you can take the activist out of the society but you can’t take the activist out of the activist.



DAY 1: Fly, Firefly

When I decided to embark upon a 30 day challenge which, includes posting to my blog for every one of those 30 days, I instantly knew where to begin: Firefly.

Firefly is a poem written by Jungle Flower, a warrior poet who is dear to my heart. Jungle Flower is the founder of Reclaim Your Voice, an organization that provides safe spaces for abuse victims to tell their stories. RYV events are incredibly healing for survivors to openly discuss and share their own stories while also hearing the stories of others. The events are transformative and cathartic experiences. I came across the poem Firefly while shopping on Jungle Flower’s website and was in awe of what I found. Jungle Flower’s ability to paint imagery and raw emotion with her words is other worldly. The power in her prose and soothing voice is undeniable in this film of Firefly by Andreya Klobucar and Monica Thi. In the film, Jungle Flower’s voice is accompanied by beautiful choreography and the dancers embody the storyline with every gesture. Watch the performance below (TRIGGER WARNING: themes of abuse):

I chose to present this poem to you on Day 1 of my 30 Day Challenge because I believe that now more than ever it is important for people to remember the message of this poem: you are more free than you think.

Abuse will play mind games on you that will have you thinking you are limited to one option when the world is truly your oyster. I know firsthand, secondhand, thirdhand, and the list goes on, how true that statement is. What surviving abuse has taught me is that there is a deception of love taking place simultaneously with the abuse which often makes it hard to identify that it is even happening to begin with. But, that moment where you find freedom, and that moment where you take back your light for you is where you begin to reclaim your autonomy.

I often speak about one particular relationship that involved abuse because even though I have been in several abusive relationships, one felt even more perverse than the others. I took back my freedom from him some time within the last few years and I have never looked back. It was as though when I flew away I didn’t even realize I was leaving until I was years removed from the situation… I was that scarred. I had to make sure that the coast was in fact clear before I could breathe again and rest my wings.

Now I am far away, but not without the memory. I have learned the hard way that no matter how difficult the memory, you have to remember; because if you don’t, then you allow a space for yourself to potentially make the same mistakes again. And if there was ever a reason that the universe put you through that experience to begin with, it was to teach you never to go back there ever again.

It is important to remember that even long after a traumatic event takes place the effects can be experienced until it registers in the brain that you are in fact safe. It is important to remember that it sometimes takes the mind a moment to catch up to reality, especially after something as potentially life threatening as abuse.

Right now the world is still in the middle of a pandemic. Domestic violence is a major concern and abuse is on the rise is general. It is more important now than ever to take measures to try and combat that trend. People’s lives depend on it.

Follow Jungle Flower on Instagram to keep up to date with more moving content and share this post with anyone you think it can help. Whether it is breaking free from past, present or potential future trauma, Jungle Flower’s words are healing energy in motion.

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  1. Jungle Flower

    I am so moved…the fact that you thought of me first and that this piece resonated with you as much as it did..I so appreciate your write up and reflections. Thank you so much Arielle!

    Liked by 1 person

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