If someone asks him, ‘What are these wounds on your body?’ he will answer, ‘The wounds I was given at the house of my friends.’ Zech 13 v 6

Monday, November 14, 2011

Time To Pop The Cork

We wouldn’t be having this celebration without Talis Abolins, my attorney, along with the help and support of Darrell Cockran, who came along side Talis to fight against this lawsuit. From the onset Talis has taken our case very seriously and has balanced the legal practicalities of the case with the emotional sensitivity of this issue. It is because of the hard work of Talis along with Darrell that we have this legal victory to celebrate tonight. I am extremely humbled and grateful that they believed enough in what I was trying to do with the blog to sacrifice their own time and help me. It was through a high school friendship with Debbie L. that made my connection with Talis possible.

My blog will stay AS-IS and I don’t have to pay one dime to the sexual predator of my child for his bogus claims.

Many prayed, many have supported me and my family practically and emotionally but I would like to take a few minutes to highlight a few individuals:

First, would be my husband, Eric, who supported my idea for the blog right away. He gets my heart in all of this and has backed me every step of the way. Thank you for seeing the importance in what I wanted to do even though it has cost our family in many ways. Thank you for allowing me to walk out my healing process in my own way and not try to fix me. Thank you for picking up the slack when I needed to “escape and refill myself” from everything. Thank you for being willing to see this to the end!

It is because of my Mom and Tom that I was able to hire an attorney to evaluate our case in the first place. They have been steadfast in their support of me personally and of every member of my family. Their generosity and thoughtfulness has been overwhelming at times. In a lot of ways we wouldn’t be here today without all the support they poured out on us.

Tom L.spent countless hours editing numerous posts for the blog in the beginning. Tom is an amazing writer and friend! Through his help I gradually became more confident in my writing abilities and he stopped editing (you probably can tell when.) His wife, Deb, my sister wife (haha) has walked much of this with me… I couldn’t have made it without her! Thank you for being such an amazingly gracious and supportive friend! I am not certifiably crazy because of you! Your family has loved on us in so many ways…thank you!

Gary and Erin D.were in this nightmare with us. They knew these people, which alone make their support and friendship unique. I talk about the Dew family on my blog. Next to our family, they lost the most for their support of our family and wanting to shine a light on the darkness. They were unwavering in their appeals to the elders of the church in asking them to seek and expose the truth about Patrick. They drew lines in the sand which cost them many dear friendships. Thank you for fighting the good fight with us.

Shana C.is my sista from another mista… my friendship grew deep and fast with Shana. In a time when I trusted no one, not even myself, I allowed her in. Not sure why… just did. She has been a precious friend. Shana was a friend in a time when I couldn’t be a friend in return. In a lot of ways Shana has played a big part in helping me learn to extend trust again. Thank you for that!

Cheryll C.has known me the longest out of my group of close friends. Cheryll has been very supportive and always knew when to send an encouragment my way.Her family has supported us both emotionally and practically in many ways. I couldn’t have held it together without her in my life. Thank you!

Kathy L. reached out to a stranger and impacted me forever. My times at her house were precious and very healing. Thank you for your spiritual sensitivity.

Aunt Valari has always been a safe place for me to fall apart. Thank you for being there everytime I have needed you.

I want to thank Anthony and Beth W. for hosting this celebration. Anthony, thank you for the amazing spirits you have made to raise my spirits. I want to thank Beth for taking an interest in Our Story and encouraging me to fight the good fight.

Kari W. was a key player in getting me to contact the media, which, ultimately lead to bringing more awareness to this subject matter and to securing co-counsel.

Sherie M.has been a cheerleader of my blog from the beginning. It was through her that the door was opened up for me to communicate with Darrell Cochran.

Debrah H. was someone from early on that lent her legal expertise and guided me through the legal process and encouraged me to stay strong in this fight against a predator. She didn’t even know me and she didn’t live in this area but because her brother, Dave, contacted her and shared our struggle, she stepped in to help. Thank you for all that you did!

Dave and Kathy H. and their girls have been very generous in practical ways. They know personally the individuals that I talk about in my blog, yet they have supported what I was trying to do 100%. Because I have always greatly respected both Dave and Kathy, their support in what I was trying to do with the blog gave me much strength. Thank you for all you’ve done and for always checking in on us.

Dee H. has been a very supportive friend. She went as far as consulting an attorney and offered to re-post my blog if it came to a time that I was forced to take it down. This was something that touched me deeply, thank you, Dee!

Bekah D.– Took on the Special Assault facility in Kitsap county and did a TOTAL remodel with the majority of the funds coming through a non-profit that her sister-in-law works with. The assault center was transformed from a rundown, depressing place, which compounded the traumatic experience a family had to cycle through, into an emotionally safe place to enter and start the healing process from sexual abuse. Bekah knew that was high on my list of changes I wanted to accomplish. I know Bekah has always supported my blog and what I have been trying to accomplish by writing it. Thank you!

Donna M. is Bekah D.’s sister-in-law that I referred to, who not only made a huge impact in the Kitsap community but tried to financially support our legal battle….unfortunately, we were not successful in finding a way to secure the funds. (This is an area I want to try and fill the gap in-in the future) None-the-less, the heart behind the offer touched me deeply and helped me to continue looking for an avenue to fund the legal battle. Thank you for your support and generosity.

There were many individuals that contributed to the legal fund or to our family personally, many who extended words of encouragement, and then there were the people that shared their own personal story of how abuse had touched their lives. All of these individuals helped focus me and gave me strength to persevere. All of you walked this out with me! Thank you!

You might be wondering what’s next… I plan to rest (emotionally speaking for awhile) and continue my healing process. In the future I plan to do some volunteering at the local assault center with the ultimate goal of getting some laws changed in regards to how victims are handled, their rights, not to mention changing how sexual predators are viewed and sentenced. I hope to see a time when victims unite and become one very loud voice to fight together against childhood sexual abuse. This is an epidemic that can be squashed with something as simple as awareness.

Awareness can stop the cycle of abuse.

* My speech from November 12, 2011 - Pop The Cork Victory Celebration.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Sweet Victory

Please join in my celebration by clicking on this song: We Are The Champions By Queen

Today, I had a sweet victory! The blog stays as is! The lawsuit was dismissed with prejudice! I am still soaking it all in. When the judge so calmly ruled, tears of relief started to fall down my face. This victory is for all the other "victims" out there that have wanted to speak up but have been unable to. We must be able to tell our stories, in particular when there is documented evidence to support the claims. I believe with all my heart, Awareness is the best prevention!