A little about me

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Brook, IN, United States
Abuse doesn't stop at the court room. Melinda has shared her battles in her life and through the court room as she navigates through the legal system Bringing encouragement, insight and empowerment to those that are in a abusive relationship. She is in the process of creating a new life, speaking engagements to "Break the Silence" of abuse, while putting a face to abuse. She is currently working on writing a book about her experiences as a Survivor.View short Bio here- http://www.patheos.com/blogs/ahappymedium/2013/02/notbrokenbutbrave/

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Flat and over 100,000 views!


The past few weeks have been a heart breaking. Physically all of us in our home are tired, worn out and battling with whirlwind of feelings.

Soon after the birth of my Daughter's baby she faced additional blood pressure issues causing her to be admitted into the hospital on several occasions. On the last incident a Social Worker noticed something wrong between an exchange between Jess and her partner. Whatever it was just didn't set right in her gut so she did her job and asked Jess if she felt that she and the baby were safe with her partner.

She answered truthful... No.

Jess went on to describe a few situations that red flagged her and her partner and CPS was brought in.

The roller coaster she is going through is painful to us to see her crumble under the weight of honesty. She was forced to move out of his Aunt and Uncle's home with the baby and to move back in with us. Which didn't make her a happy camper.

She had threatened suicide, lost the desire to parent the baby and did injure herself which after chatting with my Sister about how escalating this situation was, she encouraged me to call the Police/Ambulance.

I did.

She stayed in a treatment facility for 8 days and since then has had up's and down's. She is on an Antidepressant and is to see a Counselor/Psychiatrist. She and her partner both have Parenting classes, he will have Anger management classes and both have to be supervised while they are with the baby.

It makes my heart hurt for her. I don't understand most of it from the Mom angle of not wanting to parent the baby. I am an odd egg and loved being with my kids. Oh sure I had my moments of wanting some alone time but I never wanted to be away for a long period of time. So this to me is difficult. Anytime I have suffered from Depression I fought my way through it.

She isn't me and I'm not her. We are so very different. We are different on how we cope and handle situations.

I wish I could wave a wand and make any pain go away for her. All I can do is to be supportive and understanding. It is hard to be understanding when I found out they didn't use a condom. GRRFACE!

Neither are ready to be an Adult much less a Parent. They can barely take care of themselves. But this is the situation they are in. Now we figure out how to fix it.

Much of Jess's issues are from her past. She (as well as her Sister) have never dealt with the abuse issue. Now that rears it ugly head like a monster that is under a bed.

Of course this brings so much back for me.

I was questioned by the Social worker on day one of the beginning of this situation and I sounded like a robot as I mentioned that we were abuser Survivors. The Social worker picked up on it and asked why I sounded so flat and with no emotion.

My first reaction to that was anger! I had a child in the ER that was unconscious at this time after just having a seizure from Pre-Eclampsia and they were having trouble getting her BP down. I couldn't think about anything else.

This is not the first time someone has mentioned how flat or robotic my response seemed from my past.

I guess I've told our story so much and I see/hear the reactions from people I tell about our past that I am leery.

Reactions are normally-

"How could you "let" that happen to you for so long" or "I would have never stayed "that" long" or "I would have kicked his a** to the curb after the first time".

It gets frustrating. I almost feel like I'm being judged for staying as long as I did. Which brings me back to my ex saying that I must have liked him treating me this way or I wouldn't have stayed.

I am apprehensive to tell my story though in cyber land I do mention and share my story on FB and Pinterest. On social media I don't have to worry about the tone, looks or response from someone that hears I stayed.

I still feel guilty enough for making my children to endure the abuse as long as they did. Why wasn't I brave enough to leave sooner or to leave before our relationship even had kids? I do feel like someday I take 2 steps forward and 2 steps back for healing. Grateful for my support team of family and friends of course my awesome Husband!

We will have another 5 months of CPS involvement and I pray that my Daughter and partner will have enough help and encouragement to become better partners for the baby and if they continue a relationship they get the counseling needed to deal with tough situations during a relationship.

If you are new to my story and scratching your head what's up with us. Here is the mini-version.

I met him in high school. I couldn't get him to leave me alone. He threatened to kill himself, my family and later my children if I ever left him.

I believed him.

I stayed. I continued to try to leave many, many times throughout our relationship. We fought about stupid stuff constantly.

I stayed through physical, verbal, sexual and mental assaults. I had no self esteem left, I was being broke down to the point of suicide. I had done things with my abuser that made me feel dirty.

We were swingers in which I had several lesbian encounters.
I was required to sit at his feet like a dog. He enjoyed BDSM but I learned later there is a healthy respect between the partners and everything he did was not!
He was a sex addict which meant I had to be ready 24/7 for relations. I could count on 2 hands how many times I didn't have to have sex with him. And that did not make him happy!
He sought the elusive Polyamory relationship, which did happen for a short period of time.
I bathed him.
I dressed him. (I warmed his boots for him in the winter and laced them for him all the time)
I started his car for him in the dead of winter. And loaded it.
I warmed his plate for meals, warm food would hit the wall, floor or would be tossed in trash.
I did everything you could think of for him.
I would have to scratch his back for hours at night until he fell asleep.
I felt like a hostage.
I felt like a whore.

I felt unclean. After the sexual encounters I would scrub myself as clean as I could, rubbing my skin until it hurt and was bright pink almost raw.

I felt like a failure as a Christian,as a wife and mother.

I envisioned killing myself and my family to escape. I had thoughts of killing my abuser and towards the end I slept with a knife under my side of the bed because I was worried about him killing me. As time progressed it was building to the point where I felt I would not survive the end of 2009. I had a dear friend advise me she could see that I wouldn't live much longer due to how volatile my situation was becoming.

I had to leave, though he reminded me I wouldn't have money, no health insurance, no place to live and that he would hunt me down.

I left the first time in 2007, staying on 2 separate incidents in Women's shelter. After the urging of my then mom-in-law to get back with him because he changed, I did.

In 2008, things were starting to go crazy again. By the end of 2008 I knew I had to go, Chatting with my Friend, Kristy Robinett, gave me courage to take steps to leave. I enlisted my family to help and they were more then willing to help!

I left for the final time in 2009.

During that time, there were deep cracks in the average joe facade that my abuser tried to keep. He hired a guy to follow me, take pictures of me and to report back his findings. All the while continuing to stalk me via the web, phone and in person.

I had protective order after protective order. All would be broken but nothing more then a slap on the wrist ever happened.

I found out in the summer months of 2009 he hired several men to kill me for money. He provided them with a camera, shovel and he wanted a few thousand dollars with more to be paid when the deed was done.

My Nephew came forward bravely to my abusers Sister, whom then let me know about it. I called the police. They investigated but found the men that were hired had shady pasts so they were not credible, therefore there was no case.

My Eldest Son attempted to set fire to my apartment and advised me he was going to kill me as I slept and he demanded I take him back to his dad.

I did. I was devastated. That was a deep blow to my heart. Any contact with him has been hostile towards me.

I suffered a few more physical attacks from my abuser towards the fall of 2009.

I felt lost.

The legal system didn't seem fair. It felt like I was the abuser and he was the victim.

We were finalized for our divorce in 2012. In 2013, my Daughter's partner advised that Jess had told him she was sodomized by her Father when she was young. Sadly, after contacting the police I found out that too much time had went by to press charges. Though it took every ounce of power not to go and just, I don't know beat him or just put a hole in his head.

I had a Protective Order placed last summer (2015) after he sent threatening emails, texts and voicemail's. All the while proclaiming his love for me. The sad thing is he was engaged to woman during this time. He said he would leave her in a second if I came back. I tried to reach out to this woman but never heard from her.

He did end up marrying her during the summer of 2015. I wish them the best. Any correspondence I have had with her has been one of someone in denial or that is perhaps she just can't see. I have heard from family and friends that maintains contact with them is that he treats her publicly just he did with me.

My last Protective Order expired this summer.

He still tries to bully and intimidate friends and family that maintain contact with me. Why does this not surprise me.

I originally started this blog as a way of healing my spirit. I felt broken. I had cried out to the Lord so many times for help and I felt like I was lost along the way.

I know now he never left my side. I'm still not sure what lessons I was to learn along the way, but I can say that my faith was strengthen.

I could have blamed God for the suffering my children endured or myself for that matter. I didn't.

We all have choices in life, sometimes the choices we make can build us up or break us down.

I was asked sometime ago if I would do it over again knowing what I know now. I still have to say yes. My life now is so very different! I have a will to keep living. I have a beautiful family and met oodles of people along this path that I wouldn't have known otherwise.

It's made me fall to my knees and ask for forgiveness for things I had down during my marriage. During my relationship with my abuser I only shared my situation with a handful of people. Today, I have over 100,000+ views of this blog. I am by no means gloating or dropping high fives about that fact.

It saddens me to know that others are still experiencing abuse. And humbles me that someone is actually reading my rantings.

So, Dear Blog reader, if you are in a abusive relationship please know you are not alone. Talk to a close Friend or reach out to a local Shelter or http://www.thehotline.org/ for help. I've been where you are and know there can be life after an abusive relationship. It's not easy to escape and staying safe for months or years to come can be hard. Don't let this discourage you! I want you to be free, happy and to be able to love yourself again!

Please look at my posts for Safety plan and Check list for leaving your abuser for suggestions to help you before you leave.

Stay safe and God bless

Mel



Monday, August 8, 2016

New life and new beginnings


NEW LIFE!

Jess had her baby! She is having some blood pressure issues and I got to be honest it was downright scary.

Her blood pressure skyrocketed which threw her into confusion and a seizure.

I was a blubbery bundle of snot. Don's Aunt and I have grown close during this pregnancy adventure and she kept me grounded. I would have totally lost it had it not been for her.

I am happy to say she is stable, talking and hoping to get out of the hospital soon! We can't wait to have them back at home!




Things are different now. Jess has seemed to literally grown overnight since having the baby. This is the same kid if you recall I talked about giving an exorcism to! I bring this up because so many parents are pulling out their hair due to how kids are behaving, whether acting out or clamming up.

I'm here to tell you it will get better! I had a time believing this would ever happen 7 years ago. I wouldn't have believed how far we've come since our old life. I have mentioned how surreal our life is now probably too many times, but unless you have walked this path you may not understand what I mean.

I still can't get the kids to discuss the past and Alex still has some issues that needs to be addressed that cropped up after her visits with her Dad during 2009/2010. I pray we can someday get help for her and that Jess will also reach out to someone as well.

NEW BEGINNINGS

I met some amazing people over the past few weeks that have lit a fire in my belly to take a leap of faith and start a business again with my first love of antiques! Melody and Mark are super cool couple! Mark is pedaling across the U.S.! Not for a cause but for himself. I was in awe! Melody is documenting his journey. She gave me an impromptu interview which was featured on her blog. I was touched by her kindness that can be found here-

http://55andalive.com/uncategorized/day-50-a-new-state-another-flat-tire-melody-meets-melinda/


Melissa is like a Pixie I could keep in my pocket! I first met her while bidding against her at an auction on a bedroom set. She was kind enough to let us win it.

We have caught up with one another during my Fleamarket in June and then we were in Monticello antiquing a few weeks back, we happened to drop in her shop at Cornerstone Antiques. We had a brief discussion on the business and she said some really great pearls of wisdom that stuck with me. She encouraged me to also take that leap of faith to do something I love and enjoy!

The Lord is talking to me through others but sometimes I question Him. I have times where I think is this "Me" or "God" giving me these thoughts.

After talking with my better half about doing something I love, I admitted I wanted to do Estate Sales! We'll still do our Fleamarkets! Also branching out to having our own shop on wheels (Gypsy Trailer- Terry is an awesome handy woodworker!), Pop-up-Market and only the Lord knows what is next for us.

My health is still on the very slow healing side. It's frustrating! I am tired easily and often. It's not uncommon for me to want to nap at the drop of a hat or to even nod off during a conversation with someone (it's embarrassing). I'm hungry all the time so weight loss is not happening.

I tried clean eating and I did feel better but I had to eat often. I still wake up in the middle of the night starving, I have tried eating protein before bed or a big dinner with no help.

I still am labeled with:
Fibro
Adrenal Fatigue
Hashimoto's
Chronic Fatigue
Still have back and neck issues
Numbness throughout my body (Pins and needles on steriods!) I did get feeling back in my face finally!

I try not to complain but last month I was just a crunchy mess! The aches, pains and migraines were getting too much. The brain fog merciless. Though I do count my blessings that I know what I have. I need to make an appointment to get a check up. I broke down and took some prescribed pills, Doxy, to give me a boost. My herbal treatments are costly and not covered by insurance so I ration my pills. Which I know is not helpful either.

Things that I can do:

Meditate
Kick off my shoes and ground myself
Ignore news or stressful situations
Take a bath in Epsom salt
Enjoy my family
Craft
Create a Vision board

So, Lyme disease I have been through one bully to deal with a bunch of creepy little ones that seem to invaded every part of my body.

On another topic, child support can be either non-existent or timely. When my ex remarried it seemed like he was doing a good job with payments at least times a month, when his Mom passed he did pay off ALL his behind payments! Now since my last 2 blog posts there has been nothing. Coincidence?

So, am I healed from my previous life?

No.

But I am a whole heck of a lot better then I was back then. I can actually discuss some experiences without crying at the drop of a hat. When I talk to someone about being a Survivor, some people are usually quick to say "I wouldn't have put up with that!", or "You should have left the first time" or "I would have hit him back".

These can be very frustrating to explain to someone that has never been in this situation. It can seem bizarre or dumb to stay in an abusive relationship and not kick this person to the curb.

I admit now I can agree to a degree. And if someone reaches out to me about an abusive situation, I do say leave. But this is easier sad then done.

If you DARE leave you may hear or experience:

He/She may threaten to commit suicide
He/She may threaten to kill you or your kids/family or furbabies
Hire someone to kill you or beat you up
There could be threats to not give you a dime
Leave you with bills
Leave you homeless
Tell everyone your crazy or that you were the abuser
Cut off your health insurance
Take everything from you
Get you fired from your job
Turn your family and friends against you
Rape
Worse abuse!

This is not uncommon and sadly these are things that keeps victims with an abuser. I heard these threats and experienced more. Your not alone! Stay strong Beautiful!

While I talked about awesome folks I have exchanged brief emails with that have been encouraging as they sail their own path as they have left or are leaving or still in the midst of a abusive relationship. Some of those that have reached out to me may never contact me again and that's ok. But there is not a time that doesn't go by that I pray they are safe and on the road to mending wounds.

Wherever you are I'm thinking of you! You too Dearest Blog reader!

Have you read my story?  Or are you in an abusive situation or know someone that is? Please share my blog with them so they know they are not alone. That there can be light at end of the tunnel!

BIG HUGS! GOD BLESS!
Mel



Monday, June 27, 2016

Drama Queen

WELL! My post set off some fire I'm afraid.

SO not my intention! It never is! If you have been with me through this crazy blog experience you have read that I enjoy my nucleus of NON DRAMA.

What has gotten my granny panties in a bunch... maybe not a bunch. I had to chuckle for a change with this exchange. I received a message from my ex's wife! She had asked  demanded I take mention of her off my blog or she would talk to her attorney.

I did take sometime to formulate a rebuttal and honestly I thought of quite a few snappy ones but decided against them. Despite telling Terry I wasn't going to answer and just blow off the email, I later reconsidered and sent back a short one.

You see, in the beginning of my blog, my ex raised the same threats so I covered myself by asking my attorney what the ramifications if I blogged about my ex or mentioned his name. I was told that ask long as I was speaking the truth, not mentioning last names or other personal stuff that this would be okay and also there is that wonderful FREEDOM OF SPEECH! This Dear Blog reader is why I still blog today!

We exchanged a few more emails. One return email stated that I didn't know her. I replied that I agreed, noting I heard we had a lot in common. If the circumstances were different we would be good friends. Her reply was that I need to keep her out of "MY DRAMA" and not to email her again.

HUH?! Scratching my head.

She emailed me originally!

She also does not know me. The only thing she knows is what my ex and my Son have told her.

I don't blame her. She is spoon fed what she thinks is the truth of the matter.

That my ex is a good man. That he deserves to see his children since he is paying his child support and up to date. That I am violating court papers for not allowing them to visit or sleep over.

Oh boy! We have had exchanged emails in the past and I didn't share them here before. And I'm not sure why.

I don't blame her.

Our court papers do not go into details about how abusive my ex was.

Or how he threatened our GAL and court appointed Counselors.

Our court papers do not go into how my ex threatened to kill us.

Or that he would find me and get even with me for leaving him someday when I least expect it. I believe he will have someone hired again to harm me/us or continue to use our Son to do so.

Our divorce was over before I found about about my Daughter being molested by this monster my ex and you can bet I would have brought that before the police if I knew sooner about the incidents.

I respect her wishes and will not email her. No problem here!

I hope that he never makes her feel so small that she wishes she could vanish when he is in a "mood".

I hope she never gets a spanking from him.

I hope she never is intimidated in front of friends and family.

I hope she never gets into the situation where she is told if she leaves he will kill her and her loved ones (or himself).

I hope she is never isolated from her friends and family.

I hope she never has to cover up bruises with makeup or long clothing.

I hope she never has to hear that she "provoked" his outbursts

I hope she never has to worry about him coming home in a bad mood.

I hope she never has to endure silence for hours or days if she was to "blame" for something going wrong in his day or at some outing.

I hope she will never have to go through several hours of grilling because some man or woman you briefly chatted with because you are thinking of "having an affair" with them.

I hope she doesn't have to check in with him 3 or more times every hour.

I hope she can come home late and not have to worry that he is thinking she is screwing around.

I hope she doesn't have to worry about how she dresses.

I pray she never has to worry that she will die in her sleep by the hand of her new husband.

I pray that she is right about him changing to be this great guy. In the 20+ years that we were together he never changed. I thought maybe I wasn't strong enough or that it was me.

No.

He is a Narcissist. Slap the "Great Guy" label on him and I can show you 5 people that will show you otherwise.

I will never meet his new wife. Why? He has too much to lose. The lies he has wove will unravel and fall broken around his ears.

I don't have to slander my ex. I don't have to tell a bunch of lies. Nor do I want to. I can't forget about my past or let it go. I blog not to create drama but to let others they are not alone.They don't have to be stuck in an abusive relationship.

I share my story as a reminder that I could be your Sister, Mother, Daughter, Aunt, Grandmother, or Friend.

Most importantly I share my story to heal my Spirit!

If you know someone that is an abusive situation please share my blog! Help can be a phone call away. If you can visit http://www.thehotline.org for information on how to help or how you can get help!

Dearest Blog reader you are not alone! I am cheering for you! You can email me at blessmeplz@gmail.com, put "Hope" in the subject line! And bear with me I don't always get to my mail right away. You can also view my page on FB as Humbled Hearts where I share info on a variety of other topics that are not just abuse related.

Stay strong! God bless and big hugs! Oh and where's my dang crown?
Mel















                                                                         

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Sick of being sick!


It's been awhile since I have posted. Several things going on with me, physically. I also think I need to take more of a drastic direction of my blog than just sharing my past. I have tried to incorporate what's going on in my life here and there that is not related to my abuser in order to shine a ray of sunshine on what can be a dark subject.

As I shared before I wish for normalcy. Like a child craving a sweet at the checkout counter of a store. I crave stability. I crave happiness in everyday life and simple things. I crave unconditional love.

I am blessed to receive all of these things now and count my life at this time surreal from my past. Which brings me to why I have been MIA for a bit.

Now thinking back I can see patterns of physical issues but I was so consumed with fear and panic that I didn't put things together. And of course I wasn't able to really worry about how I felt at that time. I know sounds weird, but when I was with my ex husband, anytime that took away from my abuser was a no-no! He believed that any sickness or injuries were my fault or made up.







(I have no idea why my blog is acting wonky with the fonts. I apologize in advance!)

Enough about him! Flash forward to present.

So over the past year I noticed an increase in aches and pains. I attributed alot of it to getting older (I'll be 45 this month) or maybe it is my high stress job as a Customer Service agent for a nationwide trash company. It is not uncommon for workers, myself included, to cry sometime during the work hours from a disgruntled customer unhappy with billing, trash pick up, or why the sun is not out.

These issues started to worry me as I noticed my feet started to feel tingly and felt numb. I blew it off to the fact I was sitting all day. And I was so exhausted, even after sleeping, also my sleep was off. I was maybe getting 4 hours of sleep a night if I was lucky. Of course I would fall asleep on the couch at 7 pm! I felt old! Despite my working out, P90, TurboJam, TurboFire, Brazilian Butt lifting 5 times a week (Not all at the same time) I was gaining weight! 15 pounds in a month at one point and time. I was watching what I ate somewhat. I admit I was stress eating mostly at work and eating snacks and desserts after 8 pm, after my nap.

Slowly that  annoying tingly-numb feeling crept up my legs. The next month my arms and hands had the same feeling. I was really getting worried. But I did continue to brush it off as how I was sitting at my desk. My back was killing me more than normal. Which again I blew off. I invested in a Office ball chair, of which I loved bouncing on! I figure I could perhaps get rid of the weird feeling in my arms and legs this way.

During this time I was having more Anxiety attacks, muscle twitches and my speech was becoming impaired. I felt like I was losing it. I cried to Terry that maybe I was getting Parkinson's or Alzheimer's! I was forgetting things, my headaches that plagued me for years were getting so intense I had to leave work.

I had Vertigo on and off for 10+ years that would come on if I was tired or under great stress. It would go away after a few days to a week. Suddenly in July no matter what I did I couldn't get it to leave. It no longer was limited to when I was just tired. I was having intense spells that happened when I when I was sitting, driving and just walking.

I broke down and scheduled an appointment to a Chiropractor. A month later, I was still experiencing issues and they worsened!

The Chiropractor advised that I had the signs of Fibromyalgia and possibly MS. Hearing this I needed to jump into going to a medical doctor in August. I left work early at work in a panic. I felt anxiety but something else. I felt hot, I was so dizzy and felt faint! I shared with my co-workers that something wasn't right. I had Terry pick me up from work and we drove to Urgent Aid. I didn't know what was wrong but something was just not right.
I was evaluated and sent away to be treated as a inner ear infection. I was unhappy with the diagnosis and told I should go to the ER if symptoms persist. 2 days later I went to the ER. I was once again evaluated and told about a probability of an inner ear infection and sent on my way.

Feeling puzzled and somewhat annoyed I was able to get to doctors. At the appointment I rattled on about 30+ other things I have noticed over the past few weeks. He scheduled MRI's, blood work, sleep studies, stress tests and more. He wanted to get a baseline since he never saw me before. I left my appointment upset. During the waiting period for my tests I took it upon myself to read and devour articles and websites on anything that sounded like my symptoms. I came up with a few things to ask the doctor about at our next visit.

Upon the next visit I was informed I was borderline Hashimoto and further tests needed. MS, Lyme Disease and Lupus was ruled out. YEA! I still had no answers. I ask if he performed the Western Blot and all Thyroid levels. He said he did blood tests and I was fine. HUMPH!  I had shared I had PTSD at our first visit this time the Doctor suggested that perhaps I was "Creating my symptoms". He may have to refer me to a psychoanalyst if nothing is found.

We left the appointment frustrated. 

I was tearful and upset. 

I know it's not in my head!

A friend of mine recommended I change my diet- No Dairy, Whites, or Gluten. She had experienced similar issues a year before. She provided some other great pearls of wisdom and I felt like I finally was not losing my mind. I also met someone else that advised of a place I could get a blood test for Lyme disease since we live in a location where this is prevalent. So I did! I should get the results back in a month, at this present time I should be hearing from them soon with the results.

Since I started this journey I have been depressed and annoyed that I haven't had an real answers. I found my blood results with a Hashi group I joined and bounced them off a kindred spirit. I wish she lived closer! She gave me a pep talk and pointed me in the right direction to ask my doctor about my test results. I had an appointment on Tuesday and before I went I prayed for God to intercede with my visit and  I ended up seeing the Dr's Associate! He was informative, attentive and listened to my concerns.

He verified it looks like I have Hashimoto's, also Celiac's Disease and he believes I have Adrenal Fatigue!

WHOA! I had to thank the Lord for this blessing.

I requested further testing on my Thyroid, brain and vitamins. He sent us to Vyto's Pharmacy (A Compound Pharmacy. In my opinion it's too bad we don't have more of these anymore!) for a Cortisol test.Everyone was informative! it so happens the Pharmacist suffered from Thyroid issues, so she was able to provide a lot of information.

So armed with new vitamins to try, my saliva test and a positive visit I feel better that something positive will come out of this!

I have been off work this whole time but my FMLA is up this week so next week I head back to work. Terry is betting I make it 3 days. I figure I will try to see how far I can go without losing my mind or physically breakdown. So say a prayer for me!

How could this all come to a head? For many years I have had a great deal of stress in my life which sent my Adrenals to work overtime. As the years went by of burning the midnight oil and chaotic situations my body has decided it's fried. I felt I needed to share.

Many Victims and Survivors of abuse have various ailments that are worse or hidden. Abuse can do a real number to a person. The effects can be felt years later after the abuse is over. In some, physical issues go away after leaving and maybe replaced with Adrenal Fatigue or Thyroid issues.

So Dear blog reader, I implore you to make sure you make a checklist for your health. Keep a journal of your whole body, mind and spirit. Get yourself checked and don't wait like I did!

Wherever your journey is taking you be safe!
God bless!
Mel

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Yippee!!

Howdy! Seems like it's been ages since I blogged! I'm still here, just alot going on.

We moved into our "Forever" home! It's situated on to 3 acres, everyone has a bedroom and since our Clan is growing we need it! The house was in pretty rough shape and will be a work in progress for years to come. Sometime over the next few years we hope to have Sheep, Honeybees again and possibly Goats? Pipedreams right now. We still have Chickens and Ducks. They are not only great for food but quite entertaining.

Our 1st Grandbaby (Jessica) is due in August and the 2nd in September (Terry's Daughter from his first marriage).


We had a Blessing way for Jess last weekend with close family and friends. It was a wonderful time! A wee bit warm as we don't have Central Air but put in a small window unit for the party that seemed to take some of the edge off.









































Earlier this year our beloved dog Maggie passed away. She was acting funny, wondering around in circles and bumping into walls. We took her to the vet and found out she had a stroke and we put her down. Our hearts were pretty saddened by this. She is dearly missed!

We found a great home for 2 puppies that we just didn't have time to give our full attention to.






Jessica also graduated from High School a few weeks ago! I'm so super proud of these Ladies!









I have been able to sell some lovely vintage treasures at a local Flea market! Did I mention maybe a small Antique shop out of the house is in the planning stages? Happy dance! We are out in the sticks so getting customers may prove to be a bit challenging!

My Lyme Disease is alot better. The referral given to me by my Primary Dr has proven to be wonderful!

I am being treated with herbs and vitamins. Also keeping an eye on my diet. Well, I kinda slid off the wagon for watching my diet. Everyday is a challenge. I am still no longer walking with a cane and grateful of how well I am doing but yet I am frustrated at how long the process to heal is. Of course I freak out when I find a tick or see a bug bite on myself and my family. It's hard not too. I have met a great community of folks that are fighting for their lives to defeat these epidemic.

I have been off work since September of last year and though we have a very small dwindling nest egg I do need to get back to work. I kind of dread the idea. I still struggle to stay awake during the day and other health symptoms concern me if I will be able to really function on a job even part time.

On a super note, it has been 1 year since my last full panic attack! YIPPEE! Now I have had some small hiccups but not the full blown, "Oh my gosh, I'm passing out" Panic attacks. I'm thinking it has alot to do with not hearing from my ex. My order of protection did expire on the 14th of this month. My anxiety level did rise a bit but I'm thinking he has the distraction of his new wife. This is great for me!

I understand she is in denial of the sexual abuse incidents. Stating that my ex is a nice man and how horrible of me to slander his name. She says her family/Grandbabies adore and love my ex. I was stunned to think I was slandering him. If I had known these things prior to finalizing the divorce you beat you sweet Bippy that I would have brought it up, despite Jess not wishing for it to be made public.

So, here we here 7 years later:
*Nightmares have lessened to every great once in a while
*No major panic attacks

These are HUGE milestones for me. My past life seems so surreal. It is as if it happened to someone else. I can talk about experiences without breaking down and melting into a puddle of goo. I still have a ways to go but I have come so far! I didn't ever think I would be where I was right now. So Dearest Blog reader if you are being abused (physically or verbally) have faith! To jump out of a abusive relationship is SUPER scary! You may be worried that you will have no place to live, no money, no insurance or maybe that you will never find love again.

Have HOPE!
Have FAITH!

Be willing to be flexible! I hear from countless men and women about how they can't leave "things or the house" or they won't make it. You CAN and you WILL!

You may have to hit rock bottom before you do leave. But why wait? If you can't leave, then try to get counseling for yourself and your partner. If your partner is unwilling then you need to make a choice.

Need more info on leaving? See the Labels for more, view Safety Plans, Positive affirmations, Leaving your abuser and Preparing to leave your abuser.. Please know that if you ever just need to vent feel free to email me or visit me on FB as Melinda Kunst or my page at Humbled Hearts on FB.

If you know someone in an abusive situation please be patient! The process to leave can talk days, months or GULP! Years! They may leave dozens of times before they finally leave. Be a shoulder to cry on, listen, give plenty of hugs and though it may seem frustrating and like you are playing the same song over and over, don't give up on them.

God bless you and know I'm cheering for you!

View my story in About me or My Book!

BIG HUGS!
Mel


Thursday, February 25, 2016

7 years!

Dear Blog reader,

Today marks the 7th year we have been free and safe from our abuser!
This date has turned into a day of remembrance for me. I don't wish to put on a party atmosphere. Its not.

It is a day that will be forever etched in my mind.


If you hadn't read my story previously, you can find my story in earlier blogs.

The months and days leading up to our leaving was intense. I had finally made up my mind for the final time in the Fall of 2008 that my children and I were leaving and not coming back. The final straw came in the form of a panicked phone call from my middle child, yelling in my ear that my ex was chasing our Eldest around the yard in an angry tirade. She called me when she saw that my ex had caught him and he was choking our Son!

I tried to calmly tell her to sit tight and told her to call the police. I also said I would be right home. By the grace of God, I didn't have anyone at the store that day, so I closed up immediately and raced home.

I had a sense of dread in the pit of my stomach. More then usual. I never liked coming home. You never knew what to expect when you walked in the door. I loved my Kids. They are why I came home.

I pulled in and jumped out of the van. My heart was beating so hard that I could hear it in my ears! I was sweaty. The fear churning in my stomach making me feel like I was going to throw up. I walked quickly to where I heard talking in the backyard. All 3 kids and my ex were out. Chatting and playing!

My ex looked surprised to see me. I told him there were no customers for hours and I decided to surprise them! He looked suspicious but didn't say much. I asked how everything was going. I didn't want to come out and ask if he had attacked our Son. I didn't want to let him know I knew or he would have given Jess hell for telling me.
He admitted there was a incident in which he flew off the handle and had issue with M, ou Son. He said he later realized he had taken it too far. He said he apologized to M. M came around the corner. I cringed inside. I could see red marks around his neck. His eyes red rimmed, nose still red from crying. I hugged him and asked if he was okay. He looked at my ex as if to check for approval to speak. He quickly nodded.

My heart was broken. I felt angry.

This man that stood next to me lying that he was sorry and it would never happen again. He thought it would be a good idea to have a code word (Banana Splits). So, if he ever got out of control in the future I could say this code word as a reminder to him to calm down.

I nodded. Inwardly, I was thinking to myself that I didn't want to spend the reminder of my life worrying about the next time also keeping him in check with a code word! I had enough. I felt so guilty and small for allowing him to bully the kids.

The next day I called my Sister and told her I was needed to leave.

I cried.

I was done.

Funny, a wait felt like it was gone from my shoulders. It felt good!  My only issue is that I couldn't leave right away. I needed to wait. My family was nervous for me. They guessed how unstable my ex was. They worried I wouldn't leave alive. Those words haunted me as a Friend had told me if I didn't leave soon that I wouldn't be around by the time the end of 2009 came around.

Since leaving him in 2007, he had changed some. He became more paranoid. His outbursts were more erratic and scary. We had countless talks about how unhappy I was. How I wanted to leave. He needed help and I couldn't give him the peace he needed. We fought and argued all the time. The kids were annoying to him. The following Fall was it.

January 2009

I am unsure how we started arguing about me and the kids leaving. It was late. I was tired. I was scared. I was in bed trying to blow off the conversation by telling him that I wasn't going to leave. That we would work it out and to come to bed.

I had been lying in bed for a bit praying he would let it go. I prayed he if he was going to kill me that it would be quick. I prayed he wouldn't hurt the kids. I squeezed my eyes shut pretending to be sleepy. Fear had a tight grip on me. I couldn't breathe.
He stood on his side of the bed watching me. I could hear him crying. Minutes crept by. Time seemed to stand still. It felt like an eternity.

It got quieter. Next I heard something hitting the wall and my ex grunting. I shot up from bed to see him slamming his head in the wall over and over again. Muttering that I was leaving and didn't love him anymore. He stopped suddenly and went to the opened window and punched the screen out of the window.

I grew balls for brief moment, asking if he felt better and to come to bed. I was surprised to hear the words leave my mouth!

He just stared at me and started crying. I managed to reassure him that I was staying and we would be fine. All along knowing we needed to leave as soon as we could.
I had to plan. He didn't allow us to leave his sight anymore and he was laid off from his seasonal job.

As soon as I could I began packing things, squirreling away money and opened up an checking account in my name. My Dad would come and pick things up when I was at the shop early in the morning so no one was none the wiser. I shared my situation with some of the vendors. I felt I owed it to them to be honest. I wasn't quite sure the day I was leaving but I knew I would jump the first chance I could!

My ex got the call they had a job for the first time of the year. I called my Sister the next day to let her know we were ready!

The night before we left I did tell the kids what was going on and asked each if they wanted to come with. Why? I had been reading other blogs and some victims had been in trouble for taking the kids without giving the kids a choice. Our kids were older and though it pained me to ask. I did.

The kids couldn't wait and were excited! I had already made arrangements with old and new schools days before. I didn't like to take them out but had little choice. I wanted to start anew.

I was nervous and tried to play it off the whole night and prayed my ex couldn't see through me.

The morning couldn't come fast enough! We did the normal routine of breakfast, getting his lunch together and getting him out the door. As soon as he left I sprang into action moving things, getting kids ready and making sure I had what I could.

A nervous clammy sweat coated me. I felt nervous and anxious...

It ended up being a long day. My ex still found us that night.

Since that time, it played out like a daytime talk show:

My ex attempted suicide on 2 occassions.

My ex hired someone to follow me and gave money for this person to kill and bury me.

Our Son started a fire in my apartment and threatened to kill me if he didn't get to live with my ex.

My ex stalked and threatened us.

I had a confrontation with my ex in which I ended up with bumps and bruises. But I managed to punch, scratch and kick him.

During a meeting at the courthouse between my ex nd I. Our Son attempted to fight Terry.

In which Terry was unharmed and our Son was held briefly but not charged.

My ex was given Parental time that was supervised but that went south several times.

He threatened to slit the kids throats if I got custody.

He threatened to blow up his parents house if they continued to speak with me.

He continued to harass me by calls, texts and emails. I filed PO's each time. My final PO was from last year. My ex is not supposed to have any contact with me or he will be arrested. It does expire this year.

We went through 1 Counselor and GAL as my ex had threatened them. I am not sure what transpired. Our case was sealed. It was also labeled as one of the longest and worst cases that county had ever seen. Hope that doesn't sound like a brag.

Crazy right? There is other situations that went on during these years. Almost surreal situations! I scratch my head to think of them.

So what had all that done for us?

I found out Jess was molested by my ex. No charges were filed. Why?! I scratched my head too! She had begged me not to turn this already crazy circus into something further. I honored her wished though a big part of me wanted to nail him for that. She states she has forgiven him and wanted to forget.

Both girls and I have PTSD. They aren't fully ready to put the past to bed by sharing it with counselors. Though I have tried! Jess had a suicide attempt and both girls battle from depression.

I have health issues. My Adrenals and Thyroid is shot. Poor things worn out from stress. My other unrelated health issue is Lyme's disease. This is another story! I haven't wet the bed or had bad dreams or panic attacks in a year! I feel better about myself. I never was lost. I hid for a long time. Sounds funny? While living in the abuse there were times when I would go numb, slipping out of my body to watch the situation from outside myself. I would watch in horror or in sympathy for me during whatever unpleasant experience was happening.

I have said it many times here about how surreal that time seems to me now. Those moments when we hear from my ex rocks me back to those days of sadness.

Though guilt had plagued me for so long for staying. Guilt for not seeing the sex abuse of my Daughter. Guilt for dropping off my eldest Son with Rob.

I have made peace with myself. I forgave my ex but took that forgiveness back after finding out the devastating news about our Daughter. I am still working on this!

I'm mending.

I'm growing.

I'm loving the life I'm in. We still  have hiccups. This is a part of having teenagers and a toddler.

I feel sane again.

If you are in a abusive situation I want to remind you that it is not easy to make the decision to leave. I would do it again in a heartbeat. YOU are IMPORTANT! Please consider talking to someone you trust. Remember you are not alone and you are WORTHY of love and safety.

BIG HUGS! Stay safe!
Mel




Saturday, January 16, 2016

Happy New Year

Dear Blog reader,

I hope this upcoming year find your free from the bondage holding you. Whether you are being held hostage against your will. Or perhaps you are afraid to leave or scared for your life. Just maybe you need to be free from the nightmares in your mind.

How do you break free of any of these? 

It takes work! Mentally, physically and emotionally. 

It means baring your soul and digging deep to the memories. 

It means opening up to yourself and others about your feelings or what you have been going through.

It means finally deciding that you are not going back to your abuser.

It means you are going to take steps to towards moving on with a new beginning. Wherever that may take you.

It means PUNCHING fear in the face and SHOUTING your not going to live in fear any longer!

You are STRONG

You are LOVABLE

You are WORTHY OF TRUE LOVE

YOU are NOT to blame

You are BEAUTIFUL

Go ahead, cry, shout, scream, punch pillows or kick something (Not your ex, children or animals please! Just throwing that out there. Even though revenge or harming your ex may sound good. He/She is not worth it!)

Can't do any of this without upsetting your Child/Furbaby or neighbors? tTake a shower or bath. Use candles if you can, light mellow music, Epsom salts and soak. 

Think about your situation. Cry/shout (If you can). When you are ready to pull the drain, if you are taking a bath, let those emotions, fears, worries and anger whirl down the drain. Let them all go! Visualize bright white light (Protection), or pink light (Loving) coming down from Heaven going through the Crown of your head and filling your body.

OR

Get barefoot! Earthing (Grounding) is another great way to unwind, destress and even give you most wonderful health benefits. I know in many areas of the country (US) and overseas it maybe cold. But try it as long as you can handle it. OR hug a tree! I tell you these have done wonders for my headaches and Lyme's issues! 

OR 

Smudge yourself and home. Now is a great time to do so! Even if you are a Christian you can do these things. I have a few prayers if you are interested email me privately- please put heading as Smudging.

OR 

Carry a Crystal with you for protection: Clear Quartz, Pink Quartz are great ones for Protection and Love (not that you are looking for love but love for yourself and for others to love you). Have PTSD or Panic Attacks? Apache's Tears is a great crystal.

If you wish to learn more tips or suggestions please don't hesitate to contact me privately:
at melindakunst812@gmail.com

I have had a few emails pop on thru that have been very sad. It breaks my heart to read stories from those trapped in abusive relationships. I give the best advice I can, but a few are in such a dark place and feeling hopeless I feel I failed in someway to bring them to the light. 

Being with any abuser or abusive situation is HARD! Choices whether to stay and be miserable or leave and live in fear of retaliation. "What if's" can do more damage to your health and spirit then leaving. 

It's tough to say good-bye. Whether you leave a letter for your abuser to find or to just be gone (I did that) or maybe you have moxie to just tell your abuser "Enough" and leave with he/she still in the home. 

You may have to leave kids or your furbabies! You may have a situation where you and your partner do not have kids together but perhaps you have watched that child/furbaby grow up! Now, that person is holding that over you by not allowing anymore visits. To be honest that in itself is hard. Legally there is no leg to stand on if you are not physically Mom/Dad. 

I can relate quite a bit. It has been 7 years since I have seen my oldest Son. I have little bits of news here and there about him but that is it. I miss the heck out of him, even though he planned to kill me. (See earlier blog posts in July 2009) I do admit of still wanting to kick my ex in the shins for what he did to our kids.

I have struggled and asked the Lord to give me a hand with this. Now this doesn't mean it is easy. I know I have to lay it at His feet. I can't keep taking it back. I know in my heart someday we will get through all of this.

I ask you Dear Blog reader to please hand tight! Stay alive! Keep yourself safe! Don't give your abuser power by taking your life. Please talk to a licensed Counselor or clergy member. In the US you can contact the National Suicide Hotline-  1 (800) 273-8255. 

Overseas? Check this website for help- http://www.suicide.org/international-suicide-hotlines.html

Just wish to talk to someone about whether you are in an abusive situation? 
US- 1-800-799-7233 | 1-800-787-3224 (TTY)

Overseas- http://www.vachss.com/help_text/domestic_violence_intl.html
Click to Chat With an Online Representative

I can't tell you the right answer for your situation. I can only tell you that it WILL get better! You do have to stay safe! Be smart and situationally aware at all times. Need more tips see my safety plans or safety tip blog posts. You are more than welcome to email me as well. I'm happy to lend an ear!

It's the New Year! Have you made your Vision board yet? Set goals? Where do you see yourself in 6 months, 1 year or 5 years from now? Do you want to be where you are right now? What steps can you take to get to safety? Who can help you? 

 Wherever you are please know you are loved! Please get help!

It can be hard for me to share personal information after blogging about critical things. I share from time to time as a reminder that someday, YOU will be in a good place. It takes time. I am terribly impatient! If you have followed me since the beginning you very well know I have stomped, cried and kicked my feet as though I was a child. I kid you not. I cursed and shouted at God. Raised my fist in the air! 

I have been there. I have gone through boxes and boxes of tissue. Crying until I have no more tears, my nose red, face swollen (I am not a pretty sight when crying!) and I end up with a terrible headache. I had gotten to the point where I was having panic attacks almost everyday. A song, memory, smell or just hearing my ex's name would send me overboard. 

I'm better! I'm on the mend. I'm healing! I am not who I was when I first started this journey. 

I have some peace. I also have a few secrets that I can not share yet but will in the upcoming months! 

Our bus project is coming along really well and we are super excited to hit the road with some journey in the summer. I promised my 2 youngest we would go see an ocean for sure. 

Stay safe!
BIG HUGS!
Mel