#metoo(working title)

The first memory of body shame came at the ripe old age of 9 years old.  I remember standing in line on picture day, I wore a navy blue shirt with lace trim and lace sleeves.  I remember his name, Paul.  He told me the sleeves should be right over my “boobies”.  I was 9.  I wilted.

Not just 3 years later, taking a shortcut to a friends house on my bike I was stopped by 4 male classmates, cornered.  They were not going to let me pass until I pulled my shirt up and showed them my chest.  I was saved by a little old lady walking her dog.  I feared.

My first exposure to porn was at the age of 12.  I had no idea what I was witnessing but knew fully that it was not something I should be privy to.  That was the first time. The second and subsequent times came, and have they ever stopped coming? Shame.

I was a very slow developer, in fact the doctor was concerned about my late blooming abilities.  I would like to think that other adults besides my mother were just as concerned, but instead it was like permission to belittle.  One friends mom asked me if I was going to participate in the “Special Olympics” that year. Cracks forming.

But no worries, I developed, rapidly.  Leaving many in the dust like a lust for over achievement. I think “torpedo tits” were the words chosen by someone other than me. At the age of 15, a simple walk at a summer festival in a tank top, an adult male tripped and fell staring at my chest. Shrinking.

First boyfriend took to hitting me. Another never stopped calling me chubby and that I should lose weight. Rejected by another in favor of porn and alcohol.  Being told my greatest value was what my body could offer. Absent father.

Tell me again that my shirt is cut too low, skirt too short, pants too tight but do not avert your eyes.  Tell me again its just for men so they can talk like men, instead of being the men you claim God made you even behind closed doors. Please keep telling me that I am too emotional, too demanding, that I should smile more, Just please tell me what I should be, what I am not, what I am too much of and not enough of . For you. I am not here for you. Anger.

Wilting, cracks filled with shame and fear, shrinking to rubble the temple walls that are my body.  Rebuilding each piece with new materials. Cornerstones made of love, kindness, redemption, hope, worth, value, peace, dreams of a an all-present, constant Father. Where my sacred soul resides hearing the choirs of you are more than enough, always have been and always will be. Amen.

 

 

Advertisements

Parenting

Because you do your best to tell them and teach them right from wrong, hoping with all hope that you are modeling it, knowing that you are screwing up somewhere, but praying the ramifications are minimal and as they grow you loosen your grip despite what your heart says and suddenly it feels that they have slipped completely from your grasp and your heart is flailing and then there are two that need to be rescued.

India, day 3, again, again and again.

The amount of images I have from each day is overwhelming.  It would be too immense to just place in one post per day-that and the fact that I forgot to adjust my timestamp in my camera is proving to make it all the more difficult in determining what day I took each picture.  These following pictures are also from day 3.  Then we can get to day 4!

 

india1

flower2

girl1

waterboysgirl2

details4

details5

window1

waterboy

India, Day 3, again, again

After lunch we took a walk into the village.  We passed multiple temples.  There are over 330 million Gods.  This idea is so complex and foreign to me.   A religion seemingly based on superstition, perpetuated by more superstition and self fulfillment.  I am sure there is much more to it than that, but that is my first impression and somewhat uneducated observation.

We walked to the river’s edge where the villagers bathe and a temple stands guard, accepting sacrifices.  Glancing towards the river we were greeted with a most unexpected sight.  I small group of water buffalo proceeding to the steps, where they exited the river, walked through town and into someone’s house.

shrine8

streetview

architecture5

structure

freerange

architecture3

streetview2

shrine2

shrine3

shrine5

shrine6

shrine4

shrine1

waterbuffalo2

waterbuffalo3

waterbuffalo4

We headed back to CEM and along the way we purchased some fresh coconut water.  And then were promptly followed by some very curious kids!

coconutwater1

coconutwater2

architecture6

kidsstreet

kidsstreet2

India, Day 3, again.

We spent time in the morning with the residents of the Agape Old Age Home.  The residents are being added to the NoChild sponsorship lists.  We are all privy to the fact that children all over the world are being thrown out, neglected, abused and just let to end for themselves, but rarely do we hear about what happens to the elderly around the world.  For the same reasons that the kids are left or brought to CEM, so are the elderly.  I did not expect that it would be so hard for me to hear about their stories.  The worn and wrinkled faces depicted a much harsher reality than most people can empathize with.  One cannot even begin to guess their ages.  Most are far younger than you would think.  And just like the children, they long to be seen, heard and loved.

agape2

agape4

agape5

lady1

agape6

agape7

agape8

agape9

agape10

agape11

agape12

agape14

agape15

agape16

india

I am guessing its frowned upon to have favorites, but this one?  My favorite!!!!