At eight years old, while visiting my family down in Mexico, I played in my grandfather and uncle's junkyard with my cousins. There were all kinds of things in that old junkyard. There was typewriters, broken glass, old cars, campervans, broken off steering wheels and tires. It was like my own little wonderland! So as you can imagine, we didn't much mind the heat.
While all of us were playing that day, I had to use the bathroom. Rather than using the shed next to my grandparent's small house I decided to use the campervan's bathroom since it was closer. So I went off into the bathroom. When suddenly my cousin came in. I found it unusual he didn't leave right away or say “sorry!” like any other person would. I pulled my underwear up immediately. My heart was racing, I felt so trapped in what at the time to me seemed to be such a big place.
He inched closer and closer, stealing my breath with every step, using my lack of voice as an advantage. Slaughtering my innocence without a second thought. When he spoke I felt all the paranoia I would have for years flood to me, I was drowning in it. “Can I kiss you there?” Every time sounded more distorted than the last. I was grateful when my grandmother called us from the little house to eat. I never ran faster in my life, I ran to safety, away from him.
But I realized that he would catch up, that I’d have to sit there at a table with all my family and act like nothing had happened. I’d have to look at him and talk to him like normal. Like yesterday had been today and today was only a dream. Like he hadn't stained me permanently. Safety wasn't real anymore, it had faded.
I wish I could've stayed innocent for longer, to this day I still miss the feeling of it. I wish I would've said something when it had happened. I wish I hadn't spent so many years trying to find reasons behind his actions. I wish I hadn't tried blaming myself for so long, and I hope you won't either any longer.
It wasn't your fault, you didn't do anything wrong and you didn't fucking deserve it, no one deserves this.
When safety fades, rebuild it. It is never too late to speak up. Surround yourself with people who care, who understand, and start loving yourself, you deserve that much at the very least. What has happened to you does not define who you are, it is your own actions.
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