Off-The-Wall—A Street Survival Journal of Recovery

Being not just a survivor, but to strive to thrive is why I moved to another state. Wherever you go, there you are, of course, and I brought with me all my considerable baggage and challenges. It’s not like I expected them to magically disappear in a “geographical cure” which recovery veterans say never works.

I moved myself and my equine partner so that I could work again. Often it seems that what I have to do to have recovery is a full time job. It is my work because without it, I have not one iota of a chance to find financial freedom from the financial abuser.

This Father’s Day is the first one where I know of my birth father and can celebrate his giving me life along with my birth mother. Both were artists. Eugene Kibbe was a photographer and his works were exhibited in a national gallery.

I can’t say I inherited his level of talent but I have been paid for photos when I worked as a health reporter. I used a disposable camera then.

Now, as I type this on my iPhone, I realize that while my financial overlord is fine with my not having had a functional computer for a year, I do have an awesome camera on this phone. Today I will celebrate my father by taking photos of the stunning sunset at the farm where my equine partner-in-grime boards.

On this, the longest day of the year, I celebrate summer solstice with gratitude to my father and leave behind any and all thought of what a fallen father of the Church did that so traumatized me that I have been disabled since the sexual assault.

I remain a handicapped reporter. On Earth Day, I took a volunteer weather spotter training and reported earlier this month on a flooded road. I wasn’t able to submit a photo because of the conditions when driving, though. I’ll try to do better next time.

I also cannot say that I rise to the level of race horses who are given extra weight to make the contests fairer. My handicap was not bestowed upon me for any other reason than the lust of a man who wanted a free ride.

I’m not winning any races, either. It’s no contest because just surviving is winning in this game of Church abuse. I have lived long enough to see the exposure of what goes on unabated. And in a few days it will be the Feast Day of St. Thomas More, patron saint of lawyers and adopted children. Whatever happens, I will celebrate him because I know he cares about victims even if it seems few others care enough to actually stop the soul slaughter.

For now, there is a barn cat who bites when he wants attention. His name is Church (after a Stephen King character). A Church that bites is not something new to me. So I stay clear for my own health because no one is going to pick up the tab for my hospital bills. And Uncle Sam ought not to have to pay when I know that I am putting myself in harm’s way to have traumatic wounds inflicted.

Church is great at catching mice. That’s his job there and his teeth are useful. A Church of predators is not so useful to sheep who want protection from wolves. Far be it for me to try to tell the Vatican what to do about their problem. I guess I just keep trying the prescription for healing given by the Founder: “this kind goeth out only by prayer and fasting.”

That’s my plan to find financial freedom. I learned through the years that I can trust the Salvation Army to pray with me when I am desperate, as I was when I needed to find a new place to board. They were there for me years ago when I was kicked out on the streets by my family. And I know they will help anyone of any background always. Thank you Major Garrett of Lexington Salvation Army for praying with me, for me! Praying the Our Father with you truly helped and I am grateful to you for being a true shepherd!

I will celebrate today the answer to those prayers with a photoshoot. May the long winter of my soul’s discontent become a glorious summer of my soul’s ascent out of madness—captured on camera…

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