i have never liked the word “victim” – our language gives it some unpleasant connotations. nothing detracts from identity like having that kind of label affixed to you. and in the case of something that shatters a life, that experience ends up following you around. with the label, “victim, victim, victim,” at every turn.
the word “survivor” is better. it implies that one has encountered a challenge and endured it. and i think some days that’s the best i’ve accomplished anyway.
every summer i feel myself slipping back in time- reality fades and the vivid recollections of summer events long gone invade my senses. at this one milepost, i am stuck, time and time again. no matter how many miles i put between the survivor and those events- no matter how i change my life- no matter anything else- inevitably i run across the “go directly to jail” space on the board. do not pass go. do not go anywhere. you’re never escaping this.
all the years, all the accomplishments, the moving on, the hard work. it all falls away. like it never even happened. and there i am, exposed even under these layers i’ve constructed- waiting, for that something to find me. for that singular something to break me again.
i’ve moved beyond the just-surviving stage. except…