Apart from — Owning It

For almost 4 years I have started my day photographing myself in a bodybuilding pose. It’s the default position competitors assume between poses, the Front Relaxed. At first I did it as practice leading up to my first competition. But continued afterwards. It became more than perfecting a display. It rooted my day in an […]

Apart from — Owning It

Own Beauty — Owning It

Physical culture is beleaguered by its association with vanity. That is a scapegoat used by those invested in atrophy. The argument is to cave into deterioration, rather than commit a sin. It’s an extension of comfort culture, the hard sell of convenience. Cultivating your physical presence has more rewards than your reflection. That’s just a […]

Own Beauty — Owning It

Before — Owning It

My biggest victories are invisible. My wins are much larger than the pounds pressed or reps gotten. Below the surface of my bodybuilding there are two key life events. The first is a sweet inspiring moment. The second is bitter. The latter’s aftermath threw me into a prison of confusing contradictions. Long before the kidnapping, […]

Before — Owning It

The ferocity of a child. — Owning It

I deeply shared a lot about the assault with a friend. Rarely have I so clearly expressed the experience. Gone was my begging permission to feel. I wasn’t nervously claiming my rights to compassion on technicalities. Without shame, I freely discussed the worst day of my life. Giving feedback, he marveled at the “ferocity of […]

The ferocity of a child. — Owning It

Call for Artwork — Owning It

Seeking artwork that celebrates personal transformation. Somanyskins.org virtually showcases art that embraces triumph over life’s challenges. Our first call ends August 13, 2021. The show “opens” on August 15. The site sprung from a series of my photographs by the same name. I am Brian David Dennis, a multi-disciplinary artist in Philadelphia. I am also a […]

Call for Artwork — Owning It

Onto Today – EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

I ask a thousand questions about the trauma. So much so, the inquisition became a mantra. The mantra, a cage. I sought to liberate myself by understanding every perspective of my experience. My approach was doomed from the start. There are questions I will never have the answer to. But even more importantly, by looking […]

Onto Today – EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

Dark Flutter – EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

Could everything you have ever been afraid of be unleashed? Would our monsters flutter away, tiny and frail? Would our bravery diminish their hold? I hold my fear in my chest, caged in my ribs. In a rage full fit, I snatched it. Dominated it. Claimed control and freedom. But they were hollow. Being a […]

Dark Flutter – EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

Finding fondness for my 14 year old- EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

A few weeks ago I was confronted with just how much I hated my 14 year old self. I’ve done a lot of work in EMDR that has helped turn the table. Last night I encountered a deep compassion for him. I once couldn’t stand to be photographed, or to see my reflection in a […]

Finding fondness for my 14 year old- EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

On a prick / balance- EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

The sessions have been getting intense. I have been fumbling around in an emotional muck. It’s left me unable to write. But I need to. I am going to be frank, so back away because there are ***TRIGGERS*** The update is pretty straight forward. The last EMDR session we targeted the moment I woke up […]

On a prick / balance- EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

Home — Owning It

A video starts and you see yourself. What if your first, unedited thought was “handsome and muscular”? Bear with me. The assessment isn’t fueled with bloated pride, nor was it a notion born of hope. What was seen was not a Hollywood hunk or Mr. Olympia. It was simply an appreciative recognition. And I can […]

Home — Owning It

Killed Pleasure- EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

***TRIGGERS*** I wasn’t going to post this here, but I believe it maybe valuable to understand. I posted it in an online forum for survivors on 1-11-21. Last week I had maybe the most important therapy session ever. I began to talk in depth about a part of my experience I have often mentioned, but […]

Killed Pleasure- EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

Anticipation – EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

I believe tomorrow I will finish providing my history. I am calm, filled with anticipation, but for what? Whenever I tell my story I am soothed with blankets of confirmation. I have never been able to wear them as skins, but it is comforting for a breif moment to be warmed in understanding. My life […]

Anticipation – EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

Solid – EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

I’ve had so many mornings after. But today’s dawn light brings a focus and clarity.  Asked what he thought, my therapist said “it sounded like a horror movie”.  There’s so much comfort in his confirmation. I needn’t scurry between doubts. I have come here to be solid and sure. Maybe others have said it before, […]

Solid – EMDR Journey Notes — Owning It

EMDR Journey Notes – Blanket of words — Owning It

I need words for what I did yesterday. I was sick to my stomach most of the night and don’t feel myself yet. As I generally don’t get stomach bugs, I am going to suspect emotional influences. I hope words will get me through. Yesterday I told my therapist, Rand what happened on the playground. […]

EMDR Journey Notes – Blanket of words — Owning It

EMDR Journey Notes – Silence — Owning It

Tomorrow I believe I begin giving a detail history to the therapist. There’s a barren feeling when I think about the magnitude of my story. Against what I know, is a strange emptiness. It leaves my mouth hollow and dry. It’s a repetitive thing tumbling around, never getting far enough away to forget. When I […]

EMDR Journey Notes – Silence — Owning It

EMDR Journey Notes – 9-18-20 — Owning It

When I mentioned being kidnapped the therapist asked a question that has lingered: “We’re they ever caught?” I can’t possibly layout my reactions in any order that gives them meaning. To him I replied “no one ever knew, except for Bobby G. He called it a “bad trick”. What a 21st century question. This was […]

EMDR Journey Notes – 9-18-20 — Owning It

EMDR Journey Notes – Day 1 — Owning It

I generally try to craft well written posts. I am taking a different approach with these Notes. They will be just simple impressions and expressions. I meet Rand today, session one is in the books. We talked about what our work together would look like. There are some formal steps, the word escapes me (foundation?). […]

EMDR Journey Notes – Day 1 — Owning It

EMDR Journey Notes – Catch up — Owning It

I am a few days into my decision to get EMDR. Just opening the subject has been fairly powerful and I want to maintain a diary of the process. I will share what I’ve posted elsewhere and from here out will be doing entries here. 9/2/2020 Guys I interviewed a therapist who does EMDR today. […]

EMDR Journey Notes – Catch up — Owning It