“I decided to start anew, to strip away what I had been taught.” ~ Georgia O’Keeffe
Critical and demanding the voices kept her frozen — pinned like a deceased butterfly in a glass cage.
“You are not brave”, screamed the taunting voices. “You can’t do anything right. Who do you think you are? Stop trying to be someone. You are nothing but a piece of shit. Who will believe in you?”
She held countless chambers of negativity. Some still stuck in her heart’s throat. Dried and terrified. Sometimes she forgot to breathe.
Numbness pervaded her extremities to protect the core of self.
Her lungs ached while coils of panic and knots formed a noose. An emblazed heaviness tightened — right above her heart. It spread into the marrow of a strange deafening shoulder ache.
The pressure she felt could rip her skin apart.
In the blur of a blink, she was handed a rustic pickaxe and began to steadily chip through the steely knots of lies, rape and abuse. Determined, she ripped the pins forcing her down. The colors were a washed. Each wing, all bitterly ugly and tattered — were more lies. For in her search she found truth is real and inner beauty can survive.
She grabbed a paintbrush, to disarm the self-hatred and dipped the tip into dazzling shades of sunrise lemon zest, succulent persimmon, alabaster clouds, the Cobalt Sea and ebony for shadows of depth.
Year after year, she began to rewrite. Fiber by fiber. Stained but transformed into a ripple of luscious aged sea glass. Stitch by stitch — under a microscope of love and hope, each calloused memory received an extra coating of safety and kindness.
And in this profound process, she discovered her ally was named Brave; it kept her alive more than she was told and never once left her side.
She swiped the condescending arsenal of “you can’t, won’t and aren’t worthy” into a paper bag attached to a thin string and let it float gradually away.
The fragile deceased butterfly, was now free and very much alive.
Something remarkable happened when she stepped into her Brave.
She found inner strength in strategic escapes of her mind; hidden in closets of darkness and in the soft coo of mourning doves. Her golden sensitivity was crafted from torment. It rested along a universal horizon of a powerful and magnificent sea; each breath, the rise and fall of immense waves gave her strength to see and believe.