Stress-less and learning to value me!

I’ve been absent for a while. I’ve needed to pull back and reevaluate some life situations. This season we all seem to find ourselves in unwillingly has taken a toll on many, including myself. I have been reevaluating the need for self-care. Personally, I feel in our society we rarely speak on this issue and how vitally important it is. Especially now with all these lockdowns and the spreading of fear! We are not called to fear but to faith!

This season we’re now in, at least here in the United States of America, is fall. I can look out my window at the beautiful leaves of various colors and be in awe at the greatness around me! Reds and oranges and yellows and yet, still some greens that are seemingly hanging on in a stubborn fashion. Such beauty!

Are you stubborn?

I am though I’m not sure if that’s a strength or weakness. I suppose it would determine how or where that stubbornness is used. I’ve been told most of my adult life I’m like a bulldog with a bone when I’m after something. I don’t want to let go. And this is truth! So yes, I do have the stubborn streak in me.

I believe I learned to be stubborn as a result of horrific child abuse. I believe I had to develop that stubborn streak in order to survive. Any form of abuse is horrible! I firmly believe and feel to the core of my being that ‘It shouldn’t have to hurt to live in a family!’

We use this phrase often in our ministry, Broken Pieces No More Inc.

Love isn’t supposed to hurt!

Families should be safe places to live!

Moms and dads shouldn’t want to hurt their children!

Spouses shouldn’t wanta hurt each other!

Yet, we do….daily…..and yes, sometimes in one family there is daily abuse!

So, I factor in my stubborn streak and yes, I’ve learned how to cope well living within abusive relationships. However, I’m also now realizing that is not healthy at all even though I thought so. Maybe there was a bit of arrogant pride involved! As in, ‘ha, I made it! I did it by myself! Look at me go!’ All the while I’m limping over to the corner to sit down and lick my wounds, so to speak.

When what I wanta be able to do is learn from those false beliefs, those lies, that were heaped on my little girl’s head as a child and grow into the Godly woman I’ve been destined to be! Well, shoot! I don’t know if I’m up for that or not! It takes a lot more work to change my perspective and focus on the positive.

I’ve lived in dysfunctional relationships, well, let’s just call it what it was: An abusive marriage! I felt I was strong to have endured for as long as I did without any major battle wounds! Ha! Maybe I was stupid!

How did my remaining in a cruel, abusive, demeaning relationship build me up as a woman?

How did any of that negative, toxic stuff help me grow and develop into the woman God wanted me to become?

It did not!!

If anything, choosing to remain in a toxic relationship only served to delay my growth and damage my soul!

How?

By remaining in a toxic, dysfunctional relationship I ended up damaging my health by an increase of the stress hormone, cortisol. This stress hormone increases our sugar level and also messes with our flight-or-flight responses. Because of the high stress homes, I’ve lived in most of my life, I’ve been on a constant alert state. That is not good for anyone.

I am now working to decrease my stress levels.

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How? Here are some ways.

  1. Be mindful of my surroundings.

I take inventory of where I am, what I’m thankful for, items around me, and listen to my breathing.

It might go something like this:

                Take a deep cleansing breath and let it out slowly.

                I thank God for keeping me safe all my life and blessing me with my beloved husband.

                I look around and count the various objects near me that are a soft aqua blue.

2. In being mindful, I remind myself that I am now safe.

Knowing I was unsafe for so many years, beginning in my early childhood, I doubted that I’d ever have a safe place to live. Years ago, when I managed to escape an abusive marriage, I was able to live with my son and his family for a season. That time and now, being with my beloved are the two safest times in my entire life! I do not take for granted the time I now have to live my life in peace!

It might look something like this:

Oh no! My husband will be home in twenty minutes!
I no longer have the fearful compulsion of rushing through the house making sure every item is in its proper place and turned just so! There is no need to turn all the cans in the pantry facing outward nor line up the towels perfectly! That was my old life.
I can breathe deeply now because I am not afraid! I am safe!

3. As I feel safe, I am free to explore my emerging inner self.

I firmly believe as we begin to realize we are indeed safe; our mind will slow down allowing us to process daily activities in a healthier manner. Once you land in a safe place, whether it’s with someone or on your own, you will begin to hear your own thoughts, your own desires, your own beliefs. For me, I’ve learned to weight my thoughts, desires and beliefs against the Word of God! It’s His book I find wisdom and guidance as I take each step. Oh, that doesn’t mean I don’t fall from time to time but the getting back up means more now that the guilt and condemnation is falling off!

It might look something like this:

I’m having a really hard day. One where the stinkin’ thinkin’ begins to get louder and I hear the negative words echoing around in my brain. When that happens, I find myself beginning to feel depressed, maybe wanting to emotional eat a bunch of chocolate cookies or go back to bed.

What I can do instead is remind myself I’ve come a long way and I am His redeemed daughter! I can put some praise and worship music on and I can find scriptures I’ve marked in my Bible that remind me in Him I am worthy!

These are just three areas I have been dealing with. For me, there are more but progress is very possible. One step at a time! One issue at a time!

What is one area where you are growing into a more healed individual?

What is one healthy coping skill you have for overcoming stress?

I’d love to hear from you!

I pray you have a most wonderfully blessed day!

More next time!

Stay safe and take care of you!

#Healing in the Mountains

Recently, my husband and I were able to head to the Smokie mountains for refreshing and recharging! I so love being in the mountains! They speak to me and offer peace to my soul! When we were on top of Clingman’s Dome I read one of the signs that were posted. It spoke of how the Cherokee people sought healing in those mountains. I believe it is true!

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I’ve often wondered if green is God’s favorite color. He sure did create many shades of it for us to enjoy! Or at least I do. I love escaping to the woods, getting out in nature, finding a safe spot to sit and meditate. I’ve taken to the woods for safety and comfort since I was a little girl needing to escape the ‘red-hot pain’ that threatened to engulf me from all the child abuse. And I still find great peace in the underbelly of the woods! I’m so thankful we have a wooded area on our property!

 

On our trip, we met some of the most intriguing people. I enjoy engaging with others, asking questions encouraging them to share their story. We met people from all around the world. One thing I took away from our trip was that people, no matter their skin color, just wanta be valued and loved and respected! That’s all!

 

How have we as a society gotten to where we are today? Fussing, feuding, fighting, blaming others all contribute to unrest and fear. These contribute to our problems, not offer healing solutions. I personally do not believe it’s a statue problem or even a virus problem. No, it’s a heart problem!

 

But who’s willing to sit down at the table and talk about our problems instead of destroying lives and property? Is someone willing to tear off the scab of old wounds to get down the root of the problem where it’s nasty and oozing with toxins? Who’s willing to listen?

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Who’s willing to sit with that person until healing takes place? I wonder how many would do so.

Sadly, there are few folks who are willing to get down in the ditch of life to help others up. I’m so thankful to those who were willing to help me get up out of the ditch I was living in and embrace freedom in Jesus Christ! Without Him, I’m sure I’d be dead or living a horrible life!

 

Are you a ditch digger willing to help others climb out?! It does take all kinds to make the world go round. And one truth for sure we cannot escape is that when any one of us is cut, we all bleed red!

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I can’t help but wonder if, during this lockdown, we haven’t been called to examine ourselves more closely. I know I have and there are numerous areas I’ve found lacking! How are we choosing to help others? How are we conducting our self? What are our values?

One area I have been studying is fear. Never in all my sixty years have I witnessed such a worldwide mass hysteria of fear! Fear is NOT of God! To me, it’s like common sense and thinking for one’s self was thrown out the window! We are told countless times in the Bible to ‘fear not’!

 

It’s sometimes hard to not give in to that spirit of fear when it’s raging all around you. Thankfully, when Jesus lives in us, we have much to hope in! We put our hope and trust in Him then fear has no authority or right to torment us! May we all gain that truth and put fear on the run!

It is my prayer that if you are struggling with fear you will soon find peace and comfort. That you will rest in Him and gain wisdom that will guide you on your path!

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I wrote about my abuse in my Secret series and how I found hope in overcoming the effects. You can order this and the 2nd in the series, Secrets Exposed, from wherever books are sold.

 

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#mentalhealthmatters & domestic violence

My husband and I along with a few friends have formed a nonprofit, Broken Pieces No More, Inc. This faith-based ministry was formed to help raise awareness of various forms of abuse and to provide healthy solutions for healing. When we were planning our 2nd child abuse awareness event back in April 2019 and I found a report stating Kentucky ranks #1 in our nation for substantiated child abuse cases I knew then I had to do something!

Growing up I experienced pretty much every form of abuse you can imagine, although I was never burnt with anything and for that I praise God! I was locked in a cold, dark celler for hours at a time! I was tied to my own bed, (why my bed I have not yet figured out!), where men and women took their pleasure from my little girl’s body. I was whipped with switches till blood ran down my legs or beaten with a belt however never leaving harsh marks because my perpetrator knew where to hit me!

I was pimped out by my mother and grandmother to men in the community for money to ‘help pay the light bill’. I was dedicated to satan at age 3; I was supposed to have been sacrificed at age 30. But God!

I used to believe the only reason I was born was to give men and women sexual pleasure! I believed a lie!

My mother, grandmother and an uncle were my three main abusers!

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On Oct. 17th we had our first annual domestic violence awareness event. Again eye-opening when I discovered in my research that Kentucky is ranked #9 in the nation for deaths among women in domestic violence!

We at Broken Pieces No More Inc want to thank Rocky Hollow Athletic Club so much for believing in what we are doing and helping with our event. They provided a warm and safe place for us to hold our 1st annual domestic violence awareness event. Thank you County Executive Judge Kelley for your heartfelt words of encouragement to all of us that it takes the love of Jesus to make a change!

A big thank you to National Impressionist/Singer Kevin Adams who entertained us with his special talent! When Elvis entered the building it was amazing! A special thank you to all the vendors, both craft and informational, who came out to stand with us in helping to make a difference. The various speakers in our program, the survivors who were brave enough to stand up and share their truth we thank you! Thank you to Somerset Community Mission for believing in our ministry and serving with us! To all who joined us…thank you so much! Together we can make a difference!

 

This still being October, which is National Domestic Violence Awareness month, it’s important we continue to get the word out that no one deserves to be abused! And please don’t forget, men are abused as well. There’s no excuse for that! We must all begin to ‘Spark the Change’ in our homes, our communities, our counties if we want to see lasting change spread across this great state! One person, man or woman, boy or girl, is one too many being abused!

I know from my own experience with d.v. that so many turned the other way. Maybe they didn’t believe me. Maybe they just couldn’t handle the truth. Maybe they too were experiencing their own form of d.v. There are many forms! I was never hit which still amazes me but I believe that was a God thing for I fear I might have shot someone!

I was, however, raped repeatedly! Money was a major issue often used as a bribe for me to perform better, do better or was simply withheld from me because ‘you don’t deserve anything’. Stalking was a major problem for me in d.v as my former husband had me followed, checked my odometer and often told me, “you don’t need to go anywhere cuz you’re just putting more wear and tear on the car”. The unspoken demand that everything be in its place and if not, there would be severe consequences! I gained personal insight into narcissism too. Years of wondering if ‘today would be the day’! Living with fear until it began to eat my insides up with constant worrying and concern and trying to gain enough courage to kill myself! I’m so thankful I did not do that! No, I wouldn’t wish any form of abuse on anyone!

There are many wonderful organizations in our area and beyond who work tirelessly to make a difference in the lives of those they work with and I applaud them. Even so, I believe that we can do more because the numbers beg to differ in that we have a problem of widespread abuse in our area. We can work together to help ‘Spark the Change’ in how we view our neighbors, our fellow citizens no matter what!

In all this I have learned to say ‘But God!’ Not just as a flippant statement but without Him I would not be who I am today! I am so very grateful He has helped me learn how to forgive those who abused my body, my soul! I am letting go and learning how to live a life of freedom and great peace! #dramanomore

BPNM will be having our first women’s group meeting on Tue, Nov 5th at 7:00-8:30 at Somerset Community Mission next to Big Lots. This group is open to all women who are searching for her own path, her purpose and to discover her passion. We hope you will come on out and join us! We believe there will be something for every woman! You can also look up our women’s group on facebook at Women Warriors Rising Up. Join us no matter where you live! We’re here to support one another!

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BPNM will be hosting our first fundraiser at Rocky Hollow Athletic Club, Somerset, Ky on Friday, Nov 8th from 5:00-8:30. We’ll be having a chili supper and silent auction. We are raising start-up funds to enable us to be more active both here and across our great state! ‘Come go with us as we take it to the streets’ and help ‘Spark the Change’! Please consider donating to our auction!

You may contact us at brokenpiecesnomore@gmail.com or follow us on face book at Broken Pieces No More Inc.  Or you may drop a line or a donation to BPNM PO Box 1373, Somerset, Ky 42502.

We’d so love to have you on our team.

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#daretodream I am!

Dreams!

We all have them!

Some of us put ’em in a box and shove them to the back of our mind hoping maybe one day we’ll pursue them. Maybe we’re afraid to dream for fear of failure….or perhaps fear of succeeding! Hummm….  Others of us jump on board with our dreams no matter what. I’ve been kinda stuck somewhere in the middle.

I’ve wanted to be an author, a writer since I was a young girl-child. I wrote my first story, Bears Foot Town when I was nine years old. When I was sixteen my mother bought me my first typewriter…yes, the old fashion kind. A manual! I continued pounding out short stories year after year. I so wish I hadn’t of lost them in my various moves but alas, I no longer have them. However, I am forever creating new stories in my mind and often times pounding them out on my laptop.

But….I’ve decided to take the plunge and pursue my dream of becoming a published author!

My first book, Secrets in the Hollers, was written in a fictional setting taking place in a small town in eastern Kentucky based on a true story: Mine! This first book in the Secret series shares my story of horrific child abuse I fought with all my being to overcome! Physical. Mental/emotional. Sexual. Even being pimped out by those who were supposed to have loved and protected me to men in the community to help ‘pay the light bill’! My own personal experience with human sex slave trafficking!

 

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With in the month, I’ll be sending book 2, Secrets Exposed, to the printer. This book deals with various forms of narcissism and domestic violence I experienced. It’s time to expose those secrets we have all been listening to! #secretsnomore

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I am so thankful I’ve had the hope of Jesus to walk with me every step of the way. Does that mean life’s been easy or without pain?

Goodness me NO! But with His hope, I’ve been able to see the light at the end of the tunnel! I’ve been able to see a purpose in my life!

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Don’t let anyone steal your dreams!

Dreams do matter! I believe they help give you a reason to get up in the morning and move forward. I also believe they are given to us by our Poppa God as part of His amazing purpose and plan to help bring His Kingdom to earth from Heaven.

#daretodream

I would love to hear about your dreams!

Drop me a line here or hit me up on face book at Author Pamela Richards Woodall or you can send a snail  mail to PO Box 1373 Somerset, Ky 42502

Let’s dream together!

Radical or Calm Emotions? Which do you have?

It’s early morning as I write these words. I looked out earlier to discover a frost gently laying across our hills and valley. It is beautiful!

I used to not be an early morning person but for some reason as I’ve grown older….actually over this past year…I’ve realized a likening for early morning.

I fix my first cup of coffee, turn on the local news and journal a bit then read The Word and plan out my day.

I so need His Word to direct my day and calm my emotions. I clearly remember when I used to be lead by my radical emotions which often got me into trouble! Now I’m learning to tell my emotions to be quiet and give a listen to what The Spirit is saying to me! Keeps me outta trouble that way!

There is nothing wrong with emotions at all! I believe they are a beautiful gift from our Poppa God to us. He has emotions and we are made in His image so it stands to reason we will have them as well. However it is what we do with them that counts!

How many of you have been at the store and get to witness a child having a temper fit?

It’s not a pleasant experience for sure.

I wonder if our Poppa God looks at us when we’re throwing a temper fit cuz we didn’t get our way shaking His head?

Honestly there have been times when I’ve seen older children throw themselves on the floor frailing and thrashing about and I wanted to spank their bottom! That is not acceptable behavior!

Our Poppa God is a loving Heavenly Father and I believe He expects us to behave in a mature manner as we grow older.

And because He is a loving Father He will discipline us as needed. He does not think up ways to beat us over the head with a baseball bat; no, He loves us and will provide instructions to help guide us.

How do we keep our emotions under control instead of allowing them to control us?

1. Read His Word

The Bible is our life instruction book. We really have no excuse for not knowing how to behave or which way to go for it’s all in the Word! There are many examples of how we are to conduct our self all throughout these pages.

2. Wise Counsel

It’s so vitally important to have those who are mature in the Lord that are willing to journey with you on your path. But take care here, not everyone has your best interest at heart! Choose those mentors wisely! Ask Poppa who it is He’d have you counsel with.

3. Use Your Written Words

I have been journaling since I was a young girl. It’s been very beneficial for me to do so especially as I’ve gotten older to write down my thoughts. I am now able to see patterns of behavior, whether good or bad, that I can either enhance or chose to change.

So often we fear change which actually we’re fearful of the unknown. But again, if we are following hard after Poppa then we have nothing to fear!

I’m finally learning to face my fears by stopping and turning to face whatever fear it maybe and deal with it. No it’s not always easy and my emotions can get all whacked outta place but it is necessary if I intend to grow!

What emotions do you struggle with?

What are some of the ways you have learned to control your emotions?

I pray you have a beautiful day!!

#nomorefear

#secretsnomore

#secretsinthehollers

#V4VL

#iamavoiceforthevoiceless

You Were Meant for Love

Kari Kobe has a song out, The More I Seek You, that totally wrecks me!! I listen to it over and over.

We were all created for LOVE….to receive love, to give love! We were created with a deep need to be loved and accepted!

So many times that doesn’t happen in our lives. Maybe we had dysfunctional parents or care givers who were never taught this love thing therefore they did not teach their children how to love.

Have you ever watched an innocent child? They just love…openly…without hesitation. That’s simply how they were created!

But…..

Life comes along and many times stirs things up on the inside….changes our belief system…causes us to put up these gyhugic walls we think is for our protection. Funny thing bout walls is that yes, they will offer a form of protection keeping the bad out. They will also keep the good out and….they will keep us in!

For many years of my life I now realize I’ve lived my life behind these walls hoping for protection yet denying myself thw very thing was created for: Love!

I’d learned very early in my childhood that I was a bad person, dirty, nasty, unlovable….or so I thought! I was listening to and believing those lies!

I was wrong!

I was none of those things!

I’ve been learning I am the opposite..I am amazing…I am unique…I am loveable…I am worthy…I am able to give and receive love!

My beloved, my husband, has worked hard at helping me to tear down my walls. And yes they leave me very vulnerable but I am now feeling way more than ever before.

Love is real! Love can and often does hurt! Love is fulfilling!

You were made to love!

More importantly, you were made to be loved! You are lovely and so worth being loved!

You are uniquely you! There is not another person like you now or ever!

I encourage you to begin today tearing down your walls to let thw light of love in! You don’t have to live a lifeless life…real, true, life changing love!

You are worthy!

You are loved!

I’d love to hear your story!

I am praying for you!

Drop me a line at: pamelajwoodall@yahoo.com

You Are Worthy!

Sometimes it’s a challenge to remember I am worthy…I am valuable…I am loveable…I am good enough!

Sometimes the lies from my past spoken over me by those who were supposed to have loved and protected me…yeah those lies try really hard to drill down in my brain and mess me up.

Haha…I’m learning to recognize them sooner rather than later and kick em to the curb!

We all have days like that!

I’m learning the value of quality self care! I’m learning to give myself permission to be still and heal!

You my friend are so worth the effort to be good to you today!

Take a walk in the woods.

Go for a bike ride.

Read a book.

Listen to music.

Dance like a wild person.

Take a nap.

Say “no”!

Do anything just for you!

You are worth it!

I’d love to hear your story.

Drop me a note at: pamelajwoodall@yahoo.com

You can follow me on face book at: Author Pamela Richards Woodall.

Rape: It is real!

Trigger Warning!!!

I had a dream last night about rape!

Not of me being raped but women I know, have known since high school and those who went to school with my son and other women I know.

It was a very disturbing dream!

I hate these kinds of dreams for to me there is no point in them except the enemy messing with my sleep; however, the more I’ve pondered on this subject this morning the more I wonder if I’m to share my words…again.

I’ve been criticized for sharing too much, for being so open yet I know God has called me to be transparent of what I’ve experienced in hopes of showing others who may have suffered similar experiences that there is hope in Him!

Rape is sexual intercourse, either with the man’s penis or some object inserted into the victim, against the other person’s will!

With regard to my experiences in my childhood I’ve used the words assault, molested, violated but today let’s call it what it really is/was: RAPE!!!

And rape can be carried out by women!

Rape is having some object, human or not, forced inside any of your openings against your will!

Rape is wrong!

Rape can happen to little girls and boys, women and men!

I truly can’t count the times I’ve been raped from before I did not have memories up to my adulthood! It was wrong!

Rape is about the rapist being a bully!
Rape is about the rapist humiliating the one being raped!
Rape is about the rapist needing the power over another!

Rape is wrong!!

Some of my rapists are dead and gone, others are not!

In my dream I had a tazer like object but when I touched these people who were raping they just dissolved! How cool is that!!!

It has taken boat loads of prayers, tears, hard work and quality counselors to help me get past my former horrific experiences! I praise God He has me in the palm of His hand. I don’t know why I had to go through what I did but I can guarantee you if it was to help one person I will share my story anywhere I can!

You can heal from rape, from abuse!

You must be willing to fight the fight to overcome and rise above it!

I share a lot of these experiences in my book, Secrets in the Hollers, as well as the new one, Secrets Exposed!

It is high time to tell the secrets!

I hope you will stand with me in stating that there should be #secretsnomore !

I’d love to hear your story!

You are not alone and someone does truly care about you!

I am a #warriorrisingup !!!

Check our my facebook page at: Author Pamela Richards Woodall

I am available for speaking engagements and training opportunities working to help heal the hurting from various abusive situations!

You do not have to bear the pain alone!