I am a survivor of extremely severe ritualistic childhood abuse and sadistic systematic torture. Without God's intervention in my life I wouldn't be here - NOW is the time for me to tell MY story by speaking the TRUTH about MY life. I will be silenced no more! On this blog I share MY life, MY healing journey; helpful quotes/stuff I come across and MY thoughts along the way. The more I speak out the more liberated I am from the shame and trauma of the abuse. My broken wings are gradually being restored. This blog has helped me begin to get my voice back and documents the journey God is taking me on to heal me from the trauma and damage caused by that most appalling abuse.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

CHRISTMAS MUSINGS

Christmas is a funny time of year. There is always so much tradition attached to it, expectations and pressures to make it as perfect a time as possible . . .

It’s also a time of memories – memories of Christmas past, good and bad – thoughts of those who are no longer part of our lives for whatever reason – along with hopes that this Christmas will be one to remember for all the right reasons. For me Christmas has always been a difficult time . . .

During childhood Christmas followed the same pattern year after year – I’d wake up on Christmas morning to find a pillow case of presents just inside the bedroom door . . . . . I’d have to open those presents alone in my room trying not to make too noise with the wrapping, otherwise I’d be screamed at to be quiet and find a fist making contact with my face or body. . . . to be honest how can you open presents without making some noise? We’d dress in our best and trail off to church . . . . where a pretence of being a happy family enjoying Christmas together was played out to perfection . . . church over while dinner was cooking I had to sit and write my thank you letters, in perfect writing and with appropriate politeness always dated with Boxing Day’s date. . . . Christmas dinner would be timed to end just in time for us all to be in front of the TV for the Queen’s speech at 3pm. During dinner my parents would pick apart everything that happened at church, leaving me wondering why they bothered going . . . . . Queen’s speech over I’d be shown the door, or kicked out, whichever . . . the rest of Christmas day was spent wandering the streets . . . killing time . . . keeping warm . . . . I might be allowed in later that night or have to sleep out on the streets, depending on whatever mood would take my parents . . .

So Christmas as a child was just another day:– another day of fear . . .violence. . . . pretence . . . lies . . . aloneness . . . exclusion . . . surviving . . .

Moving on from childhood Christmas has been a mixed bag . . . and not a very nice mixed bag . . . not having family of any shape or form makes Christmas very difficult . . . year after year I tried various things . . . working. . . . . studying . . . helping on homeless projects . . . asking friends to be part of my Christmas, but they have families that I cannot be part of and who naturally take 1st priority in their lives . . . there was no getting away from that aloneness no matter what I did . . .

Over the period that I was living with friends I was part of their Christmas which was great . . . another year I went to stay with friends in Wales . . . they wanted me there but one member of their family took exception to me being there and actually said “what’s she doing here? she’s not family”- and she made sure I knew exactly what contempt she felt for me ‘gate crashing’ her family Christmas. She made life very uncomfortable indeed, and my friends were mortified . . . but that kind of finished things for me . . . after that I felt I just could not look to friends again and had to find another way of doing Christmas . . .

Then I came across a company called Travelsphere . . . they do coach tours over Christmas to Europe . . . and they aren’t expensive either . . . so I travel with them to the Alps . . . this will be the third Christmas I have travelled with them . . .

I struggle to find the money but now I can look forward to Christmas and plan for it, instead of dread it and hope I will find a home this year. Yep it still hurts, sure it does, but I have a real sense of belonging on the coach trips . . . we do Christmas together like a family and it’s healing and great fun too!

So many people say “oh please take me with you, I am so jealous” . . . little realising that I struggle to not be jealous of their family Christmas . . . . it’s a funny ole life sometimes!!

And this year I’ve done Christmas without the obligatory religious content. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not out of rebellion but it’s just how things have worked out this year that I have not been able to get to any carol or Christmas services at all . . . Jesus is the centre of my life, and He’s the centre of my Christmas. I always sing happy birthday to Him on Christmas morning . . . . . . there was a time when it would have been considered sacrosanct to not be in church over the advent and Christmas period . . . . but then that was it was all about religion and being seen to do the right thing . . . Jesus is the reason I celebrate Christmas because of what He has done for me . . . if I manage to get to church great, but if I don’t it’s ok. and it’s actually quite liberating to feel ok about that!!!

Happy Christmas Jesus!!!! My ever present companion without whom I would be sunk and have no reason to live. Thank you Jesus for all you have done for me and helping me cope with Christmas and put you at the centre of it.

Thursday, 11 December 2008

THE BELL

THE BELL
I KNOW WHO I AM
I am God's child (John 1:12)
I am Christ's friend (John 15:15 )
I am united with the Lord (1 Cor. 6:17)
I am bought with a price (1 Cor 6:19-20)
I am a saint (set apart for God). (Eph. 1:1)
I am a personal witness of Christ. (Acts 1:8)
I am the salt & light of the earth (Matt 5:13-14)
I am a member of the body of Christ (1 Cor 12:27)
I am free forever from condemnation ( Rom. 8: 1-2)
I am a citizen of Heaven. I am significant (Phil 3:20)
I am free from any charge against me (Rom. 8:31 -34)
I am a minister of reconciliation for God (2 Cor 5:17-21)
I have access to God through the Holy Spirit (Eph. 2:18)
I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realms (Eph. 2:6)
I cannot be separated from the love of God (Rom 8:35-39)
I am established, anointed, sealed by God (2 Cor 1:21-22 )
I am assured all things work together for good (Rom. 8:28 )
I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit (John 15:16 )
I may approach God with freedom and confidence (Eph. 3: 12 )
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Phil. 4:13)
I am the branch of the true vine, a channel of His life (John 15: 1-5)
I am God's temple (1 Cor. 3: 16). I am complete in Christ (Col. 2: 10)
I am hidden with Christ in God (Col. 3:3). I have been justified (Romans 5:1)
I am God's co-worker (1 Cor. 3:9; 2 Cor 6:1). I am God's workmanship (Eph. 2:10)
I am confident that the good works God has begun in me will be perfected. (Phil. 1: 5)
I have been redeemed and forgiven ( Col 1:14). I have been adopted as God's child (Eph 1:5)
I belong to God
Do you know
Who you are!?


Keep this bell ringing... be encouraged by these scriptures always.
'The LORD bless you and keep you;
The LORD make His face shine upon you
And be gracious to you;
The LORD turn His face toward you
And give you peace..'
Numbers 6:24-26

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

SOME RANDOM BITS OF INFO ABOUT ME

I posted this elsewhere and thought well why not post it here too - some of this you will know from elsewhere in my blog, some you will not - so want to know a bit more about me? Here goes . . .

1. I was born three months premature in Feb 1966 . . . I was weeks in a special care baby unit after birth . . . I think I knew in the womb that I wasn't wanted and just wanted to get out of there . . . my mother did not want a second child . . . and when she discovered she was pregnant with me pronounced that only a boy would do . . .

2. If my mother could have had foreknowledge of my gender I would not be here . . . I spent the first 19 years of my life being abused and tortured in every way possible by all the key people in my life simply because I was a girl . . . . ended up beaten up, kicked out, disowned and left for dead in the snow three weeks before my 20th birthday . . . . I've pretty much done life alone ever since, trusting no one . . . . just surviving . . . getting by . . . hating being alone . . . but not being able to cope with anything else . . . ouch . . .

3. I had a very very very religious upbringing, religion and the bible were used to explain and excuse terrible acts . . . and keep me in my place . . . I grew up in both the Roman Catholic church and the Church of England . . . and I have enormous problems with the whole church thing . . .

4. I read a book called "Journey into Life" when I was 14, it had the sinner's prayer in the back of it but me being fiercely independent didn't pray the sinner's prayer . . . I just remember crying out from the deepest part of me 'God if you're out there and you're real then come into my life and be my friend and stop the abuse" . . . that was 15th Feb 1981 - 3 days before my 15th birthday . . .

5. I endured another 5 years of abuse following that and still kinda wrestle with where was God in all that?

6. I kind of struggled on with the whole religion thing till aged 30 in 1996 when I went to work at a Christian conference over Easter and had a very powerful encounter with the Holy Spirit . . . that threw all my religious paradigms in the air and led to me leaving the established church and embarking on a journey that I’m still on . . . trying to find God in the gritty reality of life . . . and trying to find a church which embraces that . . . what I need in God is way beyond mere form and words . . . and it is so hard to explain . . . just pursuing God with all I have, knowing that He has pursued me with all that He has . . . and longing for real deep healing and resolution . . . oh to be able to help others because He is my healer and deliverer . . . and oh to be able to receive His love deep into my being . . . if only I could . . . the longing of my heart . . . hmmmmmm

7. I left school with few qualifications because of the trauma of my childhood . . . most of what I know is self taught . . . but against all the odds after being involved in youth work for about 15 years in the voluntary sector . . . and gaining an award for Outstanding Attainment in Youth Work from Devon County Council in 1996 . . . I ended up going to university in 1998 and graduated aged 35 in 2001 with a BA Honours degree in Community and Youth Work . . . along the way I discovered that actually I am not stupid and thick but have a brilliant brain and have a lot to contribute given the right environment . . .

8. I love football and played in goal for an amateur league whilst at university and I’m a life long fan of Liverpool football club

9. Although I was born in England and have lived in England all my life my ancestry is actually half Scottish . . . . and half Viking, which makes for a wild fiery combination!!!

10. I love hiking and climbing mountains . . . my father climbed the Matterhorn in his youth and I get it from him . . . as a child I read a book called “Eiger, Wall of Death”, all about the North Wall of the Eiger in the Alps. Ever since I’ve been obsessed with the mountain . . . last Christmas I finally made it to the foot of the Eiger North Wall . . . . and this Christmas I’ll be back there again hoping to photograph even more of it . . . one day I will get to climb Snowdon and Ben Nevis . . . one day . . . and as for Everest base camp . . . well I can dream can’t I?

11. Photography is my greatest hobby . . . and I’m always happiest when I have a camera in my hand . . . .

12. I am very creative . . . love working with colours and shapes . . . . just creating stuff for the sheer fun of being creative . . . I've written loads of poetry down the years . . . and just love to write . . . it is in writing that I find freedom to be who I am . . .

13. Language fascinates me and I can speak French, German and a little Russian

14. I’ve got a huge capacity for fun and have a massive sense of humour which often gets me into trouble, but has also been a large part of my survival

15. My favourite colour is green, my favourite colour combination is dark green with dark blue and purple

16. I just love to collect fridge magnets and my fridge freezer is covered in em