The following article is a Guest Posting by a friend I met on my recent life travels. Our conversations started out casual but after a while, life reared its head and we shared our goods and bads. Although I was totally shocked at her admissions, I was struck by her ‘angelic glow’ and ‘spirit’ that came to me as a beacon of strength and conviction. It is my prayer that by printing her story on my blog will help at least someone who may have similar circumstances however remote and give them the strength to persevere and overcome circumstances that were not in their control in any way. – Melanie
My Story by Roma Vomerine
“I was surprised and quite pleased when Melanie approached me. I was honored that she asked if I would share my story.
My story makes people shuffle in their seats. It’s the kind of story that provokes mothers to cover their child’s ears. My story is suicidal at age 6. My story is my best friend being dragged to death. My story is silent. The timeline of my story is difficult to create perfectly, as all memories distort, yet remain embedded in their best recollection.
For context, I’m under 20 years old, and I’m female. I live in pale skin and brown shoulder-length hair. I am the kind of skinny that a street-cat is, and I am just as reluctant and assuming of danger. I wear baggy, muted-colored, clothes. I wake up at 4:44 am (every day since my best friend died) and I go to sleep when I feel safe. I’m obsessed with anything academic and keep my bookshelves in alphabetical order.
When I was six years old, I was molested for the first time by a family friend similar to my age. This molestation continued daily, (and eventually grew into rape) until I was 12 years old. As the molestation continued, I stopped laughing at my favorite TV Shows. My books were no longer as comforting.
A weekend break of dawn compelled me to the kitchen. The large knife my mother used looked so beautiful in silver; powerful enough to end the pain. I stood motionless staring at it, for what felt like hours, as if I were magnetized to death himself. My mother came upon me and broke the trance. I spoke softly, about how I wanted to slit my throat with that beautiful kitchen knife and feel the blood drip down to my toes. My mother looked at me like I had been shot in the face. Frantically, my mother and father sat me down to explain that suicide is not acceptable, and not an option. As they described death, I was only more persuaded to take my life, to be set free. This feeling never quite left and is still always brimming under the surface. I was not sent to a therapist, a doctor, and no further action was taken other than the conversation.
In elementary school, I went to my friend’s house for a sleepover. I was separated from the children at night and told to lie on a mattress. I can still see its faded peach color, feel the floral patterns and stains. My friend’s father dropped his belt and raped me. I was no older than 10. I screamed, I fought, I cried. When my mother picked me up, I had no more tears left to cry. I was silent for days, as if I screwed my jaw shut.
I was taken to the back room by my hairdresser when I was no older than 8. I was molested. I cried, and he was fired. At 15, I was asked to strip naked by a man in his 60’s on a movie set; the director told me it was my fault for not knowing that men were “like that”. I came upon a statistic which stated that people who are sexually abused previously are more likely to be abused again than people who were not abused. This terrified me.
A year later, my grandfather shot himself. We spoke on the phone daily. I walked into his home and the smell of death consumed me. His dog rushed up to me, blood on its mouth. He had been lapping at my grandfather’s blood. I put dirt in his grave with my own hand on the shovel, in my ready-to-go funeral outfit and black high heels from Shoes4Less.
A few months later, I visited my now ex-girlfriend in the psychiatric ward and knew that she, too, would live a life parallel to my grandfather’s. Her blue eyes turned grey, her skin was a display case for her veins and bones. I wrote her a letter and bought her some slippers and stuffed animals. What else am I supposed to do? What else was unattainable.
I began to ask myself, what am I supposed to do with all of this? Who is there to blame? I felt so lost yet so much more aware than my peers. There are parts of me that are broken, that they don’t even know exist. I abandoned hope and implemented techniques to get better. I have read every book, article, and paper on recovery. I’ve seen all the documentaries, attempted the religions, and I realized that there was no cure for how I felt. I had to face the pain and anger until it became manageable. I had to tame it.
I don’t want revenge from the men who took advantage of me. I’m working on forgiving those in my life who should have intervened when I was a child, and I’m working on forgiving who killed my friend.
I have told you my “secret” life. My public life identifies me as a prolific self-taught composer, a straight A student, an academic, and an introvert who is always reading or writing. I am an avid volunteer and I try to love my friends with all that I have. I have 3 jobs, and I make a 5-figure salary to allow for me to begin financial independence and security. I go to a University that is referred to as a ‘reach school’.
At any point during this nightmare, during this hellish life that any reader may feel right now, it is possible to get out of the rut. The hardest part is deciding you deserve to get out. The even harder part is deciding to do it.
Surrendering to the absurdity of the Universe, the careful chaos, and the truth is what is healing me. There is no reason, no rhyme, no equation or rational explanation for what I have suffered. Once I stopped fighting that, I realized that for the first year of my life, I am not facing sexual or emotional abuse. Nobody close to me has died. I am financially stable. I’m on over 7 medications, but I am learning how to eat and sleep. It may seem trivial to the regular adult, but for me, that is a victory. I choose to wake up and be grateful. For all of it. For being a prodigy, for being raped, for molestation, for the close friend I was able to have, for every phone call with my grandfather, accessible education, and for each healing scar on my wrist. The point of my story is, there is no point. There is no point in holding onto fear or anger. There is no point in revenge. There is no point to self-harm. None of those things change what has happened, they just fuel the negative cycle of trauma. There is no point in claiming to be wise. I know nothing. Who am I to define what is good or evil? Who am I to cast blame? I am not God. I am not omniscient. I am a human. My story is ultimately pointless, but my perspective has given me strength and understanding which is invaluable. All I have left to say is, thank you, Universe.”