Healing – Bravelets

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Posted on February 10 2016

I am a Navy Veteran, Women’s Veteran Advocate, Photographer and author that has been on a healing journey for a long time. I have tried many different ways to heal from being raped and having Post Traumatic Stress. Earlier in the 2014, I went to a retreat called Artemis Rising, in Bluemont, Virginia. I went through a recreational retreat that involved EMDR, art therapy, kayaking, hiking, archery, acupuncture, equine therapy and somatic therapy.
One of the therapists at Artemis Rising introduced us to a dance called Break the Chain. We started learning the choreography and it was so empowering for me. That was when I started to realize that I liked to dance and by dancing I was able to excess feelings that were locked away and could let the tears come out.
After the retreat, I came back home and got involved in my life again. I started taking Nursing Aide at Wake Tech and was feeling so many things. In January, my mom had surgery to remove a stricture that was in her intestine. We found out that her cancer had come back. I was feeling so many different things and started looking for a way to express what I was feeling.
One of my veteran sisters started Vets Rising and I was helping her on social media to get the word out about the One Billion and Rising event that was held last year in Washington. I knew that I would not be able to go to that event because I needed to be close by for my mom. I was looking on the One Billion and Rising website and came across a Nia Jam that was being held 10 minutes from my house. I did not know what Nia was but knew that I wanted to attend the event that was being held. So I went to the One Billion and Rising Nia
I had no idea what to expect. I did not know what Nia was and had never have heard of it. I walked into the studio and met all of these lovely women that were excited about dancing and made me feel welcomed. The music started and I started dancing. Immediately, I realized that I had come home and that Nia was awesome. Nia has helped me to be able to feel. It has helped me to come back into my body and helping me to heal on a deeper level. Nia is teaching me that I do not need to leave my body. It’s teaching me that I am safe to feel what I need to feel and to express what I am feeling. Most important, I have learned in order to heal, I have to feel the emotions and that I am safe.
I took Nia White belt in July with Kate. That was an awesome experience because by doing white belt I developed a relationship with my body. I started to realize that I did not need to be ashamed of my body and that I can love my body. I learned where I hold feelings and memories from what I have been through. I learned instead of criticizing and hating the parts of me, to start to be accepting and loving towards those parts. Kate taught me how to really be present, talk to my body, listen to my body and be loving to my body. She taught me how to really be present and listen to the music. I learned that I can dance and that I can trust myself and embody the 52 moves of Nia. I realized that I am all about the base and I love music that has drums. I am coming back home to myself.
In September, I took Green Belt with Stephaney and that helped to understand the music better and how to move my body. Once again, I developed a sense of my body and where I hold memories at. I learned how to listen to the music and to que on the three to six. I learned to just try and that I do not have to be perfect.
I love Nia. Nia is helping me to heal from Post Traumatic Stress. It’s helping me to be able to feel feelings that have been locked inside. It’s given me sisters and friends that truly care about me and I care about them. It’s helped me to have a relationship with my body and to start to love my my body. Also, Nia has given me a community of sisters that are on there own journey and we support each other. Nia has given me a safe place to feel what I need to feel and be who I am. I am so glad that Karen, Kate, Haven, Robin , Lynda, Stephaney and so many others have introduced me to this way of living.


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