Thanks for your kind responses ladies. I will begin my story. Mind you, it's a share, not a pity party. It's a tough story, but I'm not looking for pity. Yes, kind words are welcome, but don't feel sorry for me. Yes, you can hurt with me over the hurts, but I am not a victim.
My journey started when I was sixteen. Or was it when I was born? Well, the part of it that I was aware of and was purposeful about began at the wise old age of sixteen. It wasn't until then that I was able to realize that all the 'stuff' that had happened earlier on needed to be addressed. Confronted might be a better term.
My high school offered a once a week group session for survivors of sexual abuse. I can't rightly recall when I first realized that this was the correct term for what had happened to me. But when the group was offered, I did know immediately that I should join it.
I remember wondering who else would be there and how they would feel about my involvement. I was a very insecure young woman back then. No wonder given my early life, but somehow that fact always took me by surprise. I knew that I shouldn't be. I knew that deep inside that I was a vital person with something to say. Still, I was afraid.
In hind sight, I'm not sure we accomplished very much. But it did open the door to conversation and helped me to realize that I was certainly not alone in my 'affliction'. In 1988, people were beginning to talk about such things. Not so much the older generations, but the flower children seemed to have started a movement that urged us to talk about our experiences. I'm grateful for that now I can tell you.
Two of my teachers joined us and led the group. It was during afternoon class, Math as I recall, which was another good reason to go. I thought it strange that they'd let us out of class for it but I wasn't asking questions. Evidently, they knew it would be important for us. We talked in that group in very general terms about our experiences as we remembered them.
At that time, I had no idea that a person could repress memories nor did I have any inclination that I might have done such a thing. I also didn't understand a thing about the formation of bonds with other human beings. For me, it was a tiny scrap of a beginning and if I had no idea how deeply those wounds we were discussing really were.
We didn't last long as a group. Again, I couldn't tell you why, but I think we met 5 or 6 times before that little respite from Math class ended. But I think it was enough. It was enough to give me a beginning.
Since then, I've revisited the topic times beyond counting. I've realized that sexual abuse has had an absolutely profound effect on my past, my present and will have one on my future. It doesn't define who I am by a long shot, but I cannot be defined without acknowledging it's permeating imprint.
The journey I am on is about eradicating the lies I've believed as a result. Next time, I'll share from the true beginning.
And on a lighter note, I'll share a layout I did recently for The Lily Pad. If you haven't ever visited, please waste no time. The Lily Pad is a fantastic little digital shop who invited me to play with their goodies recently. The thing I love most is that you can use the Print and Cut feature on your Silhouette to get all kinds of wonderful designs from the many talented designers over there.
I added a couple of the Moment's Die Cut labels to the mix to incorporate the date. In fact, if you look at the bottom of the photo, there's another label with the year under the glassine envelope.
I've decided that I officially love sequins. Yes I do.
Here is a list of the products I used for this project:
Not So Plain Jane Papers by Micheline Martin
Anywhere Papers (May 2012 BYOC)
Honey Honey Elements
Honey Honey Papers
a wonderful day (mixed media) by sahlin studio
typeset alphas no. 1
Who What Where Cards
Along with some Studio Calico Paper, some Moment's Collection Die Cuts, some washi tape and a few random stamps, brads and sequins.
Have a wonderful weekend friends!