Archive for broken spirit

Bodacious to Bullied and Back Again

Okay, so maybe I’m dating myself, like I have anything to hide, but the word “bodacious” still rocks in my world. Remember the 80s? Valley girls, righteous dudes and bodacious babes? I finally figured out what it takes to be a bodacious babe and it’s not what I though!

Bold + Audacious = Bodacious

bold

  1. not hesitating or fearful in the face of actual or possible danger or rebuff; courageous and daring
  2. not hesitating to break the rules of propriety; forward; impudent
  3. necessitating courage and daring; challenging
  4. beyond the usual limits of conventional thought or action; imaginative
  5. striking or conspicuous to the eye; flashy; showy

au.da.cious

  1. extremely bold or daring; recklessly brave; fearless
  2. extremely original; without restriction to prior ideas; highly inventive
  3. recklessly bold in defiance of convention, propriety, law, or the like
  4. lively; unrestrained; uninhibited

Based on the above description I can definitely say I’m a bodacious babe. Funny thing is, I always was one. I just didn’t know it.

As a child I was punished for being strong-willed, independent, daring and free-spirited. I was a precocious child who could see and think outside of the carefully crafted box my parents put me in.  My defiance against the system that used terror to control me made my father punish me all the more. Now, before I sound like a whiner, my well-meaning parents were simply over-protective and did the best they could with what they knew. They believed in a God that bullied them and unleashed His punishments if they failed to control me.

The continual pounding on my body, mind and heart finally broke my spirit and my will, just the way parents believed I needed to be.

I grew up with the archaic belief that, “a child’s will needs to be broken” and “you must come to God with a broken spirit.” By the time I reached my teens I was sufficiently broken. What I didn’t know then that I know now, is that the extent of trauma I experienced at the hands of my peers, occurred because I had already been traumatized as a child. Kids with no self-esteem make easy targets for relentless bullies.

It took a very long time for me to put the pieces of myself back together, re-build my will and heal my broken spirit. It turns out they never really broke me, just damaged my ability to recognize myself. It turns out that the spirit, just like the body, can be healed and restored. Now I’m back to my strong-willed, free-spirited, bold and audacious self.

Wow, it’s great to be myself again! How about you?

What I’ve discovered over years working with clients and meeting people at events, is that those who are drawn to me were strong-headed children too. There is nothing that compares to the flurry of excitement that comes with being given permission to be yourself, not only have permission, but being applauded for not fitting in the box. The reason bullying hurts so much isn’t the words and actions of others, but the lack of acceptance for being ourselves. Once you get to the place of self-acceptance it no longer matters what anyone else thinks!

Are you ready to be Bodacious?

Victoria_Reynolds


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