Once I dreamed I was a butterfly…

In early 2014 I met a woman who changed my life forever. Those of you who have read my book will know this woman as Pam. I dedicate this post to her.

On 26 June 2014 I had a nightmare…

I dreamt that I was on my push bike, riding through a pitch dark tunnel. I knew that the tunnel was a dangerous place to be, but I also knew that I had to make my way through it, the alternative was too scary to contemplate.

As I made my way through the tunnel, peddling as fast and as hard as I could, I was aware of unknown men grabbing at me and hurting me. I knew that they would rape me and worse if I let them pull me from my bike. They grabbed at the back of my trousers and burnt my back with something hot but I managed to get away from them.

I emerged from the tunnel and found myself at the beginning of a path that I could see led onto many other paths, in a town I did not know. Crowds had gathered to observe me as I exited the tunnel and I could hear them talking amongst themselves, commenting on the scars and bruises that were visible on my body.

I was not affected by these comments, I was concerned only with finding my way through the maze that lay before me. I was determined to do it, and with the help from a stranger who stepped forward from the, not unfriendly crowd, I did.

I made my way through the town and found myself standing in a doorway looking into a large room that was full of Buddhist Monks. Each monk was surrounded by a mosquito net that protected the space around them. They each had a bed upon which they were sat and I could see that they were meditating.

I watched them meditating and noticed that scattered around them, within their protective shelters, were hundreds of chrysalis. Suddenly, they began to split and beautiful butterfly’s climbed out to stretch out their wings.I stepped through the doorway to get a closer look.

I realised that it was the monks meditative power that had coaxed the butterfly’s out of hiding. I then noticed an empty bed in the corner of the room, covered in unhatched chrysalis. I knew that the bed was meant for me and that it was time for me to claim my own space and awaken all that was sleeping within me.

Looking back through my journal, I am reminded of a quote by the chinese philosopher, Zhuangzi…

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…Pam, I want you to know that because of your help, I now feel like Chuang Tzu.

Thank you for helping me spread my wings and fly.

Love,

Zoe

 

Fighter

Today I received a lovely email from a lady in Australia who has read my book. Her message moved me to tears and I am so grateful that she decided to reach out and let me know what reading my story has done for her. I was having a difficult day myself yesterday after having had a nightmare, and the email I received today lifted me up and reminded me that I am not alone.

The note I am going to share with you is for all of us fighters out there, because love is the answer…and, “we got this!”

A fighter is so much more than those moments in the ring. She is each and every moment of preparation, both physically and mentally, in body and in spirit.

It is in the moments of preparation where the true battle begins and the character of the fighter determined. Not in her moments of glory and enlightenment but in her moments of sadness, sacrifice and doubt.

That is where the heart of the fighter lives and breathes. That is why she fights and that is where love can conquer.

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Publication day

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It’s finally publication day and I have been able to see my book on the shelves for the very first time. As I stood with jelly like legs in WHSmith looking at my book, I could not help but think of myself as a 13 year old girl sat on the roof top of Denver House. Usually the memory is a sad one but today I was able to smile.

I pictured myself sitting next to my 13 year old self and handing her a copy of the book.

“Here you go, Zoe. We did it. We made our voice heard. Now lets get off this roof because we have a boxing match to train for…”

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On the eve of publication…

By this time tomorrow my book will be on the shelves in book shops waiting to be purchased. It has not been an easy process getting to this point but ultimately it has been a rewarding one. I have mixed emotions regarding the publication. I would not have chosen to live through any of the horrific abuse I have endured, but I am extremely happy that I have found the strength and the courage to do something positive with it.

My hope is that my story reaches other survivors out there who may need a little reminder that they are not alone. To you I want to say don’t ever give up hope. Incredible things can happen when we have faith and dare to believe in love.

I would like to thank Jane Smith and the team at Harper Collins for all of their hard work. Without them I wouldn’t be writing this today. I am forever grateful for this opportunity. It has been a life changing experience for me.

I would also like to thank the readers who have contacted me. I enjoy reading your comments and I appreciate the time you have taken to get in touch. I hope you continue to be inspired by my story.

Love,

Zoe

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Personal growth

This morning I took the dog for a walk through our local park. It was a beautiful morning and I could not help but notice how vibrant everything looked. Our local park is full of trees and as we strolled amongst them I felt like I could physically sense the life force flowing from them, even though many of them are not yet in leaf. Which got me thinking…

We have just as much right to life as the trees and the flowers, and like them, we have just as much right to stand tall and own our own personal space. Personal growth is a process, and like a tree that grows in spurts, it would be foolish of me to think that I could rush this process.

You can not rush personal growth any more than you could order a tree to leaf out and bloom.

With spring just around the corner I wish you all the best with your own personal growth and anything that is new in your life or preparing to blossom.

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Love

Like a firework love wants you to fly, it wants you to soar. Filling the sky with your light in all of your glory for all the world to see.

Love does not wish for you to be grounded. Out of sight. Contained.

Love is the spark that will light your fuse.

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Hunger

On the eve of Mother’s Day I would like to share with you a note I wrote with my own mother in mind.

 

From the moment I was cut from my mother I experienced hunger and thirst. From thatpexels-photo-66346.jpeg point on I have been driven each and every day towards satisfying these cravings.

Cravings for which I am eternally grateful for they serve to remind me of my spiritual appetite. I know that the food and water I consume will not satisfy me for long just as the truths I receive about myself and life will not.

I am in constant search of my next meal, constantly searching for my truth. Such is the road of enlightenment, gently leading me back to myself, my mother, the earth.