That’s what we nicknamed it the first time I slept with sexual assault dude – basically the only time that things were good.
I remember so much about that day – him inviting me over to cook dinner together. I never cook. But he loves to. It was all so light and fun.
He put this apron on me. I think it maybe had something about Sweeny Todd on it.
We made ravioli. He did the flirty thing where he stands behind you to show you something.
So super flirtatious all night, until we went to the living room.
He told me about the posters hung up in there. I learned a lot about him that day. Then he sat so close to me. You know when you’ve been hanging out as friends for a while, but the spark is there. And the flirting is high and it gets more and more and more and more intense. Until you’re like an inch away from each other, alone, on his couch. And he leaned in… Our faces were oh so close for what felt like forever, until he finally leaned in for the last push and kissed me.
And then it was on. It became a whole weekend after that. “Stay just a little longer… Just a little longer…Why go home in the snow? Stay a little longer still?”
Thinking back on it, there were some small moments I felt uncomfortable that weekend. But, for me, there wasn’t anything that seemed like a gigantic red flag to me (at the time). And any uneasiness I felt, I thought was just kind of a butterflies/weird/nervous feeling of spending aaaaaall weekend with someone I’d just started sleeping with.
The intense-ness didn’t have to be bad. There was a giant spark there. And for the most part, I would say we were having a lot of fun.
in an alternate timeline, this became a really beautiful love story and any kind of anxiousness I was feeling by all the intimacy up front is just like a funny thing to think back on now.
In another alternate timeline, we were a lil’ fling that fizzled out very quickly but he’s just kind of the “dude I had that totally random but fun intense weekend with.” It didn’t have to be this giant story in either direction. It could’ve been a blip on my radar that I never think about when thinking about my life.
That weekend could’ve happened exactly as it did, and be something I barely even remember now.
But alas, that’s not what happened.
That weekend was basically the only time with him I got to be happy. I was assaulted by him only about 48 hours or so after leaving.
So, that weekend has now become this terrible thing. I’m all about “remembering the good times.” I have a habit of often even deleting any evidence of any fights with friends or significant others (in texts and such) because I always want to focus on the good. But in this case, I can’t compartmentalize this.
I think I’ve said this before, but I still have the watch a guy I was with gave me. A picture of us in one of my many montages that decorates my apartment. (We look so good. It’s one of the best pictures I’ve ever taken.) I really only remember the good. Just because it didn’t work out long-term doesn’t take away any of our fun memories.
When California guy and I had to call it quits (oh, my heart hurt just typing that), I handwrote copies of maybe 7 or so of my favorite journal entries of my time with him. I really remembered the good there.
And this is one of my problems – I keep trying to put sexual assault guy in the “normal dating” or whatever (even though I stand by the idea that we weren’t reeeeeally dating) box. But he can’t go in there. In no way was this a normal relationship. So, I can’t expect to deal with in the same way I do other ones – to have any “beautiful closure,” or forgiveness for anything that happened, or fond memories, or whatever… I kept trying to shoehorn this thing into that box, and it doesn’t fit. And of course it doesn’t. That’s not what happens when you get away from abusive men. (Or maybe it is for some people, but that’s not working for me…)
I can’t compartmentalize our good times and just “forget the bad! What does it matter anymore?” I can try to move on for me. I can try to deal with PTSD. I can do everything I can do. But for me, that doesn’t involved looking at that weekend as a “fond memory.”
When I think of it, I think of how one weekend of moderate fun was not worth a year and a half of devastation. This is not normal ups and downs. And it’s not equally split (or skewed toward good) in any way.
I wonder how I didn’t see red flags. I wonder about how I could’ve saved myself.
I think about how on that first weekend, it was picturesque New York – all of it. Those special New York steps that lead up to the apartment building door. The snow that fell out the window and looked so gorgeous. The fabulous woman who yelled encouragement on the street as I walked out to brunch with sexual assault dude – through the snow – in the dress and stiletto heels I came in.
It was so fun and beautiful and picturesque. I think about how so weirdly, that weekend, I felt very safe. I’d been so busy, and I was still unpacking my messy apartment. So, to go and have some space, and to see snow falling out the window… It all just seemed perfect and safe and relaxing.
[Granted, side note: I didn’t sleep much when he was in the bed. I wasn’t good yet about actually sleeping beside him. But that was my weirdness about literal sleeping with someone. And when he worked, I got the bed alone and slept a lot – which I desperately needed at that time. So…]
It was a really nice weekend. And it wasn’t worth my life being ruined over.
And now, enveloped in the sadness of thinking of another blizzard weekend and how had I not gone, so much might’ve been different… I just can’t even bring myself to go outside, to go home…
I’m just staying at the office (in my windowless office). I can’t bear to do anything else.