This site was launched on V-Day, 2009, in tribute to Eve Ensler, who has artfully demonstrated the powerful difference one person on a mission can make. Her delightfully funny and thought-provoking play, The Vagina Monologues, was the spark that grew into a global network of people committed to work until the violence stops. You can find V-Day events on her web page: VDay.org
My intent is to educate and inspire people to speak out about domestic violence, abuse, and incest. I am accepting Alice Miller’s call to break down the walls of silence that isolate us and hold some people prisoner. We need to find more viable solutions. Peace on earth starts at home.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton started the women’s movement by editing the Declaration of Independence to read, “all men and women are created equal” with the same unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Her top priority was the elimination of domestic violence.
The Declaration of Independence was written on my Rittenhouse ancestor’s paper. The right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is encoded in my DNA. On the other side of my ancestral blanket, my family were prominent Loyalists descended from the family of Sir Francis Drake. My DNA from them is my love of sailing and courage to navigate uncharted waters.
The Life Rafts page is my Hall of Fame. The people featured on this page have experienced abuse and gone on to be highly successful in their chosen careers. None of them emerged unscathed. Many have leveraged their talents to help bring an end to the violence. Their wisdom and candor have helped me to repair my shattered dreams.
The Great Books page will feature works of fiction and non-fiction that have informed and inspired me. Some are a great escape.
The Survive, Thrive, Joy page will help you cross the bridge from abuse to empowerment. It is the synthesis of what I have learned. It is the start of a map and a tool box designed to help people make wise choices.
The Bitzie, My Muse page is a lighthearted sharing of the wisdom I’ve learned from my cat. Bitzie was a tiny, terrified kitten trying to survive a blizzard in the woods behind my apartment when she entered my life. I thought I was rescuing her, but she rescued me. She is a service animal who is my muse and teacher.
The Leadership page is for people who have survived and moved on to thrive and find joy. On this page, I will write about resources and organizations currently making a difference. You will find links to these organizations in the column on the right and notice that I’m hoping your first action will be to cut these folks a very generous check!
Finally, the Maps (blog) page is where I will archive the previous posts to each of these pages. If a topic interests you, you can access similar posts by clicking on the post’s “category” or the “category cloud” links. Alternatively, the search feature is quite robust. I use abundant category links and tags to help you find people, information, and resources that may be helpful to you in achieving your own mission.
Thank you for visiting my web page. I hope you will find it to be a safe haven if you are currently experiencing abuse. If you have survived abuse and have moved on to thriving in your life, I hope you will be inspired to experience the joy of leveraging your talents and resources to help those currently walking in your old shoes.
Respect is love. So, on this Valentine’s Day, 2009, I invite you to respect yourself. Embrace yourself. Remember that you are God’s beautiful creation. You are God’s child. God loves you and will send guardian angels to guide and protect you. . .until the violence stops.
graduated from DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois. She received a B.S. in Commerce with highest honors and was admitted into Delta Epsilon Sigma, a national honorary society; MBA with distinction; JD and American Jurisprudence Award in family law. She was licensed to practice law in two states. She is currently disabled and living under the protection of Washington State’s Address Confidentiality Program.
Ms. Drake has experienced incest, sexual harassment, domestic violence, emotional abuse, and stalking. She is completing her research on several books on surviving abuse. She lives with her cat Bitzie and the Byrds: Rachmaninoff (Rocky), Angel III, Haydn, Sunny, and Georgie (Gershwin).
On page 275 of The Drake Family in England and America by Louis Stoughton Drake which was published privately in Boston in 1896 and was part of the collection of the Newberry Library in Chicago in 1989, the author states that Peter Drake (my ancestor) was a member of Sir Francis Drake’s family. Some enthusiastic Sir Francis Drake fans suggest, however, that the line died out in the 18th century. Peter was born in England on June 16, 1739, sailed to America, was a strident Loyalist during the American Revolution, was “respectfully requested” (or be hung as a traitor) to decamp to Canada after the war, and had his property confiscated.