When I first saw #metoo on social media, it immediately triggered in my mind, an episode from my childhood that caused a lot of grief for me as an adolescent. I know that its effects still have a hold on me today.
I also know that many women would have responded to #metoo the same way, with painful flashbacks.
After all, how many women had not been sexually harassed in some big or small ways in their lives, at least once?
I meditated on how, as a life coach and a story SMASHer for women, would I want to respond to #metoo. The easiest way would be to share that episode that I have carried with me for so many years.
That thought jammed my heart into my throat. Woah, that is a big move Joy. Very few people know about that incident.
Admittedly it took a while but I decided yes, that is the most authentic way to approach this subject, from my personal experience. I am grateful to #metoo, because it also reminded me that it was time to heal myself of that emotional scar.
Since it is from a very long time ago, there is nothing I can do now to catch the culprit. It would be impossible to do so. But what I CAN do is heal myself from the wounds it has created.
So today, I have done an Aroma Freedom Technique (AFT) session for myself, revolving around the topic of standing up for myself against sexual harassment.
Something that all women can do, heal ourselves, let go of the past hurts and set an intention to stand up for ourselves moving forward.
Coming back to this traumatic incident. It happened when I was about twelve years old. I was instructed by my parents to get dinner for everyone. So I promptly head off to the coffee-shop to order our takeaways.
Upon reaching my block, I pressed the lift button and waited. At this moment, a Chinese man in his late thirties appeared, strolling by with his bicycle.
I had been trained by my mother to keep a lookout for strangers, especially men. I was instructed to avoid taking lifts with men I don’t know. So yes you can imagine, I perked up, waiting to see if he is passing by or if he is also waiting for the lift.
To my relief, he walked right past me. But not before looking at me intently. My lift came and I hurried in, glad to be alone.
But it was not the case.
Just when the lift door was about to close, it started to move in the opposite direction. I was taken aback. Confusion and fear set in when I saw that it was the same man with the bicycle.
I was standing at the corner farthest from the lift door, and he parked his bicycle diagonally right in the middle of the lift, before he entered. I was completely trapped in a corner by his bicycle that took up the entire lift space.
I was too overwhelmed to react and he pressed the lift door closed. He looked intently at me. Again. I was drenched with a sense of dread. I felt
something very bad was about to happen.
He pressed and moved his hand across my chest, his eyes never once leaving mine. I froze. My hands were occupied with the takeaways, and I had no way to run. I felt a silent scream from within.
I wanted to die.
His floor arrived and he quickly exited. The lift door closed. My legs buckled and I collapsed onto the floor. I was a mess. My floor came but I did not exit. I sat inside the lift, completely blanked out.
At some point, I managed to pick myself up and went home. I feigned illness when I got home, and spend the whole night lying in my bed, tortured by the images from the lift and the molester.
I told no one.
For weeks, I was tormented by the episode. I felt dirty. I felt unworthy. I was ashamed. I was not close to my parents, and I was terrified of telling them.
I would be blamed for not following their instructions. I was the wrong one. I was the bad one. I must be a terrible person, that is why this is happening to me.
I was distraught and destroyed. Still, I did not tell a single soul.
I grew up carrying that unworthiness into my life, like a silent cancer.
Today, as a woman in her thirties, I am telling you, #metoo, this is my story.
What is yours?
Today I decided to put my brave on, and do an AFT session on myself revolving around sexual harassment. I must confess that I went into the session, with a lot of apprehension.
I am not looking forward to experiencing all that pain and horror again. Nevertheless, I went ahead.
This and other hurtful memories and feelings rose up. There is a common thread of unworthiness in the memories and feelings. I wept. I felt nauseous. The waves of pain needed no further encouragement.
I wanted to die.
I pressed on.
Resentment and shame turned into grief. Then my feelings took a turn. I started to feel a sense of determination. I was even feeling upbeat by the last AFT round, which surprised me.
By the time I was done with my power pose, I was invigorated. I felt cleansed and a sense of release.
What took me so long to do this?
- What sexual harassment episode(s) is/are still haunting you?
- What can you do about it?
- How can you bring the culprit to justice?
- Healing yourself is your own responsibility, what can you do to start the process?
- What victim story have you been telling yourself &/ others?
- What ‘poor me’ behaviour have you been acting out in the world?
- Moving forward, how would you want to be if it ever happens again?
Do something, do anything.
P.S. Do note that Young Living oils have been recommended by Dr Perkus for the AFT process.
P.P.S. ~ Free coaching series for women at Shakti on Fire Podcast! 🙂
With all my Shakti love,
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She traveled a long distance to a special place, and even braved a fire walk–something difficult to imagine. She tells her story in an absorbing way. This book is charming.’
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