Sunday

A Woman's Journey right here in Centre County

While we have focused much of our attention on problems women are facing around the world, we do not want to undermine the issues women face right here in State College. Just because we live in a developed country does that mean that the gender gap no longer exists. There are women who walk among us every day who may be suffering behind closed doors.

Spread the world that resources are available. The Centre County Women's Resource Center offers a safe place for women who may not know where else to turn. It offers a 24-hour hot line, counseling services, temporary and transitional housing, and children's programming in addition to other services. The center is open 365 days a year and all information is kept confidential.

No one deserves to suffer. Keep that in mind.

A Woman's Journey through Pregnancy

Ectopic Pregnancy: One Woman's Story
"As a woman you always dream of one day having a child. However, sometimes, things don't work out the way you expected. As a young woman myself, I am grateful that my first pregnancy went great. I have a healthy, now 9 year old. But after I had him, I became pregnant 6 more times, and to date, I still only have my precious son. My first ectopic (tubal) pregnancy was hard for me to understand, because I had absolutely no problems with my first pregnancy. I had gone to the doctor, very excited that I was going to be expanding my family, however, when the received the blood test back, my hormone levels were not at a normal rate for how far along I was, so the next couple of weeks, I had to go in and get blood tests done every other day. My levels just didn't seem to be going up the way the should. So the doctor finally did an ultrasound and didn't find anything in my uterus. He informed me that this was an ectopic pregnancy and can be very harmful to my health if I didn't have a shot called "Methotrexate". From what they had told me, the methotrexate shot would dissolve the pregnancy that was in my tube. However, with this shot, you are unable to eat or drink anything with folic acid. Folic acid helps in the development of the fetus. I received the shot and then I was no longer pregnant. The doctors can tell you how you are going to physically feel (there is no change physically with an ectopic pregnancy), but they cannot explain the emotional roller coaster a woman will go through when something like this happens.
A few months had passed by and I became pregnant for the third time. A little leary this time, but still excited. Everything was going great, then one day I started spotting, I immediately called the doctor and they got me in as soon as they could. I had miscarried. Some miscarriages can be painful and some can just feel like bad cramps from your mentrual cycle. Then I had to get a D and C. Again, another emotional roller coaster ride.

I became pregnant once again a year or so later for the fourth time. Again, this one was another ectopic pregnancy. Another methotrexate shot was in my very near future. As my husband and I were discussing if we should even try anymore to expand our family. I was young, 25 years old at the time; what are the chances of this happening again? So we kept trying. I became pregnant for the fifth time. This time another miscarriage. I was referred to a fertility specialist. She was wonderful, she explained everything to me so I can understand. She did an exploratory laporscopic surgery to see what exactly was going on in there. There was scar tissue built up around my right fallopian tube and it was pressing it closed. I became pregnant for the sixth time. Yet another ectopic pregnancy. My fertility specialist went in again and removed my right fallopian tube so this would stop happening. My husband and I could not have been more happy. I still had my left tube that was extremely healthy. When I was 29, I became pregnant for the seventh and final time. You guessed it, another ectopic pregnancy. This time, I couldn't handle the emotional part of losing my sixth pregnancy. I told my fertility specialist, "remove my left tube", she was very reluctant because I was so young, but she did what I asked.
I am very fortunate to have my son. I know some woman out there have been through what I have been through without having a child. I know the pain and heartache that you have been through or are going through. Be thankful for what you have. There is always adoption, surrogacy or IVF. To this day my husband and I still toss the idea around of IVF or adoption. The feeling of never being able to have another child is gut wrenching, but I believe there is a reason for everything. I believe my son is going to go far in life and will need his parents to be behind him 150%, and that is why we were not meant to have anymore children.
There is always a silver lining. I think. Live your life with love, laughter and happiness.
I hope by reading this article you will find that you are not alone in the world, there are many of us that have been there."

-As written by Anonymous

Wednesday

A Woman's Journey to Freedom and Safety: Masi's Story

video

We had a unique opportunity to sit down with Masi, a survivor of domestic abuse, who now works to help other women remove themselves from these dangerous situations. She inspired us to go a step further in raising awareness of this issue by making sure that victims know what resources and opportunities are available to them so that they know they are not alone in this struggle.

The Polaris Project

Founded in 2002, the Polaris Project is one of the largest anti-trafficking organizations in the United States. Its name comes from the North Star, which in the past has helped to lead slaves to freedom. The organization aims for just -- all around the globe.






Human trafficking is the second largest criminal industry in the world and one that exploits more than 12 million people globally, according to its website. The Polaris Project works at local, nation and international levels to spread awarness and conquer modern day slavery in the following ways:


"Polaris Project's comprehensive approach to combating human trafficking includes conducting direct outreach and victim identification, providing social services and transitional housing to victims, operating the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) serving as the central national hotline on human trafficking, advocating for stronger state and Federal anti-trafficking legislation, and engaging community members in local and national grassroots efforts."


-- from Polarisproject.org
While the Polaris Project looks at several areas around the globe, it also draws attention to the human trafficking problem that exists within our own borders. Currently, women and children in the United States are forced to become a part of the sex industry, and labor workers are abused in our agricultural and restaurant industries. It's startling that many don't know that this type of injustice exists in our country. Slavery did not end with the Civil War, as many people believe.


Do yourself and favor: explore the Polaris Project website. There are so many people in our own country and around the world being exploited in ways that we cannot even imagine. LEARN about this problem and SHARE it with others. Awareness is the key to making a difference in the lives of so many people.

Monday

Hollywood's Self-Defense



In the movie "Enough", Jennifer Lopez is terrorized physically and emotionally by her husband and is forced to travel the world with her daughter in an effort to hide from him. In the end, she decides the only way to truly escape from him is to kill him with the self-defense skills that she recently learned. In the movie, there is a distinct quote that reads, "You have a divine animal right to protect your own life and the life of your offspring."

A Woman's Journey through Self-Defense

Throughout our blog, we have talked a lot about the suffering of women through sex trafficking, rape, etc. We have named for you all of the statistics we can find and we have told you a ton of heart-breaking stories of women who were tortured sexually and emotionally. Now we are telling you a way to help yourself. Self-Defense. It may not work everytime, but if it helps just one time by protecting a woman from any sort of abuse, then it's worth it.

At the Women's Self-Defense Institute , their mission is simple - empowering women to fight back against crime.

How do they do this?

By providing women training and education in:
•Awareness
•Prevention
•Risk reduction
•Risk avoidance; and
•Self-realization of your own physical power
These tools greatly increase a woman's personal protection options to combat crime.

It's simple, the more prepared you are, the less likely you are to need self-defense. It is something that will give you the peace of mind that if for some reason you are attacked or forced into a situation, you will have the abilities to fight back.