Beauty from ashes daughter

Words of hope from an abuse survivor

Waiting November 24, 2012

Filed under: Poetry — Beauty from ashes daughter @ 4:16 pm
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I’m trying to take one day at a time.

I want to trust that God will see me thru this.

I long to believe that the answer is around the corner.

So I keep waiting.

For Him to show me the next step.

 

I want to believe that beauty will come in the morning.

With each new day, I am disappointed.

No clear answer or direction.

So I keep waiting.

For Him to respond to my plea.

 

His word says not to worry.

That He will guide my path.

But I am groping in the dark, lost.

So I keep waiting.

For Him to shine a light so I can see.

 

He promises He is with me.

But I still feel all alone.

Afraid of what happens next.

So I keep waiting.

For Him to give me peace.

 

I can’t seem to find my way.

I have forgotten where I belong.

No longer sure of my purpose.

So I keep waiting.

For Him to remind me that I’m His.

 

Confused, lonely, lost, waiting, waiting, waiting…

 

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Rock Bottom October 31, 2012

Filed under: Abuse — Beauty from ashes daughter @ 11:44 pm
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I may have hit one of the deepest pits of despair that I have ever experienced. I haven’t felt this alone and hopeless since I was in high school and in the throws of my sexual abuse. It seems that God is teaching me lessons lately about the people in my life not being as trustworthy as I thought they were or as they should be. Here is the problem with this: I already know all about broken trust. I spent my entire childhood learning the lesson that those who should love and support us no matter what, don’t.  Why then, does God find it necessary to drive this point home? I mean, really, I get the picture!
In addition to this, I find myself in a position of being abused all over again by a person in seniority to me. I cannot escape it without sacrificing my livelihood. But, on the other hand, what does allowing it to continue say about me? After years of self-empowerment and personal growth, which included setting boundaries with my abusers, how can I possibly stand by and allow myself to be bullied without taking ten steps back in my healing? And why on earth does this person have this much power over me?

 

I’m listening to this song on repeat right now:

Nothing is Wasted, Jason Gray

The hurt that broke your heart
And left you trembling in the dark
Feeling lost and alone
Will tell you hope’s a lie
But what if every tear you cry
Will seed the ground where joy will grow

And nothing is wasted
Nothing is wasted
In the hands of our Redeemer
Nothing is wasted

It’s from the deepest wounds
That beauty finds a place to bloom
And you will see before the end
That every broken piece is
Gathered in the heart of Jesus
And what’s lost will be found again

Nothing is wasted
Nothing is wasted
In the hands of our Redeemer
Nothing is wasted

From the ruins
From the ashes
Beauty will rise
From the wreckage
From the darkness
Glory will shine
Glory will shine

Nothing is wasted
Nothing is wasted
In the hands of our Redeemer
Nothing is wasted
[x2]

From the ruins
From the ashes
Beauty will rise
From the wreckage
From the darkness
Glory will shine
Glory will shine

I just keep praying over and over again that the line I placed in bold happens really soon. I am not sure how much more I can take.

RKB

 

Poetry with a theme of hoplessness September 19, 2012

Filed under: Depression,Emotional Pain — Beauty from ashes daughter @ 12:40 am
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These are from several years ago. I have come so far since then.

Life On Earth

Life on earth seems so hopeless

I am sad and alone

Scared of the future here in this empty place

I’m so tired of it all

Endless days of endless work and endless sleepless nights

Can’t make the pain go away

No matter how hard I try

I give and others take

I love and others hurt

I get nothing in return

Just heartache

Trying to understand what I have done

To deserve this life

But I must play the cards I’ve been dealt

Day after day with no goals and no aim

I must trust that the Lord has a plan

And someday it will be fulfilled

And I will have a purpose

And people will respect me

Maybe even love me

And the pain will stop

And the heartache will fade

And everything will be great

I am wishing for that day

SOMEDAY

Someday things will get better

Someday all of the work will be done

Someday all of the bills will be paid

Someday everyone will have a home

Someday the sun will shine forever

Someday all people will be at peace

Someday love will never die

Someday no one will have to leave you

Someday broken hearts will heal

Someday I will have no regrets

Someday the tears will stop falling

Someday I will be happy

Someday my life will have meaning

Someday people will love me just the way I am

Someday my fears will subside

Someday music will never fade

Someday all of my dreams will come true

Someday I will be where I belong

Someday everything will be just the way we want it to be

This day that I speak of is one that I will look forward to for my entire life

It is the day that I will meet my Father in heaven

 

Suicidal September 11, 2012

Filed under: Abuse,Depression,Emotional Pain,Suicide — Beauty from ashes daughter @ 7:25 pm
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As is the case with most abuse survivors, I went through a time in my life when I wanted my life to end. During this time period, I was being sexually abused and felt very alone in the world. I was also using drugs and alcohol to numb my pain. I thought that there would never be an end to my suffering if I did not bring about an end myself. I wrote many poems about my feelings during that time. I would like to share some of them here. I was approximately 14-17 when I wrote these. PLEASE NOTE these were written over 15 years ago and in no way reflect my current frame of mind.

Roses

I can smell the roses

Waiting at heaven’ gate

So close to me now.

The palace that I’ve longed for.

They feel my pain

And show me the love that awaits.

A different world full of happiness.

I’m not far from where I want to be.

Closer with each breath I take.

Nearing a chance to escape.

Look back at the things I’ve known,

Kiss them goodbye,

Wipe the tear from my eye.

No regrets.

Moved on to where I belong.

The angels sing me a song.

I’ve passed on to a better place.

I pluck the roses at the door.

This is what I’ve been waiting for.

I’ve found the sweetness I deserve.

 

Falling

I’m falling down into a hole,

I can’t seem to escape.

The further down I fall,

The more I get afraid.

I’m reaching out

For you to catch me,

But you don’t seem to care.

Your face disappears

Into the darkness.

I can’t find you anywhere.

I can’t fight for my life anymore.

I’ll give up instead.

I’m falling down into a hole,

And now I’ve fallen dead.

 

Escape

A quiet girl in a lonely town.

No where to turn, no one around.

Afraid of the feelings she has deep inside.

Searching for a dark place to hide.

Maybe they’ll miss her, maybe they won’t.

They watched her disappear.

She didn’t fit in here.

Wanting to leave this awful place.

Trying to conceal her face.

Looking for a reason to stay.

There are none. Time to depart.

Time to end the pain in her heart.

Just one moment and she’ll be gone.

A smile appears upon her face.

A shot rings out in song.

She’s escaped to where she belongs.

 

When I read these poems and reflect back on this time in my life, I am haunted by two primary thoughts and feelings.

The first are of frustration and disappointment. The notebook these poems were written in went with me everywhere – school, church, work, home. I even submitted Roses for a poetry contest and won. I was, in this way, subtly screaming for someone to notice how desperate I was to die. But no one did. And I just cannot fathom how every adult in my life managed to fail me by ignoring all of the signs. Sometimes I hate them for it.

The second is an incredible sadness that this was my adolescence. What should have been a time of discovering myself, having fun with friends, and preparing for independence, was instead a time during which I was preoccupied with death. It was almost the only thing I ever thought about. I was robbed of the joys of being a teenager. And multiple people are to blame for the theft. And no matter how sorry they are (and not all of them are), I will never be able to relive or rewrite that chapter of my life. My adolescence is etched in stone forever – filled with abuse, pain, trauma, suffering, and a longing for my life to end.

But I’m still here and I thank Jesus for His redemption from that chapter. He knew it wasn’t the final one in my story and now so do I.

 

Penny September 5, 2012

Filed under: Domestic Violence — Beauty from ashes daughter @ 12:06 am
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Most adults have pets as a part of their childhood memories. Unfortunately for me, each of my pets came with a traumatic experience. Our first dog, a collie named Dolly, was sent to a kennel while we went on a family vacation to Disney World. When we returned, my dad went to pick her up and came back claiming that she had run away from the kennel and was never found. At the age of 3, I was devastated. I still remember how hard I cried – burying my face in the couch as if the world had come to an end. I didn’t find out until I was in my 20s that Dolly had actually been put to sleep because she had bitten my sister. When it came up at dinner and this truth was revealed, my sister and father were both shocked that I had not figured that out by then. At the time, I thought to myself  “How many other lies have I been told in my life that I have foolishly believed?” Apparently, I take other people’s statements at face value, which I’m learning isn’t always a good attribute.

When I was older, approximately age 8, we had a toy poodle named Peaches. It was early in the morning on the day after Halloween and we were getting ready for school. My mom had let the dog outside to go to the bathroom and I heard her whining at the door. I let her inside and immediately realized that she was bleeding pretty severely. Turns out she had literally been bitten in half by a German Shepherd that lived in the home behind ours. She was rushed to the animal clinic where they barely saved her life. They had to remove a large portion of her intestines that had been damaged and suture her stomach back together, but she survived. She lived another 10 or 12 years after that, but those traumatic images of her bleeding profusely were forever lodged in my brain. Even seeing her with stitches after the fact was pretty traumatizing. Outside of this one incident, however, Peaches was the best dog I have ever had. She was present for all my growing up years and was the epitome of man’s best friend.

Between Dollie and Peaches we had Penny for a short time, who definitely carries the worst pet-related story of my childhood. That’s her in the picture above and its the only one that I have of her. We got her as a six week old puppy and only had her for two weeks. We had been keeping her in the laundry room because she was still being potty trained. I was playing in the playroom in the dormer upstairs and heard my father screaming. This was not out of the ordinary so I continued to play. It was only later when the police had arrived that I realized what had happened. Apparently, Penny nipped at my father (as puppies sometimes do) and drew blood. This enraged him and her threw Penny out the back door so hard that her neck snapped when she hit the cement. She died instantly. Yes, that’s right. My father killed my pet when I was just 4 years old. I have two lasting memories from that night. The first is of the police cars parked outside my home on the street. With this image of the police cars – lights glowing brightly – I came to the realization that my father’s fits of rage were not normal. The second memory is an image that is strongly imprinted in my brain. Its a single drip of blood running down the side of our 70s green clothes dryer. At the time, I thought it was Penny’s blood but learned as I got older and the incident was discussed with my mother that the blood belonged to my father. It was from the bite Penny made that caused my father to become so angry. To this day, those colors – that green and blood red – when together cause an anxious reaction in me. It helps that today as an adult I understand that she did not suffer.

The positive result of this incident was that my father was forced to enter a program for batterers. He successfully completed the program and even anonymously endorsed it in the local newspaper a few years later. He was quoted in that article stating that he realized when he killed Penny that he had a serious problem with his anger. And because of the treatment he received, things got better in my family for a long time after that – about six years actually.

Its interesting that with all my pet related trauma, I ended up marrying a lover of animals, a man who works in the veterinary field.

RKB

 

Family Tree August 28, 2012

Filed under: Survivor — Beauty from ashes daughter @ 1:00 am
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Its always helpful for me to have reminders that I do not have to become like my parents and I can choose to stop the cycle of violence. I thank Jesus for giving me the freedom from my past in order to make that choice. Here is a song that illustrates that freedom in a beautiful way.

Family Tree
You didn’t ask for this
Nobody ever would
Caught in the middle of this dysfunction
It’s your sad reality
It’s your messed up family tree
And all your left with all these questions

Are you gonna be like your father was and his father was?
Do you have to carry what they’ve handed down?

No, this is not your legacy
This is not your destiny
Yesterday does not define you
No, this is not your legacy
This is not your meant to be
I can break the chains that bind you

I have a dream for you
It’s better than where you’ve been
It’s bigger than your imagination
You’re gonna find real love
And you’re gonna hold your kids
You’ll change the course of generations

No, this is not your legacy
This is not your destiny
Yesterday does not define you
No, this is not your legacy
This is not your meant to be
I can break the chains that bind you

Cause you’re my child
You’re my chosen
You are loved
You are loved

And I will restore
All that was broken
You are loved
You are loved

And just like the seasons change
Winter into spring
You’re bringing new life to your family tree now
Yes you are
You are

No, this will be your legacy
This will be your destiny
Yesterday did not define you
No, this will be your legacy
This will be your meant to be
I can break the chains that bind you

And just like the seasons change
Winter into spring
You’re bringing new life to your family tree now

~ Matthew West

 

My first memory August 27, 2012

Filed under: Abuse — Beauty from ashes daughter @ 12:41 am
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I have this early memory, it seems to be the first memory of my childhood. However, I suspect it isn’t even accurate because I seem to be the age of three but I am sitting in my parent’s bedroom in a house we didn’t move into until I was five. Nevertheless, it exists in my brain for some reason – perhaps because of comments others have made or pictures I have seen or perhaps because of the memory’s symbolism, but most likely it is a combination of all those things and some portion of reality. Anyway, here is the memory that has made its home in my mind.

It’s a typical evening in my childhood home. The windows are open and a light summer breeze flows through the house. I’m trying to drown out the noise of shouting in the other room by softly humming to myself. I am three years old. I’m sitting at my mother’s vanity in my parents’ bedroom, running her brush through my pale blonde curls. The yelling draws nearer. My father bursts through the door. In a rage, he grabs the nearest item he can get his hands on, my mother’s black purse. Without hesitation, he hurls it across the room and it smashes the mirror before my innocent face. I don’t remember if I cried or what happened next, but that image of shattered glass and my broken reflection is a vivid picture in my mind. Again, I’m not even sure this ever occurred, but it symbolizes my lost innocence, which was taken far too soon.

RKB

 

 
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