Saturday, June 16, 2012

My Conquering Hero

I soar on wings of eagles
because you have given me hope.
Continually, you fill me with great joy
Your love just over flows.

You were my light, my salvation,
when I only knew fear.
You protected me from danger,
then drew me so close, so near

You asked me, “Why do you tremble?”
Why should I ever again be afraid?
Because you will always be my helper,
and always come to my aid.

You are my rock, my strength,
I love you with all my heart and soul.
“My God and My Savior!”
I shout this for the world to know.

Whenever again troubles may come,
I will hold my head high,
because you cradle me in your arms,
and give me the courage to fight.

Even if the enemy attacks,
and tries to bring fear in my heart,
I know I'm protected and safe,
for I have you as my personal guard.

You saved me, My Lord,
and gave me new life.
You rescued me from darkness,
and let all Your love shine.

Lord, I adore you.
My Heart, My Soul.
My Life, My Love.
It’s Yours, and Yours alone.

I thank you forever,
for dying for me.
My conquering Hero-
My God, I Love You.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Rape is Not a Metaphor

As a survivor of rape I notice that the word “rape” gets thrown around a lot out of context. RAINN defines sexual assault, based on the general definition used by the U.S. Justice Department, as “forced sexual intercourse, including vaginal, anal, or oral penetration. Penetration may be a body part or an object.” The problem starts when people use the word “rape” to describe situations that aren’t actually rape (i.e. “I just got raped by that test,” or “I totally got raped by that video game,” or “I just got raped out of all this money.”)

Using the word out of its original context can diminish or belittle that actual crime that leaves victims scarred mentally, emotionally, and physically. Rape is a violent crime that should be recognized as just that. Rape is not a metaphor and should not be used as one. It is very disrespectful and offensive to survivors and people who know survivors of rape.

Another example of using the word in an offensive manner is Facebook rape, also known as “frape.” Frape is a slang term that is used to describe someone who posts a status on someone else’s (usually their friends) Facebook page when they stay logged in. It is disgusting to me how many “Frape” fan pages there are on Facebook. Anyone who thinks using the term in this manner is funny is obviously immature, insensitive, and unaware of the implications this can have on victims when they see these pages. There are also many websites that allow people to share examples of “frape” so they can laugh about it and have a good time.

Rape is a serious crime that violates a person’s humanity. Survivors of rape suffer from many mental health issues ranging from depression to post-traumatic stress disorder among others. A person’s life is forever changed by this act of violence that violates a person and leaves them damaged and broken inside.

Language is powerful. The way we talk and use words can change how someone perceives a particular word or situation. People need to think before they speak. It is easy for rape to become trivialized in our society because of the way our culture perceives rape. There is a lot of victim blaming that goes on because people don’t take this violent crime seriously enough.

The next time you hear someone use the word “rape” out of context I challenge you to educate them on what rape and sexual assault actually is. The stigma of rape needs to be abolished so victims feel more comfortable coming forward to report these crimes. One way we can put an end to this stigma is by using the word “rape” in its proper context. It is NOT a metaphor. Every time I hear someone use the word out of context my stomach gets twisted in knots. I have already been traumatized and people turn the word and act of violence into a joke.

We need to continue to challenge language that commits oppression. Rape is not a joke and it shouldn’t be made into one. The next time you tell your friends that you have been “raped by a video game” or “someone raped you in a basketball game” just remember that the person standing next to you may be a survivor of rape or sexual assault. If you were that person who had this violent crime perpetrated against you and you heard someone use an expression like that, how would you feel?

Monday, June 11, 2012

His Dark Evil Grin

He waits in the darkness
Stalking from within
You don't know he's there
His dark evil grin

He strikes without warning
Not much you can do
This specter so formless
Out to get you

You try and you try
Do what you can
How do you fight this
It's not even a man

Something from within
That takes things away
You feel the darkness come in
As you sit down to pray

Only time will tell
If this fight you will win
And wipe off his face
His dark evil grin

Saturday, June 9, 2012

My inner strength..

I wrote this 5 years ago right after I graduated from high school. I found it and decided to post it because I think it is something I need to read in order to remind myself how I strong I really am. I feel like God inspired me to write this so that I could look back at it now. I don't remember writing this but it is good advice for this point in my life.

I have become a stronger person because of the pain that I have endured during my life. It has helped me to grow as a person. I know I definitely wouldn’t be the person I am now if I hadn’t been through the experiences that I have been through. We all have to have bad things happen in our lives, so that we are able to appreciate the good things. Lately, I’ve realized that there are so many good things in my life. I am healthy, I have family and friends that care about me, I have a decent job, and I am in college; just to name a few. I have learned how to become a happier person. All I had to do was change my outlook on life. I believe a lot of my problems were all in my head, and sometimes I think I made too much out of things. It was really hard for me to pull myself out of the hole that I kept digging deeper, but when I finally did.. it made me feel powerful. I will never forget that feeling because it’s going to help me get through whatever sorrows that may come my way in the future.

Life is hard. There is no question about that. Life needs to be hard, so that we can learn from our experiences. I am very grateful that I was able to move forward with my life, and I am also very thankful for all the caring people that I have in my life. I think that all the people around me grew stronger as well. My friends have seen a change in my attitude, and I think they have changed too. Emotions can be contagious. If you are around people that are always sad, then you are most likely to be sad too. Likewise, if you are around happy people all the time, then you are more likely to be happy. I think because I have gained a more positive attitude my family and friends are also more positive about life. I always tell people that nothing is impossible if you work as hard as you can to achieve what you want.

There were so many times when I wanted to give up. It was so hard for me to get out of bed in the morning, but I forced myself to. There were so many times when life got to be so overwhelming, and I just wanted to break down. A few times I did break down, but it just made me feel worse. Giving up on trying made me feel like a failure. No matter how much pain you are in, or how much you think there is no hope; you should never give up. In the end it will made you feel worse.

I am so happy that I was able to move on. I am going to use my past to help me direct my life in the right direction. I have learned many life lessons that I want to share with others. I also want to show other people that you can overcome whatever life throws at you if you really put your mind to it. You have to remember that people are there that are willing to help. I always rejected the help. That was the worst thing that I could have done. I was too ashamed to admit that I needed help. Someone finally convinced me that maybe I should give help a try. It was the very thing I needed to overcome my problems. Talking about things made me feel so much better. I wish I would have realized it sooner because I wasted some years of my life; however, all I can do now is keep moving forward. I intend to never forget my past because my past is going to help me in the future. It feels so good to say that I love my life. I say it to myself everyday because I am so happy to be alive. Pain is a part of life, but so is happiness. There is no point in living if you only live for the pain. Life isn’t as bad as you may think it is, so just get out there and live your life.

Thank you Lord, for guiding me to this. Please help me feel this way again.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Nightmares, flashbacks.. hell.

Those prison bars cannot sustain him. I close my eyes and he emerges from the dark. My heart starts to race as I have memories of the crime he perpetrated against me. They are memories that haunt the inner core of my being. They grip me so tight that breathing is impossible. My body shakes uncontrollably because I cannot escape the demon that dwells within my consciousness. It is occurring all over again and there is nothing I can do to make it disappear. Sleep is something that I never get consistent. The nightmares inhibit me from getting restful sleep. Most mornings I wake up feeling like I haven’t slept a wink.

The nightmares generate fear. I am frightened of the dark and I often keep myself from falling asleep. I am terrorized in my sleep and I want to avoid it all costs.

During the day I cannot escape the torture either. Occasionally I have flashbacks that cause me to experience the agony all over again. The flashbacks occur at the slightest glimpse, odor, or sound that reminds me of the incident. I need to let it run its course before I can snap back into reality. I feel so powerless because I cannot control it. The trauma is hardly over two years old, but it feels like it just took place yesterday.

Once the flashback has passed, my depression and anxiety take over. Sometimes I cry until there are no tears left in my blood shot eyes and my head hurts to the point of explosion. Other times I turn to self destructive behavior to relieve the anxiety. I hate myself for it afterwards. I often wish I was dead so I wouldn’t have to deal with the shame and guilt associated with being a cutter. I yearn to be able to stop, but it’s an addiction I can’t break. The initial feeling I get from it is so gratifying until I realize what I just did.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

My strength, courage, and faith..

I have experienced true anguish and hopelessness. I was violated in the most atrocious way possible. I had my innocence, which I tried so hard to hold on to, violently ripped out of my grasp. I was violated in a way that has left me forever scarred and damaged. Sometimes I don’t think I will ever fully heal from this life changing affliction. I feel as if my body will never be cured from this agonizing torment that consumed my entire being. The pain has yet to depart from my dejected soul. Sometimes I am able to hide it away in the depths of my essence, but it is never completely gone. It is just hidden away… waiting for the very instance that I will let it attack me from the inner core of my scarred soul. My strength is gradually being expelled from my dilute body. I am alone. I feel like I am left to rot in this desolate place that I once knew far too well. The memories are constantly playing over and over again in my vanquished mind. There are days when the pain is so intense that I feel like my insides are being fiercely ripped apart by the presence of despair. I am drowning in shame and embarrassment. I am overwhelmed by fear, and I have many sleepless nights. The fear is inescapable, and I can feel its shadow lurking in the darkness. My tears flow like a river through the dark woods of reality. My weeping is sometimes so extreme that it causes my body to violently shake. My weariness is almost blinding at times, and sometimes I am unsure if I will ever see the end of this hell… but then God takes a hold of my trembling hand and reassures me that he will carry my helpless body through this agony.

When I feel I can’t go on I look deep inside my soul and reach for my faith. For me, faith is more than just believing. Faith is a connection that I share with God. God is always with me even in my weakest moments. Faith is being able to be aware of God’s presence and entrusting your life in His hands. The realization that God is always there for me even when I think he isn’t has taught me that my purpose in life is to serve God by living a life that honors Him. God will be right by my side every step of the way. He has made me strong and courageous, and with His help I can get through whatever life throws at me. At times my life feels more than hopeless; I know that through God there is hope. God gives me the strength and courage to carry on during these troublesome times in my life. There are days when I feel extremely depressed, and I just want to give up. Sometimes I feel like the pain won’t go away. It just comes more every day, and it suffocates me until I can no longer breathe on my own. The devil gets into my heart and makes me think that I am worthless. At times the devil drives me to harm myself and turn my back on God. It is a constant battle that I face every day, and I often lose the battle. I have many wounds and scars both physical and emotional. I know that every time I break down and fall God is always right there to pick me back up again. He holds my hand as I walk through this vicious, wicked world and holds me close to Him as I cry. He wipes away my tears and declares to me that things will eventually get better. When devastating things happen in my life it is hard to believe that things will ever get better. I have learned that things always get worse before they get better. No matter what happens there is always hope. There is hope in God. God has the power to strengthen the weak and bring happiness to those in complete distress. God allows dreadful things to happen, but it is not in His plan. There is divine beauty found in total hours of darkness and a beautiful sunshine rising over the horizon.

Experiencing so much pain left me in a state of disarray. I feel like I am falling into a never-ending hole. I am drowning in my sorrows, and I don’t know what to do. I am a strong person, and when I finally heal from this I will be an even stronger person. I have done nothing wrong, yet some days I feel like I am being punished. Those are the consequences of being a victim. I no longer want to be a victim. I hate the word victim. It sounds so powerless. I have strength and I have courage. I am a survivor. A survivor keeps on living. This is the next step in my healing journey… to keep on living.