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
9. Although I was born in
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
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