Thursday, September 26, 2013
This is quite possibly the most personal blog I've ever written. I've dug in deep before, but never quite on this level and I debated whether or not I should even share this--that maybe it would be better and more therapeutic for me to just write this out and save it for myself. After thinking about it for a while, I decided to share it and hope that maybe I can reach a few other people who've been in my shoes.
In my last blog, I wrote about resiliency. Although I was mainly referring to resiliency in terms of bouncing back from missteps that lead to overeating, I think that sense of resiliency applies to other areas of our lives as well. Last weekend, my resiliency was put to the test and I'm doing my best to work my way through it. Without being overly dramatic or getting into too many details, I was sexually assaulted. I wasn't raped, but I was violated and it was the stranger in a dark alley variety. I was alone for a very brief time in a situation where I ordinarily wouldn't have been apart from some extraordinary circumstances that night and the creep took advantage of that. Fortunately, I was able to scare him off before the situation lapsed into something much worse, but it was terrifying--and I'm still shaken. There are some things I don't think I'll ever fully be able to get out of my head and I keep replaying what happened over and over again in my head and thinking about what I could have done differently. In case you're wondering, yes, I did file a police report, but so far nothing has come of it. The idiot was actually stupid enough to tell me where he was from when I first encountered him on the street and was merely being annoying, so at least I was able to give the police that in addition to a reasonably accurate physical description.
Now that a little bit of time has passed, I realize I have two options: I can let this horrible experience run my life and become paranoid, mistrustful and withdrawn or I can work through my fears and anxiety, move on and maybe do a thing or two to help other people who have been in similar situations. The latter option seems far more appealing to me and I think will do a lot more to help me cope and heal. I never want my smile to fade or to feel like I can't present myself as a confident woman. I've come too far to let this set me back and there's no way I'm going to let some low life have that kind of power over me.
Even though it's been less than a week, I can already see how my resiliency has come into play. I've shared what happened and how I feel about it with a handful of people who I'm close with and decided to open up here as well. I've walked along the same route a few times since then and my fears are starting to diminish. I'm feeling less anxious and jumpy in general. I haven't stuffed down my emotions with food, something I'm almost certain I would have done just a few years ago, I've been working out and I've fought off the urge to hide out at home. I think I'm going to bounce.