There was a little girl. Coming home from school. She was grabbed and raped by a man she’d walked past just moments before. She wakes up everyday and is thankful that she didn’t die. That she wasn’t hurt beyond losing her virginity. That she found refuge in writing. That her young mind hid this moment long enough for her to be strong enough to carry it. That she’s used that moment to strengthen her backbone. That even through bursts of “madness”, no one sees that she’s wearing that mask.
It’s easy to say don’t let it define you. It’s easy to say you can make it out. You can be brave. You can love. You can be intimate again. It’s easy… It’s not. It starts with you. You define yourself from there. You can laugh or break down. And that’s the hard part.
I’ve read “Dis Ek Anna”/”It’s Me Anna” as written by Elbie Lotter and translated from the Afrikaans by Marianne Thamm. When you’ve been there, the anger shrouds you and you almost imagine yourself there with Anna as she plots and drives and remembers all the way to the front door to shoot her step-father.
And then you realise that it really does require some kind of madness to survive rape. To walk away and forget as big a chunk as you can because of course you can never really forget. And the world will have to excuse you if you don’t trust it for some time. But you could never forgive yourself as you tie yourself to the yokes of what’s happened…
Intimacy difficulties with black men, been there, done that, got the t-shirt and got tired of the annual membership renewal. It took some time, I’m not saying it won’t, but I truly got over it… I put myself first eventually. Fear sometimes knocked on the door, and sometimes I let doubt slip through thinking it wouldn’t sneak fear in as it’s +1.
It could take about as long as it’s taking South Africa to build itself up politically speaking or more or less time. It’s a sad shame how my country is slipping at the seams or rather how our mens penis’ seem to be slipping out their zips leaving women vulnerable and no longer trusting.
Mine was a stranger. Most are people who the “victim” trusts. I only put it in quotation marks to emphasise my speaking in my earlier passage where I speak of the need to self define after such an experience.
I’m digressing. Or I feel like I am. I think I’ll finish this thought later. I have to say… My country disgusts me at this point in time.