The healing journey of a childhood sexual abuse survivor

The idea of starting this blog originated as a suggestion by a trusted friend. I gave it some brief thought and then dismissed it as a wildly self indulgent idea. After all, who would possibly care about what I have to say?

I have been expressing myself through art for as long as I can remember. In fact, I was expressing my feelings through art long before I even realized I was doing so. Drawing, painting, and creating have provided me the ability to access and express emotions often before words can be found and assigned to them. Writing, on the other hand, has become a relatively new passion of mine. I started writing as part of my personal healing from childhood sexual abuse. I found myself often sitting in my therapist’s office silently wrestling with the thoughts, feelings, and emotions that came up. I struggled to say anything out loud. I am a deeply introspective person. I spend a great deal of time in my own head, contemplating, analyzing, judging, and often second guessing every word that comes out of my mouth. By the time I could muster up the nerve to open my mouth and let words escape, they were often so filtered and muted that they didn’t come close to representing the depth and gravity of my feelings. I would often leave therapy sessions feeling defeated and full of regret for not being able to express my truth.

When I learned that I could write without the inhibition of self judgement an amazing thing started to happen. I began to access feelings and emotions that I had never expressed before. I learned how to give a voice to my deepest raw and unfiltered emotions. At first my writing remained tightly held in my own personal grasp only to be shared in my therapy sessions. Then I braved the idea of sharing some of my writing with a few people close to me, and I experienced this amazing reciprocating validation and connection from it. I learned that while my experiences may be vastly different from others, the thought processes and emotions that I experience are incredibly relatable. The more I shared the less alone, different, and broken I felt in my own feelings. I learned that my honest and open expression created not only a growing interpersonal connection between myself and others, but it also allowed others to better connect and relate to their own feelings.

Writing and art have allowed me to create a bridge from my deepest truest self into the hearts of others. This growing and healing connection I have felt has become the catalyst for taking this step and starting this blog. We were not meant to sit silently and wrestle with our deepest struggles alone. It is my hope to create a space for freeing, open, and honest expression. A place for connection, validation, and insight. A place of collective support where we can face our struggles together.

Welcome to my wishing tree

Latest from the Blog

Army of One

She stands in front of a police station – preparing, breathing, second guessing. Four adults surround her – protecting, supporting, embracing. She steps inside and lets her shaky voice tell her story, exposing the evil that was done to her. With her army of four by her side she feels scared yet capable. When she … Continue reading Army of One

The Impacts of Grooming

She is 14 years old. She sits in her school hallway on the floor with her back against the wall. Her legs are outstretched and crossed in front of her. She wears an oversized hand-me-down t-shirt and athletic shorts. Her feet are laced up in well worn running shoes. She waits for the rest of … Continue reading The Impacts of Grooming

The Hollow Place

There is a hollow place that finds me. It knows me by name. Its reach can cover any distance I travel. Its strength can multiply, creeping and surrounding me as it wishes. There is a hollow place that hunts me. It lurks and stalks and waits for the prime moment to pounce. Its jagged grip … Continue reading The Hollow Place

Impossible Hope

My vision spins before meCircling the drainEnergy spent againstA formidable foeThat laughs in the faceOf opposition Where does clarity exist?Where does safety reside? I can taste the temptation of surrenderAn impossible optionBringing questions and doubt, whileIgniting an impervious hopein an otherwise barren wasteland.

The Scrappy Warrior

The messages she carries try to convince her that her home is in the darkness that surrounds her and seems to know how to steadily lurk just one step ahead of her. It makes it hard for her to maintain traction on where or even who she is. Yet something inside urges her to focus … Continue reading The Scrappy Warrior

Needs From Within

I can feel youreachingfor safety you deserveyet have never known I can sense your needto meltinto the softglow of visibility To feel both seen and heldsafely away from the gripof the stormthat chases you

An Anniversary of Sorts

Originally posted on Wishing Tree:
Four years. Today marks four years since the man who sexually abused me was arrested based solely on my police report. Today marks the pivotal day where this man learned that he can no longer hurt me. As a reminder of this day I have the lasting image of his…

The Flip Side of Hope

It knows where to find meClinging and grippingOnto something hardly tangibleIt hovers nearbyWaiting and knowingIts presenceMy reminderThat what I grasp forDoes not belong to meThat what I needExceeds what I can wish for

Growing New Beliefs

What truths do you possess about yourself? What beliefs about who you are provide a foundation of guiding support in your life? These are questions that have been swirling in my mind this past week. These are questions that don’t seem to have easy answers that I can securely hold onto. I enjoy hiking. Summit … Continue reading Growing New Beliefs

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Sunshower
Though your garden is grey
I know all your graces
Someday will flower
In a sweet sunshower
~Chris Cornell