Love Is Patient & Kind!

Love is patient and kind. 1 Cor. 13:4

Growing up as a suvivor of abuse I was full of feelings of shame and worthlessness. These feelings followed me for years and eventually became part of my identity. Constantly feeling shame “dirty” and worthlessness left me wanting to escape the sense that something was horribly wrong with me. I was unable to shake the negative emotions, I found myself masking my emotions through self destructive behaviors.

There were periods when life was so dark and I felt alone in my brokeness I just wanted to end all of the internal suffering. I didn’t really see the point in living if I would have to continuously deal with all the shame and pain, life felt unbareable and I wanted to escape! My way of dealing with the multitude of emotions was through destructive behaviors. The majority  of my teenage years were spent in and out of hospitals trying to find  ways to deal the internal chaos I constantly felt. I hated everything about myself and thought that if I could change everything about myself and my past somehow life could be better.

By  the end of high school I just wanted a fresh start. My plan was to put everything behind me and live a successful life, unfortunately I did not have healthy tools to make the life changes. I had hopes and dreams alongside the pain and suffering and I felt hopeful about the idea of being an adult. In my mind becoming an adult meant the pain of the past magically disappeared. At that time I was still carrying around all of the drama of my youth, but I had become more skilled masking the pain. My way of dealing with pain remained the same (self harm eating disorder), but I was desperate to succeed in life. Looking back on this time in my life I know that clearly God was carrying me because if it were left up to me I know I wouldn’t have survived all the way through college.

Although I made it through school and the start of a career, I still lived my life from the place of a broken little girl. I hadn’t dealt with any of the trauma from my past. My identity had become so enmeshed with all of my dysfunction that I could never imagine dealing with the brokeness in a healthy manner. The recorder of negativity that had been on repeat since my youth kept me bound to my poor self image and self destruction.  You can only live so long in dysfunction before it explodes, anyway, I continued to exist in a space where I was unable to love or accept myself. Eventually, I exploded.

As I am writing this all out I am so grateful for all of the experiences on this journey of my life.  Does that mean I am grateful for the trauma? No. I am grateful that I was able to live through the dysfuntion because it has given me a greater appreciation for experiencing self love. I am grateful for the journey that has brought me to a place where I can with assurance say that I love myself.

“Love is patient and kind;” 1Cor. 13:4, this passage is a reminder of how I am to love myself with gentleness, tolerance, endurance, acceptance, and kindness. Loving myself with patience and kindness allows me to love others with the same gentleness, tolerance, and acceptance. Loving myself is a journey one that I see as beautiful, my eyes have been openned to the awesome qualities and acceptance of the pieces of myself that are not my favorite.

I hope that if you made it this far you are inspired to start or continue the journey to love yourself.

You are Resilient

You are a Revolutionary

You Radiate Love

-Natalie

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Love Yourself!

Have  you ever felt unworthy? Have you every done anything to hide who you really are? Do you ever feel like you are not enough? Have you ever put yourself down? Do you ever wear a mask to keep people from seeing what hides behind? Do you allow yourself to be vulnerable? How far do you let people into you stuff?

Before I go any further I want you to know that you are amazing, resilient, confident, brilliant and worthy of giving and receiving love. No matter what you have been told or said to yourself you are loveable. You are fearfully and wonderfully made and you were created to be exactly who you are. Embrace the greatness inside of you.

The key is to love and embrace all that you are inside and outside.  Falling in love with yourself takes time, it is a relationship that must be cultivated. Like any other relationship we get to know the other person until we grow to love that person.  When your relationship grows you begin to feel confident and you are willing to open up and put your trust in that person and you value their opinion, you are in a relationship with yourself. Loving yourself creates overflow and you can give and receive love…

-Natalie

 

I Woke Up Late!!!

Hello! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend.

I woke up late this morning and freaked out. I am the type of person that must stick to my routine and if I don’t then my day is out of sorts. My alarm clock went off several times this morning and I hit the snooze button. Last week I planned to meet my friend for breakfast this morning and I missed our date. So basically my day was off to a rocky start.

Typically I would have spent the rest of the day under the covers waiting for the next day to make up for the “disater” of the day. Yes, I can be pretty dramatic. I managed to pull myself out of bed, texted my friend and rescheduled for next Monday at 9:30am. I am not really a morning person, but I am trying to prepare to become part of working world again.

Becoming part of society is scary since the last time I was able to hold down a job was 2009. Since my  breakdown while on my first job out of college I have been terrified of reentering the world of the working. I have done a lot of work so that I can work and become a productive member of society, honestly, I am anxious about this new opportunity. My mind is filled with “What If’s”, I have to constantly remind myself that I am ready and I have put in the time and work.

Currently I am going through the process of looking for work with my Job Developer and studying for my Medical Coding Exam. I am so full of anxiety and and excitement,  I am trying to stay focused on the end goal. These are the moments when my lessons learned are tested.These are the moments when I remind myself to take breaks, breathe, and enjoy the process.Over the weekend I didn’t study or search for jobs, I have to admit that created anxiety for the start of my week.

I had to do my affirmations this morning to keep me grounded and from speeding to meet ALL my make up goals for the day. I did study and applied for two jobs, I am hoping that the rest of my week will be better. Do something fun and enjoy the process is my mantra for this week. I am telling myself that it is ok to have goals but I can’t get so caught up that I panic all the way through the process. My feelings are valid and I can do anything. I know this sounds corny, but it is what I have to do to get through the week.

-Natalie

 

The Process of Healing

The process of healing takes a lot of work. I have found on my journey that art has been on of the top coping skills that I used at the start of my journey  and continue to use when I need a mini escape. I am not the best artist, however, I find it relaxing and it keeps me mindful. I love drawing trees for some reason they make me feel grounded.

One suggestion  I have is to find something that you enjoy doing and do it. For me in my early years of recovery from the aftermath of my abuse my best friend and I would sit at the coffee shop drink coffee and draw. That was our weekly escape from all of our issues. For us, if we met up and one of us was not having a good day by the end of art and coffee we would be laughing and feeling empowered.

Although we now live in different states we continue to meet at Starbucks once a week and we talk on the phone and draw. That has been a life saver for both of us, it is our time to encourage one another and it allows us to push beyond our past and live life. For me it has made my recovery stronger and hopeful for what is to come in the future.

Love,

Natalie

Power Of Words

  • I am more than a conquer through Christ who strengthens me
  • Greater is He that is in me than He that is in the world
  • I have the mind of Christ
  • I am fearfully and wonderfully made
  • God has given me everything I need to succeed in the wourld
  • I am good enough and I deserve to live in this world
  • I have been redeemed and Christ has healed me from the brokeness

I decided to share my daily confessions that have helped shift the course of my life. Growing up in a Christian home I was familiar with the power of God to change my life and those around me. I was sold out for Jesus! Unfortunately after being violated so many times I lost my faith and hope. As a result of the violations I endured my self image was ripped to shreds. I was full of shame, resentment, and guilt I hated myself so much.

Eventually I found my way back to Christ but with my return I carried my baggage of shame, guilt, self hatred, guilt and resentment. About two years ago I realized that if I continued to speak self defeating words over my life I would continue to struggle with self hate. I couldn’t imagine spending the rest of my life  constantly hating myself for things that weren’t my fault. I wanted desperately to live a life of peace free from mental torture. I started to reconnect myself with Christ and I realized that I needed to start speaking the word of God over my life if I wanted to be free from mental torture.

The change was gradual, the more I confessed the word of God over my life the greater the change in my self image. Another  thing that helped me along on my journey was exploring what God says about me. My heart was open for change, I needed  something different since nothing else was leading me towards the healing and peace I wanted in my life.Many of the deeply ingrainged  beliefs I held for years about myself were shifting, I found myself able to look in the mirror more often without cringing. Now please don’t get me wrong,everyday is not full of roses, however, I do have more good days than bad with the hope of more good days.

I am still a work in progress, this is something I remind myself of almost daily. However, being able to see the improvements in my life I am hopeful about what is to come. Words Do have power! Change your words, Change your life.

 

 

Come Out Of Hiding

Hello,

Welcome to my blog!

When I decided to start this blog it was my desire to inspire and give hope to anyone that is or has dealt with sexual abuse and the aftermath. The road to healing and freedom is not easy. Having the right people to support you during the process makes the journey a little smoother. I have been blessed to have support and encouragement that allowed me to come out of hiding. In the past I resisted sharing my story or my journey from victimhood to survivor out of shame. However, the enormous amount of shame kept me trapped in guilt and pain of being abused. I realize that talking about sexual abuse is taboo, however, sweeping it under the carpet keeps us bound to the past.

As a survivor, I will no longer live in silence. Living in silence made it difficult for me to live up to my full potential. I have moved from victim to survivor.I have a voice and I want to use my voice to inspire others to  live a life of freedom. Be inspired to ComeOutOfHiding and live free.

Thanks for stopping by,

Natalie Nicole

P.S. Please feel free to dialogue…