recovery


I was in my second year of college here. I had made many friends over the past couple of years. I was living in a four bedroom house with two guys and another gal. The guys  were like my brothers. I had a rule, no dating housemates. Too complicated if it didn’t work out. For the most part, my housemates and I were very different but, for the most part, we got along real well. We had the scholarly, the bicyclist, the stoner and me, the theater/science nerd. We all lived very separate lives most of the time but sometimes, we would actually hang out together. House parties, movie nights, watch sports on TV, even a theater party here and there. Over all it was a great living situation and I was very happy there. Across the street lived another college guy that we all knew someway or another. He would occasionally hang out with us and sometimes we would hang out at his place.

One night, a couple of my housemates and I were over at this guys house to watch The Fly. It was such a good movie and we thought it would be a good night. For some reason, my roommates went back home for the night. The movie was about over and I wanted to see the end. I had no reason to not trust the guy that lived there. I had hung out with him many times before. I was wrong. Shortly after my roommate left, the guy was on top of me. He had me pinned to the sofa and was trying to convince me to go further. I kept telling him no and he kept going, touching, kissing, groping, touching, kissing. I had no chance of getting away from him and he would not stop no matter how much I told him no. I was scared and couldn’t get away. He was so big and I was at such a disadvantage as I was pinned under him on the sofa in an empty house. He was at least 200 pounds. A BIG guy. At the time, I was barely over 100 pounds and 5’5″ and had no skills for defense. I had never been so happy to hear a knock on the door until that night. One of my roommates came back. I have no idea why but I have been so grateful for it. The guy jumped off of me and I sped home. I did tell my roommate what happened and thanked him so much for coming back. I never spoke to the neighbor again and avoided him the rest of the time I was in school.

I never reported the incident. I only spoke of it to a few people. I knew it would be his word against mine. I didn’t want to go through the hassle or any of the shit that goes with it. I didn’t want to have people say that I shouldn’t have put myself in that position. I didn’t want to hear how it was my fault. I didn’t want my sexual promiscuity to be used against me. I knew I had no proof. My roommate didn’t see anything, he just knew how glad I was to see him and what I told him. I did share with a couple of female friends and found out that he had done the same with a couple of friends of mine but they chose not to report either. Being a reporting female, especially back then was so bad but I do not know if it has gotten any better.

I blocked out so much of the event. I do not remember his name, I just remember that he was a lot bigger than I was. I remember the house. When I drive by it, I always remember it. I don’t remember what he looked like but I remember the layout of the room. I remember the smells. Would I remember his name if I heard it? Would I remember his face if I saw it? I do not know but I do know that it happened. I have shared with very few people in my life. Why share it? It does no good. I often have guilt for not reporting it as I am sure he has done it again but would my coming forward have stopped it or just ruined my life? I am just glad I got away before he raped me and it was “just a sexual assault”. It still traumatized me. It still made me very leery of men and trusting a man when I am getting to know them. I thought he was my friend.

I am Fifty One now.

#metoo

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Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest TrailWild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I did very much enjoy this book. After reading many of the reviews, I can see where the negative comments came from but I do disagree with them in many ways. After her mother died, it appears that she got depressed. That is how I can see why she threw away a good marriage and lost. She was lost. Yes, her deciding to hike the PCT alone with no experience was not a smart thing to do. She was very lucky that she ran into so many kind hearted people. To me, that shows how most people are good after all. She made many mistakes and was very lucky. Yes, she got off the trail many times but only bypassed in a few areas. She stuck with it though she was unprepared. I respect that she kept going with an overweight backpack, lack of supplies, and lots of pain. The critics need to remember that she was so young when this happened. We aren’t the smartest at that age. She learned a lot about herself and grew a lot on her journey. I don’t know what has happened to her since but I hope that she has found happiness and continued to grow in strength and confidence.

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My name is Wil Wheaton. I live with Chronic Depression, and I am not ashamed

LuckyLucky by Alice Sebold

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wow. What a book. This is the true story of the author’s brutal rape and her recovery. She is so brutally honest and the book was so detailed that I could not put it down. The description of the rape was hard to read in such detail but I think it was important for the book for the readers to be able to relate even a little bit to her story. Hearing how her relationships changed with her friends and family was difficult to imagine. One scene that really stood out for me was when she tried to get her father to understand what happened to her and why she didn’t fight more. People so often judge and blame the victim. In this book, she talks about that frequently and how she actually tried to protect others from their discomfort. She was lucky to have a lot of support and one teacher that helped her have the strength to face her attacker in court and actually convict him. This was a book of strength and courage. It was well worth the read

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WOW what a great inspirational film about second chances.

I watched this yesterday morning at the Durango Independent Film Festival. This judge has done amazing things to help change people’s lives. He starts out talking about how difficult it is on a person to sentence people to life in prison over and over again. He started this running group of addicts and ex-cons and homeless people. They run marathons around the world as the people rebuild their lives and self esteem.

I love how the judge says that one bad moment does not define who a person is. It made me think of my friend, the ex-con. He will always be a what if for me. If his parole hadn’t taken him across state lines, what would have happened with us? We still talk regularly and I know he is not the man that did the awful thing he did. He and I have been friends now for 2 years. He has thanked me a couple of times for giving him a chance and is glad I was his first friend post-prison.

I also have friends and family that are addicts. I love when people can have second chances and succeed. I admire this judge for doing what he does and wish all his runners the best of luck.

#skidrowmarathon #second chances

I thought that he had. I thought that the holiday season was ruined for me forever. I used to be one of the crazy holiday loving people that so many people complain about. I would think of the Solstice, Saturnalia, Christmas and just feel bright inside. I loved the music (even the religious ones), the colors, the lights, the cooking, the food, the giving, the receiving, even the crowds. I would wear my Santa hat every day. I felt so alive during the holiday season. The holidays were not always good with the ex-husband. He was a bit of a scrooge and made things more tense than they needed to be but I still loved it every year. That is UNTIL…….

He filed for divorce two weeks after Christmas. We had been having problems for a few years but that Christmas was one of our better ones. He even gave me great gifts. I was sure that things were getting better. I thought that maybe he loved me again. Even our oldest told me that he really loved me and thought things were better for us all.

I felt so betrayed. I felt lied to. I felt that the entire holiday had been a lie. I have not looked forward to it for years.  I have put off the decorating as long as possible. I have dreaded putting  up the tree and seeing the ornaments that remind me of various things in our marriage. I had thought about cancelling my annual party. I went through the motions for my kids but would have been perfectly happy just skipping the celebrations.  I actually have had good Christmases in the past few years but I still dreaded them. BF/ex-boyfriend has been with us for a couple of them.

This year, for some reason, I am more myself. my kiddo/roommate was working today and I brought in the decorations, put on the music and almost finished decorating the house. Last night, I went to Noel Night  in town with my nephew. I am excited for my party. I am excited for the holiday season again. I enjoyed singing the songs while I decorated today. I have my holiday back. I have no idea what changed for me this year but I am happy  about it. This has always been my favorite time of year. I definitely do not have any more money this year, things are not perfect but I can enjoy all the things I love about this time.  I am lucky that all three kids are choosing to spend the holiday with me this year, too. Now I just need snow to make it as perfect as it can be.

So many of my male friends are shocked by the #metoo stories and how many women they know with stories. Somany of them are asking what they can or should do, this is a good read regarding this.

 

#MeToo testimonies are flooding our social media feeds. For men, realizing complicity can be uncomfortable. On seeing this discomfort as a challenge.

Source: For Guys Reading #MeToo Testimonies — Courtney Martin | On Being

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