A little about me

My Photo
Demotte, IN, United States
Abuse doesn't stop at the court room. Melinda has shared her battles in her life and through the court room as she navigates through the legal system Bringing encouragement, insight and empowerment to those that are in a abusive relationship. She is in the process of creating a new life, speaking engagements to "Break the Silence" of abuse, while putting a face to abuse. She is currently working on writing a book about her experiences as a Survivor.View short Bio here- http://www.patheos.com/blogs/ahappymedium/2013/02/notbrokenbutbrave/

Monday, November 24, 2014

FIBBER!

I feel like a fraud. 

Rattling on my blog about positive thoughts and feelings, when I didn't feel that way inside, I was talking the talk but not walking the walk.

This puzzled me as I had thought I had forgiven my ex, finding emotions that I had felt were healing or gone have been painfully opened by the events surrounding my older daughter. I have humbled myself before God, family and friends on numerous occasions with tears, prayers and even screaming in the comfort of my car to and from work.

My PTSD in full swing, I feel like a mad woman inside, wanting to run away and throw the covers over my head and never leave the comfort of my home!

It doesn't help the career I am currently in is Customer Services, where during my work week, I, and my co-workers are sprinkled with insults, nasty language and hostility from a wide range of issues. God bless them as they help ground me until I get home.

My spirit is still wounded and trying to heal from the past, moving on the future is very hard! I don’t take confrontation well. I get very fidgety, hurt and start shrinking into myself during a heated or any sort of stern discussion.

I have avoided social media, blogging, reaching out to other survivors, my family and friends, not feeling many understand the depths of emotions and darkness I feel from time to time. While I am in a much better, safe place then ever I feel like I am my worst enemy right now.

I crumble under pressure to maintain and juggle home and job obligations, my current husband, Terry is wonderful at building me up, yet he cannot understand why the girls and I can’t just get on. It’s not logical to him. He can’t fix it or the girls or I, leaving us from time to time in family discussions and situations where one or all of us are in tears.

I feel very much like someone that is fibbing to the world that life is peachy, when it’s not. I dislike the job I have, but love my co-workers, and yet I am thankful I have a job, especially during these times of high unemployment. I enjoy doing various hobbies; I’m scared to just quit doing that full time.

I am letting my joy being stolen from me. The daily little things are worrisome for me for no reason, but I can’t help but dwell on them.

I have been torn between cursing and screaming at the Lord for understanding how my abuser seems to get away with everything! From being able to attempt to harm me on more than several occasions, stalking me, using parental alienation tactics, not paying child support, breaking the numerous Order of Protections and more!

I assumed once I left him that he would be seen for what he is. No matter where I turned it seemed as though he was getting away with everything.

How can this be?! 

I cried, reasoned, yelled and questioned the Lord with how this is okay? How come he continues to seem to get off free?

Though I wavered in my belief that someday he would be held accountable, God has made it clear to me in my heart to be patient.

I felt as like a small child pouting and begging God for some sort of smiting to take place or for someone legally to find a reason to throw the book at him! How can this be?

I’m tired of hiding from my ex and now my eldest son. I live in worry that there will be some harm that comes to my family and me.

“What if they figure out where we live?”

“What if they figure out where the girls go to school or where I work?”

Frustrated and envious of others that has statues on social media that gives them the freedom of not worrying about him stalking me on a random outing.

Stupid right?! Living life in fear is terrible. Even though the probability is super high that anything would happen, the random text or email messages causes me to hiccup and get panicky or worried.

It gets me upset that I allow my abuser to continue to hold me hostage and he doesn't even know he does! I’m feeding my demons by living in fear of living.
Now how can I move on?

I have done much of the things I have rambled on about. I am finding things that give me happiness, outings, learning new things, while my latest craze is teaching myself how to play piano and knocking off a few things off my ever growing bucket list.

Also we are thinking of travelling when the kiddos are on summer break around the nation to visit friends and family.

I toyed with the thought of seeing another therapist but can’t seem to bring myself to do so. The big factor is I have little funds to do so as counseling is very costly.
I need to take my own advice! Pray more. Tear open my box of crayons, glue and glitter to create a vision board for me for my health and sanity. I need to call friends and maybe have a few date nights with my husband, play some more with the kiddos.  

Why write these things?

I want to be genuine and truthful on my journey. There are tears, times of doubt and dark moments.

A year or so ago a dear co-worker had given me a book to borrow, I kind of read it but couldn't get into it totally because that it dealt with a child kidnapped and killed. It wasn't a true story but I couldn't read it and gave it back to her. Well, over a year later I kept seeing that book on the web and whenever I hit thrift store, yard sales and antique shops! I figured these were signs I needed to read it for real this time.

I read it in about 1 ½ days. It was a quick read for me. The end of story reminded me I need to find forgiveness for my ex and that after I found out the information about molesting our daughter I realized I hadn't forgiven him for that.

I also did something I have never done throughout my journey, I screamed.

I screamed at the top of my lungs while driving home. I sobbed. I shook my fist in the air, screaming like a mad woman to the figure of my ex that is burned in my mind. I yelled at God! I yelled at myself for feeling so blind, feeling like a terrible mother.

I felt as though I had been living in the dark. How could I have been so dense? I wanted a pound of flesh! I asked God how can I forgive her father and forgive me for not seeing.

After my tirade, I felt better, yet I could not say the words of “forgiveness”. I still felt angry and out of sorts, as I pulled up to the house, my husband was out to greet me with a big hug. He noticed something was off and mentioned it. I shared my feelings and he reminded me that we are safe now and even though I say the words that it doesn't mean the hurt and pain is going to go away but my heart and spirit will feel free.

This was a big step! That same day, I had received a text message from, supposedly, my eldest son that is living with my ex-husband; the message was a forwarded horoscope about burning down bridges and that even when I think about that person I should consider make amends with someone that has been on my mind. I truly believe that was sent by his father rather than him and found it kind of eerie at the same time.

There is no discussion between him and I still, as he is not reasonable nor will he be civil enough to have any type of friendly relationship with and especially after the information that came to light over the past few months!

So, where does this leave me?

I said the words, I felt at easy saying them and peaceful. Reminding myself that my daughter said she had given it to the Lord and forgave him several months ago.





Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Hold on!

I sat in the break room, half listening to the talk show my co-workers loved to watch during lunch and caught a segment that featured a female guest that endured abuse during her marriage. The host on the show was sympathetic to her and when the partner was announced, the crowd when wild, booing and shouting what a loser he was.

A co-worker voiced how stupid the woman was and how she would have let that guy have it. I piped up that these situations don’t typically start this way and build up. Another survivor of abuse also voiced the same sentiment and added, no one looks to be abused and after a while you believe this is all there is.  The young lady quickly grew quiet and didn’t say another word.

I shook my head, but pondered how many people out there think how “stupid” I must be.  The topic of abuse is a really out in the media due to fascination of how it has effected starts and athletes. While the hearts of those not in this situation may look negatively on the abuser, even more scrutiny is frowned upon the victim.

Unless you have been in an abusive situation or been closely involved with a loved one in this situation, you can never fully understand.  To be honest, there are times I don’t understand how I allowed the abuse to happen, or how I allowed myself to seem blind to the signs of the abuse between my children and myself. 

I am still haunted by my decisions.

I am not a certified authority or legal representative. I am a Survivor, having many hours of research about the subject and mental aspect via books, internet, some college classes and those involved in the medical and legal profession.

I have gleaned many things from a great support system that has allowed me to heal from my experiences. I can’t say I know everything nor do I profess to say I have the magical answer for you, but I can share what has worked for my situation in order for me to move on to a living a healthy future.

It breaks my heart to hear stories from other victims that feel as though there is no hope. The sinking feeling that you are stuck in a bad relationship or getting screwed over by our legal system can make you feel as though you will never break free of the cycle of darkness that seems like it hangs over you like a cloud.

Abuse is found in every race, religion, sex. As many forms as it is found it, you can also find various forms of abuse, from financial, sexual, religious, parental, bullying, verbal, mental, emotional and more.  I am in awe at the levels of depravity that is inflicted on another.  I really do not understand it. Even as I was going through it, I didn't understand. How one person can do such awful or horrifying things to another person or animal is beyond me. Or worse there is no remorse from the abuser.
I could still see in my mind’s eye my abuser standing over me with a belt in hand, smirking. Telling me that I deserved whatever it was he was dishing out. 

I have a hard time with the thought that, it’s because he is mentally sick or unstable, so in the medical profession that makes it okay?

I mentioned before that I had to hit rock bottom before I woke up to really listen to my inner self to know this was not right. I prayed to God to just take me to end the pain, yet, knowing in the back of my mind that would leave my kids at the hands of a mad man.

I had to face my own demons, dig deep for strength, I read my Bible, prayed and scoured over passages to find validation that we were meant for more. I found it in the pages of that Bible. Later several people would enter into my life briefly to serve as a reminder. I truly believe they were sent from God as a reassurance that everything would be OK, not to give up and to HOLD ON!

Stay safe and God bless you on whatever stage of your journey you are on!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

"I don't want to be alone."

"What if I never find love?"
"What if I never find someone to never hurt me again?"
"I don't want to be alone"
"I'm damaged goods and no one will ever want me"
"How come I keep attracting such losers?"

Sound familiar?

I've said those words. I've thought those thoughts. I have been there. I have been in a crowded room feeling more lonely then ever.
It's a tough situation. Especially when your heart is feeling like it is twisted and torn apart.

Perhaps your thinking, "Seriously, Melinda!? I'm so not thinking about anyone right now!" Maybe not, but there may come a time when you get a hankering for a companion.

So thoughts on this?

How about a pet! A fish, four legged critter or something that slithers! Animals are very grounding, loving and can just melt away much the tension from a love lost or abusive situation. A plus is a cat or dog can make an excellent alarm system for you if things are hairy with an ex.

"How can I ever trust a man/woman again!?"

Baby steps! Healing needs to be a priority! Your mind, body and spirit can be off kilter, making you feel moody, depressed and unsure of yourself.

I felt very unworthy, ugly and just plain unlovable for over a year later after finally leaving my ex. No matter what my family and friends did to try to give me kind compliments and boosting me, I didn't believe any of it. Looking in the mirror was something I rarely did for long periods of time. Feeling ashamed to look myself in the eye.

I hated that woman in the mirror. She was a coward, stupid and a waste of flesh. She was someone that allowed a monster harm her children and herself. Digging out of the darkness and into the light was a challenge. The smile that was plastered on my face for so long was forced, painted on and not genuine. A friend encouraged me to look at myself in the mirror, telling myself as I looked myself in the eye that I loved myself, that I was beautiful and worthy to be loved. This took time! I couldn't do it at first, half chuckling and feeling foolish. That was hard, but why?

I left my abuser! Why didn't I feel better? Why didn't I feel better about me?

I can be my own worst enemy.

I begun to pour over self help books, positive affirmations, making myself vision boards, creating goals and wishes for me. Eating better, exercising more and finding out what I wanted in life for me and my kids.

Over the past few years I have been in and out of counselors offices. My favorite counselor, Kim, excused herself from our case due to threats and fear of my ex. This sadden me and the girls, since we all loved her. She was like a old friend that we could tell anything too and left the visit with dried tears but yet comforted. After that I never found that feeling again, also after leaving my last counseling session, I felt worse then when I went in!

What's a girl to do? I began to do meditation, started to journal and blogging again. I started to find things I always wanted to learn and do. Enter a reawakening of my spiritual journey! I thirsted for the living water that I only found in my Bible and church (a great KJV Bible believing church!). On this journey I have found healing of my spirit and self and met a bunch of wonderful people in the mean time.

I created a Bucket List, as suggested, by my then boyfriend, Terry. He suggested to think of as many big, outlandish or small things that tickle my fancy. View my Labels for my previous post for my list!

I have to admit that I am very blessed to have found someone that is supportive, loving and caring so quickly after leaving my abuser. I wasn't looking for love at that time. I really wanted to run off in the woods with my kids and become a homesteader living off the land. I did get part of that! I didn't bargain for love, but have thanked God for him.

Trust your instincts if you begin your journey on healing. Keep yourself safe and if you have kids or furbabies, see how they interact with the new person you let in. BUT, do so with an open mind. Even though you really like this person, most kids and dogs can be an excellent judge of a person!

In a nutshell, you don't have to be alone, but you do need to be safe, take it slow and be open to other friends and loved one's when you do let someone into your life again. You will get there, believe me but it takes time. Don't rush it!

God bless and big hugs!
Mel



Tuesday, September 9, 2014

I poked the bear!


I did it!
I couldn't help myself!
I thought deeply and searched my heart before doing so. . .

I reached out to my eldest son. I was nervous as I waited for him to pick up. I fumbled for words and managed to spew out, "Howdy, Matt, it's Mom, er, Melinda, I just wanted to say I hope your doing well."

AGH!

There was a pause, than he began to say I wasn't supposed to have his number. There is nothing legally stating I could not call him. He kept on for another minute, telling me "Melinda, you can't contact me." and more. I could feel a lump forming in my throat and tears stinging my eyes, I ended quickly with a warm message to say I was thinking about him and hope he has a great day.

About a half hour later, my cell phone was blasted with 16 text messages. None of them friendly.

Who was I kidding? I guess part of me hoped and wished he would have said something like, "Mom? I missed you!" or "I have been thinking about you too!"

My co-workers are so caring to support and lift me up. I was laughing after a bit which helped lift my spirits.

I didn't get any of that. I had Terry check the messages when I got home. I was a blubbery mess at work, half due to the conversation and half because the hopeful bubble I created prior to making the call was popped.

The messages hit about 10 points. None of which have a shred of truth or sanity to them, my guess they are at the hand of my ex.

They range from me saying:

Rob killed animals, belonging to family members and that has proof, as he works with his dad alot and know he knows where he is. (I have no idea what that or who that is about. And that Rob doesn't know where we live.

The stuff in those papers are lies and he always sees the mail first.( I think he means the Protective Order I just filed).

There is more. Honestly I don't understand most of it and I guess I never will. I blame myself for this one, but I deeply wanted to hear my son's voice.  I haven't see him in over 5 years. I keep praying that someday there will be an understanding and healing.

So Dear blog readers, today's lesson. . . Don't poke the bear if you don't need to.

I tell you, I am not a professional and I do flub up along the way.

I keep you in prayer for strength and reassurance for guidance for your situation! And please do the same for me, I need all the help I can get!

God bless!

Mel




Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Grounding yourself in the midst of chaos!


Depending on where you on with your journey, you still may feel the need to just let out a scream!
It is still surprising to me at how many times I shake my fist to heaven with tear filled eyes or that I still have a nightmare that causes me to wet the bed or to watch the tics or anxieties that still plague my children.

Out of all of these things the outcome from years of abuse that effect my children has left quite an impression of hopelessness, worry and deep heartache. No band aid can bind up the wounds caused. No kiss or hug can wipe away the memories.

No amount of beating myself is going to make it go away.

I apologized to my girls. I hug them. Let them know I love them and I did ask for forgiveness. I am eternally grateful that God gave me strength not give up and He didn't give up on me,though there were times I questioned His ways. There was a peace. Many times there was a stillness in my heart that everything would be okay and that we were not alone.

I don't understand it. I still have a hard time forgiving "Me" for keeping us where we were. Though in all honesty it worked out the way it did for a purpose not for my understanding.

How do I hold it together? I pray A LOT! I am a chatterbox with the Lord! I read my Bible and find verses that helped build me up. I keep my favorite verses in my wallet, purse or where I can view it regularly! I have a prayer journal of thoughts and prayers for my family and friends. Most effectively, I plead the blood of Christ over me and my family. I ask God to send me a hedge of protection and don't hesitate to call on Prayer Warriors to help!

I have been pretty candid on here. I have shared everything I can about my life and experiences. Oh, sure I don't go into intimate details about some of the sexual abuse. I feel I have been descriptive enough. The blogging has helped me greatly! I know I am not alone. Thousands of men and women have passed through this blog. I am still shocked and saddened by the stats.

I literally swipe my arms, head and body from negative thoughts or when I feel down. I brush it down or throw it to the ground. For added happiness I step on those nasty things or imagine a drain taking all of those things down and away from me.

I get out in nature! I unplug and just listen to the birds or the wind rustling through the leaves/trees. If I can I go barefoot and imagine myself with roots reaching down like a plant! Go somewhere that makes you happy! If you can't (money can be tight!) use your imagination, by going to a "Happy place" that is special to your or maybe it can be a memory where you felt safe and loved.

Play inspiring or soothing music! Color or dig out some craft supplies! Have a pet? Play with him/her! If you have kids, play with them! Spending time with your kids is of course first and foremost to help you and them recover.

Picture yourself in a white light or pink (Love) or blue (Calming) light has helped me when I needed to talk to my ex or when I had to go to court. Cutting Etheric cords that attached me to my past abuser also has helped (I will get a separate posting about these!)

Set goals for yourself! Where do you see yourself in a month? 6 months? 1 year? 2 years? 5 and so on. . .

Talk with a professional if you need to. Do what works for you! What works for me is entirely different from everyone else. Don't feel bad if you do something that takes a medicinal turn. I went more of a holistically path of healing with my path and non medicinal. I found essential oils, flowers, Bach's Flowers, Positive Affirmations, Dream boards are what worked for me.

An occasional bout of screaming and crying still works too!

These are just a few things that worked for me. I am still struggling even after 5+ years. I struggle with getting child support, bad dreams and panic attacks. These are getting few and far between, but you are not alone in your fight! Don't give up! I believe in you!

God bless my Dear Friend!
Mel


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Got lists?

 
 
The first few days after leaving my abuser, I was so distraught and unsure how to proceed. I had no money, my family was kind to offer refuge. But I had no job. No plans and not a clue where to proceed further.
 
Though I had planned my escape, but neglected to think further about my future. I only focused on breaking free. When I finally settled down after a few weeks I knew I needed to start again and reinvent myself for a new beginning.

I pulled out a notebook and started writing lists! Lists of things to do in the present, things to do in the future and things that needed to be done immediately.

I also made a list of goals, dreams and things I wanted to achieve. I know I have my Bucket List on here and that was right around the time I started my other lists.  All of these lists are different for everyone. As no one has the same path, goal or dreams.

I knew I needed to work on important situations; eg., the safety of my children and me! So a Order of Protection was #1 on that list! I had information about local law enforcement, shelter information, began to research how to represent myself legally and what firm grounds did I have to keep my kids. I needed to look for a job in order to have some sort of income and listed friends and family that may or did know someone hiring.

I had a list of things I needed to supply our new apartment that my sister kindly helped decorate and fill a bit. I didn't have dishes, or a coffee pot or groceries. The kids needed supplies for school since I abruptly pulled them out of school.

I moved on to future needful things that were not necessary but a bit of a pipe dream. A new home, car, safety and even for the possibility to live off the grid someone in the woods, as I didn't want another relationship for a long time (Boy! God has a great sense of humor, as my current husband and I began to dating, I was blindsided by that!)

I created my Bucket List with Terry's urging, and I listed things I always wanted to do, see and learn. My lists changed as I grew and became more confident. I felt progress as I scratched off things and sometimes those lists felt very overwhelming!

I created a vision board to reflect wishes for a new life. And over viewing that board 5 years later, much of those things did happen!

Start off small! As this can be too overwhelming, especially if you are already stressed out due to leaving your ex.

Write 5 goals or things to do in immediately, present and future. If you don't get everything done on your list, don't stress out about it, move onto something else. Make a list of silly things that you have always wanted to do, you don't have to call it a Bucket list. Or make a Vision board! Cut out magazines with pictures or positive words that speak to you!

Give yourself a realistic time limit to get these done and again don't stress if they aren't done or you only check off a few things from your list. These things take time. Don't give up and stay strong!

God bless and BIG HUGS!
Mel


Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Brushing the dust from my knees




I lay curled in a protective pose, trying to shield my head and midsection from the assault that seemed to be over taking me.Terror that filled my bones, my stomach was in knots, I sobbed uncontrollably begging my attacker to please stop. 

I begged for mercy.

I sucked in my breath as the blows to my body, feeling light headed and wishing for death.

I prayed for God to just take me. To end the tirade that seemed to be lasting for hours, but in fact was over in less than a few minutes.

I was hit with sweat and spittle from my abuser as he screamed about how useless I was. That I was a stupid *unt! 

My head hurt, my body ached, I felt myself urinate on myself. I hoped he didn't notice. . .

Too late! He laughed and sneered with disgust at me. He ranted that I was a disgusting pig! He stopped in mid kick. He backed away, muttering under his breath about what a waste of flesh I was and shaking his head. 

He barked to me to get my ass off the floor, clean myself up and I better not have to go to the hospital or else. He yelled that it was my fault anyway and he would deny anything if it came to that.

My breathing was labored. I prayed I wasn't seriously hurt. I brushed myself off, found some clean clothes and was further instructed to take care of dinner.

I made haste and nearly fell down the stairs from our bedroom that was on the 2nd floor, to the sinister smile of my abuser waiting at the bottom of the stairs with open arms to say he was sorry he got out of hand. He made a pouty face and said an almost shy apology. 

He grabbed my hand and pulled me close to hold me. I felt repulsed and dead inside. Confused, hurt and still dazed by the events that had just taken place. I didn't understand why God was letting this happen to me or the kids.

***********************************************************

I felt as though I had floated in and out of that former life. Feeling as though another person had taken my place during times of painful episodes. Not believing there would be anything else that awaited me in the future except a coffin. I saw death by the hand of my abuser or from my own hand as I slumped in a deep depression, unsure of what to do next with my circumstances. I blamed myself. I blamed God. 

I walked about in a nervous fog. I dreamed of happiness. Fantasized of a life of happiness. No drama or violence. Even after chatting with a intuitive friend, Kristy, who advised me that she was worried that I would not survive the upcoming year. My heart knew she saw wasn't far from the truth. I needed to run. I couldn't stay in this crazed relationship any longer. 

Fast forward 5+ years later! 

God never gave up on me and provided the right opportunity to escape. My life now is still a roller coaster. My recent Order of Protection has been granted for no contact with my ex. Though I highly believe he is emailing my daughter, and believe he is pretending to be my older son. 

The girls are happier. Terry and I are best friends. I have been able to grow as a person. Heal and laugh again! That former life and me seems like it is a hundred years away. Helping my daughter from the sexual abuse she suffered is slow and I am not pushing her to relive those events. I have advised her we need to have a counselor or perhaps she needs to discuss with peers someday when she is ready. 

I'm writing as a reminder to others "stuck" you can break free of abuse. No, everything is not perfect. I still am on guard and watch over my shoulder. We don't receive regular child support payments. And there are still nightmares and panic attacks. I am very happy with this second chance at life and feel blessed.
Don't give up my Friend! Please pass this along to anyone else you know or believe is being abused so they can know they are not alone! There is beauty from the ashes!

God bless! Stay safe!
Mel