Mary Graziano shared Michal Madison Art




Learn to be proud of your authentic, messy, self.
It’s who you are, even when you feel lost
within yourself thinking you are a failure!!
Failure can be turned around,
empowering you to keep going.
A challenge, to change. Accept it!!
Make it a turning point to who you really are.
Never mask your authenticity,
show your genuine self.
Never be afraid to feel, to speak up.
Say what you mean without trepidation.
With courage, to be heard for what you believe in!!
Our world, often saturated with chaos.
Being optimistic, you achieve, having tenacity
to persevere through the bumps in the road of life!!
By showing love for yourself first, only then
can you guide others to find love within themselves.
Our lives, often messy, never perfect.
It’s impossible!!
We all have imperfections. Not one person
is better than another. Our Creator
made us unique for a reason.
Our imperfections show us who we truly are.
Empowering others, showing them how
accepting of ourselves we are. In turn,
they too may learn to accept their genuine self.
Demonstrate respect for others, listening to their views
never tearing it apart!!
Words are like a jigsaw puzzle, can be broken
apart by hate, or put back together
solidly, bringing love, understanding,
hope to the world!!
One word can change the whole meaning.
Learn to be proud of your vulnerabilities.
Dare greatly, be yourself.
Authentic, Messy, Imperfect!!

Prose by Mary Graziano©2016

Beautiful watercolour painting
title “Dare Greatly” & words
“Authentic, Messy, Imperfect”
by my Incredible, inspiring, friend
Michal Madison©2015




Her dark brown eyes evoke sadness,
lips have lost their smile.
Lost when she sees hatred
born into a child.
Bigotry, in place of love,
anger in place of happiness!!
Eyes questioning, wondering why a child
is used in despicable ways.
Where is society, when a child is thrown
into the “lion’s den?”
Where are those who say they care?
In reality, they look the other way!!
A child feels the heartache
of not being loved, innocence lost.
Damage, that cannot be reversed.
Living in a bubble, unable to escape.
The future of a child, foreboding!!
Her heart cries for an abused child
who is neglected, sexually abused,
bullied, living with racism
that is still alive today.
All forms of abuse!!
She wants all children to live life content,
without convictions, to be free, able to run
play with laughter,
to just be CHILDREN!!
When was this lost?
When do we change what was eradicated?
How do we find strength to say NO
to this hatred that purges out
into the streets, into the lives
of our children?
Her eyes speak in silence,
her lips say “please don’t turn away,
let’s change our world by speaking up
for the future of children everywhere!!”
With pleading eyes she begs.

Prose by Mary Graziano©
Revised July 7, 2016

Beautiful watercolour painting
by my wonderful friend
Michal Madison
Vulnerable Expressions of Raw Emotion



A child of abuse is very cautious in trusting an adult.  They have been denied to live the life of an innocent, carefree child!! Hiding, in the shadows, as other children are free to be themselves, playing laughing, free spirits.  An abused child may often put on that happy face, but it is just a mask, to cover up what is or has happened to them.  I know, I was one of those children.

An abused child grows up in an adult world, being subjected to things that they should never know about, that corrupts their mind, body, soul.  Trust is often doubtful in the eyes of a child.  They are forever changed.  Degraded, a “puppet” on their abuser’s string.  Caught in a web of lies, decent, shame, being told it’s their fault these things happen to them. 

You must slowly earn their trust, lovingly, one step at a time.  Letting them know that you are a safe person, even then, that trust is going to take a very long time in coming.  They may have been told by their abuser, “I’m  a safe person and would never hurt you.”  A wounded child, lives with their wounds forever.  They are caught in the deep abyss, sometimes unable to ever climb out from the clutches of their abuser.  

We must not turn away, we must always believe a child, then help them, not leave them shackled in horrendous abuse!!! Believe, get their trust, call someone, don’t sit idle, don’t pretend it’s not happening.  If it were your child, wouldn’t you want someone to be there, let you know what happened or is happening to your child?  Take off your blinders, open your eyes to an abused and innocent child!!!  Mary Graziano©2016



What this world of ours needs is more love. We live in a world where hate dominates. A world filled with hatred for others. Whether it be race, religion, sex, gender. Seems everyone has something to say!!! Why can’t we live in peace, harmony, with love all around us?  Is that a “fairy tale?” Does it not exist any longer? 

Hatred does sneer at love.  Children learn almost from birth to hate.  And it’s not their fault, it’s a learned behaviour that needs to change.  In some parts of the world, children are handed a machine gun, learn how to kill, learn that they are the superior race.  Innocent children are killed, told they will be martyres. They are brainwashed so badly, will this ever change? 

How do we spread love? One way is to start at home, sharing with your child the meaning of love, that we should all love one another, not hate someone because of the way they look, the colour of their skin, the ethnic background, their sexual orientation,  etc.  Children learn this at an early age, when going to school, they will sneer at someone because they look different, they learn to judge others, this usually happens when they are with their peers.  

We are such a diverse society now.  We need to learn to get along with each other, to learn to love each others cultures, and those coming into our countries need to learn to adjust to our culture, not change it for their purposes.  This has caused so much hatred among cities, countries. it needs to stop!!! Let’s wipe out hatred!!!!…Mary Graziano©



So many children live this way every day of their young lives.  Silent, withdrawn, keeping to themselves.   But, in a busy world we live in, who really takes the time to notice little Johnny, little Cindy?  Even in their own homes, parents are too busy to take notice, and decide that Johnny is just playing up in his room.  Changes do occur and we must take notice if your child, a child at school, is changing.  Silence isn’t always “golden” like they say, it could also be a sign your child is being bullied, abused and he/she has no voice to let anyone know.  They live in fear, fear of what will happen if they do tell, fear of what would happen to their family unit, if abuse is happening in their own homes. 

Their hearts are being torn apart by what is being done to them. Their abuser is keeping them silent.  Their hearts are hurting so badly, they shed tears in silence, when they are alone. On the outside, instead of being that silent, withdrawn child, they are looking happy, not a care in the world, living a life like any normal child, so they think!! They are putting on a front, hiding behind that smile so not to be detected, not to look different. Bit by bit they are becoming a shadow of themselves from the inside out.  Children of abuse don’t have a voice, WE the adult must be that voice for them.  Don’t let a child down, reach out if you see your child or another child change in some way, if sadness, depression, takes hold of them.  Talk to them, let them know you can be that trusting person who cares.  Don’t ever turn away from a child in need, take off those blinders, be a voice for an innocent child.  I was that child who on the outside looked happy for the most part, pretending nothing happened, but on the inside I was dying slowly, trapped within.  My heart was aching but I had no voice.  So as a child, I did nothing. 

Let’s be a voice for the innocent children of abuse.  “We are the forgotten children, please stand up and fight for us. Help take away the monsters from hell, who abuse us in every way.”  Remember children everywhere, protection is what they need.  Be that voice, help set them free!!!




We need to be the voice for the many children, who are alone, who have no voice, scared, defeated by their abuser.  They are shadows in the night!!! Fearful of their lives.  Many of us are survivors of abuse, we know what it is like for them.  We know the terror they feel, how the shadows in the night time mean only one thing to them.  Silenced by their abusers, knowing if they tell bad things can happen to them, to their families.  Their lives are empty. Hearts crushed.   Let’s help stop this cycle of abuse.  Know the signs. Be their voice.  Don’t turn away. They need us, need our trust. Don’t let the children down!!! 




     Uniqueness is a wonderful thing. Can you imagine if we were all the same in this world? Nothing was different about us?  We all looked the same, had the same qualities, shared the same beliefs.  How boring would that be?

     I think that society needs to realize that there is a void in our world. The void; not enough love. Not enough compassion, Loving one another.  Reaching out to each other, having compassion, giving of oneself, Showing empathy, having faith in mankind.  Where and when did we start losing this? Where did we go wrong?

     There is so much hatred in all parts of the world, especially of late.  Is that the way things are going?  Are we as a human society beginning hate more? Believing that hate is deserving, because of someone’s nationality, religion, ethnic background.  The colour of one’s skin, who one loves?  Why does it matter? Our world has changed drastically because of this ideology. Racism, which covers, race, creed, sexual orientation etc., is one problem that is persistent in so many parts of the world.  We need to feel deep within our souls. Remembering that we are all in this world, supposedly to make it a better place. But we are destroying one another with all this hatred felt by so many.

     Prejudice attitudes bring with it ignorance and fear. So much is based on not having the knowledge of what another nation per say is all about. People are too quick to judge. This judgment brings with it stereotyping because we are so often not caring enough to find out about who one person or group of persons really are. We ignore the real picture, we tend not to care because they are different!!! All of this leads to discrimination.

     I guess it is a normal human response to have some sort of prejudice, whether it be racial, sexual, or other, because of one person or race being different than you. But does it make it right? No!!! Not in this day and age. I thought we had become far more accepting of others. It saddens me to see that this is not the case. Wars are fought today because of these differences. One nation wanting to take over all other nations. Life is too short to feel hatred for another.

     We are all unique.  Individuals. No one is better than the other, not in our Creator’s eyes. Not in my eyes either.  When we hear about all the violence in the world, for most of us it makes us sad. Violence tears lives apart, violence is hatred, violence ends discussions of peace, violence is like a weed, thriving, growing, can’t be stopped!! We must learn to love again, stand up for all the injustice in this world. Our Creator is a loving God, wanting us to love one another, not tear each other apart. 

     In closing, I would just like to say that kindness within society, within our world overall, could change how we see things. It can bring hope to the world, to humanity. This world might just become a little more positive, and a far better place to live in.  Let’s learn to embrace each other with love, compassion, kindness overall goes a long way.

Written by Mary Graziano©                                                 June, 2016


     In the wake of all that happened in Orlando Florida, I as a Canadian am saddened by all that took place. What gets into the mind of in this case an individual, to go inside an establishment, and start shooting at random, killing and injuring innocent people!!

     Friends out with friends, couples out together with other couples, enjoying a great evening of dancing etc. What gives a person the right to take another’s life?  Where is their conscience?  Certainly not where it should be, caring and having love for their fellow human beings.  I just can’t wrap my head around, all the senseless killings that have taken place.  It happens here in Canada, but not as often as it does in the U.S. and other parts of the world.  Here in Canada we have stringent gun control, and yes, if someone wants to get a gun they can.  

     There have been many reasons stated in the media about why this young man chose to gun down innocent people.  Doesn’t matter, what he did was wrong.  The colour of our skin, our races, our sexual orientation, should not matter.  We are all God’s children, we don’t have that right to kill another human being because we don’t like that they are White, Black, Asian, Iranian, etc. or that they are gay, lesbian, straight, bisexual, etc. Who cares!!! That is their choice and we should respect it. The colour of our skin should make no bearing on how we feel for another human being. Like my prose says, we all bleed the same.  Colour is just colour, it’s what’s on the inside, in our hearts, our souls that  matter most!!!

     There are good people and bad people in this world and there always will be.  Good and bad in all races, religions, sexes, it doesn’t matter, and it doesn’t give ANYONE the right to gun down another  human being in cold blood!!! They are someones, son, daughter, cousin, aunt, uncle, husband, wife, lover!!!! We are humans, let’s start acting like it. Let’s bring more love into this world, subtract hate, all it does is bring more hatred.

     Our world is crumbling all around us.  Hatred spews out everywhere.  You see it on the news, read about it, see it first hand.  What kind of an affect is this going to have on the next generation?  If we don’t turn things around, our children’s children are going to continue this hatred for others, the world will not last.

     We have forgotten how to love, how to be kind, how to live harmoniously with each other.  Our diversity, is so unique, makes us all different,  can teach us how to live in peace, not live with being afraid to walk down the street because you are different.  

     Feel it in your heart and soul, don’t hate others, because someone tells you you should or that what they do is wrong.  Let us all unite together.  Bring back peace, diversity.  Our differences make us who we are.  Let sameness prevail over differences. pizap.com14658637014623.jpg




In nature animals trudge on,
never giving up. Meeting many adversities
in their lives, but, no matter what the cost
they continue on, with determination
to see the rising sun of new dawn,
knowing their courage helped them
reach their final destination.
Be amazed at the beauty
surrounding you.
Time to be positive, a time to renew.
Life, is an arduous journey.
One we must all travel.
You can live it to the fullest,
with a positive attitude or,
face it with negativity
which makes life gruelling!!
Meet it with determination,
have the potential to see it through.
To reach your goals, your dreams,
they CAN come alive!!
Seek joy, embrace living.
There is no room
for negative thoughts!!
We must trudge onward,
like the animals in nature.
Their journey is on survival,
hoping they live to see tomorrow.
Your dreams, your journey
is whatever you want out of life.
Giving up is too easy,
face each day with tenacity!!
Follow your heart, your soul.
Above all, your dreams.
Move forward, each step,
helping to bring you closer to
Embrace the Journey.

Prose by Mary Graziano ©
Revised June 10, 2016

Beautiful watercolour painting & title
Embrace the Journey
By my fabulous, wonderful friend & artist
Michal Madison


     We all have an “inner child” within us. As survivors of child abuse, often times our inner child is silent, afraid, hiding in the background, because of the abuse that happened to us, we have not had the chance to live our young lives as happy, go-lucky children.  We may have blocked out what happened and continued on our life’s journey pretending that nothing happened.  I for one did that.  But, our “inner child” is hurting, wanting to be able to come out from the darkness, but is not comfortable in doing so. She/he lives inside us in fear, fear of being hurt all over again.  To help our “inner child” come out from the deep abyss, we need to talk to her/him., let them know that it is safe, if you have healed from your abuse as an adult, and you yourself know that it is safe to tell your inner child this.  As we tell her/him that they are now free, that the monster can’t hurt them anymore, there may be a lot of resistance from your inner child in believing you.  Trust has been broken, now we must mend the fence, and bring that trust forward.  With a lot of love, understanding, your inner child, will hopefully start to open up to you, trusting that you are their safety net.  Play, colour, read fun stories to your inner child.  These are things that you may as a child not been able to do.  Together you will grow into one person again.  A survivor, she/he will smile again, feel free to explore your world with you, as a survivor/thriver/warrior.  

“I won’t let the demons hurt you, I will be your guiding light, to protect you and always love you, in the darkness of the night.”  

     I spoke these words to my inner child in my healing from abuse, it took quite awhile to get her to trust me, but now we are one, happy, living the life that was robbed from us as  children. Never to be abused again. To help others in their own healing journey.  Take your inner child by the hand, lead her to safety, your safety, be free, to live the rest of your life in peace..Hugs and Love to all. Mary Graziano© June, 2016



How can anyone expect to help a child be free from their abuser if you turn a blind eye and pretend that it didn’t happen, that it doesn’t pertain to you, you say “let someone else worry about it.”

 I’m sorry, but it affects all of us.  We as adults need to be vigilant in children.  Just because it isn’t your children, or family member doesn’t mean you can forget about it.  If you know that a child has been abused, or you suspect it, you have a duty to that child to report abuse.  If it turns out to be false, that’s okay, because you will feel better knowing you did something.  If it turns out to be true, again you have saved a child from abuse, may have saved their life.  All these things help children of abuse.  They are often silent in fear, or have been told that they better not say anything or their are consequences.  An abuser will traumatize a child into silence!!!

In this day and age where abuse has come out into the spot light, you would think that more people would stand up for the rights of a child, be there for them, but those blinders are still on, I’m afraid..But how many times do you see animal abuse in the forefront?and right away people jump on it and are appalled at what abuse an animal has gone through.  T.V. Stations have commercials for animal abuse.  I love animals and I am also appalled at what someone does to an animal, but please remember, humans come first.  Why is not enough done to show that children are being abused?  People often say they don’t want to see disturbing pictures of children.  But they look at these types of pictures of animals..How does that make sense?  It is time, to take off those blinders, stand up for the rights of children.  They need us., we need to stop the abuser from hurting another child.  By turning a blind eye, the abuser often gets away with it.Shame on us!!!! HELP STOP ABUSE!!!! OF AN INNOCENT CHILD!!!pizap.com14648293019851



Do you know the truth  about abuse                                                         The scars it  has left behind?
The secrets so many, left untold,
poisoned us, with words that, corrupted our minds.
Stole our innocence, controlled us by fear,
made us believe  we were useless
never amounting to anything!!
Good for only one thing,                                                                        
degraded beyond belief.
In our minds we believed we deserved this,                                            
no-one ever saying that we otherwise didn’t.
We pretended that our families truly loved us.                                  
Our smiles we often did fake!
Who really knows what goes on
behind the walls,
who really listens, who really cares!!
What they don’t see, to them
nothing happened, or was wrong.
Our secrets are ours.
The pain we must bear.
The scars from abuse, deeply affected us,
In our hearts it never leaves.
We don’t want this for our own children.
We must fight for all the children
To try and protect, 
help keep them safe from abuse
making them live a life that is so unfair!!
Behind these walls                                                                                  
walls that were meant to protect
not keep children silent, trapped in abuse.
Too young to fight, it’s up to us.
To come together as voices for the children
And let their spirits live.
Mary Graziano ©
Revised May 26, 2016


Mary Graziano shared Michal Madison Art                              www.MichalMadisonArt.com


She wears a mask with beautiful hues of purple, green, orange! Camouflaging how she really looks, feels,
bringing comfort to all her fears. Slowly, losing her identity. Trapped within herself, powerless, afraid to escape the confines of her mask. Her brown eyes stare with emptiness.
Trepidation holds her back, crushing her spirit.
Frustrated. She decides to confront her fears!!
Taking on a positive attitude, slowly able to leave the negatives behind.
The mask that hid her beauty begins to fade, as she finds inner strength. Realizing, wearing the mask only conceals who she truly is!! Able now, to face it with her new found power called COURAGE.
Her faith, diminishes fear, she is now her own person!!
No longer hiding. Outwardly exposing her true authentic self.
The hero of her own destiny.
She is now!! Authentic, raw, fearless, shameless, epic, free!!

Prose by Mary Graziano
Revised May 16, 2016©

Beautiful Watercolour painting,
Title “BEHIND THE MASK” & words
“Authentic, raw, fearless, shameless, epic, free”
By my wonderful, artistic friend
Michal Madison©

Michal Madison Art's photo.
Michal Madison Art

someday she knew she would be brave enough, to remove her masks, to be who she truly was — authentic, raw, fearless, shameless, epic, free!
~michal madison




Tomorrow, May 8, 2016 is Mother’s Day.  It is suppose to be a happy day, where many embrace their mother’s love, celebrate that love with them.  How many won’t be able to do just that?  How many did’nt receive a mother’s love?  Too many to count!!! As children we look up to our mothers, look for encouragement, understanding, a feeling of being wanted.  Wanting nothing more than the love of a Mother. Their kind touch, hug, kiss.  Many children didn’t or will not ever know that kind of love.  Living in a world of abuse, a world they have known all their lives.  Suffering often in silence.  Being neglected in many ways. Emotional, physical, sexual abuse is devastating to a child.

When a mother emotionally abuses you as a child, it leaves a scar inside of you that may never heal.  We carry that scar with us from childhood to adulthood.  Words spoken are ingrained into us, we never forget.  How can a mother do this, seemingly not caring for her child. A child she gave birth to?  Even a child she adopted as an infant.  I was one of those children. Adopted at 6 months of age, supposed to be loved.  Told I was “special” because they chose me.  I didn’t feel loved.  I don’t ever remember being hugged, or told “I love you.”  That hurts, and still hurts.  My mother is now deceased, and have now forgiven her in the past year. I will never know if she truly loved me.  Always being put down, told “You will never amount to anything!!” This hurts.  Although I hid it inside me growing up, pretended that all was fine in our family, but it was a dysfunctional family, like so many who lived their lives the same way.  My mother never knowing about the incest that went on, or did she know? Didn’t care, turn a blind eye?  These are things I will never know, others may never know either.  

Living a life of pretending, that all was okay in our family to the people on the outside. I hid it well, as so many other children did and do. All we want was a mothers love but often only got yelled at for every little thing. Yet, I still needed to hear her words of praise, her words of love. Telling me I did a good job. Sadly, so many children face this every day.  It saddens my heart to know what these kids are going through.  Abuse will happen even on Mother’s day.  We can’t stop abuse, but we can help by seeing the signs, not turning a blind eye.  A child has a right to feel happy, to feel the love of a mother.

I write this not for me. I have moved on and yes the hurt still lingers, but I am in a good place now.  I write this for all those who are still in a dark place in their lives, who need to know that there are others out there who know what they are going through, who care, and want them to know that they are not alone.                                                                                                           Mary Graziano                                                                               copyrighted May 2016…


To be a mother, God’s greatest gift
To cherish a child for life.
Our Creator blessed you to care for them
Never abusing, hurting, to neglect.
A mother is a mentor, to shape a child’s life.
Not hate, ridicule, ignore them.
That is not the way it should be.
A mother is their shining star.
Someone a child looks up to.
To be held in their arms, told “I love you.”
Bringing comfort, as they go to sleep.
No mother should ever humiliate.
Break a child’s spirit in any way.
Their child will carry this forever.
A heart that will be broken,
Sometimes never to be repaired.
Children are our special gift
Loaned from Creator above.
To always love, cherish, protect.
A mother love a child’s wanting gift.

Prose by Mary Graziano
Copyrighted May 7, 2016

Mary Shared Michal Madison Art




Mary Graziano Shared Michal Madison Art10993125_659908937465490_8234415553837526151_n
My eyes speak with sadness. 
For the crippled spirit.
My eyes share compassion. 
To those lost within.
My eyes share kindness. 
When kindness eluded.
My eyes speak with tears. 
When fear cripples their voices.
My eyes share understanding. 
For the pain they feel.
My eyes speak of hope. 
Lifting those disheartened.
My eyes share strength. 
For the weakened spirit.
My eyes speak of positives.
When negative mindset takes over.
My eyes share visions. 
Of rising up. Not falling.
My eyes speak with courage. 
Helping others move forward.
My eyes share joy. 
No more emotionless eyes.
My eyes speak of grace. 
Love. Respect for oneself.
My eyes share empowerment. 
Giving resilience to thrive.
My eyes speak of Creator’s. 
Immeasurable love.
My eyes share gratitude. 
Of making it through.
My eyes speak new beginnings. 
Never give up.
My eyes share kindness. 
To lighten a heavy heart.
My eyes speak with many emotions.
Sealed are my lips.
No words need be spoken.
Prose by Mary Graziano ©2015
Revised May 6, 2016
Beautiful watercolour painting &
By my incredibly talented, friend
Michal Madison
©2015 www.MichalMadisonArt.com



How often do we strive to reach our dreams or goals in life?  Too often the negatives take over and weigh us down.  So…we tell ourselves, we can’t do it, or someone else says “those goals are not achievable, why even bother?  Changing our mindset, can help us grow, can help us attain those goals.  Never let a negative mindset discourage you in your pursuit to achieving your dreams.Whatever your dream is, it comes from inside you, deep within your soul. In order for it to happen, you need to make it come true. You have thought about it over and over, then, you have the inherent ability to accomplish this wonderful aspiration!!

Courage can help us change within ourselves. Help us to break away from the fear that grips us. Often afraid to move forward, one step at a time. If you believe in your journey in reaching your dreams, striving for goals that you never thought you could attain, it can happen. But it begins with YOU!!  To believe in yourself. To change your mindset. Those dreams are out there, all you have to do is be confident in yourself.  All things are possible if you believe!!!!!          Mary Graziano ~ copyrighted….May/2016






To color inside the lines.
Safe. Within your own.
Personal perimeter.
Actions. Often dictated by others!!
Always living by rules.
You have invariably known.
Content to stay where you are!!
Have faith in yourself.
Believe you can.
Strive to be you. Your own self.
Not what others.
Think you should be.
Be willing to take risks!!
Genuine insight.
Often met with resistance.
Making progress.
Meets with more contention!!
To color inside the lines.
Your sanctuary.
To move outside those lines.
Takes courage. Strength.
Mediacrity. Your comfort zone.
Never be afraid.
To make that change.
To discover what lays beyond.
Achieving your dreams.
Takes risks.
Learning to.
Color outside the lines.
Gives you hope!!
Hope. Gives you courage.
Deep inside each of us.
Courage waits.
Believe in yourself.
Grab hold of it.
Courage. Leaves fear behind.
Knowing you can succeed.
Surpassing your boundaries.
At a time. When you thought.
There was. No hope!!
A time when you had to always.
Color inside the lines!!!

Prose by Mary Graziano©
May 1, 2016

Beautiful watercolour painting &
Title “Color Inside the Lines &
by my wonderful friend
Michal Madison
11”x14” ©2015 Michal Madison

Michal Madison Art's photo.
Michal Madison Art

“To live content with small means;
to seek elegance rather than luxury;
& refinement rather than fashion;
to be worthy, not respectable;
to be wealthy, not rich;
to listen to stars & birds,
babes & sages,
with an open heart;
to study hard; think quietly,
act frankly, talk gently,
await occasions, hurry never;
in a word, to let the spiritual,
unbidden & unconscious,
grow up through the common
~this is my symphony.”
words by William Henry Channing

“Elegance the only Beauty that never fades.” ~ Audrey Hepburn

“Color Inside the Lines”
watercolor painting by Michal Madison
11″x14″ ©2015 Michal Madison


Creativity has helped many of us heal, both on the inside and outside.  So many survivors are able to express themselves through the arts, whether it be painting, writing, music.  It’s a way to express ourselves.  Giving us a chance to finally have a voice. A voice that was silent for so many years.  WE are now able to come out from the shadows of the past, feeling positive in ourselves, in our feelings.  The negatives that we felt for so long, can now subside within our minds.  Many survivors as children only heard negativity.  Often told they would amount to nothing.  Are stupid, worthless!!! Their minds believed this.  Never believing in themselves.

Now as adults, so many survivors know that this is not true.  It is far from the truth. Their abuser wanted them to believe this. Knowing that they could keep you in the dark.  Afraid to tell!!!

Being able to change their mindset, brings about a fulfillment within themselves.  A chance to fulfill their dreams. Believing in their dreams. Of leading a life with so many possibilities for a better tomorrow. The arts gave them that outlet, to use their voices not by words per say, but by creating what they felt inside…..By Healing Through Creativity!!!!                                                                                                                               Mary Graziano                                                                                                                                           Copyrighted                                                                                                                                                  May 1, 2016                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          


EYES OF FEAR!!! How many children….


How many children have been terrorized. Having eyes of fear?  Too many to count. We as survivors know the fear they have.  Our eyes also had that fear inside. They internalize the hurt they feel.  On the outside they may look fine to others.  Carrying on their day to day lives when away from home.  Not wanting to show the fear that dwells inside their eyes to others.  

Afraid to tell.  Afraid it will cause them more pain by their abuser.  Often times an abuser tells them they will hurt them or others in their family.  Silence.  Binds them together.  A secret!! Secured. Locked by the fear of what their abuser tells them.  

We, as survivors of abuse.  We are the voices for children hurt/abused/murdered.  We have escaped our abusers, are now free, alive.  We have a voice, because we decided we were not going to keep the “secret” quiet any longer.  We created a change in ourselves.  From the quiet, solemn child, or the child who entered into a world  of drugs/alcohol/etc. to an adult who looked for therapy, to help cope with the past, the P.T.S.D. to free us, and help us move forward.

Now, as we have moved forward in our lives, not letting the past hold us captive, we now have the strength to be a voice for the voiceless!!!  Our hurt consumed us.  We don’t want that for the children today.  We want them and any other survivors, to come forward, tell their story, as hard as it is. Releasing it brings a huge relief inside your body. As we use our voices, now powerful.  We are letting others know that it is okay to tell.  To break free from the shackles that held you prisoner.

We are helping to let children know, that it is the fault of their abuser.  The children did nothing wrong, no matter what the abuser said, or tells you will happen.  We the voices that were once silent, are here to help free all children who live in fear.  Hoping that they will listen.  So that they will never again have to face another day with EYES OF FEAR!!!!

By Mary Graziano©                                                                     April 24, 2016






He stood outside the school that day.
Scared. So all alone!!
His heart beats fast. He contemplates.
’s going. To happen next.
Slowly. He trudged up the steps. Of the school.
He peered. Inside the door.
Kids were running. Down the hall.
With a deep breath. He walked inside.
Slowly. He trudged. Head bent down
He felt so very lost.
Unsure of himself. No knowing. Where to go.
Kids stared. Pointed. Laughed. At him.
Tears filled his big brown eyes.
A bigger boy. Comes up to him.
Pushes. Kicks him hard!!
He falls against the lockers.
His head. It hits the ground.
“This is my school.” The bully said.
He laughs. As he kicks him again!!
His face turned white. Much pain he felt. Painfully. Got up. From the ground.
He just couldn’t take. Much more of this.
Every school. He went to. A bully would hound him down.
Home that night. Sad. Depressed. He locked his bedroom door.
Shaking. He wondered why. He was a bully’s target.
No longer could he take it. Sadly. He had had enough!! His will to live. Was gone.
Tears clouded his eyes. As he wrote.
“Dear Mom and Dad I’m sorry.
I can
’t take this any-more.
Bullies are always hurting me. Thought. I could take care of it myself.
Didn’t want to worry you both. Goodbye.
To the angels I go.”
Prose by Mary Graziano©
September 10, 2013

Revised April 11, 2016
Children can sometimes, only take so much. Feeling they are targets of bullies, for some reason. No matter how many schools they go to, their lives become a living hell. Some feel suicide is their only resort. They can’t talk to anyone because of retaliation by the person bullying them.
We need to see the warning signs. Learn about them. Whether you are a parent, teacher, friend, whoever. If a child isolates him/herself, talks about suicide, gives away their possessions, are loners, depressed, these are signs that must be taken seriously.
Talk openly to your child about feelings. Reassuring them that they CAN talk to you about anything. Don
’t dismiss what they say, LISTEN, you may just save a life. It may be the life of your very own child!!                                       mgraziano©


April is Child Abuse Prevention and Sexual Abuse Awareness month in the U.S.A.

Will you be there for the children of abuse?

Michal Madison Art's photo.
Michal Madison Art with Michal Madison and Mary E Graziano.

I Will Be There For You

I will be there for you
To lift your spirits high,
Take away your doubts and fears
When all you do is cry.

I will be there for you….
Give you a shoulder to lean on
Without words I’ll hold you tight
And help you to be strong.

I will be there for you….
When no-one else does care,
Wipe the tear-drops from your cheeks
When life is just not fair.

I will be there for you….
When the darkness swallows night,
Hold your hand ‘til you do sleep
Together win this fight.

I will be there for you….
When shadows frighten so,
Reassure you, love you forever
Be with you as you grow.

I Will Be There For You…..

Written by Mary Graziano©
art by Michal Madison



     Many of us have come a long way in our healing journey.  It has been a difficult rough road, with many twists and turns.  We persevered. Pushed through the debris, per say. Had many setbacks along the way.  In the beginning, we never thought we could make it. Thought of giving up. Why? Because if was easier to give up than pursue what was waiting for us at the end of the rainbow.  We cried, were depressed.  So many things filled our heads.  Questioning our own inner self. Self doubts, hating who we were. Telling ourselves we deserved what happened.  We must have asked for it or was a horrible child.  Feeling worthless inside ourselves. We held our secret in a vault deep inside our being. So no-one would ever find out our “dark secret.”  Maybe your abuser told you if you told he would hurt you even worse. He/she would kill everyone in the family.  By saying that, he/she knew you would keep the secret.  As a small child, you were scared, so scared. You kept quiet.

A small child. We were.  Alone. No-one to turn to. Feeling dirty.  Ashamed. This very secret burning in the bit of our stomach.  Everyday, we were left wondering when he/she would strike again.  When the hitting would start!! When the sexual abuse would begin, hurting us so badly.  Not understanding what was happening.  So many nights our pillows stained. Tears spewing down our faces. Knowing any moment that door would slowly open, the haunting figure of a monster would stand in the doorway.  For me, that was my fear.  I would pretend to sleep, covers pulled up close to me, hanging on to them for dear life.  Did that stop him?  No, he was strong, large hands, pulling the sheets down, reaching for me……So many of us have faced the same thing.

We were not bad.  We were children.  Innocent. Wishing our lives were different.  To be happy, well adjusted. That was not our destiny.  For some reason, we had to live through a life of horror.  Our world belonged to our abuser.  Not able to fight back. We dissociated, thinking of a happy place, where we were free, laughing, playing, Parents who loved us unconditionally.

We were crushed.  Beyond hope.  For those who believe. Praying to Our Creator. To release us from the bonds of abuse.  I know I prayed many times.  Never heard from God. As I got older I lost my faith and believed I must have deserved it, that our Creator abandoned me.

As we grew into adults, we led our lives.  Some may have taken the low road, drinking, becoming promiscuous, taking drugs etc.  Others, like myself held it deep inside.  Letting it fester like a volcano ready to explode at any time..And it did.  I finally had to let it out. That was the beginning of my healing.  I realized, I wasn’t a bad person.  I never deserved it, none of it from either parent.  The sexual abuse was not my fault. I am a good person. These are the words that help us heal.  Our abuser has no control over us any longer. We can say NO to abuse!!!  Therapy a God send.  You need to find a therapist that is right for you.  It may take many attempts to finding the one who understands what you have/are going through.  Never give up, keep searching.  Interview them.  There is one out there just right for you.  There are many different types of therapy. The 12 Step Program, has helped so many survivors.  I wish I had known about that 20 years ago, but…..

I was lucky to have a wonderful therapist named Cheryl, who understood all I went through.  I was with her for 17 years.  The day I went in for my appointment, she said to me, “I don’t think you need my help anymore. By what you tell me and what I read on your blog, you have finally gotten your wings.  You are helping others.”  I had shown Cheryl my blog, where I first started writing about my abuse with poetry.  Little did I even think that my poetry would help others in their own healing.  It was deep dark poetry about what I went through at that time in my life.  Now I write inspirational posts, to let others know they need to be more positive.  Cheryl shares my blog with her clients, for them to read and know that they are not alone.

Having a support system is something that will get you through. Either your spouse, or a close friend.  Someone you can trust. When I finally told my husband, he stood beside me all the way, never once doubting what I said to him. He didn’t want the details.  He believed me one hundred percent. Never doubting.

As you go through your recovery from abuse, have a mindset of positives. Leave the negatives behind.  Know that there is a rainbow out there waiting for you to reach it.  It takes time, but it will happen.  Tell your inner child that she/he is loved.  Is safe. Play with your inner child.  Colour with them.  Read stories to them.  Do things that you as a child were never able to do.  Your inner child will begin to trust you, will realize that they an come out from the deep abyss. Not needing to hide away any longer.  The monster who destroyed their self esteem/your self esteem is not longer able to hold you prisoner in his/her lies and deceits.

So many sexual abuse survivors have shared so many similarities.  Know that you are not alone. We share a lot of the same thoughts and feelings.  That’s why it’s so important to change your mindset, be more positive as you take your healing steps.  You are worth it!!!Don’t ever let anyone make you doubt that.  One thing that I realized just within the past few years is that our Creator never left me.  He was always there, I just never heard him.  I chose to ignore.  Creator loves us, and would never abandon us even in our darkest times.  There is a reason for everything, even the worst of what we went through.  I think for me going through what I did, brought me to where I am today. Helping others with my writing. Inspiring others with positives, uplifting them to believing they too can move forward, leave the past behind.  Our past is just that the past. We don’t live there any more.                   


Believe in HOPE.
Hope is courage.
Giving you will.
To fight the depths.
Of your inner self.
Freeing your mind.
Of any negativity.
Slowly creeping in.
Believe in DREAMS.
Dreams take you.
To another place.
Brings hope.
For a better tomorrow.
Reach for your dreams.
It’s possible.
To accomplish whatever.
You set your mind to.
Never give up.

Prose/Watercolour by
Mary Graziano© April 4, 2016



How sad it is when some don’t pay attention to a child who needs them. A child who has been abused, and is trying to tell an adult in some way, but get brushed off in the process. They become silent. Feeling that they are not important, that the abuse they are going through must in their minds be a normal thing, as no-one is coming to their rescue.  They are the FORGOTTEN CHILDREN.  We must listen, never turn a child away. Always believing a child in what they tell us.  Let their message be heard.  Don’t hide away. If it was your own child I pray you will believe them and not tell them “Oh stop saying things that aren’t true!!!” Be a voice for the voiceless!!!


Velvet Martin to Protecting Canadian Children
 Supreme Court says mom who left babies in trash not guilty of murder https://ca.news.yahoo.com/supreme-court-says-mom-left-babie… via @Yahoocanada
The Supreme Court of Canada has waded for the first time into one of humanity’s darkest corners, offering…


This is an excellent article on sexual abuse of children at the hands of spiritual leader, and why we need to abolish the Statute of Limitations. http://forward.com/…/329620/i-was-13-when-marc-gafnis-abus…/

In a Forward exclusive, Sara Kabakov for the first time tells her story of sexual molestation by the spiritual guru when he was a rabbinical student. She decries the…


Via Jerome Elam
UK ‘Elite’ Covered Up Pedophile’s Crimes:

LONDON — An extraordinary elite-level coverup that included a member of the royal family, Cabinet ministers, and judges conspired to keep a pedophile bishop safe from prosecution and free to continue abusing boys.
Peter Ball, the former bishop of Lewes, was finally convicted Wednesday for decades of sexual crimes against boys and young men that date back into the 1970s.



I have a tiny child inside.
Who so badly.
Wants to come out.
When she feels a trickle.
Of courage. She retreats.
Just too afraid.
I need to try. Convince her.
The numbness. Fear she bears.
Can no longer. Keep her prisoner.
It’s now her chance. To finally let go!!
“The past. It’s gone. Move forward.”
As I whispered. Called her name.
“Come. Play with me.
Let’s have some fun.
Laugh. Sing. Let’s dance!!
Just like a small child should.
All happiness. It was stolen.
Leaving you. So unfulfilled!!”
Slowly. The door. From the inside.
Creaks open. She takes a peek.
Unsure. If she can trust me.
She sighs. With a sense of relief.
Her emerald green eyes. Brighten!!
To see. Her adult self. Safe.
Warmly. I said “I love you.”
A smile slowly. Creased her lips.
I returned her smile. Fervently.
Embracing. Love.
That fills the air.
Tears well up. Inside my eyes.
Happiness prevails.
Gently. I embrace her tenderly.
I can feel love. That was amiss.
She’s blooming. Just like a flower.
Eyes now. Twinkle bright.
Proudly. Now able.
To take a stand.
Like each petal. On the flower.
Happily. Displaying.
Their own true self.
We have come together.
As one. Never again.
Will we.
Ever part!!

Prose by Mary Graziano©
Revised March 3, 2016

Beautiful watercolour painting &
Title “Child Inside”
By my wonderful friend.
Michal Madison

Michal Madison's photo.
Michal Madison

“No matter
what happened
in the past, I now
begin to allow the tiny
child inside to blossom
and to know that it is
deeply loved.”
Affirmation from Louise L. Hay

“Child Inside”
watercolor by Michal Madison
copyright 2014
visit www.MichalMadisonArt.net
to purchase art. 10% of every sale
is donated to ending child abuse.



Childhelp Village.
Dedicated to helping children.
Severely neglected.
Bringing hope.
To lives so innocent.
Others thought.
Were unfix-able.
“Throw away kids.”
Six to sixteen year old children.
Who every day.
Lived with the pain.
Stole their childhood.
Silenced by their abusers.
Never to be.
That innocent child again.
Secrets so deep.
Not trusting.
Living in trepidation. Silence!!
Who others gave up on.
Here at Childhelp Village.
So much compassion.
Security. Love. Freedom from fear.
No more abuse!!
From the storms.
Of their past.
Childhelp Village.
A place they can finally.
Call home.
Acres with beautiful scenery.
Serene. Open space.
Takes them away.
From their living hell!!
Childhelp Village. Lovingly.
Opens their doors. To the many.
Bruised. Fearful. Tearful faces.
So many feelings. Of apprehension.
Unsure of strangers. Because.
Abuse was all they knew.
The Village. Offers an experience.
Of positive feelings. Self worth.
Where. Each child can sleep.
Peacefully. Without any doubts. Fears.
Feeling secure.
In the darkness of night.
Wrapped in their “Blankets of Hope.”
Made with love.
Their Ganz bears. Other stuffies. Donated.
“We are the Forgotten children.
Please stand up and fight for us.
Help keep away.
The monsters from hell.
Who abused us in every way.”
I write these words.
For all children small.
That little child in me.
Silenced then.
Not anymore!!
I will keep shouting.
Help set them free.
Thank you Childhelp Village.
Where so many help to love.
All the children.
Entering their doors.
Giving them.
A chance of a new life.
A new beginning.
From the horrors.
They faced. Everyday!!
Above the entrance door.
Are the words.

Prose by Mary Graziano
August 12, 2014
Revised March 8, 2016
Watercolour painting and some editing by
Michal Madison
Vulnerable Expressions of Raw Emotion

The Blankets of Hope, were made by Michal Madison, and a group of volunteers They were donated to Childhelp Village in Beaumont, California at Christmas time. I contacted many many toy maker companies, and Ganz in Canada, donated boxes of stuffed animals to the children. I wanted them to have something to cuddle while they were snuggled in their blankets. I thank all the volunteers who helped Michal in this huge endeavour, and to Ganz Canada for the kind donation. mg..

Michal Madison's photo.
Mary E Graziano Blankets of Hope.

Mary E Graziano's photo.
Mary E Graziano Donation by Ganz Canada.

Mary E Graziano's photo.