I was incredibly fortunate and lucky when I first released my book, A Broken Ring. It was my very first venture into publishing a book and at telling my story of survival from abuse. Why was i lucky? Because Dennis Golden of IM-Safe organization was kind enough to give me a review and endorsement for the back cover. I was ecstatic when he sent it to me! I was so happy, I wrote:
Dennis and I have kept in touch since. I was thrilled to discover this last summer he was publishing his book, What to know, do and say to stay safe, with Jennifer Lownik, his daughter. He very kindly sent a signed copy to me, which I received this week.
It’s an amazing book!! It really is a “must read!” It covers so many topics to help keep you safe either from a stalker, tips to help in a domestic violent situation, traveling! They give good examples of what to do to keep yourself safe. It’s not really a “How to” book in a sense, it’s more like conversation.
Dennis and Jennifer describe the book perfectly on it’s Amazon page
“Every Woman Needs This Book
While an attack by a total stranger is what women dread, national statistics show the likelihood of such an event is less than10%. The good news … an assault of this type, is the easiest to avoid. The larger concern is that women routinely and unknowingly ignore 90% of threats that surround them daily in work, at play and in life.
In the real world, you are more likely to be stalked by a former partner, become a victim of workplace or domestic violence, or be victimized while traveling far more often than being assaulted by a stranger. Statistics also show that 90% of the time you will be targeted, by someone you know and you will be in location you believe is safe.
What To Know Do And Say To Be Safe, A Woman’s Guide To Personal Safety finally separates the facts from fiction. It fills an important gap by offering real insight on how you as a woman can live safely in a world that is becoming increasingly hostile to your personal safety and security.
This long overdue book gives you immediate access some of the best self-protection tools and strategies the world has ever known. Here you will learn:
• How to safely navigate in a world that is becoming increasingly more hostile to your personal safety and security.
• Ways you can be “armed” with a mental weapon that can never be taken away from you.
• What self-defense “experts” often fail to tell women about real world physical encounters.
• The secrets on knowing how to quickly deescalate any verbal attack at home, at work, anywhere.
• The powerful natural advantages women have when dealing with abusive partners, bullies or predators.
Order you copy today and discover why no woman deserves to live in fear … not from bullies …not from intimate partners … not from strangers.”
If you are thinking of buying a book, buy this!
We can all get overwhelmed sometimes, life can be overwhelming! A lot has happened to me in the last year with moving, my step-daughter moved out and now we are hoping to be able to plan our next move in 2015, back to the UK. Simple, right? Well, I have two books to finish, an upcoming webinar with amazing guests like Simply Mary, Kimberly Steinmetz, Julie Buhite, Kit Gruelle of the documentary, Private Violence which aired on HBO in October. I was also going to organize a Stalking Awareness Event in January 2015.
I also, dipped my big toe back into the financial world, so currency contracts and bonds were back on the table! Does it make me happy? Yes, I always like to be busy but I have learned a lot over the last few years and it’s really very simple. I ask myself this: Am I loved and does someone care for if I’m around? Do I have a roof over my head tonight? Am I safe? Am I warm and have I eaten? Do I have a bed to sleep in?. The answer has been: Yes. My basic needs and wishes are met. This makes me happy! Of course, I strive for more, it’s natural but I count my blessings that I am loved, safe, warm and not hungry.
We work so incredibly hard for the “bigger house” to “keep up with the Jones’s”, the new car, that we become stressed, anxiety takes over, nights become sleepless. There are many people out there with far less, and are happy. Sometimes, when things are stripped down in our lives we have to take a breath, re-evaluate and move on. Sometimes, the less “things” we have, the less clutter we hold so desperately onto can cause us stress, just like relationships.
At the end of each day, we should ask ourselves if we are happy….
Sometimes, we second guess our decisions, when our heart tells us one thing but our head says something completely different.
We feel torn especially when we are in bad, destructive relationships. We tell ourselves to run, but we stay. We know from the first meeting that the person is too charming, nice or just wrong. How many times have we fallen for the bad boy or the woman who is a “wild” and we think it’s exciting?
Trust yourself, you know more than you think you do! Have you ever gone against your instinct? How did it work out?
Christmas is fast coming upon us. One minute we are basking in summer sunshine, the next the temperature drops, sweaters are pulled out of closets and viola! Christmas is here! Unless you live in the Southern Hemisphere, then you are quickly dumping sweaters back into closets. Oh, the thought of warmer days!…
Christmas always brings back a lot of memories for me, some good, some bad and some downright ugly. There is one though, that spins around in my mind now each year. It is one of the Christmas’s I spent alone. There were no friends or family to visit and say hi too. They were all busy with their own families, after all we are told it is a time for sharing time, gifts and food.
My car that year was feeling rather unwell, I know it wasn’t going to a 400 mile trip, so I sent cards and presents and decided to hunker down for some “alone time”. I was nervous about, but I learned a lot from that day. I, also, planned. Yes’ I planned the day out ahead, putting the nerves to rest. After all I can do one important day alone, right? It turned out to be one the best!
If you are spending Christmas this year, don’t fret, you can make it an amazing day too! It can become healing, transforming, relaxing, uplifting and totally indulgently, yours.
Here’s my tips for an amazing soul filling, happy Christmas day:!
1. Plan it, seriously. This will be a day of “Me Time” Plan the food you want because you can go by your own rules! Turkey? Ham? Sure! But you can think outside the box without offending anyone. It is open and the ideas endless. Sushi? Lasagne? A frozen meal to make it easy, to just pop into the microwave or oven. A day to yourself means not spending hours slaving in the kitchen, unless you find cooking, relaxing or therapeutic, if so enjoy!
2. Take a stroll. Just because we are on our own doesn’t mean we can’t go out. I took a stroll down the harbor. I sat on a bench watched people hurriedly walk their dogs so they could get back to their families. They had after all, been told to hurry. I sat on a bench, and watched the boats bob up and down in the water, hearing their masts clang, as the wind that tugged at my coat and hat, tugged at them too. It was peaceful, I hadn’t seen the harbor so quiet, it felt like it was mine just for a short time.
3. Be self indulgent! Before the day arrives, treat yourself to something purely for yourself and your senses. I had bought
some luxurious bath salts and candles. I had prepared for my own at home spa. The ringer was turned off, candles lit, scrubs washes and oils filled my senses. It warmed and coddled me after my stroll, heaven!
4. Put some time aside to call, Skype, Hangout with those you want to wish a Happy Christmas too. Enjoy the family, friends you would like to be with but can’t be. Connect simply and enjoy the moments. After all none of us are total islands!
5. Buy yourself a gift, because you deserve it! I had bought myself a Martina Cole novel I had been excited to read and a cheap guitar, along with the book “Learn the Guitar for Dummies! I snuggled down on my sofa to be lost in Martina’s world of London, East End crime drama. I struggled and laughed as I learned some new basic keys on the guitar until my fingers felt a little sore. It felt strange to press on the strings and find a tune, but absolutely worth it.
6. Watch, the movie you have always wanted to watch but never had time, because of all the usual commitments our normal, daily lives hold for us.
When we are busy all year, our minds active, it can be difficult to unwind, to let our minds drift. To stop and breathe, simply for just one day with no commitments but to ourselves. It gives us a chance to really decide what we want for the new year ahead. We can make each moment count, for it to be a blessing and to be our authentic selves.
What do you plan this Christmas? Do you have plans even just moments for self care?
Some decadent self indulgences?
A couple of months back Christine Murray and I were communicating about Domestic Violence Awareness. She kindly asked me if I would like to contribute a post for See the Triumph organization, which helps raise awareness against violence and abuse. I leaped at the chance!
“The goals of See the Triumph are: (and I quote):
* To share empowering messages that people can overcome their abuse and create positive, nonviolent lives
* To describe strategies that have worked for other survivors to help them overcome their abuse and the stigma related to it
* To promote a new view of battering survivors that shows them as triumphant, courageous, and resourceful”
It was exciting to see the first post I wrote:
What Everyday advocacy Means to Me, in July
I have since had the opportunity to write two more, one for August and October’s Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
If you are interested they are currently recruiting participants for a new study on immigrants’ perceptions of intimate partner violence, stigma, and culture. To learn more about this study, click here: http://www.seethetriumph.org/1/post/2013/11/new-study-on-immigrant-survivors-perceptions-of-intimate-partner-violence-stigma-and-culture.html
See the Triumph is the result of research studies with survivors of past abusive intimate relationships who have been out of any abusive situations for at least two years. These studies were conducted by Dr. Christine Murray at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro and Dr. Allison Crowe at East Carolina University.
If you are a survivor of domestic violence, why not hop on over to their website! You’ll be welcomed.
Please note: See the Triumph is not a crisis response resource. If you need immediate assistance for a crisis-related domestic violence situation, please contact your local authorities immediately. In the United States, you may call the National Domestic Violence Hotline: http://www.thehotline.org/; 1−800−799−SAFE(7233), or TTY 1−800−787−3224.
I had an amazing time at the Babylon Fall Festival with a table outside Healthy Alternatives! It was a chilly and slightly breezy day, with everyone willing the sun to come out, which it did later in the day.
I got there early, grabbed the essential cup of coffee and set and everything up. It was so good to catch up with friends early on and slowly the village started to buzz with people. The smell of different hot foods started to waft around the street.
People were talking to me about my books, A Broken Ring and Stalking Liberty, sharing their own stories of healing and discovery. I was asked if I’d like to be a speaker at an event for teenagers, which of course I would love to! It would be an exciting opportunity to be able to educate teenagers on the dangers of Teen Violence and what to look for in an abusive relationship, as those of us who grew up in abusive family environment don’t always see or understand the red flags. It feel a blessing to be able to help young people to understand friendships are in fact a community, however small their circle is but a community of supporting each other through the bad times as well as the good. No-one needs a fair weather friend, in fact I wouldn’t be here to be able to advocate as I do if it wasn’t for a friend who helped save my life from a stalker.
Of course I took pictures to show you… Don’t I always? (giggles)
I hope you had a great weekend!
What did you do?
I have however managed to send some posts to See the Triumph which I feel truly blessed to be a part of! My posts were the “What if I tell my story” and “What everyday advocacy means to me” . I’m excited as there is another post scheduled for Oct 23rd for Domestic Violence Awareness Month-Whoo!
I have also been blessed to be part of Brett Scudder’s Radio show for September’s SISFI’s Suicide and Prevention NY Tour to talk about the Correlation between PTSD and Suicide. You can click on the picture if you would like to listen!
I was also a speaker for Theresa McIntosh at Barrier Free Living. It was a wonderful, empowering day, meeting some incredibly brave people who had survived Domestic Violence. It’s uplifting listening to survivors stories and poems. I even got a chance to meet Brett Scudder in person too! (Giggles). My speeches have changed to include how when we grow up in abusive homes we don’t see the red flags of an abusive relationship when we are older.
Yes, I was struggling in the picture trying to get down, nope I’m not on a seat, just trying to balance! haha! That’s why I’m silently looking Like, “Hurry up, I’m gonna fall over!”
My website’s (www.clairecappetta.com) had a whole new make-over too and I’m halfway through finishing Liberty Rings.
Hope you like the cover!
I’ve also been packing because, yes… We have to move again, fun huh?
Oh yes! Stalking Liberty has been getting some amazing reviews too!
A friend’s wife bought it. He wasn’t happy because apparently their friends always ask her for her opinion when they write something and she has been so scathing about their work they have lost friends! She is also a member of the American Screenwriter’s Guild and has worked for PBS in the past. None of this I knew until he apologized before she read it, asking if we could still be friends after! I told him of course we would still be friends!
This is her review:
I was thinking while I sat in the garden, basking in warm Summer’s rays of how I had started my healing journey two years ago. How my concepts and ideas have changed over this period of time. I am not the same person I used to be for sure! I now understand C-PTSD, why I startle, my mind can ‘crash’ under stressful situations… I have all of the complexities that it holds and yet I feel stronger now. They say knowledge is power. I believe it is.
This is not a new concept… knowledge being powerful. It turned my mind to history… A strange word… Why wasn’t it coined ‘Herstory’, Or ‘Theirstory’? Hmm… Another subject altogether!
We some times call ourselves victims, survivors or thrivers. I, personally do not like these terms, victim equates to helplessness, I was once, but I am not now. Survivor? Yes, I survived but, I don’t want that as a label forever. And thriver? Well, simply… No. I don’t feel comfortable with that either…
What would Queen Elizabeth call herself? She went into battle with Spain. Did she call herself a winner? Boadicea became a warrior after her husband was slaughtered, defending her lands after both she and her daughters were raped and flogged according to legend.
I could list a few but one legend, one mythology stands out… Freya, Lady of Vanir. Freya was, in stories told, a goddess. She was the Scandinavian goddess of beauty and love. Her chariot pulled by two black cats. She was also strong, back then in history women could own their property, divorce their husbands and take back their dowry. Odin purportedly told men they should be lovers and warriors, Freya’s message was the same to women, that they be strong, assertive and full of light. They too could be lovers and warriors. Now there’s a concept!
I think, we can look at this as there is a time to fight and a time to love. Times have changed a lot since then, thank goodness! We can however still fight. We can stand up shout out against abuse and violence. We can take our perpetrators to court and ‘fight’ in a court of law. We can fight with pens and ink to get our message out. We can blog, Tweet, Facebook… Use social media to get the message across. This has made the world smaller and more connective. We still have to try and stand above the social media noise but if we keep saying ‘Enough!’ We will be heard! Men, women and children who have been abused, assaulted, raped all now have a voice. It might start quietly, but it will grow in strength as we move forward.
I have decided I like the word; Warrior. Pens, ink and words are my tools of choice.
What would you call yourself?
Who would you have wanted to be like in history?
What tools do you have to hand to make a difference?