To The Father of My Angel Baby

Dear Father,

Father, you barely deserve to be called that. No, you don’t really. It’s the anniversary of the conception of our angel baby. I wonder if you’ll even take a moment to remember the child that died while still growing inside me.

I remember the horror that crossed your face when I told you that your forceful hand resulted in a child. I can still hear your anger, asking me how I could have let this happen. Demanding to know how I planned to end our baby’s life before it could take a breath. I remember crying, convincing myself this was my fault. Yes, my abused mentality believed you. I believed that the forced conception and the resulting baby was, of course, my fault. Thus, it was my responsibility to take care of it.

I remember searching abortion clinics, determined to keep you as my man. I was loyal when I should have left you. I should have left you the moment the first time you forced me into a situation that resulted in so much pain. I didn’t. I was blinded by the love I had for you. I thought it was love. The reality is that it was fear. I spent nights racked with indecision and confusion. I didn’t want to lose you, but could not kill my child. Everything in me believed that abortion was wrong.

I remember deciding to keep the baby. I couldn’t take a life that I had helped create. I couldn’t bear that thought. I remember telling you. I boldly, fearfully told you my decision. That was the first time you actually hit me. You kicked me down and kicked our baby until it died. Our baby died because of you. It was then I left you. I couldn’t stay with a man who killed my baby.

I want you to know that not a day goes by when I don’t think about my baby, the little life that lived inside of me. I want you to know that I loved that child more than I would have ever loved you. When you killed the baby, you killed every chance I would have given you.

Today is the anniversary of the conception of what could have been but you made sure never was. My heart is full of grief and pain knowing that I couldn’t protect my child. Know that I have forgiven you. I have forgiven you for forcing me, beating me, belittling me, and for killing my baby.

Salutations,

Viv

An Open Letter to the People Who Stare

Dear Observer,

You know who you are just as well as I do. You’ve been staring. You’ve seen the scars that tattoo my arms. You’ve had questions, but do not know what to say. You want to reach out to be sure I’m okay, but you’re unsure of how to approach me.

Here’s the reality though. You didn’t notice me when I was wearing long sleeves in the summer. You ignored the fact I never kept my arms on the table. I know you didn’t notice because I’ve been watching you, too. I don’t blame you for not seeing me. It’s so easy to hide in today’s society. I hid because I wasn’t ready to talk about anything. I hid because I was ashamed of what I was doing to my body. I was ashamed of the darkness that led me to the point that I became addicted to cutting myself.

Now, you see. You see me. You see my scars. You see my scars because I have decided that I am no longer ashamed. I am no longer going to hide the scars. I am free from that addiction. I am free because I have a risen Savior who bears scars as well. His scars are only identifiable to him. He bled so I don’t have to. He bled so I can be healed. All I have to do is ask.

I beg you, please stop staring. Tell me what you’re thinking. My scars tell a horrible story, but they glorify my Savior.

Be Blessed,

Viv

The Vanity Post

I’m not a slave to the mirror.

At least, that’s what I want to believe. A few weeks ago, I would have valiantly argued that point. I would have argued that I wear whatever I want whenever I want, stating that my beauty is ingrained in Christ, not in the clothes on my back or the make-up on my face. Then, I would have stated how everyone needs to have this view. That we need to stop caring so much about our appearances and learn to focus on the Lord. I would have argued till I was blue in the face that I was not vane. However, my world was shattered in a place I never would have thought. I was standing, alone, in front of a mirror.

Okay, maybe saying my world was shattered is a little strong, but something seriously changed in my mindset. Here is the story. Earlier that day, I had lunch with some lovely women in my life. The lunch was spent talking about God and how He had blessed each of us in that year. Then, as most conversations go in the beginning of a new year, we starting talking about our New Year’s Resolutions. One lady stated, “I am tired of being so fat. I’m losing weight this year.” My jaw dropped. This lady could, as my Appalachian mother would say, hide in the shadow of a clothesline while I, on the other hand, am over 200 pounds. Of course, we reassured her and stated she was beautiful and all the blah blah blah. I found myself thinking, “Wow, I’m glad I’m not like that. I’m glad that I don’t have to be constantly validated in my appearance. I’m glad that my mother raised not to care what others thought of my appearance.” The lunch ended, but my thoughts did not.

Throughout the rest of that day, I found myself pondering the horror it must be to be a slave to the mirror. The constant checking ones clothes, hair, or make-up. How awful it must be to be worried about that. Later that night, I was getting ready to go out again. I looked in the mirror and realized the truth about my mentality. I am, too, a slave to the mirror. I was concerned with hiding the fat on my body. I was concerned with hiding the acne on my face. I was concerned with all the aspects of my body that I had scoffed at my friend for being concerned with that very day.

I am a slave to the mirror.

While that statement is true, I also believe that there is freedom for those that ask. There is no reason to be a slave to anything when you know and love Christ. We are creatures made in God’s image. How magnificent is that? How beautiful is that we were made in the image of the righteous God? My favorite verse, Ecclesiastes 3:11 says that God has made everything beautiful in His own timing. What that means is that God made you, He made you beautiful. You may have to endure some ugly stuff in your life, but you are beautiful.

Now, instead of pondering the mindset of being a slave to the mirror, I am pondering the question, “What if we viewed ourselves as God views us?” I truly wonder what would happen. I wonder how much would change if we started seeing ourselves through God’s eyes. In His eyes, we are beautiful. We are beautiful because He created you. He created you as beautiful as the nature around you. We are beautiful. That’s all that needs said.

I Am A Mother

I am a mother, but I have never held my baby girl. My little girl passed on before she could take a breath in this world. My little girl woke up in the arms of Jesus. I am sure of it. I know that she is much better off with Him than she ever would have been with me. But that doesn’t mean my heart doesn’t ache when I think of her name. Her name is the same that I blog under. Vivian. Her very name means life, and she is living a life eternal with Jesus. She will never know pain or suffering, only the pure joy that comes with being in the constant presence of the Father. She is safe. Isn’t that the best that a parent could ever want for her child?

While I realize that my child is in heaven, my heart still grieves for her. She will always be my first born child. Vivian will always hold a place that is dear to my heart. I long to hold her. To hear her laugh. To see her smile. I want to take her to dance or piano lessons. I want to play with her outside. I want to see her creativity. Unfortunately, I will never get that chance in this life.

I am thankful that my little girl will never know the horrors of this world. The only emotion she will ever feel is that of pure joy, the kind that comes when living alongside Jesus. It’s an emotion that I can’t even imagine, but my little girl gets to live with it day and day out. She is happy. She is safe. What more could I ever want?

An Open Letter To My Abusive Ex

Dear Ex,

It has been well over a year since I left you. I don’t have to spell out our relationship issues here. You already know what they were. You know that I was hurt by your words. I was hurt enough that I left you. Do you have any idea how hard that was for me? I am loyal by nature. It is part of who I am. I stay long after I should leave. In fact, I did stay long after I should have left. I stayed after you hurt me. You took my soul and shattered it. It was shattered in those nights spent in confused pleasure. I still don’t understand what happened. I don’t think I ever will. It’s been a year and I am still putting together the pieces. I am uncovering the harm. I am healing.

It’s been over a year, and your scent still taints my skin. Numerous showers and scrubbing later, it’s still there. I still dream of you when I sleep. I suppose my body remembers, though my mind wishes to forget. There are days when I want to peel off my skin. I want to be rid of you. It’s been over a year, and I’m still not. Because of you, I have put up walls. Though it has been a year, I have not taken down those walls and let another man in. I’m terrified that they are like you. Is this unrealistic? Most definitely, but to me, it is very real.  I have not forgotten the pain you caused nor will I ever.

I know you are waiting for an apology. After all, it was I that ended things between us. Because of my nature, I want to apologize. Because of what you made me, I want to come crawling back and beg you to forgive me for ever leaving you. But the reality is that I should never go back to you. The reality is that I should never even entertain that thought. The reality is that I am broken. I am broken because of you. I am diluted enough that I want you again. Maybe things won’t be so bad this time. Maybe you won’t manipulate. Maybe you won’t make me question my body and my decisions regarding it. But I know the truth. I know that if I come back to you, things will be the exact same. I will end up humiliated, hurt, and degraded. I know from experience you will never change.

This is why I am writing this to you. I am writing this to say that I am done with you. This is me breaking off all chains. I am holding fast to my Father in heaven. He is the only man I need in my life currently. I pray you find Him as I have. Only then will you ever see the error in your ways. Only then will you understand the pain that you have caused me. My life is forever changed because of you, but I’ve got a Healer in my corner now. You knocked me down, but I am not out nor will I ever be.  I will rise with the Lord at my side. You will no longer have a hold on me.

Salutations,

Viv

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devil’s Lies

I lay down each night

Trying to find the bliss of the day.

But that when the devil starts whispering

His deceitful lies.

No other voice to drown out his words

He whispers,

“You’re worthless

Can’t you see you are not loved?

Can’t you see how much you’re hated?

Your friends only pity

That sorry sob story you cry.

Your GOD isn’t there

And HE never was.

You think you’re so special.

Something unique created by HIM.”

I scream, “Please,

Just leave me be.”

And the devil replies

“You think I leave that easy.

You’re nothing.

You think you’re protected by you GOD

But you answer me

Where was HE when you were small

Too young to know anything at all

Your mother beat you.

She watched as that monster crawled into your bed

And made you such a broken little girl.

Answer me

Where was your almighty

When you were a teenager

And overpowered by a man that was twice your size.

Answer me, Nothing.”

The words sink deeper.

The lies begin their work.

Tears begin flowing.

My voice to weak.

To fight this battle.

I’d lost too much.

My heart too brittle.

My pain too great.

Slightly I prayed

That GOD get me through this pain.

A voice rose.

A voice that was not my own.

“This is my daughter.

You have no place in her satan.

I command thee,

LEAVE.”

The lies ceased their hold.

The pain ceased in my heart.

I am something.

I am a daughter of the King.

I’m Doing Just Fine

Laying in a hospital bed

A woman frail and old

Her hair no longer there

Her skin pale and ice cold.

Her body constantly

Racked with pain.

Daughters and sons

Family and friends

Visit with tears

Falling down their cheeks

For they know

The woman lying there

Will soon be gone.

Each day they visit

Each day they ask

“How are you doing today?”

Each day she answers

“Can’t you see?

I’m doing just fine.

While my body hurts

My soul rejoices.

Today is another day

I have with my friends and family.

And today is one day closer

To the time I get to go home.

Today

I say

Is a day of rejoicing.”

This continued

Til one day

Family came to visit

And all they found

Was an empty shell

Of the woman that once thrived there.

A note laid beside her head

“Don’t cry over me.

My body no longer hurts

JESUS came to me and said

‘My child

It’s time to come home.

I’m doing

Just fine.”

Was all it read.

Dear 16 Year Old Me

Dear 16 Year Old Viv,

It’s me, well, actually, it’s you. It’s you five years from where you are now. I’m now 21 years old and living a life you would not believe. In fact, I know you won’t. I know that right now you are still grieving the secrets that you hold so dear. I know that you are terrified to tell anyone. I know that you are constantly shaming yourself. I know that you feel dirty because of all that has happened. I won’t lay it out here. You’re not ready to read it from another perspective. I know that. That’s not why I’m writing this dear Viv. I’m writing this because I want you to know something. I want you to know that the life that you are living now is not the life that God has for you. Wait, I forgot, you don’t know God yet. But you will meet Him. You will meet Him and fall in love.

In just a little over a year, you will personally meet Jesus. He will come into your heart and just love you. For the first time in three years, the pain that is so deeply ingrained in your chest will be gone. He will set your free of your anxiety. In five years, you will be free from your deep fear of men. I know it sounds crazy, but it’s true. You are going to fall in love with children who have stories just like yours. You are going to do everything in your power to ensure that no child is ever hurt like you were. None of this is to say that you will do it without pain, because there will be plenty of that. But you are going to go to college, you are going to live your life, you are going to have more good friends than you ever thought possible. But most importantly, in five years time, you will come to love Jesus and you will understand the deep love that He has for you. In five years, you are going to personally see that there is life amongst the pain that you have now. In five years, you are going to be well on your way to healing and helping others. There is nothing that can stop you aside from God Himself. Carry on my younger Viv. Carry on.

With Love Always,

21 Year Old Viv.