November 23, 2005


A Good Morning To You, Survivor--And May You Thrive!

If you've done the recovery work to transform your abuse victim status to that of survivor, you may be ready to make the jump to thriving. You may, however, ask yourself, "what does it mean to thrive?" What does thriving look and feel like? On my website,, I've listed a poem of sorts about a day of thriving. (You can find the full story in the "Meditations" archives.) My very first blog entry talked about the first three lines of that "poem," which tell about getting a good, full night's sleep.

The next section talks about waking up and starting the day. "Upon awakening, I feel refreshed," means exactly what it says. Refreshed?! What a concept! What a miracle, to start a new day feeling refreshed from the previous night's sleep. If you're a survivor who's struggled with falling (and staying) asleep, you know what I'm talking about--how important this is. I used to sleep so poorly at night and then find it very difficult to drag myself out of the cozy, warm bed once the sun was up.

Before I had all my memories of the sexual abuse (much of which happened in my bed, at night, in the dark) I was baffled by my observation that any bed I attempted to sleep in transformed from a vehicle of torture in the dark, to a warm, toasty snuggle-spot in the daytime. There were many times over the years that I seriously considered getting a job somewhere on the graveyard shift so that I could sleep soundly during the day. What worked out so much better for me was doing the necessary trauma processing with a trauma expert. To find out how to locate a trauma processing expert for yourself, see the "Resources" section of my website.

The next line of A Day of Thriving speaks of being flooded with insights and optimism. Now, I'm not going to lie to you, this does not happen every morning. But, it happens often enough (now that I'm thriving) that I keep a pad and pen next to my bed so that I can record the great stuff that often bubbles up and into my awareness, right as the sun is coming up. And, speaking of the sun, now that I'm more of a morning person, I do enjoy a good sunrise quite often. Even if I'm jotting down a few notes in my morning journal, I take the time to look out my window to the east. I'm often rewarded with a gorgeous, crimson sky. It's a great way to start the day.

When I think of "starting" the day, I have to mention where I'm at now with coffee drinking. Back in my dissociated, sleep-disorder days, I would routinely consume six to eight cups of java a day. I don't think I'll ever completely eliminate caffeine from my diet, but I have cut down a great deal. Today, I enjoy just one morning mug of coffee. And, it's something I truly enjoy; not just some chemical I'm pumping into my veins in order to stay awake and alive. As the day progresses, I sometimes hit a slump. Now, instead of grabbing another cup of coffee or a cola, I do some stretches, eat something high in protein, do some deep breathing, or get out for a bit of fresh air. Try some of these techniques yourself and see if they perk up your day. Blessings to you, Marj

Copyright 2005 by Marj McCabe. All Rights Reserved.

November 17, 2005


World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse--Saturday!

I know I promised you more about "A Day of Thriving," but I wanted to make sure I mention an important event: "World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse." I think we all should do something to get in on this on Saturday (November 19, 2005). Here are two good sites that have on-line links about how anyone can still get involved. One site is listed on my website's resource page for advocacy and prevention--Yes I Can Break the Cycle. They're at Another site that's always good belongs to Unicef. To go directly to a page where you can "Say Yes" for children, go to: Other children's advocacy and child abuse prevention links are on my advocacy/prevention page, under resources, at Thanks for being aware and involved! I'll be back with more on daily thriving.

Copyright 2005 by Marj McCabe. All Rights Reserved.

November 14, 2005


From Surviving to Thriving

I launched my website ( a couple of months ago. I've now decided to do a blog. As you may know if you've visited my site, I'm in the process of writing a self-help book for sexual abuse survivors who want to thrive. I think a blog is a perfect fit for me. It's a place where I can post ideas that are not fully developed enough yet to go into my book. Also, a web-log is like a journal. Anyone who has been in recovery or therapy of any kind may realize how important keeping a journal is for healing.

What other reasons are there for me to do a blog? I think my most compelling reason is my strong desire to stop the silence in order to break the cycle of child sexual abuse. The statistics related to sexual abuse are staggering. The US Department of Health and Human Services estimates that one in three girls and one in six boys is sexually abused by the age of 18. This means that the odds are higher that your little girl will get sexually abused than that she will get breast cancer. I see a lot a pink ribbons out there for breast cancer awareness. I believe in this cause and think it is important. But, I have to ask--why can we talk about breast cancer and not sexual abuse? It's not because the problem isn't huge!

We must stop the silence to break the cycle. Child sexual abuse perpetuates in our silence, shame and discomfort.

Why else do I want to do a blog? I want to write about this stuff because I think it is time that we survivors decide we want and deserve to thrive!
Those who have endured sexual assault and abuse may start out feeling like victims. As we begin our healing journey, we learn that it took strength and courage for us to survive. We are, indeed, survivors. But being a survivor is not the most we can hope for.

When I asked myself what I want out of this life, I couldn't be honest and answer that I merely wanted to survive. There came a day when I decided I deserved and wanted to thrive. That's what my website, book and blog are for and about: Survivors who choose to thrive. On my personal path of recovery, I learned to thrive. I firmly believe that if I can learn to thrive, anyone can!

A while back, I asked myself these questions: What does thriving feel like? How do I know when I am thriving? What does a day of thriving look like? On my website, I posted a little poem of sorts called, "A Day of Thriving." You can find it in the archives of my "Meditations" page. I'll use this blog to elaborate on thriving vs. surviving.

I think one of the most important changes has been my new-found ability to fall asleep easily and sleep well through the night. This is big for me. For years, I had to have everything in the bedroom and the bed set up just right so that I could fall asleep. These precautionary measures were created by me over the years to prevent certain triggers that could catapult me into hideous flashbacks of my abuse. Another common challenge used to be waking up at the same time in the middle of the night. It got to the point where I had to make sure I could not see my alarm clock from the bed. I dreaded waking up to see those glowing LED numbers reading 2:59, 3:00 or 3:01 night after night.

Nightmares were also commonplace for years. Many terrifying dreams would end with me becoming conscious, only to be launched directly into a flashback. I think my husband is as happy as I am that I am no longer waking him up in the bed with my thrashing, screaming and beating on him!

The next line of my day-of-thriving "poem" talks about what a thriving morning is like. I'll elaborate on that in my next blog entry.

Copyright 2005 by Marj McCabe. All Rights Reserved.

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