Once upon a time I was living on a tropical island. I was teaching yoga full-time and my days consisted of posting tropical pictures on social media, drinking from fresh coconuts, surfing and shoeless living.
Everyone back in Europe would send me messages telling me how jealous they were – I was living the dream.
One day my best friend sent me a message, she had a funny feeling and wanted to check I was ok. I replied the next day telling her I’d been really drunk, slipped in the shower and split my head open. I’d had stitches and was in shock but it was my own silly fault.
And the pictures of tropical beaches and cocktails continued and my friends continued to be jealous about my life.
Except deep inside I was dying. The story I'd told her was a complete lie.
The reality was this: my boyfriend and I had come home after a party. I was showering and he tried to initiate sex. When I refused, he choked me a couple of times and told me he was going to kill me. I remember screaming at the top of my lungs, praying someone would hear me. I thought he'd gone completely mad and honestly believed I was going to die.
Just as I thought the ordeal was coming to an end, he grabbed the back of my head and slammed my head into a wall. My forehead was split open - blood poured everywhere. He slept off the drink and the next day I was stitched up.
I didn’t teach my morning yoga class and told everyone that I had been drunk and fell.
It felt easier to keep up the illusion than to face the truth – that I had been betrayed in the worst way possible. I stayed silent.
This photo of me and a yoga student was taken a week after it happened.
I stayed with him for more 9 months. Every day I was haunted by what happened. This story isn't about him. He is on his own path to healing and I hope he finds peace. This story is about me.
It wasn’t the physical violence that truly hurt me though. It was the inability to be vocal. It was lying to my friends and family - it went against my core values of honesty and authenticity.
Eventually I found the courage to leave him. It was only then that I told my friends and family the truth, one conversation at a time. And with each new conversation, I found freedom and healing.
Conversations are powerful. Telling your truth is vital. Letting yourself be seen will set you free.
I’ve since dedicated my life to having powerful conversations and in the process I've created a beautiful life for myself and mostly transcended the past. I met my true soulmate Mauro too and we live a simple and beautiful life here in Portugal.
I now use this experience to fuel my deeper mission: to help women improve the quality of their lives, one powerful conversation at a time.
I know what it is to feel silenced and to not speak out. And I also know that, ultimately, authenticity, truth-telling and powerful conversations will set you free.
Owning what’s really going on for you will give you immense freedom.
Letting yourself be seen just as you are will give you the kinda strength you didn't even realize it was possible to feel.
This is me with my soulmate Mauro.
I'm now inviting you to share your own unique story with me, woman to woman. Email me at: [email protected] I read and reply to every single email I receive.