SHATTERPROOF Thriving After Domestic Abuse

I’m Mickie Zada and I lived in abuse…for 34 years…from age 19 until I was 53. I believe we create our realities, and I chose to stay in a damaging relationship for so long because I thought it was my Calling. I was wrong. I changed me. I am now an enthusiastic participant in Life. “The words ‘I am’ are potent words; be careful what you hitch them to. The thing you’re claiming has a way of reaching back and claiming you.” A.L. Kitselman I am a strong woman, a fabulous woman, over 60 years old. I am a Change-agent. I am an encourager. I am uniquely qualified to speak to living in abuse, getting out and surviving to the fullest extent. I know what it takes. I know the fear. I am a survivor. I am a coach. I am happy to have these “I Am” words to reach back and claim me! The actions I teach and share are those that I’ve learned in my Journey from choosing to live in abuse to choosing to create my authentic life; safe, sound, Real. I invite you to read through this web page. Think about who I Am. Read blogs, listen to some podcasts, watch live videos. Do we connect? I am open and exposed. Choose to reach out to me or not. What I know for sure is that I lived the life of abuse, and got out, and I’ve thrived, to serve as a beacon to other women. If you live in abuse, or you’ve recently escaped, it’s my Mission to support and encourage you to choose and live a healthy life. The materials, the tools, the support is here. It’s your responsibility to grab hold and change yourself, from the in-side out.
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SHATTERPROOF Thriving After Domestic Abuse






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May 29, 2019

This podcast episode is about business.

Specifically, My Business.

And the fact that it’s not working.
Warren Buffet is the third richest person in the world…he has owned and started businesses that have not worked.  Here is one of my favorite Warren Buffet quotes:

“In a chronically leaking boat, energy devoted to changing vessels is more productive than energy devoted to patching leaks.”– Warren Buffett

You know that I have changed my mind, changed my life, changed my name, changed my business and its name.  You know that my foundational belief is “If we don’t change, nothing changes.”

I have hung on for several years in a chronically leaking boat. I’ve tried several stints of patching leaks to keep from sinking. Changing vessels is more productive for me now than patching leaks.

I always considered the podcast, live videos, and articles to be my passion and a business.  The business part was coaching and creating paid classes and groups to support, inspire, and educate women who have escaped domestic abuse.

Paid classes and groups have not been supported.  In spite of my efforts, this business is not viable.

The cost to create what I offer for free is almost $1,000 a month.  I thought by this time I would generate enough income to at least break even.  That has not been the case. 

The bottom line is that I can no longer justify staying in this chronically leaking boat.

This is the final episode of SHATTERPROOF Thriving After Domestic Abuse Podcast.

Listen to the podcast to learn more about my decision to take the fork in the road.

I do intend to continue building an online community. My focus will be on personal growth for women over 50.  Content and lessons will apply to creating our authentic lives after domestic abuse, but that will not be the primary focus.

If you are a member of the open or secret SHATTERPROOF Thriving After Domestic Abuse FB pages, or The Second 53 Years, and you’re interested in continuing to follow me, please like my personal page, Facebook Mickie Zada   I will continue posting content there.

I appreciate the support I have received from this community.  As one of my coaches told me, the only thing consistent in Life is change.  It keeps us growing and moving forward. 

I am open, ready, and willing to embrace whatever new venture Divine Intent is leading me into.  Choose to like my personal Facebook page and invite your friends to join that community, too.

Join me in the next growth spurt…thank you for listening and for following me to Facebook Mickie Zada

May 22, 2019

My guest today is Jitka Bernardova.  Jitka grew up in the Czech Republic behind the Iron Curtain. Despite the confines of living in communism with very controlling parents, she was a very happy and active child. Her parents were very strict and she didn’t feel loved enough, so she was constantly seeking love from babies and animals.

Jitka loved to play outside and take care of all the neighbors’ kids on the street.  She was so blinded by looking for love that she didn’t see the problems she was taking on when she married an alcoholic man at the age of 18.

His drinking got better and then it got worse…then it got better, and then it got much worse.

Jitka discovered it was not ONLY drinking that he was doing.  He was also cheating on her: Cheating with her friends!  To make matters worse, everyone knew (even her parents) and no one told her. That was emotionally devastating and it was the catalyst to motivate her to know she couldn’t live like that anymore.  Jitka divorced her husband after 24 years of marriage.
Her kids were all grown up and on their own at that time. The divorce left her suddenly alone and not needed.

Being the strong woman she is, Jitka didn’t look too far ahead: She chose to rebuild her life day by day.  She focused on herself, she focused on creating a life she wanted to live.  She began a well-planned program of walking on the beach, working out, adding a healthy diet, meditating, learning English, learning to drive and reading.

She became a different person. she became stronger, happier and healthier than she had ever been.

Reach out to Jitka at New Stronger Me

May 15, 2019

You never know the influence you have on someone’s life.  As you deal with your reality, feeling like you are drowning in emotions and responsibility, someone else’s view of you is that of inspiration, strength, and success.
My cousin died last week.  She was a favorite cousin, my big sister by proxy.   She was the one I ran to when I left my abuser for the very first time.

At that time, she was recently divorced, had emotional and financial responsibility for two young sons; she was a full-time Master’s Program student and worked full time.  Her life was on overload.  I’m sure she felt like she was at the end of her rope.
Then I showed up. In crisis.

To me, she was a savior.  A strong woman in charge of her life, moving forward on her dreams, dealing with responsibilities, and creating a safe, healthy life for herself and her sons.

No matter how shattered your life may feel to you, to someone else you may be the exact inspiration another woman needs.  That’s what my cousin was for me.

May 1, 2019

People often see the victim of narcissistic abuse as “crazy” and full of fear and doubt.  The narcissist shows up cool, calm and collected.  Right?

Why is that?

Because the narcissist has the ability to make their victims responsible for any and every negative thing.  Even things they make up…using our words!  They convince us we are crazy.  They convince us we are the abusers!  They separate realities and stay calm, while the light us on fire.

You are not, and were not, crazy.  You were abused.

Now it’s our choice to change our perspective, to accept that building our own safe, happy and authentic live is OUR responsibility.  The abuse was real.  We did not deserve it.  We did not ask for it or enjoy it.  Now it’s our choice to use that experience to grow, and to help ourselves and others heal.  

Apr 24, 2019

Laurel Anne Hill grew up in San Francisco, with more dreams of an adventure than good sense or money. Her close brushes with death, love of family, respect for honor and belief in a higher power influence her writing and life.

Her early home life included a happy-drunk Grandfather and a mean-drunk Dad:  So mean and violent that she, her Mother, Grandmother, and brother often hid in the basement to escape his wrath.

This life pattern, of course, set the stage for the first marriage to an abuser.  It also created fertile ground in her mind to create heroic female characters and alternate Universes.  At the age of 5, before she could read or write, she dictated stories to her older sister and used paper cut-outs as an illustration!

Her journey through childhood violence and domestic emotional abuse led Laurel Anne to become a strong, creative, talented and honored author.

Laurel Anne’s best-selling book, The Engine Woman’s Light, has won prestigious awards in the category of steampunk…which she explains is a fascinating alternative literary Universe.  Laurel Ann’s diverse life experience has inspired her creative mind in many ways, as you’ll discover in this podcast conversation.

Learn more about Laurel Anne Hill at Laurel Anne Hill and on Facebook at Facebook: Laurel Hill

Order her book on Amazon  Facebook: Laurel Hill

Apr 17, 2019

It was the lies and emotional abuse that lead my guest to research and discover that BOTH her Exs had extreme childhood trauma. 

She said “This fact was something NOT taught in a triple Masters program in Psychology!”

After 2 years of research, she discovered childhood trauma leads to emotional abuse and that made total sense, for her healing and the healing of her psychotherapy and coaching clients as well.  

My guest is Riana Milne.  She is a certified, Global Life, Dating & Relationship Coach, a #1 best selling author, and podcast host.

Because so many women want to know WHY things went so bad when they were great in the beginning, Riana has developed, and she presents for us, the TEN TRAUMAS that are experienced during childhood that affect an adult later in life and in their love relationships.

Riana also offers 3 free gifts to listeners of SHATTERPROOF Thriving After Domestic Abuse podcast.

All are available on her website –

1) Free Life & Love Transformation Strategy Session  (a $500 value for Singles; a $1000 value for Couples); FREE when you mention this interview!

2) Free Chapter downloads of both her books; LIVE & LOVE Beyond Your Dreams.

3) Free eBook on this topic: found at –

Apr 10, 2019

Her abusive marriage mirrored a made-for-TV movie.  Then she decided that God must see so much strength in her; she shifted her focus from victim to thriver.

Kim Lyons describes domestic abuse as emotional terrorism and says what we all know to be true: If you haven’t lived it, you just don’t get it!  Thrivers are a sorority of sisterhood. (Not a sorority in which we want to be Members, but in a sisterhood of support, encouragement, and inspiration.)

Now Kim works with people who want to harness their full power in life, with no limits!


Reach out to Kim and learn more about her on FaceBook at 

or on Linked in at

"​"If you're working hard but not accomplishing your goal, you don't change the goal, you change the strategy!"​ ~Kim Lyons

Apr 3, 2019

Many of us can relate to Rena Romano’s statement that for many years, on the outside her life looked perfect.  She was a successful business woman, friends were envious, her Mother was proud.

On the inside she was dying, a broken soul.

Harboring a horrific secret since childhood, no one knew the pain she was suffering.

Then she chose to become a Thriver: she created and embraced her truth that there is always an upside no matter what you’ve been through.

In October 2009 Rena was a featured guest on the Oprah Winfrey Show where she shared her long-kept secret of childhood sexual abuse.

She also is a TEDx speaker.  Her TEDx talk is titled “Healing Sexual Abuse can start with one word.”  You can watch her TEDx talk on YouTube.

Learn more about Rena Romano and her program, The THRIVE Perspective, listen to her podcast and order her books, at

Mar 27, 2019

Raise your hand if you have you said this about your abuser: “How foolish I was.  I thought he was perfect.”?  My hand is up!

Christine Cristina shares her story of shocking awareness of being undermined by a narcissist.  She sold her home and her business because he encouraged her to live the life he had created.  They decided to build a new home.  She chose to travel with him, to spend a lot of time on his boat, to give up her own life to embrace his.

She was 60 years old.  She had never been married.  Her gorgeous gown was purchased and fitted.  Wedding invitations were in the mail.  Then, he called to say he was breaking up with her.  She was not the woman he thought she was.  (!!!!)

Her life unraveled.  She spent four months on the floor crying.  She was suicidal.  She was Shattered.

Christine is a thriver.  With support from friends and through her faith, she became Unstoppable, Unlimited, Unsinkable.  Shatterproof.

Read more details about her unique experience in her book When Life Unravels. 

Reach out to Christine at

Mar 20, 2019

A 90-day temporary order took two years to resolve…YEA!  I finally got 50/50 custody of my daughter!

This conversation is not to discourage anyone.  It is to validate that right can eventually prevail, even in custody cases with abusive Dads.

Amber went to court without an attorney and everything her abuser and his attorney told the Judge was believed.  Her abuser was given full custody of their daughter, then and there.

The lies he told were that she was addicted to drugs and alcohol.  She was ordered to attend AA meetings.  He said he did not rape her; she liked rough sex.  She was ordered to seek sex therapy.  He and his lawyer convinced the court that she lived in her car.  She lived with friends.  She was encouraged to sign a 90-day temporary order, giving her abuser full custody of their daughter.  She was convinced it was the right thing to do. 

Finally, after many court appearances, finally hiring an attorney who believed her, and two years of supervised visits with her daughter, Amber gained 50/50 custody. 

Amazingly to me, Amber’s abuser fathered another child and he was given full-custody of that child, using the same tactics against that mother that he did with Amber.  It’s a story we hear over and over.

Amber’s story gives hope that persistence and a good attorney can turn things around.

Amber Elizabeth can be contacted on FaceBook and through her closed page supporting abused women, Breaking Free!  Ask to join her group.


Mar 13, 2019

Jacqui Oh is a career teacher, student and vocalist who loves to ask questions, from dumb to inappropriate and often introspective.  Jacqui likes to have fun.

She is passionate about education, diversity and culture.  All of those areas are addressed on her podcast, StartDis.  She is also a victim turned thriver of domestic abuse.  Her story in this interview is openly shared with heart-felt honesty and emotion.

While Jacqui’s abusive relationship did not last many years, the trauma was tremendous.  They were young: late teens, early 20s.  They dated off and on for a couple of years. Controlling behavior led to threats of suicide and murder.

Still she moved in with him, believing he would not be physically violent toward her. She was wrong. And, after living together for just 4 months, he burned their apartment to the ground! 

Listen to and share this woman’s tremendous story.

Learn more about Jacqui Oh on Facebook:

Mar 6, 2019

My guest just celebrated 10 years out of abuse…she created a Facebook video and titled it her “Survivor-versary”!

A long hard road that began as a young child through abuse by her step-father, she was conditioned that being treated poorly was “normal”.

My guest is author Melinda Kunst.

At 17 Melinda moved into teen dating violence … like most of us, she ignored the red flags.   Now, she teaches teens and parents to pay attention to their daughters’ behaviors and words, to listen for control or abuse…she teaches teens not to ignore the red flags, like she did.

Her teen violence boyfriend said he’d kill himself and/or her and her family if she left him…he was a bully.  She married him out of fear…

When they were married, it looked good on the Outside; her friends thought she had married her ideal guy and that she was happy.  From the start, inside the marriage relationship, behind closed doors, her life was one of terror, rampant jealousy, and consistent, constant control by her husband.

After she escaped, as part of her healing Journey, Melinda began writing a blog titled Hope When There Was None.  It’s now a Facebook page; check it out!

Melinda Kunst is the author of two books Call Me Master and Awakening the Beauty of Life Without Abuse.  Both are available on Amazon.

Feb 27, 2019

My guest’s favorite quote is:  You can’t change where you have been, but you can change where you are GOING!!

When she was in her 20′s, she thought she had met her soul mate, the love of her life. He was a very successful businessman who owned an advertising/direct mail business. They married and she soon became his right-arm partner in business.

In September of 2001, The World Trade Center collapsed: their business income fell 90% that year. Her husband was able to choose retirement, she set out to work in corporate America and proudly made a name for myself.

Sadly, her husband did not celebrate his wife’s success.  He displayed only jealousy, resentment, and arrogance.  His action toward her spiraled into verbal, physical and financial abuse.

We all have choices! 

She chose to escape, and became empowered to not only seek safe refuge and healing, she began surrounding herself with positive, outgoing and caring people.

Angeline Mitchell’s favorite quote is from Michael Jordan: “I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can’t accept not trying.”

She now inspires other survivors/thrivers by sharing her philosophy that when obstacles arise, embrace the challenge and celebrate the opportunity for change.

Angeline is a firm believer that by doing so, you first empower yourself so that you can then empower others.

Reach out to Angeline on her Facebook business page: Let’s Break the Silence.

Feb 20, 2019

Just you and your thoughts in the midnight hour:  What are you thinking about?  Can’t sleep because you worry, you’re still fearful, you’re wondering if you REALLY can make it on your own, were you really abused?

Sheila Malloy-Hall talks about carrying the shame, pain and hurt of abuse, knowing these emotions are not who she is or who she was meant to be. Still the feelings kept her awake at night.

Sheila is now an Empowerment Speaker, Advocate, Survivor Strategist, Best Selling Author, and she has moved from being a victim of abuse and domestic violence to the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of her life! 


She shares her story of triumph and her healing journey to provoke, inform, restore and activate healing in others … from the inside out…and she encourages women to reach their highest level of internal fulfillment.


Sheila Malloy-Hall’s story shared in this podcast and her public speaking presentations encourage and empower professional women, who have been or are being exposed to abuse and domestic violence.  These include professional women who may appear to have it all together on the outside, but who may still be adversely affected on the inside by the trauma of abuse and domestic violence. 

Learn more about Sheila on her Facebook page:
Healing2Grace, Inc.


Feb 13, 2019

Wouldn’t you love to have magic words to use when communicating with your narcissist…or any abuser? 

My guest, Lindsey Ellison, tells you exactly what to say on this podcast and in her book by the same title, Magic Words.   Lindsey is an author, a relationship coach and founder of Start Over Coaching, Inc. 

She specializes in helping people break free from narcissistic abuse, navigate their divorce or break-up, and find happiness and peace.

Originally stemming from her own personal experiences, Lindsey’s mission is to inspire you to make those amazing changes in your life to help you start over and find happiness.

Lindsey shared much of her story of transformation after abuse as my podcast guest in March 2018. That very insightful discussion was titled “You are not the only one…you are not alone”.  Check it out.

Today we are talking about her new book “Magic Words, How to get what you want from a Narcissist.”

More information about Linsey, her online courses and her book can be found at

Feb 6, 2019

How is it possible for this to be your most abundant year?  That’s what I wondered…then I thought about what “abundant” really means!

Abundant is finances, of course.  And much more than that!  I discovered that this being my most abundant year included changing my perspective, releasing even more negative self-talk, recognizing and letting go of undermining beliefs tied to the Imposter Syndrome.  I spent the past few weeks changing my attitude and my energy. 

This is my most abundant year.  Will it be yours, too?

What does “abundant” mean to you?  Are you willing to step out of “Where you are” to move on to “Where you want to be”?

This can be your most abundant year.  That is a choice, right?

Listen to more podcasts, watch videos and read articles all created to inspire, encourage and empower thrivers of domestic abuse.

Jan 30, 2019

I easily and effortlessly smile!  Why?  Because smiling is the quickest way to increase positive energy.

Several women in my Community have asked this week how to change their negative moods and attitudes…they were feeling sad, guilty, lonely, frustrated, angry, alone.  

We all feel negative emotions now and then.

Having left domestic abuse does not mean everything is good now…no more sad days, living in the past or fearful of the future.  Right?  We still carry all that negativity with us, in the recesses of our minds.  And it does surface from time to time.

This podcast discusses and teaches The Smile Exercise.  It is simple and free.  Anyone can do it.  And, it will improve your attitude.  I learned this process years ago and still use it often.

Test the theory…what have you got to lose (besides feeling sad, lost, alone, afraid?)

For more information about thriving after domestic abuse, listen to podcasts, watch live videos and read articles on my website  

Jan 23, 2019

There is a pervasive reality described and discussed by women who have lived in domestic abuse…it is generally only talked about after we leave.  We don’t want to accept the reality of our lives when we are still living in abuse.

Here’s the one thing:
You did not know you were an abused wife, significant other or girlfriend.  For months, years or decades you did not know, did not believe, did not accept that you were abused.  Your mind told you that you were the strong one, that you were Called to help your abuser live his life between the lines, that for whatever reason you were where you were supposed to be.  Right?

Even after accepting that we were abused, it usually was months or years before we gained the strength, the support, the mindset, to leave.  We are used to believing our lies.  We still feel responsible for helping and supporting our misunderstood, angry-at-the-world abuser.

The one thing you don’t know about living in domestic abuse is that most of us don’t allow our reality to enter our minds, our worlds.  Silence allows the epidemic of domestic abuse to grow, to thrive.  1 in 3 women in the U.S. experience domestic abuse at some time in their lives.  You were not alone.  You are not alone. 

Listen to more podcasts, watch live videos and read articles at

Jan 16, 2019

As kids, we threw rocks into water to watch the ripples…I still do!  I like to see how far they will travel.  We know that ripples of light and sound travel into infinity.

The same is true of what we say (sound) and the energy we release (light).  Our words and energy are felt and heard.  They affect objects they bump into…like our family members, co-workers, and friends.

We are totally responsible for the ripples we send into the Universe and into our little space of life. 

The question is not, will I make a difference in the world?
The real question is, what kind of difference will I make?

Purchase Looking Behind Closed Doors on Amazon

Learn more at


Jan 9, 2019

My guest’s Mission is to break the stigma of being abused by breaking her silence.  One of the realities that empowered her and that she teaches other victims of abuse is that your abuse was not about you.  It was about your abuser. 

In our conversation, she shares that her former step father abused her physically, psychologically and sexually. He told her every single day, from the age of 2 til 12, that she was ugly, stupid, useless, worthless, and unlovable.  She believed him, not just because she heard the words for so long, but because that was what she saw unfolding all around her.  Every situation in her life seemed to be shouting, “He’s right!!!”

Lisa Cybaniak is now an enthusiastic, high-energy, motivational speaker and success coach.  

Now she has created a life of value and worth.  Now she has a family she adores, a home she cherishes, and a career she’s in love with.  Her life is centered around empowering survivors of abuse to find their personal purpose, to build the life they deserve.

To learn more about Lisa and to join her online community, go to

On Facebook, her private group is The Life You Deserve.  You must ask to become a member of the private Facebook group.

Jan 2, 2019

When I decided to create my own name, I apprehensively told my grown, very conservative, son.  His response on the phone, when I invited he and his wife to dinner to talk about me choosing a new name:  “OH, this is gonna be good!”

At dinner his response was “Mickie Zada?!  That sounds like a hippie name.”

My answer to his concern: “Well, you know me as your Mom, as your Dad’s wife.  You don’t know “Me”… and I AM an old hippie!”

Listen to this podcast to learn more about my motivation and reasoning.

Go to my website to learn more about Mickie Zada, listen to other podcasts, watch live videos and read articles.  All this content is to inspire, educate, and encourage thrivers of domestic abuse to stay on their Paths, to create their own authentic lives…whether that includes changing your name, or not!

Looking for your own personal coach?  I’m available and I offer various programs, from 3 months to a full year.  Contact me to schedule a complimentary 15-minute introductory session.  Messenger me on FaceBook or contact me through my website