Here, at Strut, we love hearing stories about how women have overcame a moment in life. For the past month, we have focused on women who have been LIVING UNASHAMED despite what they have been through or going through. While seeking women to feature in this campaign we came across, Sherika Powell, A Woman Unchained.

We had a moment to chat with her more about her story of survival, and a little about her book. This is what she had to say:

I was ashamed. I was ashamed of my past, ashamed of being a victim, being a part of the statistic of this epidemic that continues to plague our society. I am a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. I am not who I was years ago and it was taken me years to get here on this healing journey. Shame is gripping, shame is crippling. Shame robs you of real joy, that’s what it did for me it robbed me of truly living the life God intended for me. One of the things that survivors carry with them is a great deal of shame.

I get it I was there, I lived in the shame prison for many years. I never knew how to remove the guilt and shame from my life, I didn’t know how to cope with it. My battle on a daily basis was with myself and the scars and bruises were very present and visible only to me at the time. I was literally battling and beating myself up on a daily basis internally from the shame I thought was mine to carry. I often asked myself “What did I do as a young girl to endure such trauma?” “Something must have been be wrong with me from birth, I am damaged goods”. “I guess God doesn’t value me or love me”. I said this to myself often “I am useless, I am not lovable I am damaged goods”.

So these damaging thoughts went on in my mind for years. I believed them, so I treated myself like those thoughts. Unworthy, unlovable, damaged goods. I ended up in bad relationships and making unhealthy choices. Until one day the burden of carrying this guilt and shame was unbearable. I didn’t know what to do or who to get help from, so I decided to cry out to God for help. I denounced him many years ago before this happened. I didn’t believe in him as I felt he didn’t help me then so how could he exist? It’s funny that certain events in your life will turn you right back to the power source God!

So I started my walk, my journey back to God ,back to knowing who he was and back to realizing he was carrying me through my storms all along even when I didn’t believe. He was waiting for me to remove my shame my guilt and come back to him and leave it at the foot of the cross. I know now my purpose and why I was born on this earth. I realize God has great intentions for my life and I am intertwined in his will.

My destiny lies with his calling on my life to share my journey from survivor to thriver as my book “A Woman Unchained, Breaking the Silence of Childhood Sexual Abuse. A Warriors Journey! will be released August

2016. I am ready to share what God has done for me and what he can and will do for you! If you are reading this just know that God is also waiting for you, he is waiting for you to take your hand in his and firmly believe in his word. His calling for your life if great and know not one thing not one good or bad was wasted!

He will take the bitter and the sweet and restore your spirit and give you a fresh perspective on your circumstances. God is able! So here I am writing to you, with a dose of courage, encouragement and compassion to release yourself from the prison of shame and leave it to God. Shame is not for you to carry any longer God’s got this!

About Sherika Powell

My name is Sherika Powell and I am a a motivational speaker, podcaster,Rogers TV talk show host as well as soon to be author of my book ” A woman unchained. Breaking the silence of childhood sexual abuse a warriors journey!” (TBR September 2016). I am a working mom working in the field of social services, married with two sons and one stepson. I was born and raised most of my life in Toronto, Canada but I also lived out my teenage years in Florida. My childhood in the beginning was a happy and bright one. I had a family where I knew I was loved until later on in my childhood my situation drastically changed. From a happy bright childhood it turned into one that was full of fear and uncertainty. In my young childhood I became the the victim of childhood sexual abuse,  by the hands of my stepfather which lead to a place of felling less than throughout my life and worthless.