Be Strong & Courageous…

My new art piece, which is one of my favorite scriptures now hangs on the wall in my bedroom. These words have been on repeat as I continue to recover. I never would have imagined that I would be adding “Survivor of Pulmonary Embolism” to my story. But nonetheless here I stand, believing Gods promises for my life even when things are hard 🙌🏽😭

I have hope and faith as I continue to say:

“I AM Strong and Courageous, I will not be afraid or discouraged for the Lord MY God will be with me wherever I go”. – Joshua 1:9💗

~ denise marie

#nolongerheldcaptive

Today I celebrate…

On April 11th, I turned 51…

Today I celebrate

both the good and the bad of these 51 years…there were so many days that I struggled with my value and self-worth, never “feeling” good enough as I listened to the lies which kept me bound to their twisted truth for far too long. So many years of refusing to truly allow myself to shine for fear of failure or rejection, playing it safe instead of living freely.

As an adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse, I despised who and what I saw in my mirror.

It has been such a slippery slope to maneuver through the trauma.

Daily choosing to renew my mind, as I apply truth to my brokenness, I am healing whole.

Today I celebrate.

Every step
she takes
is a brave
quest to silence
the lies
which kept
her bound
for far too long.
This courageous
feat outweighs
the years of
previous defeats.

Her new found

confidence
beams as
she finds
her worth
in simply
being
present.
~ denise marie
“So if the son sets you free, you will be free indeed”. – John 8:36
#nolongerheldcaptive

International Women’s Day is everyday…says this survivor.

Being an adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse and rape at 14. I lived most of my life in a fragmented mindset, pieces of my identity hidden behind the shadow of what I only allowed others to see. The secrets were suppressed and the key to that pain was locked away.

The bondage placed upon my life at the early age of 4, was meant to be a death sentence of everything good that my Mother and Grandmother stood for and the love they so lovingly wrapped me in, was now blemished. The curse had been passed down through generations and as much as they tried to protect me from abuse, I experienced this unmentionable pain in the hands of people they trusted.

Years of flashback and triggers haunted me as I covered up the pain through perfectionism, people pleasing, an eating disorder and many other coping mechanisms. Trauma after trauma tried to keep my mind in a self-denial pit of defeat. Blurring my decision making and accepting unhealthy boundaries.

On the outside I appeared to have it ALL together, picture perfect is what some would say. But, on the inside I felt scarred, damaged, worthless, unloveable and broken.

I was lost.

When I chose to face the truth and feel the pain, it was excruciating, literally debilitating and heart wrenching.

I wanted to put it all back in the pretty little box that I secretly kept hidden in the crevices of my heart.

But I couldn’t…the truth was exposed and I had to make a decision, either I was gonna fold or I was gonna fight…and I chose to fight for my freedom.

What does fighting for my freedom look like?

Everyday making a decision to do the next right thing…..in spite of depression, anxiety, ptsd, wanting to isolate, low self esteem, doubt, fear or self sabotage.

The next right thing looks

like…..accountability, intensive therapy, an eating disorder program, Celebrate Recovery: 12-step Christ centered recovery program, reaching out to others who I trust when I need support or a listening ear, prayer…lot’s of prayer, self-care, journaling, spending time with my husband, kids, granddaughter and our dog, walking preferably near salt water with the beach under my feet, fresh air, essential oils, laughter, whole food, supplements, chocolate, reading, drinking water, sipping my cup of coffee in a pretty mug, finding joy and gratitude daily…even when it’s hard and learning to love, accept love and give love.

Above all else, my relationship with God through his son Jesus is how I am learning to view myself through His Word, promises and truth. I am healing.

These are some of the tools, resources and support I have used and some I am still using to help me walk in my freedom.

Everyday I celebrate “international women’s day” as I cheer on other women who are locking arms with others who are overcoming tremendous battles (some in which others may never know about) and are taking one step at a time to courageously become liberated from what tried to destroy her.

My name is denise marie and

I AM no longer held captive…by my childhood secrets, I AM free.

“So if the son sets you free, you will be free indeed”. – John 8:36

#nolongerheldcaptive

Today I celebrate my 50th Birthday. I love this pic because it was a day that I shared my story. I am overwhelmed by the gratitude that I feel and cherish every memory, both good and bad, for it has brought me to this point in my life that I am able to stand up and use my voice to overcome fear that has kept me quiet for so long. I thank God for His gift of life and the ability to reclaim my freedom!💗

“For if the son sets you free, you will be free indeed”. – John 8:36

#nolongerheldcaptive

I was attacked

at the very core

of my being and

was told to end it.

That I was not going to

live past the depression,

the anxiety and the tremendous

amount of pain.

The lies, and self hatred

tried to overshadow every ounce

of hope and faith

I previously held onto.

Even though I walk through the

darkest valley…

Fragmented pieces of the

memories came flashing

back as I tried to piece them

together and make sense

of the realization that these

were not nightmares but

factual suppressed recollections.

I will fear no evil…for you are with me….

It was too much!

I felt as if I was literally being

ripped from the inside out.

Every part of my body ached

as I exposed the truth and

walked through the dark

murkiness of my past.

You protect and guide me,

and I find comfort as you console me…

In my despair,

I wept, as I released the pain.

You are repairing all the damage

that was done to me,

and restoring the deepest,

most real part of me.

Lord, my strength and hope, comes from you.

(*Psalm 23)

~ denise marie

“So if the son sets you free, you will be free indeed”. – John 8:36

Awaken yourself…

Fear kept

me bound

to circumstances

that stripped

me of my

self-worth.

Awareness,

of the need

to change

my perspective,

opened up

my ability

to love

myself.

Belief in

who He is,

bought my

freedom.

~ denise marie

“So if the son sets you free, you will be free indeed”. – John 8:36

Healing from Trauma is a process…

Moving slow and steady as each layer of darkness is exposed to His light, I’m no longer masking, covering up or remaining silent as I am learning to trust the process of true healing and the work it takes to reclaim my life.💗

“So if the son sets you free, you will be free indeed”. – John 8:36

From the first touch…

Self expression through writing has been a hobby & passion of mine since I was a little girl. In this picture, I was approximately 5 years old and was writing a poem. The following self expression explains why I am sitting there with a blank stare filled with so much sadness.

From the first touch, my life was forever changed. I could no longer see through the innocent sparkled filled eyes of a little girl, but rather the a darkened, blank stare that narrowly dilated my carefree view of this world. This false interpretation of safety and love from a man, quickly devoured my heart with lies of how my life was to be.

The depths of the overwhelming sadness that overcame me, could never be explained in order for you to understand how deep that violation not only hurt me, but changed me. All because of…that first touch.

The “first” touch led to many incidents of being molested by several people through the age of 12 and then raped at the age of 14. I held this secret until I was 40 years old. By finally sharing my story, it is helping me heal from the pain of the abuse.

Words That Are Silenced Are Lethal Secrets To Destroy You Soul, Speak Your Truth.

In April, I turn 50 years old, a half century! I want to encourage others that they too can be “no longer held captive by childhood secrets”. By safely sharing your secret with a trusted friend, family member, teacher, therapist or writing it out anonymously, this powerful act of courage, is the first step to being free from shame.

~ denise marie

“So if the son sets you free, you will be free indeed”. – John 8:36