#savingme

« You.are.my.wife ». He shouted it. He was completely out of control. I was wondering whether he could arm me. I did not protect my face. I put my arms around my belly, feeling my child’s life inside me. I closed my eyes. And it was over.

His wife. Like I was a chair or a table. Like I was his property.

I was his prize. I was the one welcoming him with a smile and trying to be nice, always. The one cooking and cleaning and making his life easy. His nightmare some days. His terrible choice, other days.

In between. Only drama.

His breath and his eyes and his steps. I remember fearing the sound of his steps and the key, the door, opened and closed with a bang, the light switched on, even when he knew I was surely asleep at this time. And his body against mine. And his hands on me. And his breath again, full of cigarette and beer. And the same old marital, sexual duty.

At the beginning it was ok. Not wonderful but ok. Loads of promises. Love in the air. It did not last long. Not long enough for me to enjoy it. The first threat was just around the corner. Big mess, harsh words. He left. And he came back. And I apologize, out of nothing, for nothing. And it was nice again. And he proposed, kind of. And I didn’t say “yes” straight away. No way. So manipulation started. He would ignore me then say “he loves me”. He would be happy and then tell me “you are a slut, you’re nothing”. On and on and on. Till I said “yes”. Just to have peace. I believed maybe this would make him happier. And life would at last be a good one together.

It got worse. Nothing was never good enough. I was never good enough.

I was a mess. I was tired. I used to knock my head against the walls, wishing I could hurt myself more. I wanted somebody to see I could not cope anymore. I was becoming a ghost in my own body. I wanted somebody to take care of me. He said he would, if only I was good to him. But I was always making mistakes. I was always begging for forgiveness. So I could sleep again and have a “normal” life.

He never kicked me or slapped me. But his words and his look. His contempt. Him thinking he was better than anybody else. Him and his threats to kill me. Him and his will to control me. Him and his body against mine and his silence. He stole my money and 4 years of my life.

But he didn’t win.

I got away. One night. We didn’t talk at all for ten days. I remember hiding myself in the bathroom, crying under the water so he wouldn’t hear me. I would sleep on the sofa in the living room with my belly becoming bigger and bigger. My pregnancy saved me from a life of pain and violence. I took a one way flight, leaving everything behind.

It did not stop after that. But at least I was home. I was safe. It took me years to find myself again. My baby boy, my family, my friends helped me on the way up.

I believe talking about abuse, violence, is key. We need to share our stories. It can help. It can make a difference. Victims need to know they are not alone, need to understand that silence is a killer. We must raise our voices. We must tell them that a life is possible after hell. And that they are beautiful and deserve all the love in the world.

My name is Marie. I live in paris and write both in French and in English. You can read me (in english) onhttps://mahshiandmarshmallow.wordpress.com or (in French) on  https://latmospheriquemariekleber.wordpress.com/

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#savingme is the column where abuse victims can publish their experiences just to let go and find comfort and support. Maybe it doesn’t feel like much but just publishing your story for others to read makes you strong. You can send your story about the abuse you went through to savingmestory@gmail.com and you can choose if you want it to be anonymous or not. More details here. 

Positivity Press #28

Hai everyone! Well, I didn’t know if this was worth mentioning, but I would say it anyways. This week was, overall, very good. I was thinking about my recent achievements and found kind of a sequence. In my blog, I reached a 100 followers, a 1000 views in may, almost a 1000 comments and lastly almost 100 posts. Next, in my novella that I had worked on for approximately 2 months (?) I had reached 100 pages,  which I had been really happy about since writing didn’t come that easily to me, especially if it’s regarding fiction or stories. So what are your achievements? Trust me, I’d love to read them!

Blog: https://nour7.home.blog/

If you want to share positivity here at The Positivity Press send in your positive news with pics and the link to your blog (if you want) to postpositivity@gmail.com

Positivity Press #25

Did you ever think that you might benefit from travel advice from a 65-year-old Tibetan monk? It does make sense: the image of a religious Buddhist spiritual leader (Khenpo is an honorary title) is one of a pure soul floating above day-to-day irritations and life challenges. But he would be the first to tell you that it is not always easy to face the physical difficulties and deprivations of travel. The mental trials? Well, that’s another story.

Khenpo Pema has been traveling for much of his life. A Buddhist monk since the age of 7, his family escaped from a small village in Tibet in 1959 and eventually resettled in a refugee camp in South India. Through the years he has established a center for Tibetan orphans in India and a school in Nepal. He has been teaching Western students for more than four decades and continues to travel from his home base in New York City to dharma centers around the world.

I first met Khenpo Pema in 1986, when I wanted to learn some basic Tibetan phrases before a trip to Tibet. Khenpo Pema was a very patient teacher and misinterpreted my early facility with the language as talent; unfortunately, none of it stuck. I did remember one phrase when I traveled in Tibet soon after: “You are very pretty,” which I said to everyone I met. Khenpo Pema told me that no one would ever say this in Tibet but that he could understand how it would amuse them.

Why Travel? Because “This is It!!”

Khenpo Pema travels to teach, but he also finds travel mostly a pleasure—he is constantly fascinated by and curious about what he has learned about the world and by people. Travel is, in many ways, pure inspiration.

“I am obsessed with ideas! I get hundreds and thousands of ideas when I travel. And you always have to keep trying to make things happen,” he says. “If something doesn’t work, try something else—try hundreds of times. Mistakes are good. If everything goes well you become soft. Mistakes you learn from make you better able to face problems in the future.”

“Buddha,” says Khenpo Pema, “teaches on every subject, especially about Mind. And one of the major teachings is on impermanence. Everything is so precious, since we are not going to have this forever. That is why appreciation grows. Everything that is constructed, dissolves. We learn to appreciate things: This is it! This is precious. You learn to appreciate but learn to let go when it is not good.”

How Travel Has Changed for Him

Pema believes that technology has changed the experience of travel. Fifteen years ago, Khenpo jokingly told me that, when his friend asked how GPS worked during a drive to my home for lunch, he told him that “a little plane flies above the car and lets me know where I am and where to go.”

Now, besides his GPS, Pema usually has his iPhone and laptop along. Because of that, he says, experiences have sometimes become less wondrous. “Now we are saturated with images,” he says. “That freshness and touching and seeing is sometimes not there, in my case.” Also, constant travel can take a toll. “I travel so much,” he says, that “globalizing the mind sometimes dissipates emotional connections.”

On the other hand, technology has been an outlet for him when he experiences travel delays. Khenpo Pema told me that being stuck somewhere is a great opportunity to read, write, make calls—and he believes that being sidelined in an airport makes work easier because when he isn’t at home and is surrounded by new people, his mind “is fresh.”

How You Can Change Your Attitude When You Travel (Because Your Mind is Like an iPhone)

Meaningful travel may require us to change our attitudes and to be open to new ways of reacting to the world. These changes, Khenpo Pema believes, take work. “The great part of Buddha’s teaching,” he says, “is that we learn to put our mind on a certain setting. It’s like using an iPhone—set your mind and it becomes part of your mindset. I have no psychological or emotional problem at all wherever I am. Oh, six hours you have to wait in airport when they tell me that your flight is cancelled? No problem. And I’m never bored, I’m like a kid.”

In order to develop such an attitude requires learning mindfulness. For this, Khenpo Pema meditates on a daily basis. “Getting to the point where delays and challenges do not disrupt one’s life,” he says, “is not easy. To change inside is not easy. The hardest thing to change is the way that your mind works.” That’s not to say that you will escape negative emotions, he believes. He says, “You feel what you feel. That’s O.K. as long as we do not follow those thoughts or try to justify them….when you travel, always prepare because things can go wrong. Then when they go wrong, you can smile.”

Even if he encounters a rude travel agent, Khenpo Pema retains his good humor: “If I am mindful, no problem if people are rude. With mindfulness you let it go. With meditation, that independence is there.”

Blog: https://thebabybloomer.blog/

If you want to share positivity here at The Positivity Press send in your positive news with pics and the link to your blog (if you want) to postpositivity@gmail.com

The Story behind the name Luna – reblog

I’ve posted this story a while ago but I decided to repost it because I think that our new project when we reach 3000 followers will be centered around abuse stories. I am still working on the idea and I remembered this post so here I am sharing it again. If you would like to have this new project about abuse stories, let me know in the comments!

 

I have promised to make a post about the story behind the name Luna and today is the day. To be quite honest I’ve never told anyone why I use this name because it’s a very personal story but I decided to show courage and share it with everyone.

My real name is Ana and I got it by my grandmother. Originally my mother wanted to call me Julia but my father wanted for me to be Ana because my older sister got her name by our other grandmother and he wanted the same for me. Luna is the name I’ve used for many years for writing purposes and I came up with it when I was a little kid. To explain the whole story I have to go back to 1992.

As I stated in my Liebster Award post I’m actually of Bosnian origins. My family lived there for their entire life and then the war happened and my father fought in the war in Bosnia. During that time he got PTSD and started to drink heavily. My parents came to Germany after the war and 7 years later we came to Croatia. Due to my father’s mental problems he started to drink even more and got more and more abusive. He would beat the life out of my mother, sister and me and the police was a regular guest at our house. He developed an identity disorder and things only went downhill. Every time he would get drunk my mother would send me to my grandmother’s because it was unsafe to leave me alone with him. Because of the stressful situation we lived in I was a very nervous child, didn’t have an appetite, I was underweight and always ill because my immune system wasn’t very good. My mother, sister and I spent our days locked up in one room of our house because he would always attack and threaten to kill us if we went to use the kitchen or other parts of the house. Thankfully the bathroom was just on the opposite side of the room we were in so we could sneak to go to the bathroom. I even remember a little bit of a Christmas morning when my mother had to pay off all of my father’s drinking debts so we had no money to buy anything, my father was drunk again and my mother got up in the morning to make pancakes for me and my sister to eat. We spent Christmas Eve and Christmas morning eating cold pancakes, locked up in one room. No Christmas tree, no presents. I would actually spend a lot of time alone in that room, watching Spanish telenovelas and writing my own stuff like scenarios for my telenovela and poems about the actors. It was a way to kill time and that’s how I fell in love with writing.

Where I’m from the winters are very cold and back in the day we had central heating. My father turned it off one day saying we don’t deserve to get warm and I got extremely ill afterwards.
One day I just woke up without the ability to breath normally, my head was hurting and I had a high fever. After visiting my doctor we found out my problem was bordering with pneumonia but the doctor didn’t want to put me in the hospital because it was dangerous for me to be exposed to so many bacteria and viruses since my immune system practically didn’t exist. My mother couldn’t send me to my grandmothers and couldn’t take days off of work to take care of me because she would have been fired. My older sister had to go to school so I was on my own. My mother would get my sister ready for school and before leaving she would put a bucket with a lid next to me if I needed to throw up and she would lock me up in the room so my father wouldn’t get in and harm me. Since he was drunk and I wasn’t making any noises he didn’t even know I was there so I was safe. My health condition was very bad. I spent 10 days literally sleeping. I don’t remember much of that time but I do remember this. One night I ran out of air and suddenly woke up. My mother was next to me and my sister was in the other bed. The first thing I saw at that moment was the full moon through the blinds. In that moment I felt so calm, like nothing could hurt me. I can’t even explain it.

Seeing the moon just gave me a strong bond to nature, helped me realize that not all is lost and made me believe that just like nature renews itself I will renew my health and get better. It was like a feeling that the sky was watching over me. It was all probably the product of my fever but that night created the name Luna. As I said I watched a lot of Spanish telenovelas so I decided to go with the name Luna when I started sending my work to magazines or publishing it online. Luna in Spanish, as many of you know, means the moon.

This was very hard for me to write because I don’t like to talk about my father but I thought it was time to open up more and be more honest on the blog because I would like to share my experiences with abuse with others and maybe help them if they are currently struggling with it. If you went through the same thing before or are going through it now and need someone to talk to feel free to DM me on my Instagram or send me an email on luna.theblog@gmail.com

Poem #206

Suddenly we were strangers. Like there was
a wall through which we couldn’t see each other anymore
and once, not so long ago we would spend endless hours
talking about things we don’t remember now.

It’s like all of the good disappeared as if taken from the
surface by a strong wave that suffocated both of us and
in order to live we had to swim in opposite directions.

Not a single glance, not a single smile when we pass
each other in the street, as if there wasn’t a bond
so strong holding us together, as if we didn’t don’t what’s
it like to hold each other tight. Suddenly we were strangers.

Poem #205

Girl, if you live believing all of them
are bastards just because one hurt and lied
to you, you will deprive yourself of the possibility
to see the good in the one who is waiting
for a soul just like yours.

Poem #203

It’s hard to put one foot in front
of the other when you lose faith in yourself.
It’s forced, it’s fake, you do it because
you know you have to and not because
you want to.

Stuck in a place you don’t want to be,
surrounded by people you don’t want to see,
reliving the same nightmare every morning.
Where do the lost go?

Leave the place, leave the city.
One foot in front of the other, maybe you
stumble across the faith you lost.