My Reality

Dedication: All woman

Trigger warning: Before reading this post, please be aware that it includes descriptions of rape and sexual assault.

I would like to know what happiness is. I would like to have someone who makes me feel special and never let me go, someone I can count on every day. Life is not easy, we all want it to be but it is not. We have to go through a lot of shit in this life, life is not a fairy tale, there is no happy ending. When I was 5 years old I saw how my best friend was killed. I remember having received 5 pesos from Berroa for me and to vivi to buy what we wanted, he had great happiness because we could buy candy, with 5 pesos we could buy something for both of us. When we go to the grocery store Vivi’s sister sees him and told him to go home and wait for me there, so vivi turned around and walked to my house while I went to buy candy.When I approach the curve to get home, a motorcycle passed by me at full speed, it was a man who was drunk. I looked up and I saw the motorcyclist hit my best friend from the back who was trying to get into a brick “castle” we had. The impact causes Michelle to get entangled in the wheels of the motorcycle while I vici screamed so loud from the pain of the impact. I see blood that comes out of his mouth, and there he is lying on the floor, with his spine broken, he only stayed for a few minutes, until he couldn’t take it anymore and stopped the fight. The next thing I remember is being at his burial, I rubbed his head, I watched as his eyes are closed, and his lips are purple. I see him and I want him to wake up, this could not have been real, but it was, he did not open his eyes, he did not open them, my mother hugs me and takes me away from him, that afternoon was the last time I saw Vivi. At age 6 I was diagnosed with migraines, hereditary migraines. Every Sunday when it’s time to be with the family I could not eat a lot of sweets, or even drink soda, otherwise I would get so bad that they would have to carry me to the hospital to have an intravenous. Years later, 2012, we moved to the United States of America. It was not easy, half of my family stays behind in my Dominican Republic. The first 2 years were a lot of adaptation and patience. Then things were not so nice for me, migraines became worse. I go to the neurologist, so they send me to do an MRI. Inside the machine I remember being very scared, the only thing that went through my mind was you have a tumor or you have cancer.It was horrible, the sound of the machine was very noisy, the device that I have in my hand is for emergencies that if I need to be taken out of the machine, I have a huge desire to press it and get out, but I can stand the 45 minutes. A week goes by and they give me the results, I have chronic migraine. It was a relief to know that it was not a tumor, I did not like the treatment that my neurologist prescribed for me. They would be an average of 20 pills a day to help me with the pain. This treatment caused me not to be the same, I was always tired, my stomach hurt, and everything hindered me. This lasted for 2 years until I had bleeding in my stomach, so I stopped taking the pills. That year when he stopped taking the pills I met who I thought was the love of my life. We had a beautiful relationship of 1 year, it was a distance relationship so it was a bit complicated, but every time I had the chance to go see him I would, we laughed together, we cried together, we went to church together, we did everything together, he even saved my life one day we were in the middle of a gunfight at a patronage party, there were a lot of bullets going off, many people shouting and exploiting the bottles, they locked us up when closing the fences, it was something very scary, I couldn’t run well because I had very high heels so he took me in his back and opened the fence and we ran to the vehicle while people continued firing. The relationship was beautiful until things started to change. There was no time for me anymore, and the promises were blown away by the wind, he flirted with several girls and I was cheated on with one girl several times so everything ended. I was discouraged, and this led me to trust the wrong person. I thought I had a friend who could help me understand the actions of the men, he told me that he wanted to take me out one night to clear my mind, as my family and his are very close I accept to go out with him one night. I remember that he bought me several beers since we left my town until we got to Moca. He insisted that I should drink a lot, since I was not a girl to drink a lot I got drunk very fast. I remember being cold and being surrounded by four walls, when I speak an echo is heard, looked up and he is above me, I push him but I can not, I tell him to stop but he continues, I look to my right and I get tears , I say no more and he answers me with a “I’m almost done”. On the way home I can not look him in the eye, looked at the window, he grabs my hand and I do not know what to do. It’s 2am I got to my sister’s house, she opens the door and says “How was it?”, the only thing that comes out of my mouth is “I’m tired”, I change and go to sleep. I can remember very clear not being able to sleep all night. I never said anything to anyone, that big stone I was carrying it alone. I still have that stone but it has become less heavy because I receive help. I think the reason that led me to seek help was when I was sexually assaulted by my boss, at first it was funny to make sexual jokes in front of me, and to get told that I looked pretty, as a minor it made me feel like a grownup. But there came a point where things changed and sometimes he touched my hand in a certain way, or touched my shoulders, even if I had my phone in my pocket he would get his hand and take out my phone, when it came to paying me the money sometimes he expected me to be scrubbing for him to go and put the money in my pocket, but the way he did it was very inappropriate, he tried to touch me while doing it, he said very inappropriate things to me, he even gave opinions about my private life. At the moment I am treated for anxiety, depression and PTSD. Life goes on, but there are things that have to change, like speaking up and tell people that life can be hard but we decide what we do with it.

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Rocio S.M

I'm just a girl that wants people to know that we all can get help, we can support each other. You are not alone.