Throughout our lives we experience countless struggles, obstacles and downfalls. Though it is always important to know we are not alone, and that there is someone we can relate to and share our experiences with.

Hanna Lulgjuraj-Murray, an Ahwatukee Foothills resident, decided to finally share her dark past with others in her first published book titled, Lived to Tell It.

"This book is about finding the courage to leave an abusive relationship, self empowerment, getting justice, and learning to love and trust again," Lulgjuraj-Murray said.

Lulgjuraj-Murray, born in Yugoslavia, emigrated to the United States before she was a year old. Her parents raised her using the customs and traditions from their old country. Her entire life, "the husband rules" idea was meshed into her mind, and for so long she knew no different.

She described, "during the process of writing my book, which took me four-and-a-half years on and off, my publisher pulled out feelings and words that have been tightly tucked away for so long."

It was in her early 20s that her wonderful life quickly took a turn for the worse when she was shot by her husband.

"My story, I hope, will be an inspiration to other women out there who are in abusive relationships and trying to get out," Lulgjuraj-Murray said.

Suriving a gunshot is a miracle within itself. She was so young and had already a near death experience.

Lulgjuraj-Murray explained, "this book is closure for myself, I have finally closed that chapter of my life and can begin a new chapter."

• Kimberly Haug is interning this semester for the Ahwatukee Foothills News. She is a senior at Arizona State University.

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