HELL AND HOPE *
Alice Sebold wrote Lucky in which she laid out her soul, sharing her intimate thoughts and feelings in each meaningful interaction in the subsequent days, months, and years after she was brutally raped. Her self-described journey left her “in a world where the two truths coexist; where both hell and hope lie in the palm of” her hand. Just knowing her struggle has created the atmosphere for rape victims like myself to acknowledge, heal and grow. Alice Sebold told her story with candor and questions and emotion, never being afraid to say the hard truth. RAPE. It’s the typically unspoken four-letter word that she is not afraid to say. Fear, anger and a range of emotions surround the word. Alice Sebold has opened the door for rape victims, like myself, to acknowledge and heal, and to be in communion with ourselves and those closest to us.
CALL TO ACTION
Alice Sebold currently serves on the RAINN National Leadership Council. RAINN (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network) operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline and carries out programs with local agencies to prevent sexual violence, help survivors, and ensure that perpetrators are brought to justice. www.RAINN.org
If you are the victim of rape, abuse or incest, you can call 800-656-HOPE or chat online at hotline.rainn.org/online or rainn.org/es (Espanol)
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, a leader in suicide prevention and mental health crisis care, provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, across the United States. 1-800-273-8255 www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org
Valerie Paterson is a creative quilter who lets her spirit give her unexpected results. Her joy is letting ideas unfold in the process of creating a quilt. Her love of a challenge has yielded multiple awards in addition to Most Creative, Best Machine Quilting and having her quilts travel across the country. She has also published short stories and loves to include quilts in her writing. She is currently working on her memoir, which blurs the line between quilting and writing, telling the story of having been sexually assaulted, the legal process and her internal evolution where quilts have been an avenue of comfort and healing, with “Hell and Hope” being the most significant.