In December, I got an intriguing email from Angela Klocke who asked if she could “walk” in my honor. Interested and a bit surprised, I asked what this meant. She explained she leads a project called Scars and Tiaras where she focuses on speaking out and creating awareness about domestic violence and sexual assault. Angela had read the article about me in The Washington Post and felt compelled to walk on my behalf. Man! Talk about being honored….I couldn’t believe a mere stranger would do this. It proves we do indeed live in a caring world! My Georgia Southern University intern, Daniela West, did a Q and A with Angela recently, and here’s what Angela shared:
Daniela- So can you tell me what Scars and Tiaras is about? How do you choose who to walk for?
Angela- The site is a combination of information on healing from a painful history of childhood, domestic or sexual abuse. I have experience with all these types of abuse. It’s not a pretty story, but the point of Scars and Tiaras is basically a reclamation of self. To be loved, adored, and worthy. Abusers fill our heads with comments such as: you’re ugly, you’re worthless, you’re stupid so you’re left with scars. The tiaras have more to do with the reclamation of self. The beautiful person that you always were and you’re coming back and realizing who that is. That seems to be a recurring theme–this journey to try to reclaim who each person once was versus what people told them they were.
Daniela- Tell us more about how you walk for people.
Angela- In late 2013 I was out taking a walk and I had this idea when the lyrics “I would walk 500 miles and I would walk 500 more” popped into my head. I developed the goal to walk 1000 miles in 2014. So I would take a person’s name and I’m always asking may I walk for you. For Jenny Lynn, I became familiar with her book through Twitter at some point in time. And though I haven’t been able to read the book yet I just started following her.
Daniela- So when you walk for someone is there any place in particular you walk, or is it a group event or do people walk with you?
Angela- I mostly walk alone. I’m not opposed to anyone walking with me, but I tend to just walk the streets in my town. I’m not in a position where I’m going to walk a thousands miles away from home. It’s just a concentrated time spent thinking about this person’s story, how can I share this person’s story.
Daniela- I saw on your website people walk in your honor. Do they reach out to you or do you reach out to them to walk for you?
Angela- I haven’t asked anyone to walk for me. In December, it became very apparent I wasn’t going to reach a thousand miles in 2014. I shared my challenges on Facebook and several friends stepped forward and said I would be happy to walk in your name.
Daniela- It’s amazing how much people care. When you walk for people, does it help you in your personal healing process?
Angela- Absolutely. It gives me that chance to not live in the past, but to reflect where I’ve been so I don’t forget that passion and that empathy that’s so necessary to help the next person who contacts me.
Daniela- What would you say your ultimate goal is?
Angela- My overall goal is to be able to keep the conversation about abuse going. And for people to understand that it’s not a black and white issue. There’s so much more involved and unfortunately I think for most people unless they experience it they never know how they will respond in that situation.
Daniela- Is there anything you would want someone in that situation to know?
Angela- If abuse occurs, just know you are not alone and there is somebody out there who can help you. There’s so much hope for healing.