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miraculous LIFE CHANGING experience

Old 02-12-2007, 08:26 PM
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miraculous LIFE CHANGING experience

Hello! I am completely new to this whole thing, and I just experienced the most LIFE-CHANGING, empowering, inspirational moment of my life.
I come from an abusive childhood, and until 2 days ago, I HAD NO IDEA of the detrimental effects it has had on me. 3 days ago was my 25th birthday, and I hit an all time low. I was (and I cant say that I have completely recovered), in complete depression, and on my birthday—February 10th, my boyfriend of years, broke up with me. He changed my life, because with nothing left, I was forced to look inside myself. Through the power of God, I somehow miraculously was able to find the strength to be honest with myself. I had to set aside my deep rooted fears, and discover my true emotions—buried under years of fear—and with the help of my loving mother, I was able to recall suppressed memories, and come to some sort of realization of my TRUE SELF! The self I had been denied of. I ALWAYS thought I was defective, and knew there was something wrong with me…and to realize there was not was incredible. Before I was numb…and TODAY, I HAVE NEVER FELT SO ALIVE!!!!! I will not—I CANNOT—go back to my fearful ways. I will not survive.
FILLED with bittersweet emotion, both incredibly sad for the helpless, and abused child inside me, and unbelievably happy for the new life which lies ahead…all I have wanted to do is, research, and write, and change me life! I feel like I won the lottery! There is nowhere to go from here but UP! I had so many emotions, it was hard to organize, and so I just started to write. I wanted to share my first day’s writings…dealing with my abusive dad, who I learned to feel emotionally responsible for. Then, I have added a poem about my TRUE inner-self, who I have oppressed and denied for 25 years. This poem has so much meaning for me, as I feel it might for others as well.
Last, my thoughts for today. Thank you for listening.
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Old 02-12-2007, 08:27 PM
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MY FIRST DAY....I JUST STARTED WRITING.....


Feb 11th, 2007

To my dad…

Children are born knowing nothing of this earth,
They are completely reliant and dependent on you.
You will teach them all you know, for they know nothing else.
You will teach them how to love, how to feel, and how to grow.

You were all I knew: You were my creator—my God.
I looked to you for knowledge of this strange place.
I was aware of my dependence on you….
Aware I would die without you….
B/c of this I could NOT admit you didn’t love me, even if its how I felt—because in my mind—that would be detrimental.
So it was easier for me to blame myself….
All of the anger, blame, fear, you projected—I projected onto myself.

As a baby, my mind would not allow me to understand or feel angry towards you…
For my survival…for my protection…
Protection from the idea that I was truly unlovable by those who meant the most to me—my caretakers, the ones who gave me life—my GODS…
I developed defense mechanisms…
I had to blame myself….
I lost my identity…I was deprived the chance to have one…
I am numb.

From you, I learned.

I learned shame.
You laughed at my new bathing suit; I learned to stop liking it. I never wore it again.
You were not at my recitals; I learned they were meaningless.
You discouraged my dancing, and told me it was childish; I learned that what I thought I enjoyed was meaningless, and learned to conform to what you found to have meaning.
You yelled, and I learned to fear you.
You argued, and I learned to avoid arguments at all cost.
You lacked all emotion, and I learned to hide my own.
You laughed when I cried, and I learned to hold it inside.
You never said, “I love you,” and I learned I was unlovable.
You blamed me, and I learned I was to blame.
I learned guilt.
You didn’t spend time with me, and I learned I wasn’t worth spending time on.
You were always right, so I learned I was always wrong.
You controlled everything, so I learned control is the only thing that mattered.
You worried about work, money, inanimate objects….and so I learned to worry about these things as well.
I live in fear.
You cared more about money that people, so I learned money is more important.
You belittled my emotions, my feelings, my opinions, and my thoughts, so I learned they were worth very little.
You did not want to hear what I had to say, so I learned not to speak.
You did not validate me, so I learned I was not valid.
You punished me without crime, so I learned I was in need of punishment.
You taught me to fear the water, and so I do.
You threatened to not pay for school because of my brother’s court fees; I learned I had done something wrong.
You locked me in my bedroom for weeks; I learned I deserved it.
You threw things at me, so I learned I deserved it.
You hit me with a belt, so I learned I deserved the abuse.
You told me it was my fault, so I learned it was.
You abused my mom, so I learned it was okay for people to abuse me.
You used me, so I let myself be used by others.
You valued what others thought of you above all, so I learned that was more important than what I thought.
You told me I was either “good” or “bad”, so I learned my self-worth was based on pleasing you.
You told me art was worthless, so I learned to stop doing it.
You taught me to be afraid, and so I am.
I dropped a brick on my toe, and it bled, and I was in pain. I ran to my room and hid, for fear you would be mad at me.


THIS WAS MY REALITY: THE ONLY REALITY I KNEW.
This was my “normal”
This was simply, “how the world is”

AS AN ADULT…
My emotions are hidden deep inside me.
I do not know myself.
I have never known myself.
NO ONE knows how I feel. Not a soul. Not even God, for I can’t let him in.
I seek your attention.
I seek your approval.
I yearn for you to tell me I am “good”…that I am a “good girl”
I want so desperately for our new family to like me, so that you will like me too.
I felt worthless as I saw you attending Jordan’s hockey games. I wondered why you didn’t attend my recitals, why you didn’t drive to my dance lessons?
I focus on you, because I always have…I base my self-worth on what I have learned from you.
I learned to seek approval not within myself, or from God, but from other people.
ABOVE ALL, I strive for people’s compliments.
I use money to buy love.
I try to please everyone.
I live my life in worry.
I am anxious.
I have anxiety.
I do not know how to handle conflict, so I run away from it.
I am always afraid I am in trouble and people are mad at me.
I am overly sensitive to yelling.
I am always defensive.
I feel everyone is attacking me.
I cut off communication with friends, in fear they are mad at me and will yell at me.
I have lost many friends.
I do not have friends.
I cry when I am criticized, because I believe it directly relates to my self-worth.
Any relationships with friends, family, and everyone always crumble. I do not know how to be me, and I do not love myself.
I am unlovable.
I do not think another person can love me, because I don’t even love me.
How can I live happily, when I am always afraid?
I lie so people don’t see how unhappy I am.
I lie so people won’t find out my deepest darkest secret: I am unlovable and I am disgusting.
I take out aggression on people I care about it.
I have “masks” for every occasion. I wear mask #1 to please Marlene, mask #2 to please Lyle, Mask #3 to please Ian, mask #4 to please Mom, Mask #5 to please you, and so on…
I do not know myself, but I know my “closet” of masks.
I feel responsible for all that goes wrong.
I have neglected my own needs for others.
When I must satisfy a need in order to survive, such as expressing a REAL emotion when I can no longer hold it inside, I feel I must apologize for doing so.
I feel like a constant burden to others.
Just as the helpless dependent child I was, I FEAR ABANDONMENT.
I revert to childhood behaviors, and once found myself, as a full grown adult, wanting you to cut my food up for me…like a little child would.
I don’t dare show my true self to ANYONE, for they will find my feelings to be a burden, and not worth it, and will leave me.
I do not know how to love.
I do not know how to be loved.
I have been deprived of joy.
I feel empty inside.
I am depressed.
I take anti-depressants.
I feel worthless.
I have lived in this body for 25 years…And every moment of every day, I have hated it.
I have felt uncomfortable.
I have felt disgusting.
I have felt ashamed.
I have felt deep, intense guilt.
I felt frustrated.
I TRULY believed from the bottom of my soul, that I was born defective.
I am unlovable.

But my worst fear of all???
…is telling you this.
And here I am, spilling my soul at risk of complete and total disastrous rejection.
At risk of affirming my worst fear… I am indeed worthless.

But I cannot live anymore, and this is my last resort.
I have been stripped, and I have nothing left…
Nothing to lose.

I HAVE BEEN WOUNDED, in the very worst way, for this wound you cannot see.
I am not bleeding; I do not need a hospital.
NOONE can see my wound; even I could not see it.

I knew there was something wrong with me, but didn’t understand.
I was dying, and didn’t know why.
I thought I could “fix all problems”…but I can’t fix the one that matters most.

Imagine the frustration…I know you can. I know you have felt it.
I could not function in life. I could not live any more. I sleep 18 hours a day. I do not have a single ounce of energy in my body. I have been abused…
And I am tired.


FOR ALL OF THIS, I CANNOT BE MAD AT YOU.
I cannot blame you.
B/c you see, we have much in common…

For all the pain I suffer, you suffer it too.
For all the emotions I was forced to hide, so were you.
All the emptiness I feel, you feel it too.
For all the shame I carry, you carry it too.
For all the guilt inside me, it is in you too.
For all the anger I hold, I learned it from you.
For all the FEAR I have, you live fearful too.
All my worries, you have them too.
For all the relationships I have sabotaged, you have sabotaged yours too.
For how I leaned to cope through manipulation, as did you.
For all the control I yearn for, so do you.
You taught me the only world of which you knew: THE WORLD YOUR PARENTS HAD TAUGHT TO YOU.

The horrible, disgusting, shameful, person that lies inside me for 25 years has been inside you for much longer.
And for you, I do not feel anger.
I feel sadness.
I feel your pain…
Because I am your pain.

TODAY MY LIFE CHANGED.

For both of us, I will carry this burden today.
The cycle stops here.
I WILL NOT allow my future children to carry this load.

I will release my fear, my shame, my guilt, my anger, my resentment, my need to control, my embarrassment, my disgust…
I have a long road ahead of me.
I will relieve the pains, buried so deep in my subconscious.
I will learn how to love.
I will be happy, as I never have been before…as I was never allowed before.

I AM FILLED WITH BITTERSWEET EMOTION

I am devastatingly sad for that helpless little girl…
Yet I am overwhelmingly joyful for the life which lies ahead of me.

I have NEVER felt this ALIVE in my life. I AM ME! for the FIRST time. I hope you can be you.
Do not be afraid dad. I love you.
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Old 02-12-2007, 08:30 PM
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Poem that holds much meaning for the "lost me"...my TRUE SELF....

(By Charles C. Finn)

Do not be fooled by me.
Don’t be fooled by the face I wear.
For I wear a mask… a thousand masks…
Masks that I am afraid to take off…
And none of them is me.

Pretending is an art that’s second nature with me…
But don’t be fooled.
For God’s sake don’t be fooled!

I give you the impression that I am secure…
That all is sunny and unruffled with me, within as well without…
That confidence is my name and coolness my game…
That’s the water’s calm and I am in command…
And that I need no one.
But don’t believe me.
My surface may seem smooth, but my surface is my mask…
Ever-varying and ever-concealing.
Beneath lies no complacence.
Beneath lies confusion and fear and aloneness.
But I hide this. I don’t want anybody to know it.

I panic at the thought of my weakness and fear being exposed.
That’s why I frantically create a mask to hide behind,
A nonchalant sophisticated façade,
To help me pretend,
To shield me from the glance that knows.
But such a glance is precisely my salvation…
My only hope and I know it…
That is, if it’s followed by acceptance…
If it’s followed by love.
It is the only thing that can liberate me from myself…
From my own self-built prison walls…
From the barriers I so painstakingly erect.
It’s the only thing that will assure me of what I can’t assure myself…
That I am really worth something.

But I don’t tell you this, I don’t dare. I am afraid to.
I am afraid your glance will not be followed by acceptance…
Will not be followed by love.

I am afraid you will think less of me, that you’ll laugh, and your laugh would kill me.
I am afraid that deep-down I am nothing, that I am just no good…
And that you will see this and reject me.

So I play me game… my desperate pretending game…
Walk with a façade of assurance without, and a trembling child within.
So begins the glittering but empty parade of masks, and my life becomes a front.
I will chatter to you in the suave tones of surface talk.
I tell you everything that is really nothing…
And I tell you nothing of what is everything…
Of what’s crying within me.

So when I’m going through my routine, do not be fooled by what I’m saying.
Please listen carefully, and try to hear what I am not saying…
What I’d like to be able to say…
What for survival I need to say…
But what I cannot say.
I don’t like to hide.
I don’t like to play superficial phony games.
I want to stop playing them.
I want to be genuine, and spontaneous, and me…
But you’ve got to help me.
You’ve got to hold out your hand…
Even when that’s the last thing I seem to want.
Only you can wipe away from my eyes the blank stare of the breathing dead.
Only you can call me into aliveness.
Each time you’re kind and gentle and encouraging…
Each time you try to understand because you really care…
My heart begins to grow wings…
Very small wings…
Very feeble wings…
But wings!
With your power to touch me into feeling…
You can breathe life into me.
I want you to know that.

I want you to know how important you are to me…
How you can be a creator—a honest-to-God creator—
Of the person that is me…if you choose to.
You alone can break down the wall behind which I tremble…
You alone can remove my mask…
You alone can release me from my shadow-world of panic and uncertainty…from my lonely prison….
If you choose to.
Please choose to. Do not pass me by.
I will not make it easy for you.

A long conviction of worthlessness builds strong walls.
The nearer you approach to me…
The blinder I many strike back.
It is irrational, but despite what the books may say about man…
I am often irrational.
I fight against the very thing I cry out for.
But I am told that love is stronger that strong walls…
And in this lies my hope.
Please try to beat down those walls…
with firm hands…
but with gentle hands…
For a child is very sensitive.

Who am I you may wonder?
I am someone you know very well.
For I am every man you meet.
And I am every woman you meet.
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Old 02-12-2007, 08:35 PM
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Today's thoughts, exactly as they "flowed" from my head....
(Feb 12th, 2007)

"His strength is made perfect in our weakness"

**Validate your feelings, do not be embarrassed
**My thoughts are real and they are mine
**Do not give up; do not go back
**There is no need to apologize for being me

(letter to mom)

I realize I am really starting to understand that the people who have been there for me over the last 3 days,have no benefit from helping me...but they do it anyways. I am used to looking at everything in a "cost-benefit" analysis...like, I am more of a cost to people at this point. I have felt, when I am a "cost" rather than being a people-pleasing-benfit, people have no reason to stay with me. I am a burden to them at that point, and it is not worth it to them. I truly believed I was unlovable....I know this b/c the only benefit that would exist for them to stay, is that you actually love me and care about me...and since I truly beleived they would leave me....I didnt think anyone could love me.
(To my mom Dont be sad, because now realizing this is my first step to beleiving that I am lovable.
-------------------------------------------------------------

I have so many emotions. I feel as if I was missing a part of me my whole life, and now I am able to fill that void. I have dreams, and I see myself doing wonderful things on this earth. I feel so creative, and I want to write poetry, and admire art, and feel inspired.
I feel empowered. I feel empowered by God. I feel closer to God than I ever have in my entire life. My life makes sense. Everything is coming together. I feel as I have lived, not understanding myself, and all the pieces are coming into place. I was like a giant jigsaw puzzle, missing pieces, pieces of myself scattered throughout the house…some under the coach, and some pieces tucked deep into corners of the basement…but now I am gathering up all these pieces and putting them together. I can see the big picture.
I was so afraid of everything. I realized today I apologize for my every action. To be sorry, is to mean you feel you did something wrong. Today I apologized for having my notebooks, and purse on the desk…and I kept saying, “I’m sorry” and the kid next to me kept saying, “It’s okay, it’s okay”
as if …what was I so sorry for? I talked to Ian and I immediately apologized for falling asleep and not hearing my phone when he called. He said, you didn’t do anything wrong…and I thought…he’s right. I am not sorry, because I did not do anything wrong. I have not hurt, or offended anybody.
I am trying really hard to recognize my old patterns of thinking that can be dangerous… It’s hard because these patterns are all I know. I have to be really conscious of my actions. It’s funny because these “sayings” that never really made sense to me before, make perfect sense to me now! For one, I always read, “Hate is not the opposite of love…fear is the opposite of love.” I never really knew what that meant. I have been afraid of everything in my life…and now that I am able to release some of that fear…I am more alive than ever. I am closer to God in the last 2 days than I have been in my entire life.
I find myself de-validating my feelings…shrugging them off, and ESPECIALLY being embarrassed about them. I will write really emotional, sensitive things…things that come from my soul, and the next morning I regret that I shared it…or even wrote it. But I am forcing myself to validate these things, and to continue to share them. I need to “own my feelings”—another “saying” that makes so much more sense to me now. They are my feelings, and they are valid, and no one should laugh at them. And if they do…I will not die. I will not care. Not in an insensitive way, but I CANNOT feel responsible for making everyone feel good. If someone is made uncomfortable by my feelings, then they don’t have to read them. That is okay. And it is okay that they are uncomfortable…I do not need to apologize to them.
I can see how it’s easy to “slip back into my old ways”…but I will not let myself. That poem means so much to me…when it says, “You alone can release me from my shadow-world of panic and uncertainty…from my lonely prison….
If you choose to.
Please choose to. Do not pass me by.
I will not make it easy for you.”
This is a large part of what keeps me going. I was so low—at bottom—and it’s hard to admit that—admit I needed help. But I know I cannot ignore this—ignoring this is misery. Complete misery. In fact, I almost feel like because I was so low—I have nowhere to go but up! And this makes my “recovery” much easier than I feel it is for others. I truly, deeply want to change. I want to put every ounce of my being into changing. I cannot give up—because THAT will be the end of me. And now, I have seen the light…and it is glorious. I am a “new person”…the person I was robbed of. But it is okay, because that is my journey. I now can fully trust in God, and know he will not give me anything I cannot handle. I know he is with me. I feel his strength.
So many little things…no matter how insignificant I thought they were…they all make sense now. I think I would do things in my life, and not really know why. I just assumed, well I must be “that type” of person…but no. I am never a certain “type of person”. I had deep reasons behind everything I did. It all makes sense and I feel overwhelmed with so much to think about. 25 years of making sense of things.
God INDEED works in mysterious ways…I told Ian, the best present you gave me was breaking up with me, hahaha…what a crazy thing to say! And to think I would tell him that only 1 day!! After I was so hysterically upset. He brought me to life. I am so grateful for his love, support, and understanding. I know we are here for each other. I feel I resented him before, and this I’m not quite sure why yet…but I would make him feel bad on purpose…how horrible. But even today I noticed I talk to him differently, and in turn, he talks to me differently. He broke my key-card, and I could of made him feel bad about it…I could have used it to gain some control over him (wow…it makes sense now! Haha)…but instead I sensed he was nervous to tell me, and I said, “Its ok! I know it was an accident. Its okay!” and he reacted so different…he did not have to be defensive. Wow, I was a “regular Rocco” I suppose. Ian does not know it, but he saved me. From the day I met him, I knew God put him in my life for a reason, and now it is so clear. I am so excited to grow with him through my life. We are each other’s strength. Ian is very spiritual, and has always wondered why I was not…and I am now also so excited to share my love for God with him…something he has understood all along.
He is so wonderful…yesterday I was reading, and learning, and I had so many “AH-HA!” moments…and I kept saying, “I have to tell you this! ‘Im so excited—it all makes sense!” And he was eager to listen, and he was so excited for me.
I feel like I won the lottery! This is all I can think about. I am so much happier now.
I am able to cry—and I am crying often—but there is such a difference because I cry with a smile. I cry feeling uplifted. I cry and I RELEASE all this pain. I want to cry! I need to…and it is so unbelievably happy and sad all at the same time!
I am learning to trust myself. I have these thoughts, that I will do something great on this earth! And I tend to blow them off and think, I am delusional…and these thoughts aren’t real…but they are. How will I ever be happy, if I cannot validate the wonderful aspirations I have?
I have always had trouble with my emotions…I used to get SO confused when emotions were running high, and it was like all of the sudden my feelings, my thoughts, my words, were like a big ball of tangled yarn. I panicked and my brain fried. I could not handle an argument in a healthy way because I didn’t even know what was going on after a point. I was so confused; I would say nothing and shut down. I thought, well that’s just how I am. But that is a unhealthy pattern of thinking…. I am never “just one way”. I’m hoping my thoughts will become clearer now, in situations like this.
What is really difficult, is that my entire basis for thinking…my whole knowledge base for working through life was “skewed”…and I have to free myself from labeling everything as “right” or “wrong”… “good” or “bad”. I am confused as to what I “should” be thinking…then I realize I “shouldn’t” be thinking anything but what I naturally choose to think. I cant think of it in terms of “should or shouldn’t” because that’s just another way of labeling my thoughts as “right or wrong”. I ask God for strength. This is another saying that has SO MUCH more meaning to me now…
“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
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Old 02-13-2007, 12:00 PM
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Thank you so much for sharing.

I'm sure you are describing what MANY of us feel/have felt.

The part where you wrote "What I Learned From You" and made a list....had me in tears because it's exactly me.

I am so happy for you that you have made this break through and are looking forward to changing your life for the better. Please keep coming back here for support!!
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Old 02-13-2007, 12:50 PM
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Welcome, glad you're here.

Your poem was brilliant. Just beautiful. And so true!! I'm in awe of your ability to see the whole picture in one fell swoop.

>Not even God<

He is within you all the time, always looking after you, never judging, always loving. So you are never alone. (((hugs)))

Thank you for a moving poem

xx
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Old 02-13-2007, 09:05 PM
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Layla2222 that first poem was so amazingly profound that it made me sob. Infact I am still sobbing as I write this.
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Old 02-13-2007, 09:56 PM
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Bless you, layla for being this honest. i am amazed at your courage and strength..

i've been there digging in my soul too and finding garbage...but then it airs and gets some light and it doesn't stink so bad...and nor does other people's :-)

Healing ourselves is like a breath of fresh air!

thank you, thank you, for sharing these moments.

wishing you strength, courage, HOPE and more JOY for the journey that lies ahead. For all of us.

Our hands are in God's hand, thankfully.
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Old 02-14-2007, 01:52 AM
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Layla

You seem to have picked up on things that took me a lifetime to find.
Many of the things you write of, I have thought through and reasoned out.
Still there was something not full about it all. When I learned what it means to be forgiven and came upon the words... forgive as you have been forgiven...
That is when I started seeing deeper changes in my own spirit.

Thank you Layla. Wonderful posts.
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Old 02-15-2007, 04:37 AM
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Oh! I want to thank you all for being so supportive, and validating how I feel. Sometimes I feel more emotional, and I spill all my feelings like I did here...and it felt good.
But then I usually "revert" later....and am scared, and so embaressed that I said all this stuff. I woke up this morning, so afraid that someone would have posted a "mean" comment back to me...and I would just die---isnt that silly? Well, I know many of you probably know this same feeling very well. I know it is not silly--I still hold fear. But that is why I am here--to release my fears.
You all had the nicest comments for me, and you TRULY made me feel so much better. THANK YOU. I'm so happy to know I have this safe place to come to.
Also, I NEVER imagined how I could help others who are going thru the same things. Someone told me the other day that I have I have taken the feelings and thoughts they have, but have never been able to express--iand put them into clear words for them. This is such a wonderful feeling.

I read that through ACA the process goes from hurting--to healing--to helping. I am amazed that I have been able to help! and I am so happy--and it feels so good to do so. You have all helped me so much through your kind, supportive, and encouraging words.
THANK YOU! for the love & support--and I hope I can do the same for you.
Much love! Stephanie
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