Soiled Innocence

Today, oh what a dear blessing to my soul. I was able to visit the home my family lived in when I was 0-4. Southeast Portland (Woodstock).

Marcia, a precious family friend who lived two doors down from us at that time went with me to revisit the neighborhood and recount the details that don’t fill my memory. What a joy and blessing!

We took selfies and pictures from the outside and then I wanted to get some dirt from the yard for my collection (cuz I collect dirt from all over the world, and it seems very appropriate to have this too).

Marcia and I went to the front door and knocked to ask if we could dig a little dirt out. A woman answered holding a toddler baby girl. I explained why we were there—and even though she was home with a sick little, she immediately threw the door open and asked if we wanted to come in and revisit the house. Her name is Amy and she is gloriously amazing. 💙💙

She asked me what I remembered most about the house. One of my strongest memories is my room…a tiny little room that had a crib. She opened a door, and inside it looked the same as my memory—like a shadow had floated from the past. Her daughter’s crib sat now where mine once did.

My heart stirred. It leapt in my chest. She took us through the kitchen and random memories toppled into my mind. Laughter. Hugs. Tears. She led us to the main sections of the home and to the attic room that was once my sister’s and brother’s.

After some beautiful visiting, she welcomed us to the backyard to take some dirt. Marcia and I went outside and the stories continued flowing. I found a place for the dirt and collected it. Holding it in a tiny bag.

And the emotions rose in my chest. But I still didn’t have a handle on why they were so intense. Then tonight, after the adventure of today, I took out the little bag of dirt. And the tears started flowing. My soul screamed within my chest. My throat constricted with whelming flows of emotion.

This dirt. Represents the time in my life I was safe. Tiny. No monsters. Innocence.

It is from a time when I didn’t know what darkness truly held.

The soil pulses with an era of innocence. No pastor had yet molested me. He had not yet sold me to his friends. He had not brought in child pornographers. He had not ruined my life.

This little bag of dirt resonated with the child in me who once knew laughter without it being the only way to survive. Who knew how to be herself and not have to hide or explain away the bruises.

This tiny portion of land in my hand is a testament to the little soul I once was. The baby girl who lived here and moved with her family to Phoenix, entering a world of desperation and agony—a world forging future warriors through the heart of fire and battle.

I collapsed under the weight of that quarter-cup of soil. And I wept under the cloud-smeared sky. There once was a time of wholeness. Of unbroken heart. And today, my soul mourned in the beauty.

Thank you, Amy, for allowing me this tiny piece of land for my soul. For welcoming me in to see the place where safety resided.

With all my heart, thank you.

#BadassWarriors #RiseUp #TheFightForHealing #KickAtDarkness

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