This post is sponsored by REI. All thoughts and opinions are our own.
Sometimes it’s hard to open up and be honest with ourselves about our childhood and how it shapes our perceptions. A big shout-out to Annie today for her courage to tell us what it was like to grow up in an abusive home. Thank you for sharing this, Annie.
Photo Courtesy Annie Copeland
Growing up in a home with an abusive father made me mature faster than most.
It’s another odd aspect of nature, the rate at which things grow.
There was physical abuse, there was mental abuse and there was emotional abuse in my childhood home.
I was told I was horrible, awful things no person should ever hear.
I bore witness to things that no one should ever see, especially an impressionable child.
I raged against what I knew to be wrong when no one else would or could.
I stood up against it and was the voice of sanity.
I was the youngest of our small family. I drew a line in the sand in those younger years, the depth of which I wouldn’t understand for years to come.
Why am I telling you this?
Because those horrible, awful things I saw could either build me up or tear me down.
Because all those horrid things I was told growing up….are only true if I chose to believe them.
You never have to believe what anyone tells you about yourself.
My nature, at that time in my life, was to rail against the unjust way in which my family or I was treated.
Strong, stubborn, unbreakable, and unbending I was in my youth.
Even as the mightiest storm raged driven by strengths I knew nothing of,
I stood, not just weathering the storm but cursing and shaking my fist at it.
I am a force of nature.
As years passed my nature began to change, no longer was I the spry youngster who balled her fist up at the first sign of a challenge.
I can still get fired up with the best of them but I no longer feel the need to prove myself to others or worry about their perception of me.
I became somewhat indifferent as nature is.
Nature can be cruel and unforgiving or it can be gentle and fruitful, the same goes for women (this woman types with a smirk on her face).
The truth is this.
Nature is indifferent to you, to your plight or struggle, it is what it is whether you are there to bear witness or not.
Its speed, its path, needs no justification and at times offers little explanation or reasoning.
I’m not going to sit here and tell you that’s how you should be because it’s not for me to decide, that’s up to you and your situation.
I personally never feel freer than when I’m indifferent to perception.
When I haven’t a care for how someone views me, if they view me at all or what light they view me in, I can truly be myself.
Indifference to the opinion of others is true freedom.
I AM a force of nature.
Life isn’t always easy to live but learning what “force of nature” you need to be and when you need to be it, can make the world of difference.
It isn’t cut and dry, be this way and not that.
It’s about what works best for you.
If your life demands a full on tornadic storm then that’s what you give it, if it demands too damn much you just might want to be indifferent to that aspect.
If you decide to weather the storm just remember to dance in the rain.
If you rail against it be sure your roots are firmly planted but let your branches sway.
A force of nature is something to be reckoned with and so are you, no matter what force of nature you choose to be.