Tag Archives: Mormon

Songs of the Heart Sunday: One Clear Voice

“And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice” (1 Kings 19:11-12.)

I am so grateful that I have been taught to listen for that voice, recognize, and that this weekend I have been given the strength and courage to act on those promptings.

Yesterday my husband and I had a wonderful day together, most of it enjoying the beauties of the surrounding islands. It was absolutely wonderful and relaxing. Nature is providing becoming a refuge for me. I loved sitting on the bench listening to the waves, the birds, the families, while feeling the wind on my face, and trying to capture on my camera the peace I felt.

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When the evening storms started to roll in I made my way back to the car a few feet away. Even driving through the storm was peaceful, almost symbolic, thunderheads around, rain coming down, yet bright sun rays shown through. I just knew that I would see “my rainbow”. I even changed my camera lens preparing for the gift that I knew He would send me, as if it was already in the works, claiming it as mine.

He sent me a rainbow, but not in the form of a colorful bow in the sky, but an email from MJ’s Mom. I claimed it as my rainbow.

When we came home, my husband decided that we would go ahead and pack up the two modems that we need to send back to Comcast. We found one, no problem. Packed it up ready to go. The other completely eluded us. We looked everywhere, for hours. My relaxing peaceful day gone. I was now anxious and frustrated, and experiencing the negative feelings about myself that automatically come as a result of my PTSD. I prayed several times as I looked. Finally after my ideas of where it could be were completely exhausted, and I was so triggered into negative thoughts about myself and my traumas I decided I needed to step back and work on my pictures to get into the now, and a peaceful point.

The more I tried the more I wondered where the modem was. Again, I prayed. This time pouring my heart out in gratitude for a great day, and pleading for the return of that peace. I told my Father in Heaven that I had no idea, where the modem is, but I knew that He did. I begged that He led me to where is was. I turned back to work on the pictures again hoping to feel a prompting to where the ellusive modem was hiding.

On our desk sits notebook that I scribble and doodle on. While waiting for the next batch of pictures to download, I scribbled.

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“Where’s the modem” (The black out is where I had scribbled my full name.) “I’m so frustrated. Urgh!!”

No sooner had I written those words did I hear that familiar voice. The voice that has guided me so many times before. “I am going to see if you trust me. Go relax in your chair in the livingroom.” when the Spirit speaks directly to you, you need to act. Relaxing. Not so easy, but I had asked, and I wanted to trust.

I went to my chair, but I continued to look. I looked on both end tables, and under them. I heard my name, then the word, “Relax.”

Inhaling deeply and exhaling slowing, I rested my head on the back of my chair. As I did my eyes rested straight across the room on our metal cd rack full of cds, my husband’s cane hanging from it obscuring the view of anything behind it, unless you were sitting in my chair. You could see maybe a half an inch or an inch at the very least. In that gap I saw the hidden, most literally, modem. I had such an overwhelming feeling of “Be Still and Know the I Am God.”

Heavenly Father knows cares about even the smallest of our problems. In the scheme on the world’s struggles, a lost modem ranks pretty low, but as His daughter nothing or no one ranks higher. He loves each of us so much. He blesses us for acting on those promptings we receive.

He knows each of us personally and by name. He stands beside us during our life’s teaching moments as they provide a springboard for other moments.

For me He knew that I needed that experience last night in trusting Him. Acting on voice of the Spirit, to feeling closer to the Spirit than I have in a while, to feel strong enough to recognize then act on the prompting today that will be pivitol in my journey of healing.

My alarm was set for 7:30. It did not go off. Awakened at 8:30, it would have been easy to to say there is no way, since Church starts at 9:00. However, I quickly did my hair and makeup, dressed, and jumped in the car. It was I few minutes before 9:00. My husband had decided to stay home.

As I turned on the highway to head towards Church, I saw him. My childhood friend, the one who many years ago raped me. My initial feeling was the fight or flight, then something else happened. It was a peace that prompted me it was okay, and it was time to pull over and talk to him. Reason told me it was crazy, Little Hope did not like the idea, but peace and the Spirit spoke calming assurance that it was going to be okay. I pulled several feet in front of him lest the closer he came, I change my mind. He walked by my window, I called his name. Reminded him who I was. He said he knew who I was, he made comments about where my Church was when I was little, so he did know exactly who I was. Other memories of our youth, he did not remember, or atleast his mouth could not relay what his mind was thinking. He many years of hard living on drugs as left him very schitzopranic like. As parted ways, he told me to be careful out there. That brought tears to my eyes. I still need to process alot from the meeting, but I feel like it is a possitive step in my healing journey.

Again I am so very grateful that I was able to talk to my friend, parent little Hope as she was afraid and let her know that I can take over and live, and we are going the be okay. Only through the comforting voice of the Spirit was I able to do these things. I am eternally grateful.

Songs of the Heart Sunday: Let This Be My Prayer

Our Father in heaven is not an umpire who is trying to count us out. He is not a competitor who is trying to outsmart us. He is not a prosecutor who is trying to convict us. He is a loving Father who wants our happiness and eternal progress and who will help us all he can – if we will but give him in our lives an opportunity to do so with obedience and humility, and faith and patience. ~ Richard L Evans

A friend of mine felt prompted to send me this quote. I know the prompting came as a tender mercy from Heavenly Father. In the struggles I face, I do sometimes ask why? Or beg Him to give me a break, sometimes feeling like the red-headed step-child because of all that I have been put through. I try to remain faithful, occasionally not keeping my foot on the straight and narrow, but I am generally on the path looking towards God in Faith, as the trials of faith pour down.

I want to focus on prayer as a two-way conversation with our Father in Heaven. I hope to do it through music, quotes, and my own words.

This first song is a sweet song with a child questioning if Heavenly Father hears prayers. We sing it at Church. It is called A Child’s Prayer.

Our next song, Be Still, has always touched me. I know Heavenly Father hears my prayers, My Savior Jesus Christ suffered the things I endure, and the Holy Ghost comforts me.

Elder David A Bednar spoke about prayer. This message really touched me. I often give a grocery list prayer. I am thankful for, I need, they need, and end it. I really need to communicate with my Father.

We have a Prophet on the earth today. His name is Thomas S Monson. I loved his message on prayer given at a semi-annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

I want to end with one last song and my testimony of prayer. I do know my prayers are heard by my Father in Heaven. Those that I speak out loud, those that I whisper, those that I think, and those that I scream through tears. I know as my loving Father He wants to hear from me more, and my prayers of gratitude need to be more sincere and thought out, as does the rest of my prayers. I need to take more time in quiet reflection after my prayers to hear and feel those promptings and words He offers me.

Years ago I heard one of the saddest stories on a radio station. I was glad I was pulling into my apartment complex, because I bawled like a baby. This teenager called in to the station after scanning through the radio as we all often do. I think I Can Only Imagine had just played and the DJ was talking about prayer, and how he prays everyday that he and his family gets to be with Jesus. He said something to the effect that we should all pray for that. That statement is what prompted this girl, I want to say she was 17 or 18, to call in. She started right out of the gate that she had been to a few churches, but in each of them she was taught that only the leaders could pray. She had often wanted to talk to God, about the things going on in her life, and ask Him questions, but based on the teaches of the churches her parents took her too she felt she would be sinning to pray. She mentioned some of the horrible things she had experienced in her life that she felt that talking to God, and not having someone do it for her would comfort her, but instead she felt alone and betrayed by God. Then she asked through tears “Can I really pray?” The DJ said “Yes, not only can you, but God wants you to.” The DJ prayed with her, she did not speak, but he expressed gratitude for guiding her to the station that day to answer the question in her heart.

I am so grateful that I was taught to pray as a little child. As I prayed and saw the prayers answered my faith grew.

This last song is The Prayer sung by Jessie Funk Clark and Daniel Beck.

Songs of the Heart Sunday: For can a woman forget her sucking child..

This is an essay I wrote for an Institute class several years ago.
I wanted to share it with you, in the hopes that it might help anyone
that is struggling with the trials this life has to offer.
It is truly my testimony of our Father in Heaven and the love He
freely gives to each of us.

“For can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have
compassion on the son of her womb? Yes, they may forget, yet I will
not forget thee, O house of Israel.” 1 Nephi Chapter 21 verse 15.
During the past summer months, this scripture’s meaning enlarged my
life. The experience I cannot relate for, the deep spiritual nature
of it, but through it, I learned the greatest lesson a daughter
could learn. My Father in Heaven loves me, and He knows each step I
take. He, as a loving parent, allowed me to learn this lesson the
hard way. You see, I reached a point in my life that though I praised
my Father in Heaven with voice, the internal person drifted in to waters
occupied by the Grand Spiritual Crocodile. I only allowed one toe
dabble with an impure thought here, and a word in anger there, but
once my toe touched the water, he grabbed me. I fell. The fall
hurt, the most excruciating pain. Not quite the intensity Adam must have felt
knowing, his unworthiness to be in the continued presence of Father,
but my own personal detachment from Father. I chose to walk away. I
felt lost, the testimony that once sustained me, ceased to exist. The
comfort I felt I merited, He denied, or such I assumed. I tried to
depend on my own strength, but my strength failed me. For as a wound
from a crocodile will make you bleed and lose life blood, a wound from
Satan if not tended by the Great Physician, will allow your spiritual
blood drain, therefore a permanent fall into Satan’s realm.

I drifted farther and farther away, and no one around me knew it,
because I always portrayed myself as spiritual. What I failed to
realize was Satan tried to fulfill prophesy with me, by “gently leading me
down to hell.” In losing my faith and testimony, I felt like I also
lost myself, my identity. The Hope who existed only a few
months before, could be found nowhere. I prayed, but not in faith
that God would hear me, but to say I had prayed. I read my Patriarchal
blessing, but with my heart hard, I felt like He betrayed me.

One night after realizing, if I did not rediscover myself and faith,
Satan would be victorious over me, I knelt and prayed. I prayed with
the hope that Father would hear me, and send me comfort and peace and
take away the anger. As I prayed vocally, relating the desires of my
heart to my Heavenly Father, I felt peace, but the questions remained
unanswered. I resolved myself to remain kneeling until I understood
the reason, why I had to experience this. While kneeling, floods of
memories came. I recalled my lessons in Relief Society when I felt
the Spirit and I spoke the words of my Father in Heaven. I recollected
my experiences in the temple, the words of my Patriarchal blessing
(one particular phrase), and then the question why? Why if He loved
me so much did He allow me to go through this grievous experience that
almost cost me my testimony? Then they came, the words from a
blessing I received almost exactly a year before, “Hope, you are one
of the Noble and Great Ones who will be called upon to endure many
trials…” I do not recall the whole phrase but I understood, and
thanked my Father in Heaven for reaching out to me when I needed him.

He knew the moment I could no longer bear the burden upon my back,
and He allowed me to go to that point, before He reminded me that He
listened. Not only did He listen to the words in my most recent
prayers, but the words of the prayers I had uttered, though not in
complete faith. Father lovingly extended His arms wide to me, but I
had to walk into them. He reminded me of many wonderful things, that
night, the greatest thing being, my Older Brother, Jesus Christ, and
His atoning sacrifice. At one point even He felt alone asking if He
must endure and yet, He succeeded coming face to face with Satan, and
He didn’t falter, experiencing excruciating pain and anguish to the
point of bleeding from every pore and yet not a murmuring word. And
then to my mind the words of the Prophet, “Art thou greater than He?”

The Godhead, each individual member, takes an active interest in our
well-being. They love us, and work as a team to ensure our happiness
and joy. “Adam fell that men might be, men are that [we] might have
joy.” I believe part of our own personal plans of happiness includes
a fall. For we must experience opposition in all things, to truly
feel the joy that comes after a complete repentance.

All in all, it is my belief that the scripture in 1 Nephi 21, details repentance.
Father in Heaven will not forget us, but He also knowing the minute
details of His kingdom, cannot run after us when we turn away from
Him. He provided us with the freedom to choose, “liberty and eternal
life…or to choose captivity and death.” The beauty comes from the
gift He furnished through Christ, repentance. When trials come and
our flesh weakens causing us to momentarily opt captivity, Father
prepared from the foundation of the world the way for us the erase the
mistake and return again to Him. He brought us to this existence for
the opportunity to prove ourselves and our love for Him.
Sister Mary Ellen Edmunds wrote a book entitled, Love is a Verb and
how correct she is. Acting on the feelings within, and turning to the source
of eternal life and happiness, insures joy beyond imagination.

We should not pray not to have trial, but rather for the wisdom to learn
from our trials. Wonderful opportunities and blessings awaken in the
hours of trial, faith can be nurtured, love expanded, eternal perspective
broadened if we listen without murmur and work without grudge.
We do not give our Heavenly Father credit when we lack the faith in
His wisdom. He will not give us more than we can handle.
“And the truth shall make you free.” I find freedom in this truth.

My testimony is this. We act out the story of the prodigal son
every day, and every day our Father willingly takes us into His loving
arms welcoming us back. He loves us, flaws and strengths. He loves us
so much that He offered our Older Brother as a sacrifice for times that
we do stray. I love Him for that. It saddens me to know that I
caused much of His pain and anguish, but oh what joy I find in the
knowledge that He loved me enough to do it.

Having experienced such a significant change in myself over the past
months, I want to share the joy I feel. Doctrine and Covenants 18 has
new meaning to me, “and if it so be that ye should labor all of your
days and bring but one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with
him in the kingdom of my Father.” That soul is me, the “many
souls” spoken of in the next verses include those that I may help to
come unto Christ. I carry much gratitude in my heart for a Father
who loves me enough to send righteous men and women, past and present, to aid
me on my journey back home. I am eternally grateful for His
Priesthood Power upon the earth today. I know when men uphold their
sacred calling, they speak the words of God and act in His name. We
can listen to them and hear our Father’s voice.

I am thankful for the Book of Mormon and the Holy Bible, and new meaning they bring to
my life each day I sup from their pages. When I learn and practice the
principles taught within, I experience miraculous joy. Now I conclude
my humble testimony in the name of He who made joy possible, my Older
Brother, my Lord, my Savior, my Eternal Friend, Jesus Christ, Amen.

____

As I mentioned I wrote this several years ago, almost 20 when I think about it. Reading it now, it has even deeper meaning. The Atonement has deeper meaning.

The Atonement of Jesus Christ not only covered my sins if I would repent, but also during His Atonement, in a way that I cannot fathom or imagine, He suffered the feelings that I am enduring right now as I am walking my journey of healing from abuse. I might meet others along my path that can empathize to a point, but my Savior truly understands what I am feeling even when I cannot find the words to describe the emotions, because He suffered them too. I find comfort in that, not that He went through anything of the sort, but because He willingly experienced every emotion to the deepest depth that anyone could suffer so He could succor us in the midst of our afflictions and infirmities. I am so grateful of the love that He has for me. I am so so thankful that I can call Him my Savior, my Brother, my Lord, my God, my Friend, my Healer…and know that He walks this familiar road beside me.

Daily Prompt: In His Constant Care

Daily Prompt: The Artist’s Eye
Is there a painting or sculpture you’re drawn to? What does it say to you? Describe the experience.

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This “In His Constant Care” by Simon Dewey. It speaks to me for deep reasons.

I know there are people who read my blog who have lost children through no fault of their own. I hope this image brings comfort.

It brings me comfort through my infertility. We will all be resurrected one day as were laid to rest. There are numerous babies and children that have died at the hands of their parents, that will not be reunited with them in the resurrection. You see such awful things on the news every day, these sweet babies are innocent and will be blessed with all the Father has in store, including parents who love them.

I believe with all my being that my arms will be filled with one or more of these special children during the millennium, and I will raise them in a beautiful world of peace–Governed by Christ. I recognize that I must be righteous to receive such a beautiful honored and sacred gift, I have so much to do before then, but for now, I am grateful to know that my babies are in “His Constant Care.”

Great are thy tender mercies, O Lord. ~ Psalms 119:156

 

Blocking Out Negativity With Music

My husband is watching a tv show that has a good bit of swearing in it. Swearing is one of those things that bothers me. Ironically, I have found myself saying a word or two since I have been going through these most difficult days. I do not like that. That is one of the reasons I put on my headphones and started listening to uplifting music and watching uplifting videos. I do not want negative words to be the first things that pop into my mind when I get angry, and if I put a filter on my mind it seems it is easier to control my mouth. Go figure.

Ironically, the first song I listened to tonight on the LDS Radio was a saddness trigger for me. I am not sure why except that maybe I sang it around the time I was abused. It used to be one of my favorite songs. It is still a beautiful song, just makes me alittle weepy.

Right after that song came on, I was comforted by this beautiful song. I thought about the things I have been taking photos of lately, and the love Heavenly Father has for them, and how it does not compare with the love He has for me.

Then I started searching Youtube. These next three videos are songs that touched my heart.

The first one made me want to sob. I want to put it on my Iphone, and when I cry put it on repeat, for when others ask questions vocally or with their eyes.

These next two are basically my testimony of Jesus Christ put to music.

Trying to Remember My Talents

When I was a teenager sitting in Young Women (the Church program for the girls 12-18), we had a lesson on talents. To set the stage of this class, you need to realize our class was very small. Three young women to be exact, myself and my two best friends. Bec was already an amazing artist, and Mandy, she was extremely musically talented.

So when the question was posed, with what talents have you been blessed? The answers quickly evident for Bec and Mandy, when and came to me crickets. So the teacher, who happened to be Bec’s Mom, asked for their help, they thought and thought, and the talent they came up with was that I loved people. Not really the talent a sixteen year old wants to hear as her talent. Especially when her best friends have talent oozing from the them. Not only could I not see a real talent, but those who knew me inside and out could not either. I was crushed.

I went home devastated. I knelt beside my bed and poured out my heart to Heavenly Father begging Him to let me have another talent. I wanted one that others would see and recognize, one other than just a great capacity to “love people.” I promised Him that if He showed me my talent and helped me develop it, I would use it for good.

The next day in English literature we started studying poetry. Poetry. Yeah right. I hated reading. I would not even read the cliff notes for the books for school I hated reading so much!

BUT that day…Never before had the words looked so beautiful to me. I loved the way they sounded and flowed. I loved the way that the thoughts seem to form at my finger tips so rapidly, almost guided by some unseen being. It was so amazing.

That night I penned my first real poem.

Everytime I see this Greg Olsen picture I think of that poem, so it is a fitting introduction.
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Big Brother

Big Brother used to tease me,
Called me His little squirt.
He sheltered me from trouble,
Never wanted me to hurt.

The time soon came His leaving,
The tears I shed, not few;
But He promised He’d prepare for me,
The place I must go too.

The days without Him seemed endless
And I wondered where He was sent.
I asked Father, this my question,
“Where is this place Big Brother Jesus went?”

Father smiled and then He hugged me.
The answer He thought I should know.
“Dear Child, Your Brother is preparing the world-
The place you soon will go.”

“What is this world you speak of?
Is it far or is it near?
Oh now I miss, Big Brother Jesus.
How I wish that He were here.”

“My dear child” Father answered.
“He has gone, not far, to earth.
Your Brother Jesus is doing well.
He though he had a humble birth.

We are with Him during each moment.
He knows we truly care.
All He must do to be with us,
Is to kneel, and ask in prayer.”

“But how long will He be gone?”
I asked Father still confused.
I was but a little spirit then,
My Big Brother I was afraid to lose.

“A time I cannot tell you Child,
For this you cannot know.
No fear should you have of losing your Brother,
He is doing My work below.”

Father’s words so gentle,
That I felt like I could ask,
“Dear Father, when then can I go,
To earth to complete my task?”

“Your time will come all too quickly.
My Child you must prepare.
Earth life is not easy.
Search for me when you get there.

In me you will find all answers,
To problems that will come.
Dear Child, fear not your life,
For in my Kingdom, no one’s alone.”

“But where do I look to find you.”
I questioned Father with care.
“Close by you” He whispered,
“As as a child’s prayer.”

With most of my questions answered,
Along my way I went,
To begin to make myself ready,
For earth life to be sent.

My day finally came,
But before He let me go,
A secret to tell me,
Something each Child of His must know.

“Your time has come to leave me.
Dear Child your valiance great.
I have saved you for this important time.
No longer do you need to wait.”

He paused just for a moment,
Then quietly He sighed.
“This part of the Plan is scary for most.
A veil I place before your eyes.

This way you will not remember
Anything before your birth.
You must search for me my Child,
To learn of your great worth.

I place within you a special gift
This gift I call your heart.
It will help you know and feel what’s right,
And help you do your part.

Never go against it
Because what you feel, you’ll see
Will never lead you to do wrong,
When the feelings come from me.”

He kissed me on my forehead,
On my way I had to go.
It was my turn to prove myself worthy,
And live my life below.

When I reached the earth I saw,
That everything was new.
I could not remember Father,
Nor my Big Brother who I loved too.

The family to whom He sent me,
So loving and so kind,
Helped me to gain a testimony,
That my nature is divine.

The talks with Father I remember not,
Nor the days from whence I came,
But my family here on earth,
Prepared me for life same.

One night as I was praying,
I looked up over my bed.
A picture of a man was hanging.
Beneath that picture said,

“Suffer not the little children
To come unto me.”
Something in His words alone,
And in His face I began to see…

The Big Brother that I new before,
The one I held so dear.
A feeling sparked within my heart.
A feeling I felt so clear.

I saw My Brother, Jesus Christ,
Hanging there upon my wall.
I knew He had prepared the world for me,
And died and rose again for us all!

I have other poems that I will share along and along. I really wish I could finding my poetry inside myself again, hopefully over time I will.

But for now, it is blogging, and I am also going to give photography a try. Anything to help me focus and get out of my head.

Angels Among Us & Individual Worth

I am of infinite worth with my own divine mission, which I will strive to fulfill.

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Lots and lots of tears today. One brother spoke on trust today at Church. Trust. Always an issue for me. Trusting those I should not, not trusting those I should. After Church I asked him if I could speak to him. We talked for a while.

In our Church, the Young Women have values they memorize and employ in their every day lives. He asked if I remembered the Young Women’s theme. We recited every Sunday when I was a teenager and again when I was called as a Young Women’s leader. It easily rolled off my tongue.

We are daughters of a Heavenly Father who loves us, and we love Him. We will stand as witnesses of God at all times, in all things, and in all places as we strive to live the Young Women’s values which are:

Faith

Divine Nature

Individual Worth

Knowledge

Choice and Accountability

Good Works

and

Integrity…

He then asked me about my individual worth. Something that I seem to have forgotten about. What he reminded me was that my worth was not linked to anything that happens here on earth. My rapist cannot dim my infinte worth, nor can my health problems. Yes, these are trials of this life.—Awful, hard gut wrenching trials, do not effect my worth. I am a daughter of Heavenly Father.

As part of learning the values, we associated each value with a color. Faith-White, Divine Nature-Blue, Individual Worth-Red, Knowledge-Green, Choice and Accountability-Orange, Good Works-Yellow, and Integrity-Purple. Just as our awful memories have triggers, seeing these colors, after learning and studying about them triggered our minds to each of the values.

This brother suggested that I create my own trigger for Individual Worth. I think I am going to create a red knotted friendship bracelet. I could not find my embroidery thread last night. Our hopes is that when I look at the bracelet throughout the day I will be reminded of my infinite worth, and be able to dispell the self abasing thoughts that I have throughout the day. Cling to the knowledge that I am of infinite worth.

“I want to tell you, each and every one of you, that you are well acquainted with God our Heavenly Father….for there is not a soul of you but what has lived in His house and dwelt with Him year after year; and yet you are seeking to become acquainted with Him, when the fact is, you have merely forgotten what you did know. There is not a person here today but what is a son or a daughter of that Being.” -Brigham Young

“You were preserved to come to the earth in this time for a special purpose. Not just a few of you, but all of you. There are things for each of you to do that no one else can do as well as you–If you will let Him, I testify that our Father in Heaven will walk with you through the journey of life and inspire you to know your special purpose here.” -H. Burke Peterson

I am very grateful Heavenly Father sent this Brother to our congregation today. He spoke words that comforted me, words that could have only been known through the Spirit as he listened intently and was His mouthpiece during a Priesthood Blessing. Through him Heavenly Father answered some of my secret pleading prayers, in words that I could not only hear, but feel.

I know His angels are around me, but I firmly believe He sends us angels in the flesh sometimes too, that is what He did today. He knew I needed it. My spirit need a reprieve, and guidance from someone not closely involved.

He is a mindful Father.

Broken Things To Mend

If you have followed me for anytime, you have learned music calms my heart. Even on the three hour trip yesterday, I sang hymns to calm my parents nervous puppy, and ease my anxiety–Almost all three hours.

Each of these three songs have special healing messages of peace for me. They calm my soul. I hope they calm yours too.

Karly’s Story

I mentioned last night reading the blog of a friend as she talked about her abuse and how her words resounded in my soul. I have spoke to her and she gave me permission to re-post her blog. I am grateful for her courage. She is an amazing lady.

I hope that as we come forward, it gives other victims the courage to do the same, so that they can start healing. I know my inner child is ready to heal, Karly’s inner child is ready to heal, and many other voices are ready to be heard and healed.

Here is Karly’s post.

“yes, it’s been a year since my last post. i’ve been putting off writing this post for many reasons, but i’m tired of excuses, and it’s time to tell my story.

let me add in a disclaimer here… this is a tragic story about what happens all too often to innocent children… sexual abuse. i have been seeing a therapist for a few months now, and i talked to him a lot about this. he is happy that i want to share my story, but he told me to be careful because many times we can experience “vicarious traumatization,” meaning that someone else may be traumatized by my story. that is obviously not my intention, so if this topic is too hard for you to stomach, i would suggest saving this post for another time.

after years of trying to deal with my trauma in many different ways, i have decided that face it head on, and learn to heal the wounds that were left on my soul so many years ago. i feel strongly that part of my healing process is to tell my story. there is a nine year old little girl inside of me that has been screaming in my head for the last 21 years, and it’s time to acknowledge her and let her speak.

you may be wondering why i would want to do this in such a public place. why would i want to share some of the most intimate and tragic details of my life with people other than my family? the answer is simple. i am pissed as hell. it makes me furious that little girls and boys have to go through this… to have your innocence and trust be shattered in the most traumatic of ways. did you know that 1 in 3 girls (and 1 in 7 boys) is sexually abused in some form by the time they are 18 years old?! let me tell you that statistic again…. ONE in THREE. i feel that as a society we don’t talk about it enough, which is also why i am sharing this here. it’s one of the “unspeakables,” which for me only fosters a sense of shame and guilt for the victims. if my story can help even one other person to start on their healing journey, then it is well worth any of the scrutiny or criticism that may come of this.

i was nine years old when i was sexually abused by an older, male cousin. it only happened one time, and for that i am grateful. i know others who have experienced abuse far worse than what i went through, but that doesn’t make what i went through any less traumatic. as a young girl i was not emotionally ready to handle what happened to me. i felt worthless and dirty, and i didn’t want anyone to know… so i kept it to myself for the next five years. when i finally told my parents i felt like i was somehow broken, but i didn’t want to admit that. i’ve always been the “strong” one, so i refused counseling, which looking back now, was a decision that i will always regret. i then fell into a dangerous and destructive cycle as i tried to “treat” myself, which really just meant i tried to pretend it didn’t happen.

pretending it didn’t happen just made everything worse. i was shattered into a million pieces on the inside, but i put on a happy face for everyone around me. i was an athlete, a good student, a good friend, but this little girl inside of me was always yelling at me to fix her, and i didn’t know how. i went to church on sunday, i went to early morning seminary* every day of the week during the school year, i went to mutual on wednesday, and i went to EFY and girls camp every summer…but it was all for show. i was angry at God, and because i was so angry, i felt unworthy of His love.

i was fifteen years old when i had my first drink, and over the next 11 years i fell into an awful pattern. my life would be going good and i would get spooked because i “didn’t deserve” a good life, so i would go out and do something to self-destruct. i also would attract, and probably even sought out destructive relationships, where i wasn’t treated very well at all. i did this because i blamed myself for what had happened to me, which in my mind translated to me deserving everything bad that happened to me… whether at my own hand or at someone else’s.

Now, i know it wasn’t my fault…well i guess i should say i’m starting to believe that it wasn’t my fault. i am at the very beginning of what i know is going to be a long and painful journey. i feel so blessed to have the family that i do for support and the counselor that i do for guidance. and i also feel blessed to have this outlet to share my journey. i know i set this blog up as somewhere to make and achieve goals, but i am so incredibly far from that. at this point, i am going to be focusing on doing a couple things every day that will make me feel better. i’m going to be trying to replace destructive thoughts and behaviors with positive thoughts and behaviors. i am also going to use this as a place to talk about counseling sessions, and any thoughts i have about what we talked about. i am taking my life and turning it upside down and i am excited for what is in store.

recently my sister came to visit and brought me a present… a piece of her art.

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i had seen her working on this piece over the last couple years and always liked it. i also always thought it was a drawing of her. when she gave it to me she told me that the girl in the picture, was in fact, me…that she has watched me over the years as i’ve fallen and climbed and fallen and climbed… and that she was proud of me. i love this picture for what it represents right now in my life. i have been in the valley of shadows for awhile now, but i feel as the girl in the picture right now. i feel i am climbing up into the sunshine and even though it hurts, it feels good. i know there are some mountains in front of me that i still need to climb, but i’m finally ready for the challenge.

*for those of you not of my faith, seminary is essentially an early morning religion class that lasts your four years of high school, mutual is our midweek activity, and EFY and girls camp are religious summer camps.”

Karly’s Blog can be found here: Journey To A Better Me