Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Wednesday's Woman: The Courage to Heal

Have you ever been handed a book right at the moment in your life that you were meant to read it?

After I recovered my memories of child sexual abuse, I jumped into the world of self-abuse with the commitment of every cell in my body.  My downfall was swift and scary.  

With the help of some very wise and generous souls, I landed in an inpatient treatment facility.  It was there that a counselor handed me the book The Courage to Heal.

Within the pages of The Courage to Heal I found descriptions of and logical explanations for the self-destructive behaviors I engaged in for years.  The long stretch of questions I asked myself over and over again were answered. 
An abrupt but accurate summary would be the following:

I asked, “Why am I am doing this?”
The book answered, “Because you are a survivor of child sexual abuse.”
I asked, “Why can’t I stop doing this?”
The book answered, “Because you need to heal.”

The Courage to Heal at Barnes and Noble
Along with articulating the damaging behaviors, pointing to their origins, and identifying the need for healing, The Courage to Heal contained a powerful voice of empowerment.  Not the Pollyanna-cheerleader kind, but the kind created with prowess, insight, empathy, authenticity, and the power of truth.  
It has been over 20 years since I first held that book in my hands and I still go to it for encouragement.  I go to it to find myself, to see in black and white that I am not crazy or mentally ill…to see that my normal is actually normal for me.

Because of the impact the book has had on my life, this week’s Wednesday’s Woman is the authoring team of The Courage to Heal


Please visit their websites by clicking their names above and get to know these amazing ladies.  They are more than advocates and healers. . . they are women writers:

"Because of the suportive, warm and artistic care I receive in an Ellen Bass Workshop, I'd go anywhere in the world to write with her. Anyone can see by her poetry that she would attract loving and talented people. Beginners and writers of accomplishment blend into one dynamic group."- Anne Silverpoet, author of Bare Root
 "Laura's writing prompts are juicy and creative and through them, I am remembering my own life story."
--Bryana Garcia

Calling for submissions to Wednesday’s Woman  

Please consider sharing the story of a woman who has inspired you in your journey of childhood or motherhood, as a survivor or teacher...any woman that has moved you to become better at any point in your life.  You know who she is.  She may be a woman of fame, a leader known only within the circles in which she serves, or someone who is recognizable solely to you.  

The experience of contributing to Wednesday’s Woman is a powerful one, calling you to honor who has made a difference in your life and offering an opportunity for you to bring attention to a voice needing to be heard by never know who.  Connections are made without our input, without our judgment.  Our job is to spread the word, to raise awareness.

More info: Wednesday's Woman

photo credit: » Zitona « via photo pin cc
photo credit: Martin Gommel via photopin cc


  1. I read this book many years ago. After my therapist suggested it because she felt it would help me (I was NOT sexually abused as a child), however I had a few friends who were. I also struggled with an eating disorder. It is a wonderful book.
    My Aunt, who recently passed, was my rock, my mentor, my confidant, and more importantly my friend. There is not a day that goes by that I do not miss sitting in her living room and enjoying tea and conversation. I could tell her anything and she ALWAYS kept my secrets. I started my first blog because of her encouragement. And then started another, under a pen-name, after her death. I know she is always with me, inspiring me, cheering me on, and smiling at me through the eyes of my little girl.

  2. I really enjoyed reading this one. Finding a book that really speaks to you, helps you and is perfect for whatever you are living at the time is a true treasure. I think I may pick this one up as well, it sounds amazing. As always, I totally love and admire your view on the Wed. Woman and continued dedication to honor inspirational women. Tools for healing and positive, female role models - we need more of both in the world! Thank you for this Kim!

  3. This book is such a powerful healing tool. Immeasurably so, in my opinion and experience.

  4. I hadn't come across this one before, but have had the experience of a book, a quote, etc. coming into my world at just the right time. I will have a look at Courage to Heal, the title alone says so much. Thank you for having the courage to share so much!

  5. Holy smokes- have you talked with Angela Shelton about this book and the authors? What a tangled web we weave.
    Your writing is beautiful.
    Kerry at HouseTalkN

    1. TY! Angela is amazing. I am currently working through her book and planning on watching the docu very soon. Thank you for introducing her to me! Remember doing that? Many moons ago in a comment? I am so, so grateful.


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