What Changes and What Stays The Same

This is my first post since my world changed again. I say my world and immediately I want to take it back. What hubris to give so much breadth to my own experiences. What single-mindedness. What writerly liberty.

When I wrote about moving forward in a previous blog, I did not expect that events would move and I would be swept along whether I was ready for them or not. That is not to say that I did not make choices (something I am generally loathe to do as a human raised in a religion where choices can mean literally burning for eternity.)

Still, I made choices and I changed things that were delicately balanced and they fell in. This is not, in itself, a bad thing. It was not a tower built on good things.

What I have not lost:
My love
My home
My words

What I have lost:
Faith. So much faith. I know now that there is no karma, no higher power that will protect us. I knew it in my mind, but now I know it in my bones. This means it is on us to protect those who cannot protect themselves.

This is convoluted bullshit and I’m saying next to nothing.

Still, it is 2:00 AM, so one must forgive me if I am not clear.


I just realized that there is something else I have to say. I throw in here a trigger warning, because my pain is mine and yours is yours and if we mix them it has to be by mutual consent.

What I have to say has to do with being believed, heard and understood as a survivor of sexual abuse. People often do not believe me and I could tolerate this if I didn’t have to carry around the proof inside my head all the time. I can remember it so clearly that I wish I could export it. The grey bedspread with the matching pillow. The mirrored headboard. Porcelain dolls, the ones that scared my sister, as witness. Smells. Being a child and knowing what a man smells like after a day of work. There is no way I can move this proof anywhere useful. It is trapped in my head where everyone can ignore it and I cannot escape it.

When people ask how someone can believe a human was hurt if there is no proof, I go back there and look at the Bambi picture and the Sweet Valley High books in the room and know that my experiences were as real as those books and pictures were. We were in the room together. The truth is contained.


One further thing: I am still here. The weather is warmer. My husband’s eyes are still more beautiful than all the greens of spring.

And I am still here.