Wednesday, September 15, 2010

My Heart Is Full

“Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising which tempt you to believe that your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires courage.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

As I've said before, Emerson's words have always inspired me, as is evidenced by the name of this blog. The above quote, in particular, has given me strength during my uncertain journey. It has boosted me up during my moments of doubt and discouragement.

But there has been something else, that I didn't expect, that has warmed my heart and given me a shot of courage when I needed it...and that something is all of you. Your comments, emails, facebook links, and blog posts about me have humbled me. I knew I'd have my critics and would have to deal with some anger and resentment in my family. I knew this blog would change my relationship with a lot of people in my life and would alter the status quo. I knew all of that going into this, but I really hadn't expected all the encouragement and support that I've been given by all of you.

My dear childhood friend, Heather, posted about this blog and her sense of compassion warmed my heart and I felt loved. Her little sister, Susie, has been posting facebook links to this blog and has corresponded with me, giving me some really valuable information to help me with this process and I felt loved again. Then one of my long-time blogging friends, Crash, has linked me and written about me in blog posts and has reached out. Man, do I ever feel loved!

And I am overwhelmed at all of the comments you all leave for me on my posts. They bring me strength and hope. I can feel the love and compassion and outrage in each comment. You all will never know how much that does for me. You urge me on in my battle.

During the coming days, weeks, months, and maybe even years I will be facing police officers, lawyers, church officials, and family and a lot of it will be unpleasant. The task before me is almost overwhelming in its size and scope and the outcomes are so uncertain. In the last couple of days, I took some first legal steps (I don't want to get into specifics just yet). To take my first little step into this deep, dark woods, full of unknown beasts and dangers has been an almost insurmountable hurdle. I suffer from an anxiety disorder, due to my childhood trauma, and it often stops me dead in my tracks when doing things normal people would consider rather mundane. So, to do something that required me to demand to be heard, to demand justice and to be courageous was so far out of my comfort zone that I felt paralyzed by the mere thought. But then, a couple of days ago, I felt something tell me to do it now! Take that step now! I stopped what I was doing. I prayed for strength and I prayed for a sense of peace to descend upon me and I did it. Normally, my anxiety would start my heart pounding, my tongue to bind, my palms to sweat, my body to shake, but none of that happened. I felt completely at ease. And when I was done taking my first legal step, my chest filled with total peace and I knew I had done the right thing. I suddenly felt the strength to take on the entire world, if need be.

A couple of months ago, I felt inspired to start this blog. I felt such a spiritual certainty that I was to start this blog to empower myself, to spread awareness of this issue, and to help other victims know that they aren't alone. I didn't know then that I would be boosted up by so many strangers and friends alike. I didn't know that so many people would take the time to show me that they care with their comments and more. I believe that Heavenly Father knew that I needed all of you to help me in these tender early days of my journey. Thank you for all of your comments, your encouragement, and your love!

Love to you all!


  1. I once heard a statement by a church leader. It was, in effect, that Satan can't counterfeit PEACE. He's got some pretty good fakes for happiness (eg: amusement, diversion, fun) which often distract people. But peace is the one feeling he has no counterfeit for. When we feel peace inside, that is the spirit. Can only be the spirit. It's how we can know with certainty that we are in alignment with where God wants us to be on a matter.

    I'm so happy for you sweet Alyson! ♥

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  3. I know I technically fall into the stranger category, but I also consider you a friend.
    You inspire so much in every post on both of your blogs. You write beautifully and are such an example of strength.
    I am glad you are feeling supported in your journey, just know that you are, in turn, supporting so many people around you.

  4. Thank you, Blue and Erin! You two have been supporting me even before I started this blog. I love you guys for it!

  5. it's amazing how much Love there is in the world, isn't it? It's the only thing that really matters in this life. Love is the most powerful force in the universe. Love heals all wounds... eventually.

    I'm so glad you have felt lifted up. I love reading your heart felt posts.

  6. I'm glad that in some way you are able to draw strength from our comments. I can't imagine what you are going through, but I'm glad you are strong enough to do it. His past, current and future victims are cheering you on as well... (They just don't know it yet!) Keep up the good work!

  7. The sometimes controversial and always witty "dooce" credits her followers for saving her life when she started posting about her post partum depression and the supporters came out in droves. It's a powerful tool, this internet. I'm thrilled that you're "feeling the love"!

  8. I am Heather's and Susie's aunt and have been following your blog as well. My sister's words have always fortified me--things WILL get better. Maybe not right away, but they will get better. Those words have sustained me through some tough times. I believe that they are true. There are many hands on your shoulder, Alyson!

  9. Crystal - I agree! Love is the most powerful force. And I find it amazing that so many will take the time to encourage those they see stand in need of encouragement. Thank you for all the wonderful comments you've left me!

    Sara - Thank you! I appreciate you leaving your comments. I mean it when I say that you guys just have no idea how much they help.

    Vern - I can totally understand why Dooce would say that. Kindness, understanding, and validation do so much in helping to recover.

    Jenny - Thank you for following my blog! And thank you for your words of comfort. You have an awesome family, by the way! :)

  10. Isn't it amazing how people rally around each other in blog-land? So happy that you're finding a support system through all this. And... girl, I'm really proud of you. As a victim of junk, it really is inspiring to see another sister rise from the ashes. ♥♥♥

  11. sariqd - Thank you! I hope you feel healing in whatever you have endured too. You have been so sweet in your comments!

  12. I love that this big world can be so small at times. Heather and Susie's dad was my bishop in Clovis when I was a girl :)

    The Lord will always give His children strength to do the right thing if He is asked. Well done, Alyson! As you embark on this new journey and find yourself in troubled waters, I pray that you are always able to find your lighthouse.


  13. I admire your strength. It would be much easier just to live out your life knowing you made it through and don't have to worry about the monster anymore. But you obviously know that there are others that need protected from that "man"(I hate to use that word describing him) and that justice needs to be served. I hope you continue to feel the peace you soooo deserve. We all know doing what is right is not always popular and you will make enemies but we all need to "stand for something" and I think you do. And it is good and right and true what you are standing for. Continue to stay strong and God bless you for all you are doing!

  14. You are a courageous and strong woman and a true inspiration. I can't even begin to imagine the horror you had to endure at the hands of that monster, yet you so selflessly put yourself out here in the hopes that you can help others while seeking the justice that is most certainly due you. You are amazing! God Bless You, Alyson, for being a shining example of grace and strength to all of us! xo

  15. That was beautiful. The whole peace thing . . . isn't is amazing. You know for sure you are on the right path.

    I wrote a whole bunch more to you in that post, but then I deleted it all. It felt too heavy handed for a dummy. I think I will try to rewrite it soon.


  16. You are so strong now and have already conquered so much! In my opinion, you have already traversed the worst of the deep dark woods. It's time now to show your strength. There will always be people who fear the rocking of the boat. But sometimes you have to for the sake of justice, for yourself, for the other young people who are in danger (because every time someone leaves their child with this man, they are making it possible for there to be more victims)
    You didnt have a voice as a little girl, but you sure have one now! Dont be afraid to use it!

  17. This warms my heart! I'm so happy you've gotten all of the support and love you deserve with this. I think it's really brave of you to do what you're doing and to have started this blog in the first place.
    I miss you and our chats and get-togethers so much!

  18. I know your post is about thanking everyone for their support, but as I read the verse by Emerson I was strengthened in my own position and goals, and it was a post that lifted me. You are supported, but you are also very supporting of anyone who has been through this kind of thing, and those that love them. You are amazing, and while there are those who would somehow try to destroy that (including depraved pedophiles) you are not allowing it, and you are instead shining brighter than ever in your efforts! Darkness can not coexist with light. Keep being that North Star, so that others can find their way!

  19. You know I love you!!! And am right here behind you all the way.

  20. You are an amazing woman! My prayers are with you!!

  21. How I missed this second blog of yours until now is beyond me, but I'm so glad I finally found it.

    I'm so grateful for that peace you received--what a gift.

    Since I'm convinced that no pedophile has just one victim, I'm glad you're taking legal steps against your abuser. No matter what repentance he does, he's still a danger to those around him. Someone needs to protect other children.

    I'm STUNNED at that woman who even LET her children sleep at his house, regardless of what she wore (previous post). I cannot fathom what mother in her right mind would ever consider such a thing. It's our job to PROTECT, and that means even people who are may or may not have changed, people who may or may not have truly repented. An addict is always an addict.

    As a friend said to me some time ago, once a person becomes an addict, it's like a cucumber that's now a pickle. You can't un-pickle a pickle. It'll always be a pickle. In the case she referred to, it was with Rx drugs. A family member of an addict always locked them up when he was around, even though he'd been clean for some time.

    Her reasoning: Even though I love him, he's still a pickle. Therefore, it would be unwise to leave out things he's addicted to.

    As for victimizing your abuser's children--if he has any daughters, I'm betting they're already victims, and THIS will be a bit of justice for them, too.

    Way to step forward in not only reclaiming your own justice but in protecting others.

  22. So, I just found this and haven't read word one yet and will have to come back later today b/c I want to start at the beginning and don't have time just now --but I feel bad that I didn't know and I could have been reading (or not b/c life has been uber hectic). Anyway, I'm here now and I'll be back.

  23. Alyson, so sorry to hear all that you have held in your heart for so many years. I too am a victim of abuse and my daughter is a victim of abuse from a neighbor. I no longer feel a victim, however. When I first came out in the open with my abuse, I was very taken back with how loved ones around me reacted and handled it. Looking back, tho, I understand that we all handle the abuse in different ways--and those actions/reactions usually stemmed from fear. Sexual abuse is so rampant and I am so grateful for the steps the Church has taken in the most recent years to be more proactive in handling this abuse, training clergy, and in prevention. Thank YOU for stepping up to take legal steps against your abuser. The cycle of abuse has to stop. NOW! Not later. It's not to be taken lightly. This abuse crippled me for years in so many ways. Thank you again for standing up, facing your fears, and doing that which you feel is to be true and correct.

  24. Even for a full heart like yours there is always a very tiny place there, to hold two simple strong.

    I know, now your heart is over capacity, but believe me, hold on that words.