It hits me when I least expect it. When I would never in a million years think for it to happen, and recently it's hit me hard.
I'll be at a bar with friends or having a BBQ on the beach, I'll be cycling down a canal path or pushing my niece on a swing.....then it comes out of nowhere. First it's just his name.
I try to shake it off every time but it never works. It gets worse after that. I see the pub sign...a grey horse...that's where it happened.
The grey horse.
I see green tiles. A phone on the floor. His black shoes and my trainers. I see a blue/grey shirt and a smirking face that riles me with anger.
First I am sad. I'm sad for what happened within that pub, within the toilet cubicle as music blared loudly throughout the bar.
Then I am angry. Angry at him for doing such things to a 17 year old girl who was so naive.
Then I'm angry at myself. I let it happen. I didn't punch or kick him, I didn't scream or cry. I tried to hold my belt, I wriggled about within his grasp, I tried to step away from the door I was pushed up against....but I never tried hard enough.
I was scared.
I remember him kicking my feet apart as he pulled my belt from my grasp. That moment alone makes me want to cry.
But God....I can't accept it was rape.
I didn't want what happened to happen....but 17 year old me was too afraid to say that. Instead I struggled and made it difficult, instead I tried to make my ringtone play to pretend my parents were calling...instead I stood on my tiptoes as he tried to enter me.
He grabbed my shoulders tightly and forced me down.
I froze after that moment.
Things a blurry for a while...I say blurry, I mean blank. Like, I can't remember much.
I think I continued to make it difficult because eventually he got frustrated.
I remember his hands on my head and neck as he sat on the toilet. I remember him inside my mouth. I remember squeezing my eyes shut as he moved my head up and down with force, causing me to gag over and over.
I don't remember how it ended.
The next 20 minutes are blank, some time within the cubicle is blank. But I had been drinking. A whopping four pints! I'd never got that drunk on four pints before but I guess it was a night of firsts.
Now...I hate myself for being so affected by it. I hate that it can just blindside me at any moment and make me want to crawl into bed and cry.
I just wish I could forget it. So many people suffer so much worse.
I just...I wish it would stop.