Sunday, February 7, 2010

Triggers.



The purpose of this blog is certainly not by any means to serve as a journal; I don't want to describe my inner feelings about the things that have happened in my life. I'd much rather share my opinions and have someone feel me, so that I know I'm not the only person on earth that knows the difference between "right" and "wrong". I'm not a black-and-white type of girl; I live for the gray area because I know and have seen exceptions to everything that I believe. Even outside of the internet world, there are few people I share the intimacies of my life with, but in all truth, I'm one of those "I-can-handle-this-alone" types of people. I'm not big on keeping secrets. Not at all. I'm an open book; I guess one of the characteristics that I inherited from my detective-dad is my "just the facts" mindset. I can tell you anything you want to know about what is happening and I can do it without including my emotions on it. That was all an aside; I just wanted to prepare dear readers for a "how I'm feeling" post.


So. Heregoes:


Yesterday, something happened that has not happened for well over a year: for some reason, I began thinking and contemplating the details of my being sexually assaulted years ago. Some days, it seems like an eternity ago; something in the distant past that has developed me into the force of nature that I work toward in my daily life. I had therapy for a very long time and dealt with the initial physical-psychosocial-emotional scarring constantly reminiscent in all of my actions, thoughts, and beliefs. For a very long time, I hadn't even stopped to think about this - one of the most traumatic things that had ever happened to me - because when I speak about it, I talk as if I'm talking about a friend or client of mine from back in the day.


Fact: being raped happened exactly a week after my birthday. So, for every year after it happened, I was constantly locked away to deal with myself for the entire month of November. It became less a lonely dealing eventually with my incredible circle of friends (who encouraged my epic party-and-worry-about-the-bullshit-later attitude adjustment), but it has always been there. Fact: last year, I did not think about my rape at all during the month of November. As a matter of fact, I didn't even realize the date had passed because I was incredibly happy and well-balanced in everything in my life. I had come to realize what my very close friend meant in lecturing me about "celebrating anniversaries of bad shit".


Even when I think about it now, I block out many specific details because this guy doesn't control the person I am, nor did he control the person I became in order to survive that night. Yesterday, though, for some reason, I really pondered on it. It was a tiny trigger that totally blew my mind for two reasons: 1. I am human and this traumatic occurrence did happen to me, and 2. Why the hell am I so suddenly consumed in the thoughts of it after not looking directly back to it for so long?


I have a tight circle of inspirational sisters that are very active in the Womanist/Black Feminist anti-discrimination/anti-sexual violence/anti-discrimination/anti-average-stereotypical-bullshit movement. One of my biggest inspirations and motivators is sister Aishah Shahidah Simmons, the mothermind behind "No! The Rape Documentary". Last year, she invited me to a conference dealing with Sexual Assault and what the Black Church can offer in terms of support and awareness to victims, survivors, and secondary victims. (Aside, she introduced me to the congregation as her Sister Warrior and I very much take pride in being recognized in my activist ventures and passion toward the movement...especially by one of my heroines.)


During the conference, Aishah said something to me about triggers; that even when the pain is gone, there will sometimes always be triggers. I could sympathize completely. There is actually one part of the documentary that is so chillingly similar to my own rape that I have to take a deep breath and woosa. But that tended to be the only trigger for me. I'm happy, I'm healthy, I'm balanced, and I am at peace with myself and driven toward my future. I'm a go getter and a mover, and I am very much capable of conquering all the attempts to intimidate me. I am strong, and I accept myself. I overstand the things I am confronted with. I am livication. Yesterday, though, the thoughts of my own traumatization really threw me off.


I truly believe that one of my purposes in life while I'm busy snatching pearls from my oyster-of-a-world is to serve as an inspiration to survivors and to work toward a brighter path to healing, if there is a such thing. I am glad that I was brought to a place where I had to face myself yesterday. I tend to forget that I am human at times, and I push myself to my own limits. I'm grateful.


Be Righteous.

blog comments powered by Disqus