Anonymous Story: Afterthoughts

Anonymous Story: Afterthoughts

I am not sure what it is that holds me back from writing. For so long, writing has come easily to me. Maybe it wasn’t always fluid or grammatically correct, but it was simple and not forced. Lately, it has felt the opposite, like the words that I want to express are jumbled in my mind and not only am I trying to write them down but first I have to decode them. This always prevents me from getting very far in what I write because I give up. I get deterred by the difficulty of trying to decipher the messages my mind brings forward and equally discouraged by uncertainty of whether or not what I interpret is even accurate. I remember reading where someone wrote that they hate writing, but love having written. I think that is how I am. I love the fulfillment of an expressed thought or emotion, but I hate the process it requires. I mean, I think that is how I am now, whether specifically talking about writing or not. I know I will love the release and feeling of confronting what happened, facing my thoughts and all that is consequence…but I hate what it takes to release it. I think to release it, I have to let go of all that I have been denying. Not only this, but I have to admit that I have been in denial. It’s not that I can’t admit this, but once I embrace the instability of where I am and where I thought I have been, I have to prepare for the wave that could take me off my feet. It’s like denial is standing waist deep in the ocean. For a while, it’s not so bad…all is well, your head still above water. Then, a huge wave of reality just knocks you over, takes you under and brings you back to shore. Yet, you stand back up and go back in the water and again it’s not too bad…until the next wave. In my denial, I have been hit over and over by waves, been knocked with reality, but ultimately persist in it…keep going back out…as if I have both forgotten about the wave that knocked me down and the probability of ones to come.
Sometimes I just wish I could have a release, just cry it all out, scream and do anything to let go of this pain that consumes me to every extent but losing my mind entirely. I am to the point of barely hanging by a thread. Everything I do, every word I speak or write…it is all polluted with what happened to me. I know that I am not alone, that I have people around me that care…and for that I am fortunate. But this pain, I have to go through this pain alone. This pain injects itself in everything, every movement…thought…where even when I think I am enduring, getting stronger…it comes back each time worse than the last, and I am to the point that it wouldn’t take much to knock me over. Every fiber of my being, my soul is broken.
I don’t know why I am finding everything to be so hard lately. It’s like I am just struggling to accept what happened…even after everything that I have been through in the time since it happened, years later and I still just can’t accept it. I can’t even use the word to refer to it as what it is, let alone say it happened to me. I can’t say it. Honestly, I can’t even think it. I find myself downplaying it in my mind the moment the thought appears, doing everything I can to resist it. Why can’t I just say it? I was raped. He raped me. No, I can’t say that and I am fighting everything in me not to delete the words, I can’t even write it. It just feels like a story in my head, a movie really. In that story, he is the villain…but in my head, he is still king. The problem is, it’s not a scary movie…or a bad dream…it happened. It’s real. Everything reminds me that it’s real. Everything, every movement, every thought…everything forces me to face the reality of what happened and I am scared to-I don’t want to accept that he raped me…that I was raped. It is easier to just accept that I screwed up. I shouldn’t have been so drunk…I should have tried harder to get out, shouldn’t have even been there…I should have prevented it from happening. That is much easier to accept than to accept the reality. Why is it so difficult to accept that he knew I didn’t want to but did it anyway-he raped me. Even though I didn’t fight it like I should have, he knew…I was raped…I was raped…I was raped. I want nothing more than to delete those words. I still just can’t say it…accept it.
Ugh, it feels like I am going backwards. I thought that moving forward meant that I get stronger and that things get easier. “Time heals all wounds”, right? I mean…I am not expecting everything to be perfect but I just thought with how much time has passed I should be further than I am. If anything, I feel like I haven’t moved at all. It feels like yesterday. I mean…this happened. This is reality. I am not dreaming, it’s not a story…this happened. I was raped. Me. Cassie. I was raped. He raped me…me. No matter what I try to convince myself of, no matter what I think…it happened and there is nothing I can do to deny it…nothing can make it go away. I haven’t even wanted to face what happened…or anything that has happened as a result. When things get so hard that I can’t even comprehend my own thoughts, I just don’t try to, I just go quiet. I didn’t think that it could hurt this bad. This long after, I know the pain is not physical…it’s emotional, mental…but I didn’t think this pain could be this bad. I was everything I could want to be…happy, loved, loving…caring, I was content. I had a family that loved me and some of the best friends. In one night, in a matter of hours…my entire world was turned upside down and everything changed. I have been through such hell and have gone from complete shock, to wanting nothing more than to lay down and not move. This pain, this is the worst pain I have ever felt. This pain is unbearable. This pain is exhausting. I want nothing more than to just let go of what happened, what he did…but I can’t. I can’t let go of any of it. I am consumed by it. Nobody around me really understands, or even knows, how bad things are. I can’t bare to look at myself, at the reality…at my reality. I might be able to hide it from everyone else, but I can’t hide it from myself…and I’d give anything to be able to.
I can’t sleep. I am afraid to. It’s like the moment I realized I shouldn’t take sleeping pills…before all of this happened to me. I would take sleeping pills and I’d sleep…but it terrified me that they kept me asleep. They kept me asleep and I would be trapped in the weirdest, sometimes scariest of dreams. That is where I am, I am afraid of sleeping because I don’t know what I will dream…or if I will be able to wake up from it when it is too much. I am so tired, exhausted…I can’t remember the last time I slept without dreaming…even if it isn’t of that night, it is of what I felt that night. I am always in nightmares that expose me to fear, uncertainty…absolute terror.
I know that I have to face this at some point. I have to face the truth. I think I am just still in shock…I just don’t understand it. He raped me…he was able to rape me. I know that I was drunk, unconscious…but he knew I didn’t want it…he knew I wanted him to stop. If not the first time, when I woke up and he insisted on more…he knew. I had bruises…I know what happened, but I don’t understand it. My mind is blocking everything from me, it’s like it knows I can’t take it. This pain is so much, and I can’t take much more of it. I try…I endure…I don’t want to do anything stupid or lose it entirely, but I am becoming afraid of not losing it…holding it “together” like I do…it’s scary. I mean, I give mad props to everyone who has gone through this and made it out the other end stronger, or even made it at all. It is so indescribable how heart-wrenchingly painful this is…I mean, I have been so compromised by him, what he did, that I don’t know how to live anymore. I can’t even remember what it feels like to really, honestly be happy. I am becoming a person that is just angry, bitter, confused…ultimately just twisted and lost and I don’t want to be this person. I can’t be this person. I am always so panicked and scared. I can’t stop thinking about it…I can’t stop thinking about him. I remember everything…everything that happened. He hurt me so badly…for hours…I was stuck and forced to experience it…forced to just take all the pain…no way of escaping. I couldn’t make it stop. I couldn’t protect myself. I couldn’t make him stop. It hurt so badly.
What kills me…I just wish I had reacted differently than I did. I wish I had reacted at all. It just didn’t register what was happening, and when it did I couldn’t move…I couldn’t stop it…I didn’t react. I remember thinking scream…no, don’t scream…don’t over-react, don’t worry…no worry…this isn’t happening, this doesn’t happen…all while feeling so terrified, knowing it was real….that it was happening. He pinned me down and I didn’t fight it.
It’s all hitting me. The truth, the reality…my reality. Everything that happened and everything I am feeling are starting to connect and the only way to describe it…it’s disabling. I honestly can’t function. I am always so anxious…I can never cope with anything at any one moment. I feel ruined. I was weak and submissive…still am, it feels like he is still raping me. I will always be living with this. This will always be happening and it will never be okay.
I know this is a long process…I know it isn’t supposed to be easy and it won’t be. I just have such disappointment in myself. I failed myself that night. Now, even this long after it happened, I am being forced to face what happened in everything that I do in every moment…and I am not ready. I can’t accept it because I can’t understand it.
I feel ashamed of thoughts that I have had. I have felt sorry for him. I felt sorry for his kids. I knew he had kids, had met them one time at work. I didn’t meet them…but I saw them, was in proximity to them. I don’t know them, I don’t know the story…but I felt sorry for them. I felt bad pressing charges, had to be convinced to do so and to this day wish I hadn’t. I am ashamed of that, but I think that…I felt bad…I don’t know why…but I just wish I hadn’t….I felt like it was so much my own stupidity…that maybe he didn’t realize…I felt like pressing charges was weaker than just dealing with it. I am ashamed of thinking that. I felt bad that he was arrested at work, I felt bad that he was going to go to jail…although he didn’t, I still felt bad that I was doing this to someone…I thought I was ruining someone’s life…and I never want to do that. I know that I wasn’t in my right mind. I was in denial…every thought that entered my mind, every bit of guilt I felt…I know it was because I was in shock…that I didn’t know what happened, I was thinking in the mind of who I was before it happened. I didn’t want to be a victim, don’t want to be a victim and I felt like I was a terrible person for ruining someone’s life. I am ashamed that every thought that crossed my mind was about everyone else but me, and every thought that crossed my mind about me, I felt guilty for thinking of me.

The thing is, in accepting that it was in the past…I wasn’t accepting anything about it. I wasn’t accepting that “what happened” was in the past, I wasn’t accepting that “what happened, happened to me” and that was in the past…I was accepting an invisible, ungraspable something as being in the past…I was letting a thought pass without ever thinking it. So here I am today, the thought has just recycled over and over ever since it happened, but something has shifted…something is causing me to think the thought…all of the thoughts that I have allowed to pass without thinking them…that I have denied ever having thought at all. The million times that “I was raped” or “He raped me” crossed my mind, I will never know…because I never thought them, I never said them…I wouldn’t even write them…and when I did…I hid it…from others, from myself…I felt ashamed for admitting that it happened. Not ashamed of it happening to me, but ashamed of saying that it did. It did happen, but in saying it…I was the victim…I was calling on it where I hadn’t before. I couldn’t deny it and live with it at the same time…but I was…and now, now it is resurfacing ten-fold.
What kills me, is that I am still ashamed. I am ashamed that I had thought about him before it happened…not in that way, but I had felt something wasn’t right before I ever went out with everyone from work…him included. I had in a way warned myself. When it happened…it wasn’t like I had been warned. I understand that it wouldn’t have made a difference…even if I had been able to fight and say no…even if I had really listened to that warning and paid attention…it wouldn’t matter because he acted in spite of all of it. He was going to do what he did whether I had anything to do with it or not. I am ashamed because I felt like since I knew him…since it wasn’t “random”, that it was my fault. I still think that…I still think that there is too much I could have done or could have said…could have prevented that the very fact that it happened still rests on me. I was raped. He raped me. But I didn’t stop him. I can’t trust myself to know what I am doing, what is going on…what I need to pay attention to. I can’t trust myself…how can you live any kind of life where the very core to your soul is shattered, where there is no foundation to stand on….I can’t trust my mind to think what it needs to think….my mind has deceived me ever since it happened, my mind has allowed me to live in denial…I can’t trust my body to move when it needs to…my body was weak and motionless when it happened. I can’t trust my words to convey what they need to…my words have been empty from the moment it happened. I haven’t spoken truth because I haven’t spoken of what happened. Anything I have said that is not accepting of my reality, is not true. My reality is what happened. Anything talking around that or in denial of that…it’s not true because it’s not accepting of the truth. And since my words have spoken of everything BUT that, I cannot trust them any more than I can trust my mind that brings the thoughts forward. It is like my mind and my mouth work together to deny my reality and convince me that I am not denying anything.
I am hanging by a thread. I am in such pain and I am so consumed. I think I just hate that I am requiring attention. Not just my own attention, but others. I don’t like that I can’t deal with anything on my own and I don’t want anyone else to have to deal with it. I don’t like that other people have to deal with my shit. I hate that. I hate it because they can’t. I have to feel this pain and get through this pain alone. No one can do it for me…yet I can’t do it alone.



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