Saturday, January 28, 2012

Blogs That I Have Read This Week - Link Love

Hi everyone. January 2012 is almost over in just a few days. Where has this month gone?

Today as you read this post, I am in Texas visiting with my sister and her family. Since Daniel and I were in Idaho spending Christmas with our daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren, we haven't visited either of our families for Christmas yet. 

While I am enjoying our cookout (no turkey and dressing), I thought I would let you check out some of the blogs that I have read this week. This is just a sampling of what I read.  I read a lot of blogs every week on a lot of different topics that interest me. They are not all on incest or child abuse. I warn you that the ones that are on incest or child abuse may be triggering for some.

1.  The Doing Project: A Review @
I participated in The Doing Project with Craig Harper and a lot of other people for 7 days. The challenges were just what I needed to start off 2012 to make it the great year it is going to be for me.

2. The Daily Awe: 50 Things I'm Grateful For - turning the blues into gratitude @

3.  Singing over the bones & rising from the ashes: Today's the day.... @

4.  A Rape Survivor's Journey: My Story of Domestic Violence @

5.  Daily Om:  The Wisdom of Surrender @

6.  healthpsychologyconsultancy: What Constitutes Child Sexual Abuse? @

7.  Knowledge Is Power - KIP Central: 9 Lessons on Loss, Forgiveness, and Healing / Tiny Buddha: Wisdom Quotes, Letting Go, Letting Happiness In @

8.  The Wounded Warrior:  Empty @

9.  smart boy designs: Kim Peek's Guide for Creating Endless Blog Content @

10.  More than a Survivor: Too Young to Know Part III @

Some of these bloggers are seasoned and some are relatively new to blogging. Please leave a comment on each of the blogs and let the bloggers know what you think. Have a glorious weekend. I am.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Owning My Personal Power - Insights

Owning my personal power is something that I feel like it has taken me years to do. In the beginning, I had no idea what personal power was. If I had any, where was it? What was it? How was it going to change my life?

As a child and a victim of incest, I felt like only my abusers had any power. When I tried to be powerful and not afraid, the abusers quickly made sure that I was put back in my place. I was always afraid of other people - afraid to speak out about the abuse, afraid to speak up and call attention to myself, afraid that if people knew about the incest they would blame me and call me trash, whore, tramp. I was afraid I would die from the shame if others knew. From that position of victim, I couldn't see that I had any power. Those thoughts continued into my adulthood.

As a survivor, I had to work hard to discover who I was. Knowing who I was didn't come easy. As a child of incest, I forgot all of that in order to stay sane and to stay alive. I did a lot of trial and error, as a survivor, starting with recognizing the things that I didn't like and didn't want in my life. As a child who saw only negatives from the surrounding adults, how could I possibly, as an adult, automatically know about positives in life? I didn't.  All I could connect with, in the beginning, was what I didn't like. After acknowledging and letting go of the negatives for awhile, I could begin to see positive things happening in my life. I could begin to acknowledge,
"Yes, I like this."
"Yes, this feels good."
"Yes, I want this in my life." and finally,
"Yes, I deserve to have this good in my life. I deserve to not have to constantly struggle and be disappointed in myself, others and life in general."

Then there was room to see the positives in my life and in who I was. That change started with learning to love myself and forgiving myself for my reactions to the abuse or to the triggers in life. I could change from reacting to acting which meant letting go of the need for drama and really, fully living my life without the hyper vigilance of my childhood and the stress that went with it. I could find real calmness and peace within myself rather than just the surface calm that most people saw in me.

As a thriver, I am coming into my own power and glorying in it. I am a person of great value. We all are. I am not a victim and I am more than just a survivor.

Owning my own power means I can be me, whoever that is. Shining my Light for everyone to see, loving myself in all of my perfection and imperfections, loving and nurturing all of my inner children while not allowing them to control my adult life, truly loving all of me, even the shadow parts - this is owning my power in all of its fullness. Being able to say, "I am sorry." and then changing any behaviors of mine that have been inappropriate or dysfunctional is a step to owning my personal power. Letting others see me in my imperfections takes courage that I seem to have plenty of. As a child, I didn't think that I was courageous at all. I was. Courage is needed to survive incest. Even more courage is needed to become a survivor and even to thrive and I am worth it. So are each of you who are reading my words today. I encourage you to look for your own courage. It is there inside of you. Be brave. You can do it. I am no different than any other thriver who has been through the fires of incest and has come out the other side.

This article was inspired by a comment that I left on the blog of a friend, Sophie whose blog post "Owning my Power" you will find at the following link:

Thank you Sophie for the inspiration and for your blog Attunements For The Soul.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Dialogues With Dignity And 22 Ways To Love Yourself

Yesterday I was on Dialogues With Dignity again with my friends Dan Hays, Ellen Brown and Stash Serafin. I love being a guest on their radio talk program. The title of this program was "Learning To Love Ourselves."
Here is the link for the dicussion:

I hope you will listen to the program and leave comments on Dialogues With Dignity and then come back here and leave a comment. Let us know if you liked the discussion. Thank you to Dan, Ellen and Stash for having me back for this discussion.

When I was getting ready for the show, I printed out a few of my past articles on learning to love yourself as a healing tool. Then I sat down and made a list of 22 ways to love yourself. Here is that list:

1. Reconnect with and pay attention to your body and what it tells you.
2. Forgive yourself for being that child who got abused. Know that you didn't cause the abuse and you couldn't have prevented it from happening. You were a child.
3. Feel whatever feelings come. Don't stuff or deny their existence. That is how addictions start.
4. Learn how to take care of your needs and wants. You do have them. You deserve to be nurtured.
5. Learn to trust yourself and your intuition.
6. Do things that make you feel good emotionally and physically.  Do something that is fun that your inner children will enjoy doing.
7. Use affirmations to build your feelings of self-worth.
8. Know that your value comes from within you, not from others.
9. Know that you deserve to be loved by yourself and by others.
10. Let go of your abuser's love - it isn't love and you don't need it when you love yourself.
11. Work on taking back and building up your personal power. (My next post due on Jan. 22 is about personal power.)
12. Move. Exercise. Diet if you need to so that you can improve your health.
13. Make a dentist appointment or doctor's appointment if you need it and keep it. Don't let your fears and shame keep you from taking care of your body.
14. Find a doctor that you trust.
15. Hug a special teddy bear to nurture your inner child. Sleep with it if it comforts your inner child and makes her/him feel safer at night. As silly as it may sound for an adult to sleep with a teddy bear, it helped my inner children to start to trust the adult me.
16. Use meditation to calm and ground yourself. Become aware of your breath and your connection to your body. Many incest survivors are totally disconnected from their body and the hurt that it experienced when they were  children.
17. Take small steps in healing. Pretend that you love yourself and watch others who show that they love you until you can start to love yourself.
18. Surround yourself with people who love you and support you in your efforts to heal and to become functional. Let go of those people who don't support your healing.
19. Recognize that change is scarey and it is a choice. Face your fears and change any way.
20. Be willing to be vulnerable and open your heart to those you love.
21. Love yourself today by accepting you right where you are today. With acceptance comes awareness. Accepting yourself is the first step to loving yourself. See your inner children as a product of your childhood and love them any way.
22. Loving yourself means not allowing you to hurt yourself. It also means not allowing others to hurt you. Say no to abuse in any form.

It is my belief that loving yourself is the foundation of all healing. You deserve to heal and to feel good about yourself.

Don't forget to check out our talk at Dialogues With Dignity. I wrote this list before doing the show and you will hear me mention most of this in my part of the conversation. Again, thanks to Dan Hays, Ellen Brown and Stash Serafin for having me on Dialogues With Dignity.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Dialogues With Dignity Show January 17, 2012

"Peace starts within us- we cannot bring to the world what we do not have to offer." -Daily OM (January 5, 2012) (found at )

Today is January 14 and this is my first blog post of 2012. I have spent most of the first two weeks of January recovering from a bad kidney infection and the antibiotics that mess with my stomach and give me a headache the first three days of taking it. 

I am also officially dieting, which I rarely do. I am a vegetarian and have diabetes so most diets just don't fit. I will let you know how this goes. I have lost one and a fourth pounds this week. I am hoping now that the doctors have finally diagnosed me with a thyroid problem and I am on medication for it, I can finally lose weight and get healthier. I will post more on this topic soon.

On January 17 at 5:30 ET/4:30 CT, I will be a guest on Dialogues With Dignity, one of my favorite radio talk shows.  The show isn't live but it will be taped and posted shortly after it is finished. I so enjoy being on the show with my friends Dan Hays, Ellen Brown and Stash Serafin. In the meantime, there are plenty of other shows that you might want to listen to. The link is as follows:

Some of Dialogues With Dignity's latest show were on topics such as:
Feeling Good Without Feeling Guilty
Listening Between The Lines
Creative Waiting
Faith at the Crossroads
Timing Is Everything

The show on January 17 has the topic of learning to love yourself as part of your healing process. I am not sure of the title. I will come back and post the title and the link when it is posted. As always, I am looking forward to this talk with my friends Dan, Ellen and Stash.

My friend Dan Hays from Dialogues With Dignity has a birthday this week on Sunday.  Happy Birthday Dan.  Hope you have a glorious birthday and 2012. 

Related Articles:

DialoguesWithDignity Guest February 23, 2011 @ topic was "Reconciliation Is It Always Possible?"

Dialogues With Dignity: Progress Over Perfection @ topic was "Progress Over Perfection"