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Monday, December 11, 2017

Reflections

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“Our purpose in life is to grow in wisdom and in love.”
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“When we know ourselves to be connected to all others, acting compassionately is simply the natural thing to do. ”

I have been reflecting lately on many of the beautiful survivors I have known and worked with over the years. When you travel deeply into another's soul, they become a part of one's own heart. This journey is an opening to understanding and love. In the process you both benefit, grow and are transformed.

This time of year is difficult for many people. The holidays are "supposed to" represent family, love, and joy. Having worked the crisis lines, I know all too well, that this is the busiest time of year. This year I again am volunteering on the crisis lines. They are swamped. This is my Xmas gift to myself.

Before every meeting, of my group Survivors Of Life, I quiet myself and meditate on my own humanity. I open my heart to listen with acceptance and compassion to whatever will be talked about in our group. There can be no barriers if the women are going to feel free and accepted so that they express whatever emotions or experiences they have lived through.

No matter what they have experienced it's vital for them not fear and know that they will listened to, and have their feelings acknowledged. There is nothing they can say that I will not listen to with love and empathy. No matter how deep the pain and wounds, there is no need to feel ashamed, as my own vulnerable human heart is given to them.

Remembering is usually done in a progressive fashion. First the less traumatic memories surface. It's almost as if they are testing ground to know if more is shown that they will still be safe and not be judged. As the degree of acceptance grows one becomes more secure in getting to the core of our pain.

Finding the core is a journey that many have never gone through. The core can be blocked for years from our memories. The human spirit has an amazing ability to protect us. The spirit will very often mask the core and only allow it to come to the light when we are ready.

I have had women in their 70's call me at times telling me they are just now remembering some of their abuse. There are many reasons this happens. A common trigger for them finally remembering is that the recent death of their abuser.

Whatever your story, the important thing to know is that no one need to carry it alone. There is healing waiting for you that you canembrace and give to yourself. This is a hard subject to discuss and many will not want to read about this. Facing what has happened seems far worse than escaping our "perfect little" worlds.

The reality is that many are touched by different forms of abuse and need understanding and acceptance. It is in secrets that abuse grows and thrives. My hope is that you will let me in my own small way perhaps shine a light into your life.



About the Writer

Barbara MacDonald is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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11 comments on Reflections

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By HomeRearedChef on December 14, 2012 at 01:24 am

Barbara, I do not even know how to respond to what you've written here. I can tell you that you have touched my heart with your awesome love and caring for other. God bless you, dear Amiga. :)

Love and hugs to you,

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By Uttam Gill on December 14, 2012 at 01:51 am

Barb, as I know you for years...I see in you a great human being who is always so kind and considerate to help others. This article is a reflection that you hold in you a divine power of healing... "The holidays are "supposed to" represent family, love, and joy. ....... This year I again am volunteering on the crisis lines. They are swamped. This is my Xmas gift to myself" Each word speaks about your firm convictions...You are gifted with passion to help others and certainly a very noble task...I wish I could emulate your passion to help people. You are a great source of inspiration...Very enlightening and inspiring article

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By Barbara MacDonald on December 14, 2012 at 09:14 am

This is how the new article should read, so let me just post it in a comment to clrify a few things....

“When we know ourselves to be connected to all others, acting compassionately is simply the natural thing to do. ”

I have been reflecting lately on many of the beautiful survivors I have known and worked with over the years. When you travel deeply into another's soul, they become a part of one's own heart. This journey is an opening to understanding and love. In the process you both benefit, grow and are transformed.

This time of year is difficult for many people. The holidays are "supposed to" represent family, love, and joy. Having worked the crisis lines, I know all too well, that this is the busiest time of year. This year I again am volunteering on the crisis lines. They are swamped. This is my Xmas gift to myself.

Before every meeting, of my group Survivors Of Life, I quieted myself and meditated on my own humanity. I opened my heart to listen with acceptance and compassion to whatever would be talked about in our group. There can be no barriers if the women were going to feel free and accepted so that they were able express whatever emotions or experiences they had lived through.

No matter what they have experienced it was vital for them not to fear and know that they would be listened to, and have their feelings acknowledged and validated. There is nothing they could say that I would not listen to with love and empathy. No matter how deep the pain and wounds, there was no need to feel ashamed, as my own vulnerable human heart was given to them.

Remembering is usually done in a progressive fashion. First the less traumatic memories surface. It's almost as if they are testing ground to know if more is shown that they will still be safe and not be judged. As the degree of acceptance grew they became more secure in getting to the core of their pain.

Finding the core is a journey that many had never gone through. The core can be blocked for years from their memories. The human spirit has an amazing ability to protect us. The spirit will very often mask the core and only allow it to come to the light when we are ready.

I have had women in their 70's call me at times telling me they are just now remembering some of their abuse. There are many reasons this happens. A common trigger for them finally remembering is the recent death of their abuser.

Whatever your story, the important thing to know is that no one needs to carry it alone. There is healing waiting for you that you can embrace and give to yourself.

The reality is that many are impacted in their lives by different forms of abuse and need understanding and acceptance. It is in secrets that abuse grows and thrives.

My hope is that you will let me in my own small way shine a light on this and bring it into the open to break the secrecy.

Copyright © 2010 Barbara MacDonald

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By Barbara MacDonald on December 14, 2012 at 09:16 am

Thank you Virginia...You always speak from your heart and I respect that so much and thank you for your kindness and understanding...hugs and love back at ya...:-) ...

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By Barbara MacDonald on December 14, 2012 at 09:21 am

Thank you Uttam for always lifting my spirits and bringing support to me. You do not need to ever emulate me in any way. You have your own gift to express so well your heart and freely give so much to others with your thoughtful encouragement...I have done what you suggested and just left the comment to clarify my meaning...Thank you again Uttam...hugs

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By melanie jean juneau on December 14, 2012 at 09:23 am

"to gift myself"- original, powerful in its simplicity- straight from your heart to mine, strait from the Spirit through you to my Spirit

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By Barbara MacDonald on December 14, 2012 at 09:39 am

Thank you very much Melanie, your beautiful spirit is alive and thriving through your writing...I appreciate your support also Melanie....hugs.

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By HomeRearedChef on December 14, 2012 at 07:04 pm

"It is in secrets that abuse grows and thrives." That is so very true, Barbara, and that is why we must help.

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By Barbara MacDonald on December 14, 2012 at 07:45 pm

Yes Virginia and it is why I started the first group in Hamilton to address this issue. For ten years I had the privilege of walking with so many beautiful survivors on their healing journey. i was able to break the cycle of abuse in my own family, when I was adopted at age 12...my own children were "over protected" by me I know, but I had to make sure I kept them safe.

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By HomeRearedChef on December 15, 2012 at 02:35 am

Barbara, I believe that as a mother you were simply just following your natural instincts to protect. I think you are wonderful!

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By Barbara MacDonald on December 16, 2012 at 11:47 am

Thank you Virginia, it is our duty as a parent to keep our children safe , yes you are right. A natural instinct...:-).

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