I read a book about rape today.Usually reading about rape draws me back, like a rope that snakes me in, wraps itself around me in complicated and confusing ways. There is a frisson of anticipation that accompanies the uptick of heart rate, a dampening of emotion that tempers the sharpness of breath. There is guilt, And shame. And rawness.
But my reaction to this book was different today. Mostly because the protagonist was feeling all the things that I felt. So I didn't have to.
In the actions of her character, the conflicted choices, the emotions that took her by storm and by calm, in turns, in the therapy sessions she attended, I didn't have to, I didn't have to push off the shame of the moment. I didn't have to consider whether the actions or reactions to events were immorally complicit. I didn't have to feel responsible for the choices she made, I just had to acknowledge that everything she felt was inside me too. And that her redemption could also be mine.
And now it is three o'clock in the morning and I need something more to filter this experience through.
I haven't ever talked so openly about this before and I feel unsure why I am here, and now. But I leave it here as a reminder to myself that the story that aches to be told has no statute of limitation in my heart.