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

No longer held captive by…my own limitations

Every part of my BE-ing

screams out from

under the mask

of my own insecurities.

Fear tries to woo itself

oh so closely

to the inner complexity

of my identity.

This inward battle of

who I am vs who I’m not

continues to churn.

Keep evolving.

~denise marie

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

No longer held captive by chaos…

Fast talking,

heart pumping

overthinking

everything.

This nervous energy

was driven by

an attempt

to hide behind

the inability

to trust,

even my

own instincts.

Trauma

groomed me

into believing

that I was nothing

outside of what

I did for others.

Unknowingly,

it kept

me bound,

to things out of

my control.

I’ve learned,

to walk away

from the chaos,

and to step

into my

true authentic self.

For there is where,

I am happy,

and for there is where,

I am free.

~Denise

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

Not believing the hype of wearing an “S” on my chest..

superwoman-blog-illustration

Like many of you Mom’s out there,

At times, I struggle with balancing life’s demands.

Tackling multiple projects at home and work, juggling hectic schedules and commitments..trying to meet the needs of my children, husband, friends and extended family.

Proudly announcing to whoever will listen, that I AM WOMAN!

Running around, pounding the “S” on my chest, with my eyes bugged out, looking less like the sexy SuperWoman, but more like a frazzled, stressed out Mama in need of a pedicure.

While listening way too much to the little voice that whispers..your never going to be good enough.. therefore..keeping me trapped in the lie of never measuring up to the woman, that I have put on that unrealistic platform of perfection.

Ouch..it hurts to read those words. You see…as easy as it is to place the blame on someone else, I had to admit, that I choose to live this way.

You see, from the time I was a little girl, I had this overwhelming need to be needed.

So as an adult, I had to stop and recognize the unhealthy behavior that continues to try to hinder my healing.

Today, I am believeing that my value and worth is based on WHO I AM and not because of what I can do. 

~ xoxo Denise

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Please join me in sharing the following video. Social network has a way of spreading information out quickly, please reblog, post, tweet, facebook, email, etc! Thank you ahead of time for doing YOUR part in bringing Awareness to END Childhood Sexual Abuse.
~ Denise ~ No Longer Held Captive..By My Childhood Secrets

No longer held captive

~By breaking my silence, I am no longer giving power to the pain~

Today, I want to encourage you to break your silence and declare that you

Are No Longer Held Captive..By Your Childhood Secrets..

May your temporary sorrow, lead you to Triumphant Victory ~ Denise

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Innocence of a Little Girl…

I am an Adult Survivor of Childhood Sexual Abuse. I was sexually abused between the ages of 3 – 12, by several different people. I created this Blog to give you a glimpse into my Healing Journey. The following is just one of the incidents I encountered. As you follow my journey, I hope to encourage and give you hope that you too can overcome any situation. Blessings to you ~ Denise aka bnewvision. 

Being molested at an early age,  caused me to have unclear boundaries. Like any child, I enjoyed the attention of people, but when the attention turned into a distorted violation against me, I became numb to the abuse and accepted whatever someone wanted to do to me.

As a 5 year old little girl, all I wanted was to be was a princess, a carefree, adventurous, beautiful princess. I danced in a tutu and tapped in tap shoes. I wanted to explore and discover my world, by my terms, as long as it included something pink and frilly. During that time, my Mom and I temporarily moved into a friends house.  Her friend had a son that was around 12 years old and we were like cousins. He was someone I looked up to, who was really nice and would play fun games with me. As time went on, the games we played turned into “special” games. I was confused and not sure how to handle his “special” attention. He never threatened me not to tell on him, and I was not forced into letting him touch me. I was loyal to his desire to play with my body.

The abuse clouded my sunny days and my world became a suspicious, misleading playground of illusions.

How could someone who was so nice towards me, also want to hurt me? How could someone who I trusted, turn around and no longer be someone who I could trust? How could you use my body for your sexual satisfaction? I was nothing more than a child, an innocent little girl.

As an adult, I now realize that as a child, I was groomed by many violators to be sexually abused.

We are in the middle of April, which is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. I would like to encourage you to help make a change, bring awareness and take a stand against Sexual Assault. A fellow blogger, Motivational Speaker and Author,  Ressurrection Graves  has created a petition on change.org.   To  Make Child Sexual Abuse Grooming A Felony. Please take a moment to Sign the Petition.

Thank you!
Denise Boyd Copyright ©

Today..April 11th..the Day of MY Birth.

Today, April 11th is my Birthday. One of the ways I choose to celebrate, is by reflecting on my journey. In the midst of  working through the healing of being a Survivor of childhood sexual abuse and rape, I want to give tribute to My Mother’s Love on the day I was born.

She looked into her daughters big brown eyes, lightly kissing the dusting of light brown hair on her head. Whispering softly how loved and honored she was to hold her only daughter. Anticipating with excitement all of the hopes, and dreams of a wonderful life for, Denise Marie. Without blemish or imperfection, Adorned with Beauty and Grace. She was the love of her life, the beat of her heart, the precious connection that would never be torn apart. The immeasurable amount of Love she deposited into her daughter’s life, equipped Denise with the unyielding Strength she would need to endure the things to come.

The Powerful, Never Ending, Love of my Mother carried me through the darkest times of my life. A few months ago, I shared my entire story of my childhood sexual abuse and rape with my Mom.  It was time for me to no longer deceptively, hide the truth from her. As difficult as it was for me to tell her, she needed to hear my secrets. The shame, guilt and fear tried to overcome me as I began to share my story. All of the lies I used to cover up the Truth tried to rise up in me, and shy me away from being completly honest. I wanted to protect her heart from the pain. But I knew, in order for me to be free, I had to tell her every ugly detail of the abuse, and who the abusers were. As I spoke, the fear within me, began to be replaced with her amazing Love for me. She intently listened to me, without interruption, without judgement, and without making excuses as to why she did not  know I was being abused. She understood that this was my appointed time to release 40 years of hidden pain and at that very moment of vulnerability she chose to simply Love me. Today, I Continue to Embrace My Healing Journey and Completly Celebrate ME!
Denise Boyd Copyright ©

It’s Time To Burn Your Cloak..

On April 5, 2012, I had the opportunity to share my story for the first time publicly as a guest on the Ravens Closet talk show, http://ravensclosettalkshow.com/ . I was so excited counting down the days to the day in which I called, my “Day of Emancipation”. The dictionary defines Emancipation, to be free from bondage, the condition of a slave. When I read this definition, I also looked up the definition of Proclamation, which means to be free from slavery and to declare it publicly. I truly had been a slave to the aftermath of childhood sexual abuse and also to my experience of being raped.

On April 4th, I had been going over my story and reviewing what I was going to say. As I was writing a flood of emotion suddenly came over me. I felt the anger rise up from the pit of my stomach. I thought I was going to literally jump out of my skin. Every emotion that I had tried to suppress and every bit of insecurity and fear came to the surface. I began to weep and shake uncontrollably.

Every excuse I had used to this point, was no longer going to hold me back from my freedom.  I knew I had to feel the pain, and the anger of the abuse. It was my right and I gave myself permission to release the shame, the guilt, the low self-esteem, the depression, the lack of trust, the nightmares and flashbacks, the overall feeling of “not being good enough”. I had carried this cloak long enough and I knew it was time for me to remove the cloak and declare power and freedom over my past.

I called my husband and shared my pain with him, I needed the support and for someone to just listen to me. I went off, not on him, but on everyone who had hurt me as a child. I expressed how I felt when my friend’s Grandfather touched me,  I expressed how I felt when I was molested in the closet by the babysitter’s daughter, I expressed how I felt when I was Raped in the front seat of a car. My husband lovingly and patiently allowed me to release that pain, without judgement.

I will never forget that moment of release on April 4th and I will never forget April 5th, in which I bravely shared my story. This is only my beginning and I will never carry the heavy cloak again.

I, Denise Boyd am a Survivor of Childhood Sexual Abuse and Rape. Those inhumane, violent acts of betrayal againgst me as a child, tried to destroy me, but, with God, I know that All Things Are Possible and that My Healing will oneday be Complete.

Denise Boyd Copyright ©

To find the Beauty..

When I began writing my blog, I felt liberated, excited, and empowered. But I soon noticed that those feelings of “bliss” quickly turned into a bit of anxiety, a bit of depression and alot of down right crankiness! I was wondering, what is wrong with me. Come on Denise, shake it off, work thru the pain and get back to writing. I felt like the little girl all over again, and I truly found myself afraid. Not afraid of my abuser, but just simply afraid. I just could not pull myself to tap into that “dark” time in my life and share my story. Yes, I could have posted one of my previously written poems. But I felt like I needed to wait until I was ready to write again.

The Webster’s Dictionary defines the meaning of Death as: “The End or Extinction of Something” and the meaning of Alive as:”Still existing, continuing, or functioning”.

I recently attended a funeral of a loved one. Throughout the service, I found my mind drifting as I looked around the room at all of the people who were in attendance. How many of them have carried childhood secrets?  How many of them will carry this secret to their grave?  I than focused my attention to the deceased loved one, sleeping peacefully in the casket…Inside I heard myself scream…..I am ALIVE!  And at that point, the cloud of heaviness lifted and I found a new determination to continue writing.

The determination is to Find The Beauty….

While walking in my courtyard at work, I noticed, a single flower in the midst of a bare bush.  It was more than just a flower..it was lively, with rich, vibrant colorful petals that completly captivated me. I have walked past that bush for years, but on this particular day, I feel like God was telling me, you are like that flower. There is beauty in the challenge, you may not see the result in that moment, but perserver and just like that flower, your beauty will blossom. So today, I am holding onto this promise and pushing thru the pain, to “see” the Beauty.

Denise Boyd Copyright ©