Updated: Jan 7, 2020
I have always thought that my life would be important. That sounds very narcissistic but I mean that I always thought I would do something meaningful; something worth talking about at my funeral. I had the usual fantasies of fame: to marry Prince Harry (never William) or to become a famous country singer or maybe I'd invent something cool... like the internet or scrunchies.
When the singing career didn't pan out and we realized I would never meet (let alone be demure enough to impress royalty), I settled for the road more traveled and pursued college and marriage with a non-royal. But I still believed I would do something big in my life. I just didn't know what it would be.
Two years ago, at the height of the #METOO movement, I would wake up every morning to check my phone and see which new celebrity was being accused of assault. Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Bill Cosby... who would be next? Well, it was Matt Lauer. I remember that day like I remember my wedding day. I drove my children to school and then headed to the gym with my youngest. The radio spoke in vague terms. I didn't know any details about the accusations, but I knew Matt Lauer was fired and I knew it was due to allegations of sexual misconduct. THIS was be a big deal.
That was the day that my journey began. I didn't know it, but that was the day that my ordinary life took on a new purpose. I had a cause. You see, until Matt Lauer was terminated, it was mostly Hollywood actors and producers being accused. But this was a TV personality. This crossed over into a new category of people who were being publicly accused of rape/sexual assault and the accusations were being taken seriously. Now the flood gates were open and victims were pouring in, no matter the profession of the accused.
This was November 29, 2017 and, until this day, almost no one in my life knew that I carried the emotional baggage that came with losing my virginity to rape more than 10 years prior. Prior to this day, I rarely spoke about what happened to me unless I had had to much wine or paid you for your mental health advice. But on this day, I rolled into my usual parking spot at the gym aNd then I just sat. I sat in my car and waited. I sat and thought about all the years that had passed since my virginity was stolen. I thought about all the moments that were clouded with the aftermath that follows an event such as rape. I thought about how many times I was forced to relive that night in my head while the world continued around me as if nothing was wrong. I sat and decided it was the time.
There, in that parking lot, [after a minute of googling] I called a news station states away and accused their very own newscaster of rape.
It had begun.
And someday when the made for TV movie of my life is made [because I will have found a way to change the world and there will HAVE to be a movie about it], I know Sandra Bullock will look fearless in yoga pants saying, "Did you hear about Matt Lauer? You know you have a rapist on the Air too?..."
*Cue the powerful music and camera zoom out*
[minor details have been changed for purposes of anonymity]
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