The Blog Farm

The Blog Farm

Monday, September 1, 2014

JUDGING ME

MY 5 STAR REVIEW
The Honourable Mary Elizabeth Bullock, a crusader for those with disabilities, fighting for their dignity, for her own dignity. This is a memoir of one courageous, “no holds barred” woman, who fought for her life as a little girl, under the clutches of a wicked monster, and is still to this day fighting for her life.

How at 6 years of age, her father tied her to a palm tree, in a snake infested swamp, why? Well that you will have to read to find out. Rising above her fate, never giving up, Mary Elizabeth embraced life, her life and all that happened. Mary released the heaviness she felt within herself, helping her to move forward, not to be defeated in any way, no matter what was thrown at her.
God for a while was left out of the equation of her life, at a time when her very being seemed so challenged ~ an incomprehensible feeling flooded her mind with that one question; Why? Why me? Mary shut her mind too God ~ Mary Elizabeth always thought God was just too busy for her and thought He had given up on her. But that was farthest from the truth ~ He never gave up on her, always there talking to her ~ reaching out to her in her darkest times, but she didn't hear Him at that moment in her life.
Upon waking one morning Mary’s heart felt lighter than it ever had. Reality did its check. Mary Elizabeth accepted what was put in front of her ~ Multiple Sclerosis ~ blindness ~ Systemic Lupus ~ cancer ~ and so much more ~ Whatever her fate ~ she now accepted it.

Mary Elizabeth knew where her vision really lived ~ not within one’s sight ~ but within one’s mind ~ and that was okay. She did not carry a Fixed Mindset ~ but a Mindset of Growth ~ to move forward in her quest to achieve what was now and beyond her very reach.
Mary Elizabeth looked for all the attributes of her father in the men she chose ~ tall dark extremely handsome ~ like out of a Danielle Steele novel ~ only to find they were the “devil in disguise” ~ she was drawn to them, as if she believed she needed to be punished for the sins of her father.
Mary Elizabeth had strength of character ~ determination to work through the demons of her past ~ courage saved her from staying stuck. She had the courage to move forward one step at a time ~ taking those “baby steps” we always tell each other.

Determined to thrive ~ Mary Elizabeth did just that ~ by hard work ~ by grabbing on to a strong will, that keeps you from failing or drowning in the deep abyss called ~ life.
Fighting for the injustice of others, never wallowing in what was, determined to move forward, proving she could do something that would give credit to all those who suffered, to support them, show them, they too could thrive and win against the horrific life they endured. Letting them know that they are not alone, she is right there beside them, guiding each survivor along the way.

There are many curves in our road towards healing. At times giving up is so much easier. Mary Elizabeth chose to take those bumps and curves and straighten them out by being positive, knowing her future was mapped out for her. God had a plan even through all the turmoil she faced, the next chapter of her life would be fulfilling ~ rewarding ~ but still hard ~ removing choices in her life, in her past, to be who she now is, strong, a fighter, a real warrior for humanity ~ for the disabilities of others, for herself, being her own person, not afraid to speak openly about anything. If something wasn't right, Mary Elizabeth would say just how it should be, her words sometimes biting, but got the point across. She once told me “I need you to put tape over my mouth, as I tend to say too much.” But no, that would not be Mary Elizabeth, that would not be her true self ~ no one was ever going to use her, take away her true self ~ that was done to her too many times ~ now she is her own unique self. A warrior for justice ~ a fighter of the monsters who hurt women ~ fiercely she went after them ~ with a vengeance!!
Now she fights the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission), fighting the corruption ~ to this very day Mary is in a combat for herself where the government thinks that they are winning, hoping she will give up, but no, Mary Elizabeth will NEVER give up and no doubt knowing her she WILL win.

Mary Elizabeth says “Where are the real heroes of today? The government has changed their power from enforcing civil rights to Americans and turned it into a “circus” into abuse, illegal government practices and corruption. This changed her life forever. Determination and the will to keep going is what has kept Mary moving onward, from that little girl who once was told “ you will be nothing,” to a powerful force to be reckoned with. She rose above and like a “show and tell story” Mary was indeed someone, not a “nothing.” She tells her story like it is, true, harsh, with reality and with strength of character. This is one memoir that is a harsh ~ brutal of the life of an abused little girl that blossomed to become one of the most respected federal civil rights judges in the country.

A memoir with inspiration for others, helping them on their journey where their paths can become so narrow they don’t think the end will ever be in sight. A memoir that lets you see that you can move forward ~ you can be yourself. The horrors of your life happened, but Mary Elizabeth shares so much wisdom, that helps you rise up and say ~ “Yes, I can become a better person; ~ I can move on and not look back.”
Judging Me ~ a must read for all survivors who question what and who they are ~ where they may go in life ~ a book that gives you so much capabilities ~ a book true to yourself ~
Mary Elizabeth asked me not too long ago while we were talking on the phone, “Mary, have you ever written a poem called Grace?” I answered back no, but I can.” Mary Elizabeth, here is your poem, I hope you enjoy it. (Mary hasn't seen this poem yet). God Bless you my dear friend, I love you, and respect you.
~ Mary E. Graziano ©
Revised September 1, 2014

GRACE

Grace so beautiful, self loving, contentment within oneself,
loving who we are, to be the best that we can, enriching our lives,
God’s work of art.

Grace is love, kindness, a virtue given to us by Creator Himself,
His loving gift, unconditional in every way.
Always there, never ending.

Grace is faith, both entwined; one will never work without the other.
Challenges that we meet, so hard to attain, but gives you the courage
To go on, to have faith.

Grace is that special gift given by God Himself, a spiritual freedom
that comes to us when we acknowledge the power it has,
to feel love in our heart.

Grace is courage when you otherwise feel there is no use to go on,
But the love, the drive of others wills you to continue,
to never give up.

Grace is peace, in knowing love, we know peace, the feeling of love
all around us, in nature, in the love we feel for ourselves,
For others.
GRACE ~ A BEAUTIFUL WORD that Mary Elizabeth loves.
Written by Mary Graziano ©
JUDGING ME


WHY? WHY? WHY? JUST WHY?

Why? Why? Why? Just Why?
A question so haunting, we often ask
you stole our lives, our existence,
our tears were hid behind a mask.

We would cry inside, silent tears
too afraid to make a sound,
you abused, hurt, threatened us
our thoughts, so scrambled, so tightly bound.

The whys will never be answered
we must move on and leave it behind
WE are much stronger, we are survivors
even when the whys still enter our minds.

You see, you crushed our spirits
stole our inner child so small,
children were we, we didn’t understand
you were the adult, it was your call.

We as adult survivors, no longer live
in your shadows anymore,
we now have a voice and use it
to expose you and all your gore.

My whys from the past, never to be answered
I understand, accept it now,
writing, talking about it
no longer silent, to this I do vow!!

Poetry by Mary Graziano ©
January 16, 2013
Revised September 1, 2014

Awesome watercolour painting
Title WHY? WHY? WHY? JUST WHY!
By my wonderful friend
Michal Madison
copyrighted

Wednesday, August 27, 2014




























IRIS INVITATION
The beauty of the Iris, so elegant,
ruffled blooms that dance in the
warm summer breeze, sending a request
for you to come close, see how intricate
each petal is, to marvel at its splendour.

Hues of purple, lavish the blooms
with abundance, petals sleeping,
soon unwrap themselves when feeling the
rays of the morning sun, spreading upward
standing tall with the other Irises.

Embracing all the warmth, feeling strong, 
its beauty again sends out an invitation 
as you become mesmerized by such
elegance, one flower can present,
by the wondrous tones nature has painted.

Sword like leaves, waving you closer
proudly showing off its green foliage,
enhancing the beauty of the dancing Iris.
Light flowing through intensifies each leaf,
the strong tubular stem proudly displaying the Iris.

So many magical shades, striking, sharing
a rainbow of colours, so beautiful, 
leaving you in awe, having you return
once again when you see the Iris dancing.
Your invitation to come back into their world.

Poetry by Mary Graziano ©
Watercolour painting “IRIS INVITATION”
by Lynn C. Tolson ©

SUNFLOWER SUNRISE

SUNFLOWER SUNRISE

The sunflower, a flower of beauty
raising its head up towards the rising sun.
Feeling warmth as it proudly displays petals
with vibrant hues of yellow, imitating the sun.

Each petal looking like rays of sunshine,
to brighten your day, helping to evoke feelings
of warmth inside, of joy, inspiration,
leaving you with a feeling of hope.

Standing tall, the sunflower ~ proud, creating a place for itself,
not worrying about what others think.
Its symbol being FAITH ~ faith in itself, giving
it the strength to hold its head up high.

Be like the sunflower, never wane, become that individual
with aspirations, fulfilling every dream,
leaving yesterday behind, building your tomorrows,
becoming proud ~ never let the past influence or degrade.

Reach for the light; take hold of all positives,
discard any negatives, letting the shadows of the sun
sweep away your past, and all that hurts.
Stay strong ~ be strong ~ be like the “Sunflower Sunrise.”

Poetry by Mary Graziano ©
Revised, August24, 2014
Watercolour painting and title
“SUNFLOWER SUNRISE” by
Michal Madison ©
www.michalmadisonart.com
"Hope is like the sun, which,
as we journey toward it,
casts the shadow of
our burdens behind us."
Samuel Smiles (Scottish author 1812-1904)

"Sunflower Sunrise"
watercolor by Michal Madison
www.MichalMadisonArt.net/galleries.html

Thursday, July 17, 2014


     Loving ourselves is something that we find hard to do.  So often we are only thinking of the negative things about ourselves.  What about the positives?  If you stop and think for on minute of one positive, one thing you have done, then you can start doing this every day.  Push aside the negative thinking.  Be happy in who you are.  We are not perfect no-one is, and if anyone tells you that they are, then they are only fooling themselves.  Your thoughts are what keeps you either feeling good about yourself or upset, angry with yourself.  How many times do we tell ourselves we are not worthy, are stupid etc.  Really start thinking about what you say to you, then try and turn it around.

     Life throws curves at us all the time.  Life is not easy, but we have to make the best of it.  We don't live in a perfect world, these curves along the way can help you grow, help you become a better YOU.  Let go of the "what ifs" we all do it, but does it get us anywhere?  Thinking or dreaming of a better life, won't get you there, you have to have to do it, act on it.  How else are you going to achieve it.

     By loving yourself, others will become to love you.  Loving yourself, helps you to love others because if you don't know how to love, how can you love another person?  We all make mistakes, that's how we learn, but when we put ourselves down for what we did wrong, we are only hurting ourselves.  Others can walk away from us when they hear our negativity, but we can never walk away.  We are it., we live with ourselves, we need to love who you are inside, in your soul, reach deep, tell yourself how awesome you really are.  I know how hard this is to do, I find it hard to love myself.

     Being a survivor of child abuse, it is often ingrained in us that we are not worthy, we are nothing.  We believe it, and live it everyday.  But it is not true.  I realize now that I'm not stupid, I can achieve anything I set my mind to.  Living in fear during my childhood and teen years takes your self-esteem down to the very bottom of that abyss, leaves you stranded in the negative thoughts.  I wondered what I ever did wrong, why I was being punished.  I believed all the things said to me, but you know, it wasn't true.  We were fed lies, we were abused, and felt we deserved it.  The abuser was the one that took away our inner self.  Now we need to find it again, and it all comes down to learning to love ourselves.

     That little child in each of us suffered tremendously, locked her/himself up tightly, to keep safe, but didn't feel love for themselves from others.  That continued on as we grew.  I never saw the potential inside myself to be who I wanted to be.  To succeed in my dreams.  I always wanted to be a nurse, but was told that I wasn't smart enough.  I couldn't go on to University or collage, so I struggled though high school, got my diploma and went out and found a job.  Nursing was pushed out of my mind.  Today, I know I could have done it, but it took all these years to really realize that I shouldn't have listened, I should have at least tried, and if I didn't succeed, then that was my decision to at least try.  Now I regret it so much.


     To learn to really love ourselves, we need to reach our inner child, it all starts there.  We need to be gentle with her/him, and by doing that we are being gentle with ourselves.  Take the time to sit when all is quiet, talk to your inner child, say loving things to them.  Your inner child hasn't heard kind words, praise, those are words that are not in their vocabulary.  But by doing that we are acknowledging our own person, our adult self.  You will start to realize that being kind to your own self, will start to make you feel a warmth inside.  Compassion for others is so easy for us to show, but to show that same compassion for ourselves, is foreign to us.

     Loving ourselves is hard work, loving that inner child is hard to do also.  Many may not even believe that our inner child exists, but they are there, just hidden away until someone comes and sets them free.  Frightened by the past, they are insecure, unloved and feel abandoned.  And as our adult selves we feel that also.  We may push it away and think everything is fine, and on the outside to others, it may seem fine, but if you really thing about it, is it?  To most others, I seem perfectly fine, happy, content with  myself, laughing, but inside my gut feelings are still hidden away.  For the most part I have opened up and let most of those feelings out, but I still hold many inside.  Why? because I think I still am not loving enough of me.  Sometimes I don't care about my feelings, I don't care enough to do something about it.  But I need to care about me first, and we all need to.  Today, I try and be more positive with myself, sometimes I fail at it, but I am trying and that is all that matters.  My inner child, at most feels happier today than she ever has.  She is no longer hidden, no longer afraid to venture outside her "box" and can smile, laugh, but also has those dark days, where she wants to stay hidden.  I have and we all have those days, but its just a day, because tomorrow comes along, and can change that mindset, to a positive one.  Each day will never be the same as the day before.  We as adults need to stop letting others tell making our decisions for us, it's time for us to make our own decisions, our own goals.  It's our choice not theirs.  You decide what you want in life, and you decide if you want to love yourself or keep on hating yourself ~ One thing I know is that we are all worth it, we are uniquely our own person, so accept it ~

     Love who you are....Give yourself a hug, tell yourself you matter, first, second and third..