A history of “violence”

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You know people say that we are not only made by our parents, their choices, our choices in life, we are also the fruit of past generation history, pains, hopes, dreams and regrets. Yesterday, in bed, as I was about to let sleep takes me to a faraway land, something hit me. Even though I had a happy childhood, with loving parents and grandparents, who encouraged me, trusted me and did everything in their power to give me the best, violence was not far. Violence was on the dinner table, in my mother’s memories that she would share again and again, so she can heal – violence against her a child (physical and sexual violence) – violence against her mother (physical and emotional). Violence was everywhere.

My imagination created many images in my mind. Violence became part of me, as I tried to do everything to make my mum happy. I took a charge that wasn’t mine. Nobody realized it. I was such a happy and quiet child.

Life kept going and I kept moving with it without understanding why I found myself engaged in many relationships tainted by violence: I was harassed at primary school for 4 years – my first boyfriend was a battered child – I worked 3 years with a toxic and crazy fashion designer – I met my ex-husband and discovered violence is not only physical, it’s in the words, the threats, the silence too.

My grand-mother always stayed and keeps staying silent about the violence she was exposed to for many years. She says “it was not that bad”. I can’t hear this. Violence broke my mum. Violence took up power in our life. Violence made me a victim for years.

Somedays I feel that violence is inside me. I try my best to tame it. These days I need silence and peace, so I can let it go without hurting anyone around. Somedays I can’t, so I shout and bury my head in a soft cushion. It feels like violence is tattooed on my skin, like something I can’t get rid of. When my sweet boy turned 2 and started using his hands and fists when he did not get what he wanted, many memories rushed through me. The fact that young kids can’t express their emotions did not help me dealing with his outburst or anger and violence. It was like the story repeated itself.

That’s the reason why I am working a lot on me, asking for professional help when the charge is too heavy. I want to let violence behind. I don’t want violence to be part of the next chapter of our life. We learn together, celebrating victories, searching for peace, towards more light.

Writing and Chocolate ice cream

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Sometimes writing feels like dipping your fingers in chocolate ice cream

It’s delicious till you can’t stand it

It’s sweet till you can’t eat it

It makes you happy till it makes you sick

It’s happening to me right now as I am in process of re-reading my manuscript. It’s not so much about the story, it’s more about finding the right word, organizing paragraphs, crossing off lines, writing differently. I love it tille I hate it.

So I stop, take a pause, find something else to do, till the passion is back and the paper is not a threat anymore.

And you, how do you see writing? Is it always easy or do you find yourself lost from time to time?

An invaluable lesson

When Jennifer told me she would be in Paris and would love to meet, the first thought that crossed my mind is « I can’t do this ». It’s not that I did not want to see her or anything lik thise, it’s just that the first words that came through my mind were “not good enough”.

I hate these three words.

But they rush like blood into my veins every time I am facing a new situation, a situation that involves new people.

And then, something happened in my mind. I heard a voice saying “what – not good enough – you’re joking!”

I was not.

I mean we were talking about Jennifer Burden there – the founder & CEO of World Moms Network, the woman with ideas, passion, who got involved with the UN Foundation and even got to meet the UN Secretary General, Ban ki-Moon.

I was so scared.

And then I answered “Fabulous, I can’t wait to meet you”, thinking that I still had 3 weeks to get ready.

Crazy!

And then I realized there was nothing to fear. I realized all this “not good enough” bullshit was not about me. It was about all the assholes I met before. I make the choice to stop this voice in my head.

I was good enough. I am good enough. I am even better than “good enough”. I am me. And I am beautiful.

So we met.

And I can say that we had a fabulous time. Meeting Jennifer was like meeting an old friend. We had so much to share about our lives, doubts, dreams. We enjoyed this special moment. It was a special treat to me. I met an open-minded and delicious woman. She was not one to fear or be afraid of. We were just two women happy to connect.

A week later, it was Purnima’s – senior editor at WMN – turn to be in Paris with her family. The bad voice did not come back. I would have told her “shut up” anyway. And again we shared a nice moment all together. It was even hard letting her and her family go.

I am so grateful to have met these wonderful ladies and to have overcome my fears. They both taught me an invaluable lesson:

Be who you are. Be proud of your choices. And the world will embrace you. And you will shine. And the world will shine with you!

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You no more…

I’d rather die

Bury my feet into the spongy ground

Vanish into the night

I’d rather stay silent

Go blind

Steal the key of the door

Taking to my heart

I’d rather fly away

Walk barefoot on fire

Swim till I can breathe no more

I’d rather escape

Take up arms

Fight against the Lion

I’d rather scream so loud

That everybody has to hide

I’d rather risk my life

Than going back to you

Books, friends, fundraising and creation

 

In September last year I shared with you inspiring projects by fabulous ladies! Don’t get me wrong, some men are doing great things too. But I like to honor the ladies here – no offense!

So, let’s see what’s going on around:

  • Lisa released her New Book – A Divorce Companion (a must read for all people facing divorce, all people recovering from it and even all people touched a way or another by this life-changing experience)
  • Marie (Deep Stones)  is creating wonderful bracelets with semi-precious stones – all made with generosity and kindness. I am in Love with her work.
  • Trish is about to set off on a new journey – a walk of 2,190 mile (Appalachian Trail) to fundraise for Kay’s Kisses “Sharing love, books, and gifts with children recovering from domestic violence”. Go check her website and support her along the way – this is just AWESOME!
  • Another book by Balroop Singh (Allow Yourself to be a better person) – I can tell you only one thing – you’ll love it. Why? Cause she is writing from the heart and nothing can ever be better than this voice inside sharing what counts.
  • My friend in Corsica is raising money for KMG Ethiopia – a charity organization working for Women’s Rights.

Any inspiring project to share with us? I am all for any you have in mind…

I’d love to have tea with you…

You remember when we met so early in the morning, it’s still dark outside and the air was quite cold. We were wearing our runners and warm jackets over jumpers made with wool. You’d wait for me at the corner of the main street. We’d have a look at the sea before starting our trip. We’d walk under the moon, then under the sun or the dark clouds, depending on the weather forecast, for two, three, four hours. We’d talk about life and whatever was in our minds these days, doubts, pain, wishes, sweet dreams and trips back home being planned for a couple of days – France for me – a couple of weeks – Arizona for  you.

I miss you, your shining smile, your heart as big and sweet as – as what – as a chocolate pudding with ice cream on top, your hugs making me feel fully alive. I miss our talks and the way we used to support each other.

I miss stopping by your home and seeing that you get a new juicer, fresh fruits and this green paste that sounded like torture to me, you said was so healthy. You’d prepare some tea and we’d sit down outside, telling each other how great it’s to be single, sharing our must reads and trying to figure out what the future holds for us.

I miss you, your tears – you were never afraid of letting them go. I’d listen to you trying to love yourself. I thought – I still think – you’re such a gem, a precious person, a wonderful friend. I know I am blessed to have you in my life even though we only see each other once a year, even though we don’t talk that much in between.

I wish I could leave work today and have tea with you. I’d show you around. We would walk in the garden, sit for a while; we’d look at the world and rejoice to be together.

I miss you today my friend.