Because I am not defined by tragedy…
I write. I share because though all writing holds a piece of the writer, I step outside of it. These are not personal accounts of anything. None of this writing is. All of it, simply words on a page. Thoughts transformed into black [or blue] marks on white pages. I’m sorry if you wanted it to be more. I’m sorry if you wished it were more. It’s not. To be an effective writer, you must not let words or fear of rejection or fear of revelation or fear of feeling or fear of anything really, rule you. You can walk beside tragedy, but not in it. You have to detach. It cannot be yours. You have to become a casual observer to your own experiences. A stranger, something outside of it all. You become someone else (the writer, the author. not the narrator, not a participant. just a watcher, a recorder).
With that said, the earlier posted ‘exercise[s] in pain’ were all a part of my detachment training process. My goal? Write about something I’m (we’re) afraid to talk about: death, suicide, rape, child abuse–&conquer my fear. Again, writing about it, does not make it true of me.
But… here is some real honesty. I’m telling the world that, yes, I was raped. No, it’s not something that keeps me up at night. No, it didn’t break me as a person. I’m sharing this because it was something (about 75% out of my control) that happened to me. I have no reason to be ashamed. And so I won’t be. I did get a good writing sample out of it though.
Here’s the deal: after I was raped, I kept a journal for about eight weeks. About a year ago, I turned many of my posts into a short novella about a young woman. I’m considering posting it, but wonder if it’d be appropriate. In any case, here is an excerpt from page 11 [of 75].
The beauty of rape is that it’s clear. I am both the victim and the perpetrator. Because I cannot prove his guilt, I lose my innocence. But even if I had a video, pictures and his written confession, he’d still have my innocence. He wins. Always. Because someone can always say: “she wanted it” or “then why did she… (do this, go here, look like…)”. It’s my fault because it happened to me. That’s the way it works. Dirty, but because of its uncompromising nature, fair.