After having such a hard time with sex my first time “back in the saddle” since the drugging, I did not know what to think. Personally, I thought I was broken. My anxiety rose with the thought that I was scarred forever and that intimacy would be incredibly difficult after everything. That guy was great, and I liked him, but something was wrong. As hard as I tried to wrack my brain, I could not figure it out.
Instead I decided to keep dating. Staying at home by myself, just my son and I, was killing me. Over and over, every time I looked at my son all I could think about was how the rape had ruined things for him. He waited all his life for a dad and some jerk had stolen that opportunity from him, and my son did not even realize it yet. Not to mention that I did not know anyone, I also had no friends in the area, and I was Incredibly horny, yet incredibly dissatisfied. You could say I was a frustrated mess.
Getting out with human contact may have been what saved me from killing myself, because truthfully I wanted to die. Even though I knew I was valuable and I was confident in myself, I felt hopeless; that finding someone to care about my son and I would be necessary. However, at that point in time, the hope of finding someone, or the odds either, was not enough to give me hope. Nothing gave me hope. The agony of what I was feeling had taken my soul. The thing I needed most was human contact and intimacy. It may not have been an opportune time, but it was necessary.
There were a few dates that passed by uneventfully. Between my disconnection with life and the failed connection between my dates, nothing amazing happened. But being around people perked me up, even if it was only for the short time. The dates were an escape from my incessant memories. My fiancé was done, there was no use waiting for him to return. Making new memories helped me forget about him. No one quite hooked me like he did.
On one date, I met a guy at a Starbucks. Not exceptionally handsome, but not bad. Oh! But he was so much fun! He reminded me of me with the way he talked, what he was interested in, his little idiosyncracies. Our quick coffee date kept getting longer. Eventually we walked across the street to the mall. As we were checking out the pre-Black Friday merchandise, I began to feel light-headed. The room began to spin and my face got numb. My visual field began to lose focus and the colors lightened while the overall picture darkened. As smoothly as I could I grabbed my date, who was only a few feet away, and quickly walked out of the store. He noticed I was acting funny as I mentioned grabbing something to eat, but I did not want to scare him. Instead I held his arm and focused my efforts on maintaining my composure.
The saturation of the colors returned, and my visual field brightened. While I still felt a little funny, I started to return to feeling normal. Luckily we were close to the Food Court, so we hopped on the escalator to get to the second floor, where the food court was. As we ascended up the escalator, the movement was discombobulating. Catching my balance early, I maintained my body language so my date would not notice. Halfway through the ride up, I began to fall backwards. At least 10 feet up already from the ground, there were likely over 20 people below me. My date, who I had been holding to keep me upright, noticed the change in my balance and pushed me forward until I was stable again. Softly I whispered thank you and held his arm tightly, trying to apply the least amount of surface pressure, so he would not notice I was holding on for dear life.
The near faint, and now the near fall, were really making me feel embarrassed. Still trying to maintain my sense of strength and pride, I stood with him in a long, slow line at Chick-fil-a. After ordering, I could not take it any longer. Practically running to the first open table I could find, I sat down. But I could not appear weak or troubled, so I did it as efficiently as possible. The food seemed to take forever, so I hid my low blood sugar by quickly drinking my lemonade. For the next 20 minutes I was weak and my voice had little strength in it. Instead I pretended to people watch. He took the opportunity to spend a lot of time doing most of the talking. Again the rape was ruining my life.
As hard as I tried to stay in the present, I kept returning to the rape, to my ex fiancé leaving me, to that empty feeling I had been overwhelmed with night after night. After another half hour I was finally able to get those thoughts back under control, but the effect had been devastating.