It’s not quite spring, but as February starts to come to a close I feel those feelings that I do every spring. I can’t explain it. People love spring and summer. They love the brightness, warm sun, the flowery air. The rushing water and chirping crickets. The smells of mulch and chlorine. They love it.
I don’t know how I feel. I can enjoy it separately if I look at it in parts. I enjoy the chipping of crickets. The smell of a bonfire. Driving with my windows down. I think that’s it.
This time of year feels overwhelming. Like full of life that I can’t quite connect with. That maybe my younger self found pleasure in but not safety. And how I crave to be safe. Spring is when I started experimenting too much. Spiraling into all the things I thought would make me feel good.
Spring reminds me of senior year, when I almost didn’t graduate. That was the first time my depression really crept up on me. Somewhere between junior and senior year of high school o plummeted.
Spring is when Eric and I broke things off. The guy I thought I would marry, the first one anyway. I cried for months. That was maybe the first time I didn’t have a filter for the pain, except in sex and other guys. I was devastated. I wanted to be a good Christian. But I hated everything.
Early summer is when I lost my virginity. I remember the day. And then a year later, 12 days after, I’d be raped by the same man I gave my virginity to. It was one of the first times as an adult I consciously knew I couldn’t ask my parents for help.
Spring is when a lot of people died around me. And all I could do was helplessly watch. And summer is when I gave myself away again and again. I didn’t want to be the girl that was so traumatized that I started acting out sexually. But I was. Time and time again. Spring summer fall winter.
I could cry writing this. I feel it in my throat, my head heavy and my eyes burning. But what would it do to help? I’m broken, maybe irreversibly so. I can’t forget. And I want so much to forget. I see people loving normal, whole lives and I wonder if i could have had that if my life had been different. If I didn’t go through what I’ve been through. I sort of feel ruined. I think maybe I am. Because every time I smell the spring air, I’m only reminded of the days that shattered me, beyond repair.