‘I was raped.’ I said, and reached for my whiskey.
He looked up at me, angry.
My first thought was “oh shit…storm comin’.”
I pulled back and my hand shook a little making the ice clink in my glass.
Panic took hold for the slightest sliver of a second. I am hand shy.
I am a weather witch for reals. I can look up at the sky, the clouds, rings around the moon and tell you what the weather will be like.
I studied the patterns of clouds and thunder in his face and saw that he was mirroring my own hurt, pain, anger and angst over what had happened.
I had had 14 years to deal, he was taking it all on all at once.
That was protectiveness, empathy for a girl he just met.
“It’s alright, I’m alright.” I said conjuring my most ‘it’s alright’ tone. Hush baby.
His shoulders dropped slightly, his eyes went back to grey/blue skies instead of the terrifying shade that is tornado warning green and the conversation continued.
I said if we ever end up having sex, I can’t feel confined. I need to know where the door is.
He said that was more than okay and he understood.
We went on to discuss more pleasant things, we had a lot of topics to choose from, pretty much everything ever is better than that one thing. We both wiggled on our barstools when Travelling Wilbury’s and Paul Simon came on.
It was a good date.
When I left Saint Anthony it was messy. Not sure if it is possible to exit a tumultuous on and off 7 year marriage in a clean manner. I have no other precedent other than the end of the 5 year one that came before. That was gross too.
The common thread that binds the ends of those two is I was on my way out the door to another lover.
Queen of the Monkey Bars. I’ve since abdicated my throne, but it is who I was.
Saint Anthony has a rather unflattering nickname for the one I ran to, I won’t repeat it but I don’t have one of my own. Initials will have to do JC.
I half joked with Drogo once that I had had more sex and orgasms with him than I did in my entire 7 year marriage. There is truth in that statement, horrible, long wandering through the driest of deserts truth. My husband didn’t fuck me enough, barely at all.
He didn’t know me either. I didn’t so how could he have. That’s impossible.
So I left Saint Ant for JC. Spent the next month in bed making up for lost sex.
One fine morning, we had had the morning sex. I was sated and ready for coffee and a cigarette. JC wasn’t. He proceeded to padlock the room we were in so I couldn’t get out.
I had not mentioned to JC that I wasn’t just raped. I was held hostage in my apartment. Beaten, terrorized and raped repeatedly by an ex for 7 hours. He said he was going to kill me and I believe he would have if I hadn’t gotten out. I zigged when he zagged and ran to the neighbors. Barefoot, without pants on New Year’s Day. An ex I had bailed out of jail for beating me 5 months prior so badly I looked like I had been in a car wreck. An ex who had a restraining order stating he could not be near my house much less in it waiting for me inside when I got home from work. Restraining orders are just pieces of useless paper. Locks mean almost as little when it comes to keeping someone out. They mean a little more when you are trapped inside.
Trigger with a capitol T.
I wonder what I look like to others when I get that angry. I scared a 7’2” bar manager badly one night when I got that mad. He admitted he was scared of me and the firing of me I had forced him to do. So I am guessing it’s pretty terrifying. Like Medusa, but I am the one that turns to stone. Unyielding, hard and cold.
JC unlocked the door and apologized. I had my coffee, several cigarettes and immediately began looking for another place to stay.
I decided to tell the truth. All of it.
That boy on the bar stool with the hurricane eyes was my real first date. Not something I tripped and fell into, not something I landed in running from somewhere else. He was my choice.
I had somewhat figured out who I am as a person and wanted to try being my self. My messy, dorky, healed-up, witchy self.
The category 5 that I summoned with those 3 words was him seeing me, as I am, as something much too precious to be ripped apart that way.
We are still friends and he still looks at me that way. We protect each other.
I write this blog about my life.
I have touched on the subject of being raped and never really gotten into it.
I had a crazy troll experience via my Facebook page wherein a man from Kentucky was being rude towards women. I asked him to stop, said sorry he had been hurt but it was a toxic idea to blame all women. I told him I had been raped and did in no way believe all men were rapists. His reaction?
He got rapey.
He sent gory photos of women being beheaded. Implied I was so uppity that mayhap Ted Bundy would have been a better choice for my rapist because then I would be dead and unable to open my whore mouth.
See the juxtaposition here? I do.
The only reason I told the first date boy what had happened was to not have a repeat of JC and the padlock.
There are good men and bad men.
My friends rallied around me to keep me safe from the bad man.
There really are not words to describe how that felt. I was technically alone in my apartment, shaking and scared. I opened my mouth and asked for help and it arrived at lightning speed. The ghosts in my machine had him pinpointed at a safe distance, blocked reported and harassed back in mere minutes. Polar opposite to my prior experiences.
I feel safe now.
My girl messaged me saying
I want to say that you are wonderful. That it takes courage to survive and to say in an open forum that someone hurt you and you couldn’t stop it. I want you to know that you are loved and that I am sorry for the wrong done for you. There are so many who never find the voice or the strength to fight back and overcome. People who seek to degrade and dominate others are weak and can never fill the void in themselves so they do something evil to spread the pain that they have. Trying to turn the light out in others. The sweetest and most important things cannot be destroyed by others. They live deep inside your secret heart. Where the soul lives. Your words reach a lot of people. And you speaking of that which is stigmatized and unspeakable may give another courage to not be a victim but a survivor. I love you.
I love you Liza, bravest woman I know.
Here is the thing. I do not feel like a victim. I do not feel like I survivor. I just feel like me.
I am not what happened to me. I make mistakes and learn.
I am still here. There is not one cell of my body left that my rapist ever touched. I have regenerated over and over and will continue to do so. I shed my skin often. It’s part of growth and forward momentum, and science really.
It is my fervent hope that this reaches anyone else who has had this happen. I want you to know that there a people out there, myself included who will make you feel loved and protected like I do. You are worthy of love and protection.
I am not made out of some unattainable magic.
Well, sometimes I am but in this instance I am just a girl who found my worth reflected in a boy’s eyes over a whiskey and some nachos when I decided to tell the truth.