A Woman's Voice

Seeing Beauty When There’s None ~ December 30, 2011 by Nikki Rosen


“He who has courage and faith will never perish in misery.” ~ Anne Frank

It’s hard to think Anne Frank was only 14 when she wrote this. Fourteen and hated – for no other reason than being Jewish. Fourteen and having her world as she had known it – turned upside down. Fourteen and not able to go outside to smell the flowers, or attend a dance or sit in a classroom and daydream about boys or her future or life…..

In spite of the hatred and brutality that had taken over her world – in spite of the being stripped of all the comforts of home and school and friendships – in spite of those who believed she had no right to exist….fourteen year old Anne wrote as if her world was normal…as if nothing had changed…putting her thoughts down on paper….the thoughts of a normal teen…..

I try to visualize what it must have felt like to be fourteen and forced to live in a small space with people terrified for their lives – fearing the craziness of those who wanted to kill not only you but your whole race – people who lived with fear that if they were found – they would die….or worse…

Anguish – cries heard in the streets – family, friends, respected elders – taken – their lives stolen – beaten like violent criminals – in temples, in shops, in communities – there was no safe place….nowhere to hide. It was always just a matter of time.

Yet in the midst of that senseless brutality – fourteen year old Anne kept her diary and wrote like any typical young teen pondering the world around her and her place in it.

Her words strong, positive, powerful: “I twist my heart round again, so that the bad is on the outside and the good is on the inside, and keep trying to find a way of becoming what I would so like to be….I don’t think of all the misery but of the beauty that still remains….”

I didn’t have the strength that Anne had. Or the courage – nor her positive outlook. I felt the hatred and I hated back. I felt the brutality and I wanted to lash out against every perpetrator who hurt me. I let the brutality pull me into its lies – into its fear, into its hatred – Everything in my world was black – dark  – I saw no beauty. I wanted so bad to give up and to give in to the darkness. I saw no hope – no light – no meaning.

Anne had been raised by loving parents – parents who gave her security and a strong foundation  – so strong that when the darkness came – she was able to push it aside and still see beauty. I’m trying to parent my girls that way. Maybe it’s working. My oldest 13 – almost 14 – is amazingly positive. She inspires me – she teaches me….

Growing up in a Jewish home – I heard the phrase over and over: “to not remember the past is to be condemned to repeat it.” I used to wonder why do Jewish people constantly talk about what happened….and hold memorials and give honor to the survivors.   I was told – ‘so it will never happen again. From one generation to the next – we must tell what happened.’

I think I’m beginning to understand…..to tell of the brutality we lived – in some way is a protection for the next generation – to know – to be aware – to live a bit differently – to understand there is darkness – but there’s also a strength, a hope – a light with each survivor who stands up and says, “I survived. The darkness couldn’t destroy me.”

I never wanted anyone to know what happened to me – all those things I lived – Today I want you to know, “I survived.” And every time I read some of your blogs – and know you too have survived – I’m cheering

Thank you so much Nikki for sharing such an intimate part of your self with us.

Nikki Rosen is the award-winning Author of   “In The Eye of Deception” (A True Story).

Website: http://gentlerecovery.webs.com

Blog Site: http://cultofdeception.blogspot.com

Blog Site: Tips & Tools for Healing from Trauma http://www.gentlerecovery.blogspot.com


10 Responses to 'Seeing Beauty When There’s None ~ December 30, 2011 by Nikki Rosen'

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  1. Nikki, what a testimony to share with readers. I am not sure I could have gone through any of what happened; but I would like to think my faith would have helped. Yes, I think it is very important to share whatever the past, so it is shared. We are all wise to hand down history to have it preserved for future generations. God Bless You!

  2. Shirley Sarafinchan said,

    Thank you Nikki for sharing your strength with us! To share is to teach and you’ve certainly expressed that in your “blog”. I read the “Diary of Anne Frank” when I was a young girl and I’m certain it helped me at a very young age to understand pain but I also learned to forgive but to never forget!

  3. Mary Haskett said,

    Thank you so much for sharing. You made me realize the importance of loving parents and family and how that component shapes a child’s thinking. As you know I had to overcome hateful angry thoughts towards my abusers. But praise God for His love which changes our focus.

  4. Laurette Godard said,

    All I can say is WOW!!!

  5. Lorraine Gauthier said,

    What an inspiring article Nikki! So well written. Thank you so much for taking the time to share it!!So many times we forget just how blessed we are.

  6. Wanda G said,

    Your writting never ceases to move me…you did it again. Thank You! (:

  7. Sarah said,

    I just noticed this Dolores…thank-you. ☺

    • You are most welcome Nikki…some articles are well worth reposting and this is certainly one of them. 🙂

  8. raisethegaze said,

    Thank you Nikki and Dolores.
    This blog and your guest post showered wisdom and light on my day. 🙂

    • Thank you Peter for your kind and warm support….God bless you & yours! 🙂

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