When I was a young woman - raising my children - Helen Reddy had a song out that became my mantra........... I never did learn all the words - but the important ones stayed with me - even to this day.
"And I know too much to go back an' pretend
'cause I've heard it all before
And I've been down there on the floor
No one's ever gonna keep me down again
You can bend but never break me
'cause it only serves to make me
More determined to achieve my final goal
And I come back even stronger
Not a novice any longer
'cause you've deepened the conviction in my soul"
You come here and read my words - but honestly you don't know me - not my "story". I haven't told many people my "story" because it didn't seem important. I was there....... now I am here. And here is all that should matter.
But I realize after the emails and comments on my blog posts about Valuing Yourself, that folks maybe need to hear a little more of MY story.. I was not born this way....... in many ways my story is very much like yours...... I was bent - but not broken - I grew determined....... I grew strong.
I was told (over and over again) that I would be "pretty" when I ___________ (fill in the blank) when I lost weight - when my teeth were straightened - when - when - when. I never actually got there.......... there was always another "when".
I wanted to be a teacher - more than anything in the world. But my father told me "those who can DO - and those who can't teach! YOU are MY daughter and therefore you WILL do - not teach!"
I was sexually abused from the age of 9 till 15.
So NO I do not speak from a place of strength and great value. I worked my way there - slowly and surely. One step forward two steps backwards. At one point I just refused to lie down anymore. I left my husband and decided I would rather live hand to mouth and be happy and content - then to continue down the path I had been put on.
It took standing up to my mother (father was dead) and saying yes I would indeed go through with the divorce (first family member EVER to get a divorce) She cut me off - financially and emotionally - my whole family cut me off emotionally - I was alone - and I struggled forward to find my strength ....... my value ........... my happiness.
don't talk about it - I don't whine or complain about it - BECAUSE I
realize that the stuff I went through is what made me strong. I would
not be the person I am today if it hadn't been for all those
yesterdays. And yes sometimes I have very little patience with folks
who whine and complain about their upbringing...... and say to me "you can NOT understand"........... and in many ways they are right - I can't understand - because it is up to each and every individual to decide what they want from life and to go after it......... it is up to each and every person to decide if they are gonna live the life that was taught them - or if they are gonna change their direction.
If you can't read the words in the picture above I will put them here so that you can indeed read them easily................
"Sometimes the strongest woman
is the one who loves beyond
all faults and unconditionally
will give herself fully
to the one she loves
will stand on her own
and fight her own battles
fend for herself because
she always has
but doesn't mean she always wants to
doesn't expect anything
will stand straight and fight
will say "all's fine" if asked
yet will cry behind closed doors
and fight battles that no one knows about."
so you have the choice - no matter your age or circumstances- to lie down and take it - or to stand up and fight back. be bent - but not broken. find that conviction in your soul.
LEARN TO VALUE YOURSELF......... and put a high price on you !!