Aug. 5, 2019

Did you know you could, and should do this?

Everybody thinks, in situations where abuse takes place, that forgiveness is only to be for the abuser - and that becomes a definite roadblock for most people.

They completely skip over the fact that, usually, the one they're the angriest with (and most hurt by) is usually themselves. For either allowing themselves to get in, or stay in their situation.

Now, think about a 5 year old victim of sexual abuse, by a family member. In their short life, this becomes all they know. They know in their heart, something isn't ok; but they're told if they tell anyone, bad stuff will happen. What does that do to a child??!

Fast-forward 25 years - they are now 30 years old, and still dealing with the repercussions of their 5 year old situation, PLUS the next 25 years of bad choices, promiscuity, and the very least.

Sure, there were some good times, but they were/are always shaded by the underlying darkness of the abuse.

Forgiving yourself is not easy. You can "coulda, shoulda, woulda" yourself for eternity - but what kind of life IS that??!

Take a moment. Is there stuff in YOUR past you are holding onto?  Maybe you feel you don't deserve forgiveness; or there's nothing to be forgiven for. Why? Have you ever thought about it? Is that the truth?

Have a good day, and be safe... #ENDtheSILENCEofVIOLENCE #EtSoV

Jul. 28, 2019

I always say I had a very Darth Vader/Luke Skywalker kind of relationship with my Father.

I always thought he was a very powerful man.

As I got older, I realized he was a very toxic person, that "dealt with his insecurities" (??!) by being very bold, and at times, obnoxious, with HIS needs. If he didn't get his way, he expressed his disatisfaction in an explosive manner, and left. (Do YOU hear the "Imperial March" in the background, right now??!)

I knew he had a bumpy childhood, at best, and was a very wounded man. HOWEVER, this does NOT give ANYONE the right to abuse ANYONE!!!

To my knowledge, he never hit my Mother; but was verbally abusive and manipulative.

At the end of his life, however, mainly the last year; his brain was still sharp, but he was unable to really verbally express himself.

I believe he did a lot of introspection that year. Some of the last words he said to my Sister, were, "I'm sorry"; and one of the STNAs said, "When I looked at that man, I saw Jesus".

My Father and I worked on our relationship, as far as he was able/willing to. I accepted that, though I was disappointed. We had at least discussed it; and I did see changes. I DID see good in him; but, it didn't change, or justify, all the stuff that happened in the past.

I realize nothing does - all we can do is learn, and heal, and go on. That is the MOST important - the going on.

Have a good day, and be safe... #ENDtheSILENCEofVIOLENCE #EtSoV 

Jul. 21, 2019

As I have stated, for this year's Art Exhibit, I found myself, for lack of a better word, channeling my 6-year-old self.

I honestly don't know if I EVER threatened to run away to Grandma's house (I was there so much, anyway), but I know I did NOT like the, at minimum, weekly fighting.

I tried to put in what a 6-year-old would pack - your BEST dress, fave stuffed friend, miscellaneous toys, no underwear (of course) - things that mattered. Thanks to retro stores, etc, was even able to score some fave candy from the 60's...

If you took the time to channel your inner child, what would THEY have to say about YOUR childhood??! Was it better, or worse than you remember; or have you blocked it? Is it still affecting your daily life, in subtle little ways; or have you moved on from it?

Have a good day, and be safe... #ENDtheSILENCEofVIOLENCE #EtSoV

Jul. 8, 2019

Dear Mommy and Daddy (Age 6)

Dear Mommy and Daddy, I can't understand
Why you fight when my Daddy comes home
He walks in the door, you ask where he's been
And boom - out the door, he's gone, again
It makes me SOOO sad, in my little heart
'Cause he's already not home, so much
I need him to stay here, to sit on his lap
And his stubbly face to touch
So when he comes home, please don't ask where he's been
'Cause you know how it makes him so mad
And I would really like him to stay home for awhile
Please, let me spend more time with my Dad??!

Love, ...

This piece was also very cathartic for me.

In writing, reading, AND remembering, I realized I used to blame my Mother for driving my Father away. All she had to do was say, "Where were you?", when he got home, after he had disappeared for hours at a time;  and he would explode.

One time, she blocked the door, and he climbed out the sun porch window, and walked the five miles back to his business. He always went there; then would call her a few hours later to come pick him up. He usually went right to bed, after they got home.

I used to think I lived a "Norman Rockwell" childhood - now, not so much. I just read something on Facebook, the other day - "We didn't understand, as children; our parent's still had work to do on themselves." This does not excuse any of their less than stellar behaviour; but it does explain it.

My goal is to be transparent. Does this resonate with you? Anyone you know?

Have a good day, and be safe... #ENDtheSILENCEofVIOLENCE #EtSoV 

Jul. 2, 2019

The theme for our Art Exhibit, this year, was The Kaleidoscope of Domestic Violence Through a Child's Eyes. 

For this piece, I gathered lists of positive, and negative words off of Pinterest, all year.

Then I sat down to write. There are a few words I did not get off those lists, because they were words I don't normally use, but needed to be on there. (The words are all written in vibrant Sharpie Marker.) Wish you could see it, in person!!!

This was a very personal piece. The main word I needed, was SAFE...never quite achieved that in it's fullest capacity, as a child.  There was always the feeling of the dreaded, "Wait til your Father gets home."

As I wrote, there was a good bit of catharsis - my Father was a verbally abusive man. I don't know if he ever hit my Mother - I know he came close a few times; and he did push her, once. I stood up to him, that time - no idea how old I was.

At first, I was planning to fill the whole poster board; then my Friend, Saige, suggested I make a hand. Bingo!!! (Ty, Saige!!!) I took a picture of my open hand, then drew it freehand. After completing the edge words, and cutting it out, I stood it up on a chair, until I could work on it, again.

It was after I stuck it to the tri-fold board, that I noticed the hand actually looks like my Mother's hand. More catharsis, as I felt it was her blessing - it was a year, on May 28, 2019, that we lost her.

I want to personally thank Ozer Ministries, for the opportunities afforded me, both by this Blog and Website, AND the chance to "get my creative on" via the Art Exhibit. I appreciate being able to help to do my part to #ENDtheSILENCEofVIOLENCE

Have a good day, and be safe... #EtSoV