For a long time, it was hard to get Emelie to open up and speak up for herself. She would be the “doormat” in relationships with others. So desperate to fit in with others her age. As her life started to unravel this spring, we needed to help her. It started with getting the anxiety under control. Then empowering her. I never knew how unempowered she felt.
The first step to empowering her was to connect her with her emotions. Show her that they do have a place in her life. That it is ok to feel them even if she can’t show them in that moment. We did that through horesback riding. As she connected with Will, the horse of a friend, she became more secure. What amazed us was that we noticed more confidence and a change within one lesson of about two hours. Yes, we pay for the lessons. Ashley, the trainer and horse owner, connects with Emelie on a level that we don’t see often.
Once we were able to connect Em to her emotions and build her confidence. We wanted to make sure she felt heard. Part of her felt that her voice was being lost in the crowd. Since she was too young for a regular facebook profile… account, not that we think she can handle one yet anyway, I started a facebook page for her. One we could work together on to put her voice out there. To help her feel heard.
Em’s Journey began. Literally. That’s what we called the page. She finally felt heard by SOMEONE. Anyone that wasn’t her family. She had a message she wanted to share. While the page has morphed and it’s more me chornicling her journey and her voice, it still revolves around Em and how her Autism, Anxiety, ADHD and Sensory Issues are integrated into our daily lives. I digress though, back to our empowerment.
Just when we thought she couldn’t get stronger and more empowered she found a theme song. She listened to Sara Bareilles song “Brave” over and over and over again. She could sing it to herself. They lyrics talk about finding your voice. Saying what you need to say. Letting yourself be the person you want and need to be. And Emelie did just that.
In light of the situation she finds herself in now, she still struggles with empowerment. She stands up for herself. She asks a so called friend to stop calling her ugly. Says they aren’t friends when the girl refuses. AND yet she is asking for forgiveness and if they can still be friends. So desperate to have a friend who is a girl who she “THOUGHT” understood her. She’ll get there, someday.
She stood up for herself to begin with. She put her brave on. She allowed herself to feel. She contained them and went to someone to help her know it was ok. And while she tried to repair that friendship, and she is hurt, she will be fine. As long as she remembers the lessons we’ve given her through empowerment and “putting her brave on”.
So to quote Sara Bareilles, “Show me how big your brave is”!