Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Deepest Thanks and Clarifications

I cannot even begin to express my love and gratitude to all of you who left comments on my post from yesterday.

Each of you wrapped yourselves around me and loved me compassionately, no judgment--without even knowing me.

What a beautiful thing that was to experience.
Tears were flooding my face as I read your words, and peace was filling my heart.

This blogging community that I have found myself in?

Overflowing with gorgeously kind and supportive people.

I give my love to you all.

But I also need to apologize.
 Some of my post was not clear.

My shame does not come from being raped...
Sadly, that time was not the first, just the most heinous.
The one I could not deny as rape.
The first one I spoke aloud.

I am not ashamed of what was done to me. 
No victim should be, but so often we are.

I almost let it kill me, but I made it out.
I am a survivor
I am proud of that.

I would be lying though if I tried to say that I got to that place WITHOUT some intensive therapy, and I would also be remiss if I did not admit that sometimes--

There are still trickles of shame.

Even though I KNOW:
It was not my fault.
I could not fight back-drugging takes away choice, funny that...
And 3 grown men against one 5'3 woman with Cerebral Palsy?
Not so much a fair fight.
Or very human, for that matter.

I know that NOW, and I am not ashamed of being a survivor. 

But despite what I "know" there are still moments....
Even while writing this post, I found myself shocked at the familiar wash of shame that came over me.

Our intellectual minds and emotional minds do not always meet where they should.

But those past tinges of shame were not what I was referring to in that last post.

I am ashamed of myself for not reporting the rape.
For not seeking justice.
For sticking my head in the sand.
For letting three grown men violate me and walk away without any consequences.

Worse still?

Knowing that I never will.

I know that there are survivors who fought within an inch of their lives to seek justice.
Exposed themselves.
Faced judgment and further violation, for the sake of taking a stand.

I took no such stand.
I don't think I could have survived it.
I am in awe of you who did, who are.

I am sorry I could not. 
It truly does shame me, but I hope those reading can understand.

You all have my apologies, my love and my gratitude.
With your words have been salve on a very deep and slow-healing wound.

Thank you. So very much.
You've given me such a beautiful gift on my birthday...


leighann said...

how beautifully said.
I understand fully how hard it is to accept the decisions we sometimes make because at the time we aren't strong enough.
Your words are giving you strength and helping countless others

livingsj77 said...

Happy Birthday!

he calls me wifey said...

I can understand why you would feel that kind of shame, I'm sure if I were in your shoes I would feel the same way.

Is it really too late to try to expose these guys who did this to you? I mean, I have no idea, but is it even worth looking into?

If so, are you willing to go there now? Would it bring you some peace to know that you did what you could, even after the fact? Or would it just tear open an old wound?

<3 you

P.S. These aren't rhetorical questions, I genuinely want to know, if you are willing to answer.

Amy said...

I woke up this morning from a dream. A memory. About when I was 17. And even though that was 4 years ago I can still feel the pain. I am typing this through eyes clouded with tears. A friend posted a link to this post so I read it. I'm so sorry for what you went through, and I applaud your bravery and posting so openly.

As to the comment above I was girl #4 this guy raped and I still couldn't bring myself to tell anyone. He did eventually land in jail. The reason I never pressed charges is I was 2 years older and he himself was a rape victim. Too much sympathy for him. Sometimes it's easier just to be done with it and not bring it up ever again. I know that seems harsh and it seems like we're endangering other people, but until it happens to you try not to judge. People think going to court is a sure thing, but it's not. Rape is and always has been referred to as a he said she said crime. It's not fair, but that's life.

CathiC said...

Very well put. And there is no reason to apologize or feel shame for this either. There are limits to what one can endure. You did what you needed to do to survive both the attack and its aftermath. There is no fault in that. I'm glad you were able to find comfort and healing yesterday. Happy Birthday - may you continue to find peace. ((HUGS))

Anonymous said...

We all do what we have to in order to survive shit situations. You can't apologize for self-preservation. I wish I could lift that guilt off of you and toss it away. It's not worth carrying... you did what you had to do. And nobody can tell you otherwise...

Kris said...

Love to you, babe.

So much love.


Jenna said...

So glad to read these words, and continue to send you much love. Happy belated birthday, too!

Kathie said...

I am not a blogger.

I am not a writer.

My words can't match those so perfectly written by some of your readers.

I am your friend, however, and I DO know you.

*I know you are kind - because you are always nice to me.
*I know you are thoughtful - because you think of me and others outside if what is going on in your life.
*I know you are smart because your brain flows threw the wittiness of your writing (is that a word?).
*I know you are a survivor - because you've been dealt a shitty hand and make the most if it without (AND THIS IS KEY) making those of us who haven't been dealt a shitty hand feel guilty or judged for having opportunities!
*I know you're courageous - because you walk the walk...tats where people can see them, a great sense of style when most people hide in black, and mostly a voice that speaks from your soul but talks/inspires/heals others.
*I know you're externally beautiful - because I've laid my eyes on you but more importantly, you're internally beautiful for all the above reasons.

Our past makes us but does not define us! (Forgiveness comes from giving up hope that you could change the past -per Oprah). For how horrible the events were, you wouldn't be who you are without them. You might not have Will/Owen...nor be a Jayne. You very well could not be a writer without introspection. The butterfly affect has it's destination and you were meant to be right here, right now, doing great things. Believe in yourself as others do. It's so much less work.

Lastly, you may "admire" those with similar paths who HAVE fought back...but what does that mean? Their "fight back" may mean putting the perpetrator/s in jail. Your "fight back" may mean EXACTLY what you're doing...blogging, sharing, being vulnerable, and giving a voice to those who have none. You have taken your own courageous journey. You are doing it RIGHT NOW. You are standing up against evil. Carma will punish those who deserve it - that is not your job...that is NOT STANDING UP. Reevaluate your description of "fighting back" and that might be the stepping stone you need to letting go of this last bit of shame.

I know you a little and I want to know you lots...I wish time allowed. For now I'll treasure our few outings together and pray that you truly see yourself as others do.

Britt said...

I understand this far too well, honey. This kind of shame. The shame of knowing that the girl you are, the girl you nurture and cherish and have watched grow into You, you let the bad stuff happen to her. I let bad stuff happen to mine, too. I am still. Letting bad stuff happen to her. I'm letting her get screamed at. I'm letting her take blame for things that could never possibly be her fault, and I'm letting her believe they are. I'm letting her be afraid and unhappy and downright sad most of the time. And it's not my first time, either.

This bullshit's a bitch to break.

But you made it. Yes, with help, OF COURSE with help. But a cane doesn't walk on it's own, honey. It takes the person using it to put their legs underneath and take those steps. Give the cane its credit, of course, but know your own strength is what brought you upright and keeps you there. (wish I had a better metaphor...)

Insert cheesy and befitting movie quote:
"Why do we fall?"

"So we can pick ourselves back up."

And if it makes you feel any better, I have personal accounts of Karma working its magic in a very big, very obvious way. It DOES happen. Damnedest thing; just when I was ready to believe in nothing, there She was, standing there with a smirk, waiting for me to find out what she did. I'm not glad for this particular person's suffering. I am, however, at peace with it happening to them. I did not wish it upon them, but it happened all the same. And that, my darling is Justice.

"Peace without Justice is an impossibility." -Desmond Tutu

You do not need to seek vengeance to have it. Monsters have a way of making themselves punished. I can guaranfuckingtee that these cocksuckers are tortured by what they did; or if they're not, that their chosen hobby will catch up with them. These sorts of things always do. Don't waste another moment thinking about what you did or didn't do right. We all fuck up. We all fall down. What separates us is we who choose to stand back up.

You will have peace one day, sweetie. When you least expect it, it will find you and wrap you up.

Happy, happy birthday, lovie.

Jayne said...

Leighann-If I can offer help or solace to anyone else, then baring myself to the world is worth it. Thank you.

Jaime-Thanks, Mama! It was a fab birthday!

ABH-We can definitely talk about this if you would like. I am always open to your questions.

Amy- I am sorry that you've suffered. So sorry. Sadly you are right, court is not a sure thing. Often, we victims are just victimized all over again, and that is pretty fucked. Hugs to you!

CathiC-Thank you for being there to comfort!

HC-You always say just want I need to hear. Thank you, querida linda

Kris-I appreciate you, so much.

Jenna-Thank YOU!

Kathie-I told you this yesterday, but I mean it: I'm lucky to have you!

Britt-"This bullshit's a bitch to break." Truer words, my friend. Just as you are always here for me, I am for you. Love you!

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