This may be old stuff to others but it was a big deal to me. My T told me I should be careful what I call myself. To say, "I am abused" or "I am a victim" or "I am depressed" gives more strength to those ideas and identities. They are not my names or ALL that I am! I am a human being who is growing and changing. I am a child of God. I am a man. I am a husband. I am a father. I am a teacher. I am an artist. I am a friend. I am a professional colleague. (I am also a survivor - but it's not my main identity - even though it sometimes feels like it is overwhelming all the others.)I am MY SELF - mine - and I decide WHO and WHAT I AM - not the circumstances that others have forced upon me.


As my life goes on I believe somehow something's changed
Something deep inside...
I've been searchin so long to find an answer
Now I know my life has meaning
Now I see myself as I am, feeling very free...
When my tears have come to an end I will understand
What I left behind: a part of me. Chicago