I still think of you often,
But more so this week
My heart still aches, it still breaks
A little each time I picture
your sweet face.
I still miss you,
I still grieve for you,
But more quietly now.
No longer drowning in despair,
In regret, in how unbelievably unfair
It is that you were taken too soon.
Tears threaten a time or two,
And occasionally they may fall,
But sobs no longer wrack
My body through the night.
I will always carry a bit
Of grief and regret with me;
I will always have a massive scar
On my heart, for all that was,
For all that could have been,
For all that you were.
And time may not heal all wounds,
But one can begin to recover
From those harshest wounds of grief.
They may seep from time to time,
But it becomes a bittersweet release.
I still have regrets,
I still wish you would reappear,
If only in my dreams.
I still love you,
I always will.
I carry you with me
You still…you will
Always have a place in my heart
A heart that has finally
Put most of its shattered
Pieces back together again.
Just as you would have wanted;
It’s still…it’s all about you.
The following post is what started it all…posting as Melina Leigh and all. I posted this under my real name, and the backlash from family was, well, I wouldn’t call it backlash if it was considered acceptable, now would I? But, yes, this post started it all. And, well, I have been feeling a bit of an urge to write more about what happened to me, to work through some things, but I have other responsibilities that have to come ahead of really sitting down and hashing it out. And, if I’m honest, I know it’s going to be a gut-wrenching, soul draining experience, one which I do not know if I can deal with right now. So, in the meantime, I wanted to at least post this as Melina. It was always in my plan to do so, but because of all of the drama it caused, I wanted to put some time between the initial post and posting as Melina. Soooooo….here it is, long, drawn out intros and Dr. Suess-like verse and all…ML
Nearly 12 years ago, on the night of January 24, 2001; rather, probably more accurately, the wee hours of the morning of January 25, 2001, I lost my virginity. It was not exactly by choice. It took more than a year for me to realize that it was not my fault, and if I were to be completely honest, I’ve spent much of the last 12 years avoiding dealing with this trauma. I was raped. But, I still feel, and perhaps always will, a sense of responsibility. I was stupid drunk that night; I allowed myself to lose control; to lose so much control that I couldn’t speak, let alone tell this guy no. Perhaps this is why I am now such a control freak. I also often feel as though I have no right; no right to be traumatized, no right to have avoided dealing with what happened to me…I mean, I know a young woman who was gang raped while in a foreign country, and left in an alley to DIE…and here she is, less than 10 years later, making sure there is legislation in place to protect other young women in the Peace Corps. My experience was not so traumatic, was not a near death experience, and I have done nothing, back when it happened, nor any time since, to keep this from happening to other women. Compared to all this young lady went through, and so many others whose stories I’ve read, I feel my experience insignificant. My therapist says it was not…and I must deal with it. I’m starting to delve into it in therapy, and also, now in writing.
A huge thank you must be given to those friends who helped me that night, and the following harrowing days as I dealt with this…situation. I don’t know if I ever did thank them back then…I do remember what was done for me, and who was there, and it will not be forgotten. I must also send many thanks to my writer friend Rachel “In the OC” Thompson, who opened up about a childhood trauma in a recent post (http://omgabe.wordpress.com/2012/09/26/a-letter-to-the-pedophile-next-door/). Reading Rachel’s post allowed me to write about my own experience…it finally felt like it was “okay” for me to begin writing. I am sure there is more to come; I know I’ve only just begun. For the following post, I refrained from doing much editing…I think that some things are best displayed and conveyed in the raw. I don’t know why the rhyming started in the second half; it could just have been a way to avoid, which I am so very good at. I know it seems almost Dr. Seuss-like, but I just could not bring myself to change it. So, here goes nothing….L
I rarely drink vodka, Randy, because of that night. I’ve never played quarters again, because of that night. Do you remember Randy?
I know your first name was Randy; I do not remember your last. I know you were hairy; I do not remember your face. I know that for weeks after, I thought every average-looking scruffy guy I saw, I thought it was you.
I know it was my first time; to which you said every chance you got, “No Way.” You heard “OOH,” when I said “OW,” the only words I could mumble that night.
I sent my friend home, I thought you were cute. I still planned to wait for marriage; I did not want it, not like you did.
I thought I loved another man; it was his face that kept appearing in my mind. So was the word NO, but I was too far gone. I don’t know how or when my clothes came off Randy; but the next thing I knew; you were naked and hairy above me as you poised to do the deed.
I got home a mess, still drunk as could be. Despite the late hours, a crowd I did bring, and I could not answer the question, Randy, did you cum inside me? Because of my stupor, my crazy drunk self, folks planned my next day. I did not know that answer, so to the clinic I went, hung-over, ashamed, and blaming myself.
I went through the exam, the tests. I answered the questions, “No I was not raped, I brought this on myself.” I really believed this, and sometimes still do; on the rare occasions I allow myself to think about you. A pill I did swallow, a life perhaps ended. My friends thought it best, and I think that may be true.
Our story should end here Randy, and I wish it were so. Some friends said you raped me, and I told them “No.” That should be the end, but twas not as we both know.
I got a call, Randy, about a week later; they told me something was the matter. A disease they said, but with a cure. I must come in for meds, and call you for sure. I had to call you, to tell you the news. Again you said “No Way,” for this and for more. You called me a liar, you might as well have called me a whore; “I don’t have it” you swore and you swore.
I went back to the clinic, and drank the swill, the medicine was a powder, not even a pill. Barely home from the trip, or just the next day, I got another call. She told me to sit down, and I was filled with dread because I assumed I was dead. No death sentence Randy, no, not at all. The hospital made a mistake, for goodness sake!
The results were bogus, so yes you were right, but I still had to call you again and tell you that night. You insulted me. You said I cried rape. Anything I said, I kept the blame on myself; you did not believe me, and told me to keep quiet. Your version was truth, mine was all fiction. And so I acknowledged the blame as my own; “I did this to myself,” I often thought, with much conviction.
As months passed, Randy, there was backlash. I was told how much I liked it; those folks heard that from you. I tried to move on, and so I thought I did. Then one year later, Randy, it hit me like a freighter. You are my rapist, Randy, a rapist and traitor.
It doesn’t matter, your last name or your face, you took something from me, something I cannot replace. It doesn’t matter I was drunk and unable to speak, you violated me Randy, all you did was take. You can tell yourself lies, you can spread them too. But hey Randy, I know the truth about you.
To take just a minute
To let down the guard
That’s been built
So sturdily around me
To rely on a different strength
A strength I refuse to admit
I may need from time to time
To just let go for a minute
To fall into his arms
To find comfort and strength
To find a release
From all the weight I carry
To just revel in letting go
If only for a minute
For just a minute
Outside of my dreams
Knowing exactly what
It is I want
But it is so far
From what it is I “should” want.
My body aching to pursue,
My brain holding back
Caught in between,
Prisoner of both,
Of lust and so-called reason,
Wishing I could simply
Cast caution and reason
Into the wind.
Well, the whole posting twice a week obviously didn’t happen. Shortly after I had planned to begin, my hours got drastically cut at the 2nd job, which forced me to pick up a 3rd job, at least for the holidays. The last 7 weeks before my Christmas vacation were a blur of work, work, and more work, sleep, and caffeine. My
main only goal during that time was to stay upright and functional, which, surprisingly, I did, with very little snapping (people’s heads off) on my part.
I had hoped to get some writing done over Christmas, but somehow, I blinked, and that break was gone, and many things I had hoped to do, did not get done.
Well, it’s now 2014. I don’t do resolutions, it’s just not my thing. I do have several goals, and a huge to do list on my plate. I MUST get this house cleaned. Seven weeks of working 3 jobs did not do any favors for the disaster area this place already was! I NEED to decide what I want to do with the next chapter of my life. I NEED to figure out what it is I want to do, or what I may be qualified for, and I NEED to try to figure out where I want to live. Not easy decisions, and I honestly have no idea whatsoever on just how I might decide all of these things. But, it needs to be done. Living so far from friends and family is just not acceptable any longer.
So, where does that leave my writing? Well, not at the top of the list, unfortunately. But, it is very much a visible part of my list. I just cannot commit to a frequency right now. There is just too much else I must handle, plus I am still working 2 jobs, so it could get a little hairy. Right now, I am simply focusing on the few daily tasks I give myself, and move forward from there. That’s all I can commit to at the moment. Hopefully things will all fall into place, and I can focus on my writing often and soon….fingers crossed. ~ML
A very special man from my past should be celebrating his 32nd birthday today. I suppose he’s celebrating with the angels today, if you believe that sort of thing. I may not know where I stand, but I have to believe that E lives on, that this beautiful man is simply no more. I have spent much of this week thinking of him, and trying to put my feelings into words, however I cannot seem to finish any piece. When writing about E, I get this overwhelming feeling that nothing is ever good enough; I can never seem to find the perfect words to honor this man. He was my best friend, my first love, and I don’t know if anyone can ever measure up. I think I feel so damn guilty for losing touch and not being around when he was sick, that I feel like anything I have to say must be absolutely perfect to make up for that failing. The thing is, E was the kind of person who realized that people were not perfect; who loved unconditionally. He would not care if my writing were perfect; he would simply encourage my passion. Gosh, I miss this man.
So, here are a few of the thoughts/snippets/starts of pieces I started in memory of him, in honor of his birthday. It’s not perfect, it’s not complete, but it is all my heart. -ML
This marks 32 short years since his birth, and already he has missed too many birthdays. He has been gone far too long, left us far too soon, but he would not want us to dwell on that this week. If we must dwell, he would want for us to remember the good times, the years we were gifted with his presence. We should remember his kind and selfless heart. We should remember his love of family and friends. Nothing came before family, and friends were treasured only a fraction less. A person could have no greater friend than E, someone who loved you just the way you were, no matter your flaws. There were no unrealistic expectations, there were no expectations, period. It was liberating. He was beautiful in heart, body, and soul. And today, on his birthday, he is dearly missed.
Happy Birthday my dear friend. Celebrate well in heaven, my dear friend. You’ve spent far too many birthdays there already. I will celebrate quietly this year, I will try not to cry…I know you do not want tears again, yet nothing and no one can comfort as you once did. A heaviness rests on my heart today though, one I cannot quite shake, no matter how much I know you would want me to have moved on, to no longer grieve. But grief is an unforgiving companion, especially when paired with guilt.
My dreams are haunted by the possibilities
My subconscious daring to imagine
That which I long for, hope for,
But am skeptical will ever happen;
Even more terrified of the heartbreak
I’d be forced to endure,
And I do not know if I can survive even once more
Torn, in both heart and mind;
Near paralyzed by both fear and hope,
And fear once more.
Hating this game we seen to be playing,
But getting a thrill nonetheless.
Hope, it shouldn’t be the enemy,
Yet I must treat it as such.
Still, one should be able to
Allow ourselves the luxury of
Feeling safe and secure in the arms of a beautiful man…
If only in our dreams
It’s been a year since I had to shut down my blog under my real name because certain family members were upset, uncomfortable, and unhappy with the topics I chose to write about. After much thought, consideration, and consultation with other writer friends, I opted to start a new blog, under a pen name. I didn’t agree with those family members, and I did not want to be silenced. I wanted to write, as it is one of the things I loved to do. It was something I wanted to pursue, something I know I’m good at, something that helps me feel alive, and something that purges my soul of the misery I’ve known.
This past year, though, I’ve not written, nor posted much. The rejection and condemnation of family sent me spiraling. It took weeks before I even attempted anything creative; months before I could even handle putting pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard. I still have technical difficulties with sitting down and writing; I question and doubt myself now more than ever when I write, which considering how much I did so before all of this, is of mammoth proportions. Much of what I’ve produced has been merely snippets.
Add in a wedding, a wedding gift project to complete, holding down and working 2 jobs, sheer exhaustion, and now Christmas projects to stitch, among the duties of everyday life, and well, writing has been put on the back burner over the course of the past year. But, no longer! I want to write; I love to write. Just writing up this little ditty (is that really a word??!!) has my blood pumping, and I LOVE it!
So, moving forward, I am challenging myself to write on a regular basis. Not only write, but POST too. I’m going to start with twice a week and go from there. Once seemed like too little to get me back into a groove, and three times was more than daunting. As it is, I have no idea how or when I’ll be able to schedule it in, but I will. I also know I will have to allow myself to share less than perfect pieces, and if it comes to it, merely snippets. My own worst critic, and ever the perfectionist, this will be difficult for me to do, but if I want to write, and I do, I must be able to give up a little control, or learn to give up a little of it so that I can move forward. Forward is the goal. Join me, let’s see where this leads!
The death of a woman met only twice
Gives more pause than she was worth
Anger. Sadness. Pity. And back to Anger again
She was a mother only by biology,
She loved her drugs and drama
More than her children
It was a not so unexpected death
No one was surprised to hear the news
Whether accidentally, or on purpose,
She took her own life
At the disregard of life
At the disrespect for her children
That she leaves it to others to clean
up her mess yet again.
For the 13 year old girl I call cousin
To have to bury her mother
For the 5 year old boy who did the same
For the woman whose greatest gift,
Whose greatest contribution to this world,
To her children, to anyone,
will be her death.
And back to Anger.
At the ones who made her, enabled her
At her alone, for what she has done to her babies.
Mother, if only by biology,
Absent more than 360 days a year,
But bore them she did.
At every.single.stab of pain,
grief, sadness, anger, and
any other emotion her death
has caused, will cause them.
Normally, I wouldn’t share a repost so soon, but this one is different. 5 years ago today, the world lost one of the greatest souls I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing. E, as I knew him, was so many things, and I miss him every day. I did my best to put some of my feelings down on paper a few months ago. I had been hoping to put a few new pieces together, but my crazy schedule has not allowed me to write anything other than a few snippets. Hopefully soon, I’ll get more out there. Until then, see the below regarding E.
I remember the first time I saw him on that last day I saw him. I flew right into his arms, with no thought of oncoming traffic, or of the boyfriend I had in tow. It took mere seconds to get to him; and it was so quick, it took him a second to realize who the woman was that was throwing herself at him. But, it only took a second, and those blue eyes softened, that beautiful smile appeared, and his arms tightened around me. I was home.
This is one of the few vivid memories I have of him. If I had known that this was the last time I would ever see him, I would have treasured every.single.moment. of it. Not that I didn’t…it was a great day. I’m so glad my plans fell apart, and we were able to spend so much of that day together. We did what we always do; we just were. We talked, laughed, caught up, and just enjoyed each other’s company. Honestly, for a last day with him, I wouldn’t want it any other way. However, had I known he only had a few short years left, I would have made absolutely sure that we had at least a few more days like this.
But, I do not want to think about what would have been, what could have been, what SHOULD have been; it makes me cry, and that is all I’ve done for the last year when I think of him. He died almost 5 years ago, but I only found out last year. I’ve been able to think of little else than regrets these last 12 months. I wonder, what if…what if…and I constantly wish I could turn back the clock. But, the sad fact is, I cannot. And that hurts, more than anything has ever hurt before. And he would HATE that. So, this will not be that kind of post.
He was my best friend; and I’m learning now, he was my first love, even if we never could get that off the ground. Our timing was abysmal. How I didn’t see it until now, I’ll never know. No matter that we never got it right, what we had was perfect in and of itself. I could just BE with him…there were no games, no pretenses, no reason to try to be something or someone I wasn’t, because to him, I was perfect exactly how I was. I’ve not had that since, and it’s taken until now to realize just how wonderful and how rare it is to experience a love like that.
A quick phone call was all it took, and either of us would be there. I remember numerous nights spent spooning, his hand on my hip, just talking until we passed out. I would give anything for just one more of those nights. *shakes head, tears up* I’ve got to stop doing that…I cannot seem to stop myself from wishing for that most of all. I might have few vivid memories, but I remember most fondly those late night talks. It might have been everything, or it might have been nothing, it didn’t matter. We were so comfortable, so real, so true to ourselves those nights, and even though we were so very different, those differences failed to have any meaning whatsoever. I’m just now realizing the significance of a friendship such as that, of a love like that, and I wonder if I can ever know that again. I wonder if I can ever want that again…
Yikes! Not sure I want to contemplate that right now… For now, I just want to remember those talks, that lanky body sprawled out on my futon, telling me he loved me. I want to remember those baby blues, that easy, beautiful smile, and those amazing arms folding me into a hug like no other. ♥