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- https://www.patheos.com/blogs/ahappymedium/2013/02/notbrokenbutbrave/

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Almost 4 years- Lessons learned

These few years seem to have flown so quickly. Though there were many points along the way I thought time would never pass fast enough to get the legal process part of our divorce done.

I have found some amazing things along the way, which I would like to share with you!

1) God didn't give up on me! He didn't let me just throw in the towel. He knew the who, what and when of the whole situation. And nudge me on when I felt defeated by a some sort of sign, person or dream when I needed it.


2) Good support of family and friends. Everyone close to me has been caring, great listeners and supportive of these events. My church family has been wonderful too! We appreciate the prayers, my Pastor and his Wife, have been AWESOME!

3) The kindness of strangers

4) That I am stronger, even through the pain of it all

5) I'm finding peace in every moment- Even when my teens are doing the "Teen thing"

6) More patience with everything. Things happen for a reason! A divine meeting or chance that worked out well for us. Even when things seemed dark.

7) The legal system WILL work even though it seems like the legal birds appear to have they're heads up... Anyway! It does work. It takes time and patience!

8) The importance of being situational aware! I make sure I know my surroundings without being conspicuous. Knowing where exits are. If  alone in a restaurant I make sure I am facing the door so I can see who comes in. Make sure my doors on car and around my home are secure. Changing path how get to my destination. Changing my passwords on email, banking, utilities, and so on. Carry permit and lessons on safety and shooting. Self defense class- youtube has some good ones!

I check a parking lot out before I park. I make sure I pay attention to my surroundings as best possible. Check parking lot again when heading to my car. Check car out quickly before leaving. Again, watch out to make sure no one is following. These tips may sound paranoid, but they could save your life! Early on my ex had hired someone to follow us/take pictures and later paid the person to kill me. I had a feeling he or someone was following but could never pin point it. Many months later it came to light his plan, thank goodness the person he hired got cold feet, if he hadn't I could rank among the hundreds (if not thousands- not sure if the stats but you get the picture) of persons murdered in the States daily.

If you feel that someone is watching or something feels off, call the police! I have talked to the local police several times to patrol our area when I got a feeling. They are happy to go through the area or even your home. Better safe then sorry! Always tell a friend or family member where you are heading, how long you will be and when you return. I know you may feel like all these are over-the-top or child like, all it takes is a moment for someone to do something dangerous that could be life or death for you.

NEVER be alone if you can help it! Ask someone to be with you during whatever the event or matter is. Even to court. Sneaky things can happen in the parking lot or on the premises.

Make sure you have a new cell phone account that is YOURS. That your ex does NOT have control of so he can not use GPS or call tracking. When taking pictures with cell phones please watch what you post on social media. Your abuser can figure out where you are or were if they are savvy enough.
If you have a computer/laptop, consider wiping it clean or getting a new one. Some abusers have been known to log on to your computer without you knowing and this could also be detrimental to your finances or personal safety!

Please view my Safety plan or Safety blogs for more tips or information.

9) It will take time to heal, both physically, mentally or emotionally. There is no way to rush this part. Everyone heals at they're own pace. Not everyone has PTSD or Health related conditions brought on by the stress of an abusive relationship. I am currently researching the effects of abuse on children, not just that the cycle of abuse may continue but the proven facts that most childhood illness could be related to abuse in some form and instead be PTSD. Examples, bed-wetting, ADHD, ADD, Epilepsy, Depression and more! I have a friend that mentioned that since they have not been living in the situation of abuse for months her son has shown marked improvement in his Asperger's Autism! Of course, further evaluation is needed from a medical standpoint. I am not a therapist or medical professional (Medical Assistant and Doula, I am told do not count- SHUCKS!). Please research and monitor your child(ren) yourself to see if there is improvement.

10) Relax! All these things shall pass. Life as precious as it is, can be done in a blink of an eye. I heard on a Christian radio station, that we are but a vapor or mist, with a short span here on earth. I liked that. Make this life count. If you have a child or pet, pick yourself up, dust off the past and start anew! Everyday is a new beginning to start over. Break bad habits. Improve yourself in some way. Smile at strangers and even say Hello! Journal, I just heard about SMASH books (form of a journal) I can't wait to try. I hear glitter and glue in my future! Create a vision board or a wish list on paper or virtual of things you would like to do. Outlandish or easy to do things or wishes. Take these and run!  Small steps! Try to get 2 things or more done a month or a season.

11) Clear the clutter. OK, Melinda, I had you for a bit now clean?! Clutter breeds chaos. I am very spiritual, in saying this, there are energies that love clutter, dirt, disorganization and filth. (No I am not pointing fingers and I am not the most organized person. Ask my husband!)

A cluttered house, car or office area can cause you and those around you to feel anger, dread of coming home or work or even in your car. I have been using a rule that if I have not used it in 6 months it goes into my selling pile or donated to local Mom and Pop resale shop (I love to help out local businesses!). Grab some garbage bags or boxes and get moving!

12) The dreaded word- EXERCISE! Whether from the comfort of your home or blazing your own path running. Exercise is a great way to help relax you, get your body moving towards better health and has been proven to help you heal after an abusive relationship! I myself am not a twig, I have a bad back, my knees have been doing some funky clicking and hurting lately. A sign of my age (42). I try to exercise at least 3 to 5 times a week, a half hour or longer if I can. It has been very therapeutic for me.

13) Talk to someone! Finding an outlet to talk about your experiences can be super important to your whole being. Keeping your abuse under wraps can be harmful to your health. Getting it out, bearing your soul to a group, friend, therapist is very important!. Personally, I have shared my thoughts on therapists and psychologist but to each their own. I don't believe in medication anymore, unless life-threatening (that's going to be part of my other blog)

14) Find yourself. I hate to sound repetitive, but I recently was privileged to win a scholarship to "Step our and Sparkle your life" with my fav intuitive, Kristy Robinett! In the few weeks I have been a part of a great group of gals, I have peeked under the cracks of my feelings to heal, re-new and rediscover me. It has been a very challenging, inspirational and empowering experience. I have gleaned a lot from both Kristy and the ladies involved. I have found I'm not alone in feeling a low self esteem.  I have made some great new friends and support this way! Do something you enjoy or once had a passion for. You maybe alone now, so what?! Being alone with just you, can be a enjoyable adventure!

I have discovered a farm life- Filled with chickens, canning, raising rabbits, aquaponics, soon bees and ducks! I enjoy gardening,composting, self-sufficient lifestyle still love antiques/garage sales, learning how to crochet, crafts of all sorts, learning about herbs and edibles in my yard (dandelions, purslane, chickweed, etc...). I finally took my CPR class so I can add that to my list of things to do 2013 both for myself and to add to my resume (Med. Assistant/Doula). I am finding me! I am enjoying the "Normalcy" of life. I love my life! I have $8.00 in the bank, but say Positive affirmations to improve my financial success as well as self improve me.

I could go on and on... You my dear blog reader are always in my prayers. Please if you are in some form of abusive relationship, get help from a shelter or call your local law enforcement. You can do it! I know your scared. You need to do this for you. Is this the life you want for the next 5 years? 10 years? Will you live that long? Will your child (pet) follow in the cycle of abuse? Do you want that for them? I can't tell you when jump from an abusive relationship. Only you can do that. Do not wait too long. Do not use the excuse of lack of finances, or place to live or no job. Call a local shelter, they have resources to help you! Or confess to a friend or family member. If there is a will there is a way.

BIG HUGS! I believe in you!
Mel

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