Life can hit us hard. We suddenly lose someone we love. We learn that our child may have been hurt by someone we trusted. Our partner decides they no longer love us and walk out of a relationship we thought would last a lifetime. These are some just some examples of the realities of life.
We can’t change our history or our stories no matter how hard we try. But we can take charge of the meaning we put to these stories, and we can manage our reaction to these stories and how we live our lives because of them. In doing so, we take authorship of our stories and we become triumphant heroines. By becoming heroines and authors, we essentially declare that no matter what happens to us throughout our life, we refuse to let circumstances change who we are at our core, and we will not become stuck in a story, a period in time.
When I started working with women, I came from a background of abuse. As a child, I had been sexually abused for some period. It took me well into adulthood to get past this story and the narrative I told myself about the abuse. Then I got married and endured new forms of abuse – physical, emotional and financial abuse. This cumulative history of abuse caused me to fall into deep despair, shame, and an intense struggle to see my way up and out of a deep, dark pit.
Abuse transforms you and the way you see the world. There’s something about being abused by the people who should love and care for you that shatters your inner world and the way you see yourself. After the last beating from my now ex-husband resulted in me being put me in the surgical ward of the local hospital, I knew my life had to take a new turn.
On leaving the hospital, thankful to be alive, I knew it was time to write a new chapter, one where I was living from a place of healing, wisdom, and wholeness. I prayed, meditated, took up running, and I tried many other things to find the healing I desired. However, it was through journaling and wellness/therapeutic writing that I was able to reclaim my power, a sense of self, and find healing and way to wholeness. Since then, I’ve become a student and an advocate of the transformative and cathartic power of writing and telling our stories. I’ve made it my mission to help other women write new stories for their lives, and lead lives that honor them and fill them with a sense of purpose.