Saturday, March 15, 2008

One of My Worst Memories

***Possible Trigger Warning***
While reading many submissions on the Blog Carnival last night, I was overcome with alot of thoughts, feelings and memories. I was inspired, touched and stirred. For some reason, the following memory was brought to the surface. It's something I've never told the whole story of. I've referenced it flippantly. I am feeling compelled to put it to "paper" (or screen, as the case may be!) and letting it loose.

There is a tremendous amount of shame tied into this whole situation that I allowed. This was around 1988. I was 19 years old. I was lost beyond lost and as numb as if I were drowning in a pool of novocaine. I was devoid of self worth, famished for love although I had no idea what healthy love looked like. I was on an auto-pilot mission of self destruction and didn't even know it.

It all started with a phone call from a stranger. His name was Donny. He called me because, he said, he got my number from the stall of a men's room in a diner. (I am positively cringing as I write this) A "normal" person would have been mortified, hung up the phone immediately in complete indignation. Me? It was like I'd achieved stardom! I was "famous" and being written about in public places for my, errr, "skills." So naturally, after a few hours on the phone, we made plans to meet the next day. Did I mention he was fresh out of drug rehab?? Yeah, well.... So I went to his apartment the next day where I proceeded to sleep with him. We hung out a few more times. In all honesty, he seemed to be a slightly decent guy trying to turn his life around.

I had an office job during the day and worked a second job at the mall at night. I was at that night job when Donny and a group of his friends stopped by. A few days later, one of the friends that was with him stopped by my night job by himself. Mike. You knew just looking at him that he was trouble. Well, at least a person with their eyes open would know it. All I saw were these piercing blue eyes and someone who told me I was special. *Swoon* So Mike and I started hanging out. By hanging out, I mean: getting drunk in his crappy apartment in a seedy, dangerous downtown location. Drunk off stuff we bought from bootleggers who sold curiously bottled concoctions from their house windows in the middle of the night. Or him sending me into abandoned buildings to buy 8-balls of crack for him. With my money, naturally. Driving around to places where people routinely get shot. In my car. With him driving. Drunk or high. There was the time he tried to steal my car. That was fun. And when he did steal my jewelry right off me. Did I stop seeing him? Nope. I thought I could "rescue" him if I just gave him more of me. And there was the time he had all his friends over. I'm sure I don't have to tell you what kind of "friends" drug addicts have.

We were partying, drinking with his group of 4 friends. I hadn't had that much to drink but considering you never really know what you're drinking, I guess it was relative. I was very out of it. Mike tried to get me high. I never did use drugs much to his chagrin. I remember him putting some cocaine in his mouth and then kissing me. I suppose he hoped it would get me high? But all it did was numb my mouth. We headed off to the bedroom while his friends watched TV. He said it would be so hot if he could tie me up. Never one to refuse a request of a man, I said sure. So he did. And we had sex. When he was done, he had a cigarette on the edge of the bed as I remained tied up. I did ask him to untie me and he didn't even acknowledge me. He left the room. (As I'm writing this, I feel on the verge of a panic attack. Or vomiting. I need to break for a minute.)

Okay. Apparently he made a business transaction in the other room and sold me to his friends for drug money. Three of the four came in and had their way with me. I so barely remember any of it. I know I did not protest. I don't believe I made a peep. From how I feel when I think about it and how little I recall (thankfully), I'm certain I was largely dissociated. I numbed for survival. I'm not so numb to it when I think about the facts of it now even though the details are unknown. Let's face it....I don't need to know the details to know what happened. I do remember the last guy, Joe. I'd met him before. He was not a drug user from what I could tell and he'd casually warned me about Mike in the past. He'd also expressed a desire to date me. When he came in, he tried to talk to me and kiss me. He ended up untying me and helping me get dressed and get back to my car.

For whatever reason, a few days later, I decided that I needed to get my jewelry back from Mike. I remember giving my friend "J" Mikes address & phone number with explicit instructions to call the police if I didn't call her in a set time period. Why I felt so driven to recover my jewelry despite an obvious fear for my life is beyond me. Maybe it was some sort of declaration to take something back for myself. I don't know. In any case, I went to his apartment to ask for my jewelry (as if it hadn't been pawned 5 seconds after he ripped it off me...) and he pulled a knife on me. I fled. After that, he continued to call me. I'm sure he was pissed to lose his cash cow and slut. I didn't take his calls. Not long after I stopped answering his calls, he started stalking me. He would show up at the mall and just walk by my store again and again. I had to have security walk me to my car every night. One night I was coming home and he was standing at the top of my street, in a shooter's stance, with his hands held together as if they were a gun and he was pretending to shoot me over and over. Actually that happened twice and the second time happened to be the first day my parents were away on a week long vacation and I was home alone. I called the police and of course they were unable to do anything since he never touched me or made a specific threat. They did say they would patrol the area regularly. I don't know what ever happened but I never saw him again after that.

Years later I ran into Joe and he told me that Mike was killed in a drug deal. Good riddance, frankly. But when I think of the time I spent with him, the atrocities I allowed without second thought....when I think how easily that could have been ME killed in a drug deal. When I think of all the unprotected sex I had with him and other drug addicts...... The fact that I'm not dead from one cause or another is utterly shocking. I didn't learn my lesson after that. I continued to meet strangers, date drug addicts and have unprotected sex. It took several more years before I started to think perhaps I was on the wrong path. Just perhaps.... I have such a difficult time connecting to those memories as being part of ME and MY past. I feel like I'm watching a movie. Telling this story made me feel more connected which I guess is good? I want to grieve for that part of me that was so incredibly broken. I just ache inside that I thought I was no better than that. That I felt lucky to have his attention; proud to call him my boyfriend because it validated me as lovable. My family should be ashamed of themselves for the messages they sent me. I went out into the world believing every negative piece of garbage that was ever said or even insinuated about me and I paid for it over and over. And over. And over. And over. Fucking Bastards.


Anonymous said...

Fucking bastards is right.

Enola said...

Yep - what anonymous said.


April_optimist said...

I'm glad you did survive. I'm glad that NOW you can see how terrible it was. You must have been in so much pain! NOW you can begin to love yourself the way you should have been loved all along.

Kahless said...

Fucking bastards.

Tink said...

Not sure I remember you telling this before. I ache for you. I'm glad you decided to put this on "paper". Thank God you survived- you have been through one too many nightmares for one person. I'm sorry :(