Lived to Tell is now available as an ebook. How it came to be is extraordinary, as is the story behind it. I sought refuge in writing, from the time I was a child. When I was eleven, I wrote a story about being thrown through the air, a bad man behind the plunge. I would have nightmares about being pushed off ledges and balconies, and resolved that I simply must avoid both. On school excursions, I refused to walk on the footbridge on The Harbor Bridge. The same applied to Darling Harbour. I was cautious to the extreme, and yet I still fell. I was put in harm’s way at fourteen years of age. I had been drugged, and suffered life-threatening complications as a result. By fourteen, I was tired. I had seen too much, and lost a litany of loved ones, both young and old. I reached out for help, and it was not forthcoming. I couldn’t figure out why nobody wanted to help a kid who was willing to save herself. I watched a documentary on hummingbird’s, and was impressed by their spirit. Tiny creatures flitting from one nectar feast to another, too small and flighty to be caught by predators. That is why this blog is called HummingBird Redemption.
I was badly beaten, and ran away from home. I ran to my best friend’s house. Her parents took me to the authorities, who opened a file, and assured me the nightmare was close to ending. My parents saw a lawyer, and he suggested handing me over to a private clinic. They would be my guardians and thus they could demand the file be closed. Perfect solution! I was admitted to this $500 a day facility, the youngest in there. I wondered what the heck I was there for. When you put a child into a place with hundreds of adults, disaster is bound to occur. Inevitable. A drug dealer took a shine to me, though it was not reciprocated. I was degraded, threatened and pinned like a butterfly in a museum. Months passed, and I ran away, and was brought back. I turned fifteen. When all my efforts to survive seemed futile, I tried to take my life with over ninety pills. I was in ICU, teetering on the precipice of life and death. I survived. I did get away from this creature, though it took being thrown off a building. My spine was smashed, though astonishingly, my will was intact. I tell you this from my heart; whatever this world and some of its inhabitants do to you, if you hold onto yourself, and believe in your worth, you will survive too. It helps being stubborn and rebellious. I was thrown out of a strict and odd cult-like Christian School at fourteen, because I questioned whether God did in fact say what they said he did. I refused to believe he did.
The book is named Lived to Tell after this Madonna song. It gave me hope and strength at the time, still does.
For twenty years, I have lived in the shadows, my name changed. I have had death threats. Menacing people have been on the periphery, letting me know they are still there. Having my book published has made me brave, and helped me reclaim all the parts of my psyche that were blown to the four wind’s. It is my story of how I survived, written as I was enduring it. I am proud of it, and the gifts it has given me are immeasurable. If you read my book, please think of yourself as being the heroine or hero. You are a survivor too! xxx