Spring Will Come Again

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Antonio Ron / Unsplash

The women in her family all have souls forged in fire and with tongues that run like hellfire. Think Athena, Hera and Artemis – imagine the fury and power these goddesses hold without Zeus to limit them. These women raised her up protectively, like a delicate flower, and at the same time hoping she’d grow her own thorns. But she didn’t. Think Persephone – imagine abduction to hell and endless winter.

The day she finally weaved courage and what happened to her into words, the earth froze. 

Her mouth tasted of metal and salt for days, from stating the details – from his unwelcome hands on her skin to the poison that poured out his mouth, over and over again. When the police came, he looked at her with pity and advised her not to cry. Her therapist told her that her personality was too nice. The comfort her family gave her was in the form of should have’s. They couldn’t understand her tears and she couldn’t understand why she had to force herself to be strong.

But the thing is, she was strong; it just wasn’t the kind they wanted her to be.

And for a while, she was sorry for it. Nights were spent questioning what she did wrong to deserve this, and wondering if she could have prevented it if she had done things differently. There were times when she thought of revenge, of throwing her attacker to the pits of hell. But who was she kidding? Nothing could ever take back what happened, not even his burnt corpse.

So she wrote instead, for herself, for her fellow survivors, for the people who don’t understand and for those who think this is okay:

The first few weeks will be grueling. People will ask you why you didn’t fight back or struggle harder, ignore them. They were not in the situation you were frozen in, didn’t feel fear choke your throat that you were unable to scream when his hand trailed through the hairs on your arm. It wasn’t your fault that ‘no’ and ‘stop’ were not in his vocabulary. You did what you had to do and there was nothing more you could have done differently to change what happened to you.

Ignore them when they tell you to just get over it, as if it was just another broken heart you can write about and call a masterpiece. This pain is not, and can never be turned into something beautiful but there are more wonderful things left in this world you deserve to see. Ignore them when they question the way you heal. This is your trauma, not theirs. You cope how you can without owing anyone an explanation. Never let them choose for you or tell you otherwise.

I want you to remember that he did not destroy you. You have survived the worst and there is no reason to stop now. He did not take away the good parts in you. You are still capable of loving and being loved, of forgiving and coming with terms with your tribulation without having the urge to set yourself on fire. The day will come when the memory of that incident will stop betraying you, the wounds will be sewn with your own patient hands, and your body will finally stop feeling like a graveyard. You will recover the days you spent withering in the dark and feel the earth revolving again.

I know talking about what happened to you conjures natural disasters in your chest, that it’s easier to just wait for trauma to pack its bags and leave, compared to the fear of having no one understand what you went through. But I promise you, someone will understand. So don’t swallow your words, don’t carry the burden alone. I understand you. I do. It will get better, so continue breathing.

Spring will come again.TC mark

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