Is it seasonal affective disorder, or does my body keep the score of traumas which seem to gravitate towards the fall and winter?
We sat against the brick wall of our high school, ready to leave on our half-day and he proposed that he come over to my house. November. I was fourteen, we had just started “going out”, which in my house meant that we liked each other, not that we were ever allowed to see each other outside of school. He had natural blindingly bleached hair, which laid flat, parted in the middle, revealing a tan face with big features. He was new to our school, sixteen, a punk, a drummer, and what they call “hot”. I anxiously agreed, blood rushing from my head, from my heart, from my hands. I wanted to say no, but had no acceptable reason. Of course he wasn’t allowed over, but wasn’t that the point?
I rode home, came home, alone. I called a friend, frantic, I ignored his calls for directions. I thought maybe if I disappeared, I could come up with an excuse tomorrow and he wouldn’t show up. I’d never been alone with a boyfriend before. And I didn’t want to be. I must have eventually answered a call and given him my address but poor directions; he was on his bike and this was before smartphones and GPS.
The blood fled once again when I watched him push his bike onto the grass and walk up to the front door. I hesitated. I let him in. I let him in. I let him in. But you let him in, she would state simply.
I stalled. Gave a tour. We kissed. We made out. We did more making out in the history of making out because I was afraid to go any further and he wouldn’t leave. His hands would inch up, and I’d push him away. Down, push him away. I locked him into a never-ending kissing session, with occasional breaks for talking.
I remember the anxiety bubbling over and crying and him holding me probing, knowing something must have happened to me before. And it felt like something had and I stalled and implied something did.
Hours later, we ended up on the carpet of my living room, head to the window, feet to the wall, he was on top of me and tried once more. I said no, I know I said it. I said it like I say no when the waiter asks me if I want lemon in my water. My body said no more forcefully, pushing strongly against him once and I guess he had played my game long enough. He brushed my hands aside, and maybe they stayed limp, and his hand depressed my right shoulder and clothes were pulled and my breath was caught, and I stared at the ceiling, images of STDs and unplanned pregnancies, heart clawing its way up my throat.
And then he got up and I scrambled next to my dad’s recliner and wrenched my pants up, shaking in humiliation and confusion. The day the storm came.
And he hugged and kissed me and left breezily and he would give me roses the next day, and he’d break up with me the next week, and he called later that day only to suggest I not tell anyone because of something called statutory rape.
I didn’t know what statutory meant, but the other word sounded familiar.