Mental Health

The Gifts of Writing a Memoir, Happy 3rd Birthday Untangled!

A powerfully moving and inspiring journey written by a courageous and resilient woman.

Untangled

Three years ago today, I anxiously waited for my memoir, Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumphto go live on Amazon. What a wonderful, unexpected and humbling three years this has been.

I took a huge risk by writing and publishing my memoir. My entire life was focused on keeping quiet, not telling, protecting those I loved, or who loved me. It took me a long time to understand that by keeping quiet, I was actually protecting the people who hurt me in my life. Writing Untangled was a way to announce in a really big way, that I will not keep quiet any longer.

I literally went from telling no one but my therapist about my past to throwing my arms up, and saying, okay….what the heck, let’s go for it, and tell everyone at once. My husband and children read the book before it was released to…

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Mental Health

Adjusting to Life on Social Security Disability Insurance

Prior to being declared permanently disabled by the Social Security Administration in 2007, I was earning about $25,000 a year. I now live at the poverty level. This took some getting used to. One of the most important things that have helped me come to terms with my new life is learning to discern between… Continue reading Adjusting to Life on Social Security Disability Insurance

Mental Health

Mental Illness and My Inability to Work

I was sitting with my journal drinking a cup of coffee at Dunkin’ Donuts when two middle-aged men sat down next to me and began to talk loudly. I tried not to eavesdrop on their conversation, to concentrate on writing in my journal, but something they said drew my attention. I heard the words “crazy… Continue reading Mental Illness and My Inability to Work

Mental Health

Living a Grateful Life

One of the most important lessons I have learned is to live life with a grateful heart and mind. It used to be so easy for me to take things for granted. I’d go through my day without giving any notice to any number of small miracles and blessings that were happening all around me.… Continue reading Living a Grateful Life

Mental Health

Last Day of Therapy

Today, my therapist brought up discontinuing our therapy sessions, citing that I am doing well. I felt an instantaneous resistance to the idea. I had been seeing a therapist every week or two for nine years. When she left the organization, I was given a new therapist, Margie. I connected with her right away. She… Continue reading Last Day of Therapy

Mental Health

Trauma and My Mind, Body, Spirit Connection

  The trauma I had experienced as the result of family violence and incest, the gang rape when I was twelve, and the rapes when I was seventeen and twenty-six resides in my body. Trapped in my cellular memory, these events permeate my very being. They are a part of every muscle movement and every… Continue reading Trauma and My Mind, Body, Spirit Connection

Mental Health

I Don’t Have to Go It Alone

The most difficult things for me to do were to share with someone what I was going through and to ask for help. I had great difficulty trusting people. I wouldn’t let anyone get to know the real me. I had thought that, by sharing my feelings or asking for help, I would make myself… Continue reading I Don’t Have to Go It Alone

Mental Health

Nightmares

I’ve been plagued with nightmares since the abuse began when I was eight years old. Drowning nightmares. Nightmares in which I’m being chased by my brother Kevin with a knife in his hand. Nightmares in which I’m suffocating. Nightmares where someone is trying to break into my home. Nightmares that relive the gang rape when… Continue reading Nightmares

Mental Health

Feeling Fragmented

How can I describe the feeling of being fragmented to people who have always felt whole? Perhaps none of us feel completely whole. Perhaps we all feel that we have lost a part of ourselves along the way. As a victim of violence, incest, and rape it took a while for me to become truly… Continue reading Feeling Fragmented

Mental Health

Battleground

Silence. Does such a thing really exist? I’m not so sure. My thoughts thunder like a triggered minefield. They criticize, they punish. They demand perfection. They repeatedly impose upon me the notion that I have nothing of value to share with the world. Negative thinking has been a part of my psyche for as long… Continue reading Battleground