The Journey Back to Myself: A Book of Healing Poetry, Second Edition



A collection of inspirational, empowering poetry written over the course of three years as Julie went on a healing journey to heal from multiple sexual assaults and Post Traumatic Stress. She learned that creating space for deep healing starts with taking some deep breaths to be present in the body. She learned that her body is her home and that her body is safe to come back to. Also, she learned how to love herself again. This is a powerful book that invites you on a healing journey. It is meant for every single person who is healing from something. It’s meant to be a guide for every psychologist, psychiatrists, doctor, nurse, social worker, professor, counselor to use to understand the effects of child sexual abuse, university rape, military sexual trauma, depression, and Post Traumatic Stress.


#foreverchanged  #CSA #universityrape #complexPTSD #depression #anxiety #healingmyheart #becomingonewithmyself #peacewarrior #climbingamountain #heartwarrior #peacefulwarrior #shutupandlistentosurvivors #why #PTSD #speakyourtruth #feeltoheal #empoweredwarrior #courage #strength #journeybacktomyself #reikijinkeido #niawhitebelt #niabluebelt #healing #inspirational #courageous #survivor #selfcompassion #selflove #selfworth #writetoheal

Peaceful Warrior


I am fighting a battle inside of myself,

My enemy is Post Traumatic Stress,

My strength comes from myself,

Memories of what happened to me replays over

And over again.

There are flashbacks,

There are nightmares,

There are triggers,

The pain is so real and I cannot stop the pain.

I cannot stop the flashbacks.

I cannot stop the nightmares.

I cannot stop the grief.

I cannot stop the rage.

I show a brave face to the world but on

The inside I am crying.

Mother Earth is helping me to heal my heart

That was broken into thousands of pieces,

There are many days when I feel like I am broken,

I am determined to win this battle and to heal my heart.

I will not let triggers, flashbacks, nightmares control my emotions.

I will not let those tried to destroy me win this war.

I have awakened and I will find peace with myself.


I will love myself and forgive myself for past harms

I will love my body.

I will continue to grow spirituality.

I will continue to be mindful and meditate.

I will continue to speak my truth and continue to heal.

I will reach out to fellow Peaceful Warriors and

Help them to heal to.

I am Peaceful Warrior.

Healing Crystals




Pink Quartz,



Tiger Eye,

Clear Quartz,


All healing stones that connect me to my body, raise my energy,

Surrounding me in a healing circle,

Supporting me in my healing journey,

Allowing me to see through the cloud of pain,

Giving me strength and protecting me,


Raising my energy,

Ground me in the present moment,

Connect me to my body,

Helping me to communicate what I need to communicate,

Healing my broken heart,

How I love these healing stones,

Pelvic Examination


How I have avoided you,

How I do not feel connected to you,

How I want nothing to do with you,

How I want no one to touch you,

This past year, you have

let me know you are there,

I went to the emergency room

to get my ankle taken care of

Next thing I know is the nurse practioner

is talking to me about having a pap smear,

I tell her there is no way in hell,

I tell her that pap smears are very triggering to me,

She makes light of this and makes

a joke about what I am saying,

I get very angry and again tell her there is no way,

As I walk out of the room, she tells me to

think about making an appointment,

I kick around the thought of making an appointment,

I call and make an appointment with the VA,

I talk to a couple of my friends and tell them

that I have not had a pap smear for five years,

They tell me to advocate for myself,

Call and talk to the nurse practioner telling her

that I am a survivor of multiple sexual assaults,

I thought that she heard me,

I thought that she had listened to me

and that we were on the same page,

I asked for anti-anxiety medication beforehand,

She tells me no,

I am very scared,

As the examination goes on, I stop breathing,

I turn red,

I stop breathing and the nurse has to tell me to breathe,

I get a massive headache,

I am in tears.

After the examination, they take

my blood pressure it’s 154/115

I cannot stand being at the

women’s health clinic any more,

I hurry up and leave,

The rest of the day I am crying and shaking,

During the night, I am having nightmares

and flashbacks to when I was raped,

The following morning, I call the

VA to ask to talk the RN,

She tells me that what

happened the previous day was

A body memory,

No shit!!!

I knew this would happen and I told you my truth,

I asked for an anti-anxiety medication beforehand,

I asked to be listened to but you choose to

ignore the fact that I told you that

I had been raped six times and that this

examination would trigger all of the memories.

You did not believe what I was telling you,

And now all of the sudden you pretend that you care by

Giving me a prescription for the medication that I asked for.

What the hell is wrong with you?

Why would I lie to you about being raped six times?

Why do you not listen to a survivor who is telling you her truth?

Why did you not believe me?

Why wait for me to have a body response

for you to see that I am telling the truth?

Hell, if you had bothered to read my chart you

would have seen that I am and have been

am service connected for PTSD due to Military Sexual Trauma,

I am a survivor of childhood rape and university rape,

All of which I told you when I

called and spoke to you before the examination.

All you did was caused another trauma, by not listening,

Not believing when I told you

And now you pretend that you care by

providing a medication and putting in a

consult for therapy and talk me down from wanting to kill myself

Listen to survivors,

Believe Survivors,

Be there


Climbing Mountain


There is a huge mountain in front of me,

I start climbing it,

The mountain in front of me seems gigantic and impossible to climb,

I start climbing the mountain in front of me,

I find a place to grip,

Digg my fingers into the rock,

Find a place to put my feet so that I can climb higher and higher,

At times feel like I am going to fall off the mountain,

At times, this task feels impossible since there is so much pain inside,

so many emotions,

body sensations,



At times all I can do is cry,


tear things apart,


It’s taking everything I have to climb this mountain,

It’s taking so much to face all of the demons inside of me,

It taking so much to heal from so much trauma,

The mountain before me seems impossible to climb,

There are other people higher on the mountain that reach out their hand to me

I grab their hand and know that I do not have to do this allow,

When I feel like quitting they tell me I can’t,

They tell me that they are there for me,

Do not give up,

It’s okay to feel your feelings,

It’s okay to allow the tears to come out,

It’s okay to be enraged,

It’s okay to rest,

Remember to do self-care,

I know you are feeling so much pain,

It’s okay to say, I am exhausted,

Be there for me and allow another to hold you on this journey of healing,

I listen to them and allow them to be there for me,

The tears coming from my eyes like waterfalls cleansing my pain and soul,

I will get through this.

It’s one day a time,

Sometimes one minute at a time,

Sometime one second at a time,

Know that you are loved,

That you are not allow,

You can lean on me,

You can call me anytime,

I am there and I will listen to what you have to say,

I believe you,

I support you,

I am a Warrior,

I am strong.

It’s going to be alright.

I will get to the top.

I will be free .


A Walk in Nature


Awoken in the morning by birds singing a lovely song,

letting me know a new day has come,

look at my dog,

he is wagging his tail telling me it’s time for his walk,


I put his leash on,

out the door we go

We are out in nature,


I smell cool crisp air,

Breathe deeply to fill my lungs,

Hear all of birds singing their songs,

Sense myself becoming one with the present moment,

As we are walking, I notice my body is relaxing more and more, and

I am becoming more mindful of all the sounds around me,


I look up at the trees to see they are starting to bud,

The dogwoods already have their blooms,

I look at the grass and see the first dandelion flower spouting up,

Saying here I am,

See my dog, prancing, so happy to be outside,

See him point at the squirrel close to us,

My dog is going crazy, barking at the squirrel,

The squirrel climbs up a tree to get away from my dog,


As we get closer, I see that the squirrel sitting on a branch,

Looking right at me,

giving me some animal medicine,


I notice a rabbit jumping around in the distance,

Also see a family of deer, that my dog has not seen yet,

We keep along the path,

As we get closer to the lake,

I see a blue heron perched on a tree,


Nature is beautiful and brings me home to myself,

I am now completely on nature time,

Completely relaxed and connected to myself.

Standing On the Edge


Senior year of high school,

I am standing on the edge,

There are so many decisions for me to make about my future,

I am excited about my future but at the same time,

I am feeling lost inside,

There are tears that are coming to the surface,

I am starting to remember what

you did to me when I was eleven,

I have started to sleep around,

Thinking that will somehow change

what you did to me that day when I was eleven,

You changed my life forever that day when you abused me,


All I know how is that I want to get as

far away from my small town ass I can,

I want to get away from the constant reminders,

And the triggers that take me back to that day,

Tears are coming to the surface,

I apply to the University of Cincinnati

because that is two hours’ way from Lucasville,

I get accepted and cannot wait to start my new life,


I have three roommates that are doing the sorority thing,

They are drinking and partying,

I never did that in high school,

So I decide to try alcohol for the first time,


I get wasted,

Two black men decide to rape me,

I have so much hatred for myself,

I swear that I will never drink again and

Don’t until I move to another town,


I start going to therapy to heal of this trauma,

I start going to a support group,

The therapist decides one

night to give us all a depression test,

I get a call a couple of days later

asking me to come in for an appointment,

The therapist that I have been seeing

wants me to go into a day treatment program

I start going to a day treatment

program and make it through that program,

Once I am done with this program,

I am feeling intense feelings

that I do not want to feel,


I start going to a club with friends,

Drinking and partying every night,

I just cannot wait to get wasted because

I do not want to remember what

happened to me when I was eleven and nineteen,

I want the intense feelings to stop,


So I start living for every

Friday and Saturday night,

So I can drink and get wasted,

I can escape from my body and the memories,


There were some nights when this was fun,

There were nights when I almost

got into fights at the club me and my best friend went to,

There are nights when I black out and my friends

Tell me the next day that I did,


One night me, my girlfriend and

best friend go to a strip club to

see her girl friend since it is her birthday,

I do want I am known for,

I start drinking long island ice teas, mind racers,

shots and get totally wasted,

We drive over to my friend’s house

that is twenty minutes away,


I can barely walk from being so drunk,

My girlfriend and my friends best

friend helps to walk to the house,

We go inside and talk for a little bit,


I have to go to the bathroom that is upstairs,

While I am in the bathroom, my

best friends friend comes in the room,

He is touching me and ends up raping me,


I do not say anything to any

one until the following day when

my girlfriend asks me what is wrong,

I start crying and she comes over to hold me,

She tells me that I can

tell her what happened.

I tell her that I am bruised, know

that I was raped last night,

and am hurting really bad,

She tells me we should call the police,

I get really upset, start sobbing and screaming,

There is no way in hell we are calling the police,

She tells me that we

should go to the hospital,

I tell her there is no point in

going to the Emergency room,

I know that the nurse will call

the police and the police will not

do anything except

blame me and shame me.

So we come to an agreement that

I will make an appointment with a gynecologist,


We go to that appointment together,

My girlfriend is there to hold me

and supports me through this,

The gynecologist tells me that I am bruised,

I tell her what happened and

that I do not want the police involved,

She does some more lab tests,

gives me a name to a therapist,

and the morning after pill.


I swear that I will never drink again,

I start going to Alcoholic Anonymous every day,

I get a sponsor and start on my healing path,

I put over a year sober, am so grateful that I found my way to AA,

have an amazing sponsor and started on my path of healing,

Blooming Into A Powerful Woman


I will never understand why six men choose to me

to violate and abuse me in the way they did,


Will never understand why nothing was done

to the sixteen-year-old who abused

me when I was eleven years old,


Will never understand why a police officer

blamed me for being raped and defended

two rapists at University of Cincinnati,


Will never understand why I was the one

that was blamed, shamed, emotionally abused,

retaliated against by chain of command,

Will never understand why I lost my career

for coming forward to report the crime that

was committed against me in the Navy

while rapist keeps his career and is promoted,


However, through all of this trauma,

I have broken free from there control,

I am no longer afraid,

I speak my truth,

I feel my feelings,


I have bloomed like the lotus flower,

Post traumatic growth has taken place,

Deep healing has taken place that is

leading in new direction,

I have new strengths that

I did not know I had before,


I realize just how powerful my voice has become,

Realize that I am standing in my light,

Shining brightly

and realize that I am an

empowered Warrior that has many gifts

of healing to share with the world.

This is my new purpose in life.









Grounded and Powerful


Close your eyes and breathe deeply,

Sink your roots deep into the earth,

Come home to yourself and your body,

Allow yourself to connect to that place inside of you

That knows you are rooted deep in the earth,

Hear that little voice inside that is telling you,

You are safe,

You are strong,

You are an empowered Warrior,

You are beautiful,

You are a goddess,


Breathe deeply again,

Connect to that place inside of you that knows

You can speak your truth,

You can feel your feelings,

You can heal.

You are an empowered Warrior and Goddess who shines brightly.


You flow in the wind,

You allow the wind and rain to wash over you,

You have learned to surf the waves that crash around you,

You know that you are empowered,

you are healing the pain deep inside,

You know that you will never back down,

You know that no one can hurt you any more,

You have taken your power back from those who tried to destroy you,


You are safe,

You are a goddess that is standing in her power,

You are shining brightly so others know there is a way out,

You are healing.


Take three more breaths, in and out,

Allow the air to fill your lungs to capacity,

You no longer have to breathe shallowly,

You can take up space,

You can speak your truth,

You can feel your feelings,


You are connected to the earth below you,

You are deeply rooted,

You are very powerful.

Keep shining and ever back down.