Maybe, I deserved to get raped.
I mean, I was so fucked up I shouldn't have been outside, right?!
Why did I think that I could kick heroin anyway. Does anyone really stop? Don't they just die or get on methadone for the rest of their lives. I mean- do you know anyone like me that has ever stopped?
I turn to look at my therapist. She gives me that warm look of interest without the sense of true understanding that I am going for at this moment. I am laying down on her couch. This isn't how she generally handles her sessions. This is by my special request. I can't stand to look at her. I can't stand to look at anyone. I can't stand to look at the truth.
Rape is a type of spiritual pain that rips into your psyche as your flesh gives way to the hate of another human being. Despite the anesthetizing benefits of klonopin, my lower extremities were still present enough to wonder if I was actually going to bleed. The delicate walls of the honey hole I had used to seduce the last $20 out of a wallet was now being stung with the reality of how little my life was worth.
I feel myself being pulled back into that moment. I remind myself I am in the room. I am on the couch. I am staring out the window now. I am trying to stay in my body. Remember how I left my body that night? Remember how I got back and my boyfriend told me it was my fault. I saw him at a meeting. He wanted a hug. He wanted a hug from me. All I needed that night was a fucking hug.
"Why did you go out there?" he asked me.
I get it. It is MY fault that I was walking long when someone decided to rape me on the stairwell. It was MY fault that I didn't fight him off. It was MY fault that we needed money , that I left the room, that I wasn't satisfied drinking beer and fighting with you all night.
Quitting heroin left a void in my life. When I took that last drink of methadone at the clinic, I already knew I would somehow make it back on dope. I just didn't know WHEN. I tried jogging- the idea was ridiculous. I went jogging through the Tenderloin and Civic Center. The clinic swore that exercise would help. 21 days on detox was not enough, they told me. Then why am I paying for this shit- I asked myself. I tried to stop. I really fucking tried to stop.
"I really fucking tried, " I told the therapist.
My best was never good enough.
When you pull the needle out of your arm, when you feel the burn in your nose, when you lay back on the bed and blow out your last pull of those delicious drugs do you ever wonder if you will ever stop. Can I ever stop? Or do I want this feeling to last forever. If I die RIGHT NOW, will my life have mattered? It did, it does, it will (I never told myself that I mattered).
They day that he raped me was the day I believed I would never stop using drugs. Why should I? 23 years old. Now I am soiled. I am the scorched earth. I am the bridge I burned to the ground. I am never the same again. Chalk it up to the game, they told me. I didn't.
I am clean now. Or sober. Or off drugs. Or whatever I chose to call it. I tried, I really fucking tried. I did this. I am beating this thing called my past that enjoys swallowing me whole. I can walk past my fears. I can enjoy my life. I didn't die on that day, although many time I wished that I had. That night is just a speck in the landscape that is my (mostly happy) life.