The End of a Decade. The middle of the same damn story.

No matter how old you are, a decade is a really long time. Even if you live to be 100, a decade hits a double digit percentage of your entire lifetime. When you’re 25, a decade is an extremely significant chunk of your life.

It seems like everyone I know is reflecting on their decade. There are some beautiful stories of growth and adventure and learning and joy and struggle and success. And listen, I know that in the past decade I have done a lot.

But fuck. All I can think is, ten years ago my rapist was my best friend.

And I think about how three and a half years ago he tried to claim that the rape had happened “almost a decade ago” when even NOW it wasn’t a decade ago.

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But the reality is, now it was almost nine years ago. One could say it was almost a decade ago and not be lying.

A decade ago was not even the beginning of our friendship.

And I won’t be leaving him behind in 2019.

If I’m lucky I still have years of litigation ahead of me. If I’m not so lucky, I don’t know how I will even survive that.

I know there’s a lot more than just that that happened in the last decade.

Like great friendships that started, and also ended. Or things I thought were friendships and realized were not.

Not to dwell on the negative.

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I also graduated high school, leaving on the absolute worst note imaginable for a generally a rule following, honor roll every single semester besides the one where she was being repeatedly raped, student: one of the last times I ever left the high school as a student I was escorted out by the local police — who later that decade would do a half assed job “investigating” my rape allegations before ghosting me without returning my notebook.

I also struggled with an eating disorder for years and had a mental breakdown that caused me to drop out of a college I loved across the country on the first day of class before returning home and spending two years in near total isolation struggling with an obsessive compulsive, airtight schedule.

That’s just the stuff I’m comfortable sharing 🙃

But that will end my pity party. I guess one of the benefits of blogging is, I can kinda vent out all this negativity and those who want to read it can choose to and also stop whenever they want to and I can still feel like anyone cares without forcing the people who love me to hear me whine about it.

On a positive note, this decade I moved out on my own to NYC. Bought my apartment with my mom. Met a man who feels like home and got engaged to him. Made some of the best friends I could imagine. Maintained some of the best friends who have been a part of my life long before this decade. Adopted my two beautiful cats. Found veganism. Recovered from my eating disorder. Found a therapist who has helped me so much. Became a runner. Ran my first marathon less than a year later. Became a triathlete. Became an IRONMAN. Raised over $25,000 for Women for Tri. Competed at the IRONMAN World Championship and met incredible humans along the way. Developed and overcame my fear of flying and traveled the world — from the snow covered mountains of Patagonia, to the saunas of Finland, to the volcanoes of Hawaii and many places in between. I stood up for myself and I didn’t give up no matter how many obstacles there were. I graduated from court reporting school and got two consecutive dream jobs. I do not take for granted what it means to have a job I love. It’s the place I spend the bulk of my time, it has been a constant that has kept me grounded no matter what chaos my personal life has had waiting for me. I’ve spent treasured quality time with my family. I’ve built a relationship with my sibling I never expected to have. I’ve got so much love in my life. I have so much passion for everything I do. Despite what I am carrying with me into the next decade, I am filled with hope for what is to come. I am excited for my future. And when I’m not stuck in a dark place, I realize I couldn’t ask for more than that.

So… I’ll end this by saying I’m grateful to be alive. I’m grateful for all of you who stand with me in the darkness, who know there’s so much more to me than that but know I need to talk about it, too. To all my fellow people in their own darkness: stay strong, keep fighting, feel your feelings and know they matter, but be happy every chance you can.

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