change and new beginnings.  This is part of the book I’m reading, sort of a Chakra guideline.  To my surprise and yet not a shock, apropos my life, part of the meditation was to feel fear, sadness and let my mind journey to that place I want to inevitably be.

Pleasantly, my consciousness has quickly adapted to letting my thoughts and visuals go where I need to in order to conjure these very real feelings.  It’s only Thursday, and I’m already feeling a clarity about certain things, so I’m interested to see where this goes.  Here’s the thing.  This week brought up a feeling I always knew existed but I’ve been so determined to suppress it that when it showed up in my meditation it was very emotional.  Very emotional.

Fear.

I just can’t shake it.  It’s this shadow that is living inside of me and no matter how hard I push it down it still pops up.  Strangely, the fear is not in being here or in the actual act of leaving.  I’m very aware of the process I’ve outlined and what needs to be taken care of in order to accomplish this.  I’m confident in my ability to get out.  However, every action has a reaction.  The fear is in the unknown response of what leaving will snowball into.

At this point in “our” lives, I know on some level he knows I’m leaving or at least suspects it but doubts I’d actually do it.  He still plans for a future of growing old together – as if.  But I know, as with any change, there are going to be stages he goes through.  Of course, we’re both going to go through stages but they’ll be vastly different.  I already know how he reacts when he’s angry so I anticipate promises, threats, and destruction.  I think it’s the hunting down part that keeps me in a certain head space.  I mean, he’s turning 50 – does he really still have the chase in him?  I tell him continually that I don’t love him and that I’m not happy, and in giving the benefit of the doubt, I feel like that will click (at some point) and he’ll accept the fact that I’m not coming back.

It’s not even fear about what he’ll do to me.  That’s pretty much the least of it.  It’s more of the lengths will he go to in order for me to come back.  Who will he harass?  What will he do?  Where will he show up?  When will he give up?  And of course there is – why.  I know he’s going to play this pathetic…Why did I leave?  Why didn’t I give him another chance?  Why didn’t I let go of the past?  And whatever else his brain can muster to dump all of this on me, as if it’s my fault.  I guess the fear is that he will actually come through on one or more of his threats made over the span of this marriage.

Fear of the unknown is horrifically cruel.  It plays every single scenario over and over, each time making the outcome worse and worse.  This gut wrenching fear is paralyzing.  I was talking to a friend of mine about all of this yesterday, and they said that [since I’m aware] I can start to detach from the fear and start really confronting it.  That I’m, moving away from it but it’s a process and I have to move through the process, which has already begun.  My friend said, the control needs to shift to me now. The battle is in my heart.  The battle is with the fear. That I’m already bigger than that fear at the deepest level and ready to take it on. Now it just has to reach the surface.  “When you decide it’s time to go, you’ll be ready for whatever he brings your way.”

I know that’s all true. It makes sense. I guess it’s just that after all these years, now that the end is so close, all the suppressed trepidation is bubbling up. Maybe that’s the point of starting back on this road of meditation.  Maybe it was a subconscious decision that is meant to lead me down the path of self realization and enlightenment in order to finish this part of my life.  I guess I’ll learn more as I continue on this journey – through darkness, dawn and light.

31 Facts in 31 Days – Day 31

Today is the last day of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  Thank you for seeing me through each day, with words of support, and by sharing some of these posts.  I’ve definitely learned a lot more than I expected by posting 31 Facts in 31 Days.  I hope you did too.

Empower:
• To give power or ability to.
• To enable or permit.

Power:
• Ability to do or act; capability of doing or accomplishing something.
• Great or marked ability to do or act; strength; might; force.

Ability:
• Power or capacity to do or act physically, mentally, legally, morally, financially, etc.
• Competence in an activity or occupation because of one’s skill, training, or other qualification.

Since the beginning, I always knew that one day I’d be leaving. I always believed I had the ability to pull it off. I always strived to survive another day to make sure I saw that – last day. Over this past year, my experience in blogging has been something of a rebirth. With releasing my secrets, I have rendered them powerless. My story of abuse doesn’t hurt me anymore. It’s no longer a burden weighing heavily on my heart, or on my soul. And because of that, there has been somewhat of a regeneration of all that I have already known, except now the reality of – leaving – is close at hand. It’s in my peripheral. And, it’s gorgeous.

Music has had a very large impact on my life, since I was very young. The sound of the melodies, the words and the voice of who is singing the song always has an affect on me. It brings out every emotion. I do appreciate all types of genres – it’s only fair. The people writing and performing music (as with blogging), do so from a part of their souls that needs to tell their story. Every song I listen to, takes me to a certain place in my mind. Whether it be memories of the past or dreams of the future – music stirs me.

One song in particular, since the very first time I heard it (2002), has had a profound effect. No matter my mood, it always gives me focus, clarity and drive. The words and the energy of the song are beyond what I can explain.

Best I can say – this – is my song of empowerment.

See lyrics below:

Fighter (2002, Album: Stripped)

After all you put me through
You’d think I’d despise you
But in the end I wanna thank you
‘Cause you made that much stronger

Well I thought I knew you
Thinking that you were true
Guess I, I couldn’t trust called your bluff
Time is up, ’cause I’ve had enough

You were there by my side
Always down for the ride
But your joy ride just came down in flames
‘Cause your greed sold me out in shame, mmm hmm

After all of the stealing and cheating
You probably think that
I hold resentment for you
But uh uh, oh no, you’re wrong

‘Cause if it wasn’t for all
That you tried to do
I wouldn’t know just how capable I am to pull through
So I wanna say thank you

‘Cause it
Makes me that much stronger
Makes me work a little bit harder
Makes me that much wiser
So thanks for making me a fighter

Made me learn a little bit faster
Made my skin a little bit thicker
Makes me that much smarter
So thanks for making me a fighter

Never saw it coming
All of your backstabbing
Just so, you could cash in on a good thing
Before I’d realized your game

I heard you’re going ’round
Playin’ the victim now
But don’t even begin feelin’ I’m the one to blame
‘Cause you dug your own grave

After all of the fights and the lies
Guess you’re wanting to harm me
But that won’t work anymore
No more, uh uh, it’s over

‘Cause if it wasn’t for all of your torture
I wouldn’t know how to be this way now
And never back down
So I wanna say thank you

‘Cause it
Makes me that much stronger
Makes me work a little bit harder
Makes me that much wiser
So thanks for making me a fighter

Made me learn a little bit faster
Made my skin a little bit thicker
Makes me that much smarter
So thanks for making me a fighter

How could this man I thought I knew
Turn out to be unjust so cruel
Could only see the good in you
Pretended not to see the truth

You tried to hide your lies
Disguise yourself through
Living in denial
But in the end you’ll see
You won’t stop me

I am a fighter
(I’m a fighter)
and I
I ain’t gonna stop
(I ain’t gonna stop)
There is no turning back
I’ve had enough

Makes me that much stronger
Makes me work a little bit harder
Makes me that much wiser
So thanks for making me a fighter

Made me learn a little bit faster
Made my skin a little bit thicker
Makes me that much smarter
So thanks for making me a fighter

Thought I would forget
But I, I remember
Yes I remember
I remember

Makes me that much stronger
Makes me work a little bit harder
Makes me that much wiser
So thanks for making me a fighter

Made me learn a little bit faster
Made my skin a little bit thicker
Makes me that much smarter
So thanks for making me a fighter

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Fact Source:  Dictionary.com

Fact Source:  Metro Lyrics

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To read from the beginning… #MyStory starts here.

31 Facts in 31 Days – Day 13

howtohelp

You Don’t Have To Be An Expert To Be Able To Help!

Many people struggle with how to help a friend or other loved one who is in an unsafe, abusive relationship. Talking to a friend who you are worried about can be daunting.  The fear of interfering, being wrong, or possibly driving them away can keep many people from reaching out.  If you are concerned for someone’s safety in a relationship, you can turn to many available resources that may help you start the conversation. According to Domestic Abuse Intervention Services (2014), some important things to consider when talking to a friend include the following:

  1. Pick a time that won’t cause you two to be rushed.
  2. Find a safe location where you can talk and not be disturbed or overheard by others.
  3. Offer your support, including suggestions for resources and practical support, such as calling a local domestic violence hotline together. It can be scary to make the first step in leaving or to even acknowledge there is a problem, so make sure your friend knows you are there to support them through the process.

There are some important things to try to avoid when helping a friend. These include the following:

  1. Avoid accusing, judging, or diagnosing your friend or their abuser. You don’t want to raise walls between you and your friend by getting their defenses up. Rather, you want to open lines of communication and offer them your support. Most likely, there are several reasons your friend is staying with this person. Striking an accusatory tone is going to get them on the defense when you are trying to have an open conversation. 
  2. Don’t pressure your friend into leaving the relationship.  There are so many reasons a victim might stay with an abuser.  You likely don’t know many of the ins and outs of the person’s relationship. Be open to hearing some good things about your friend’s partner.  Validate where they are coming from.

FACT: You don’t have to be an expert to help someone who is in an abusive relationship. What’s important is to show them that you’re concerned and deeply care about the happiness and safety of your friend. That is important enough. Be there when they need support, and help them reach out to support systems and resources as they are ready. If they’re not ready to hear you or are not ready to leave, make yourself available to be there when they become ready.

Remember to be patient.

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Fact Source:  See The Triumph

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To read from the beginning… #MyStory starts here.

Sweet Heart Series: Day 5

Let me be clear…not everything I read has to do with abuse.  It’s just that when I started on WordPress that was the topic I was writing about and it was the topic I needed to read in order to find my way.

Beyond that joyful topic is so much more.  I love reading your poetry, and your hysterical hijinx in the work place, as well as the inspirational posts and not for nothing…there is some nice erotic fiction on here. Haha!  Hey…I’m being honest.

Today I wanted to share a post that really resonated with me.  Made me rethink and change my way of speaking.  You see, I have a few friends who are all about positivity.  Being grateful for everything they have is just second nature to them.  Even if things don’t always go their way for some reason they take it with a grain of salt and understanding that maybe something better is ahead.  I’ve taken notice that this attitude has worked for them and that what they wish for others was returned to them.  So when I read this post it wasn’t something foreign to me.  It really made sense.

I started to change the words I used and after a while I didn’t have to stay on top of what I said…it came naturally.  For those of you who have followed me since the inception of this blog, you may have noticed there has been a change.  Many of you have commented on the growth you have seen.  I truly appreciate that and it would be remiss of me not to pass this post on, as I feel it was a true turning point in my way of thinking.

This one was posted by: The I Am

Like so many other people, I have a list of words that I try very hard not to use. For the most part, they’re easy to avoid. One word that takes more concentration than others on my list is “hope.” *

I’ve looked for synonyms, but none really satisfy the requirements of this single, simple word. So, I fall back on the good ole’ standby, “trust.” As in, “I trust you had a good time.”

But why do I avoid “hope?”

In my thoughts on anything, I try to always think positively. I want to manifest this and that and to do so requires a constant flow of positive thoughts. And “hope,” I’ve determined, is not as positive as I’d like it to be.

Continue reading here… There is no Hope