I remember what I wore.
I still have the denim jacket.
I didn’t want the med examiner to put it with the rape kit and the rest of my clothes as evidence.
I remember he was a friend of a friend.
A friend of a friend I once trusted.
I remember eating pizza at Mellow Mushroom.
I remember talking about friends we both knew from back home.
I remember enjoying myself.
I remember getting in the bar underage because he worked there.
I remember sitting at a table against a dark wall.
I remember feeling “cool.”
I remember him ordering drinks. Not from a waitress but at the bar himself.
I remember waiting for the drinks.
I remember how many I drank.
I remember talking about my boyfriend (now my husband) and how they would get along well.
I remember saying, “I have to pee.”
I remember going to the bathroom, flushing, washing my hands, and then walking out of the restroom.
My legs went numb.
I remember telling him, “I can’t feel my legs.”
I remember he said he would take me home.
I remember him lifting my arm over his shoulder to help me to his car.
I remember him opening the car door for me.
I remember getting in the car.
I remember buckling my seat belt.
That’s where I stop remembering… I think…
What’s in my mind after clicking the seat belt could be true or false… reality or imagination.
I don’t know. I will never know. Truly. I cannot turn back the clock.
I remember wanting to turn back the clock.
I remember saying “no.”
I think I remember saying “no” as he pinned my wrists and spread my legs.
It was a whisper.
My voice was hoarse.
I remember pain… physical and emotional.
But did I say, “no”?
I remember waking up in his bed. He was on the floor. Naked.
I remember seeing the condom wrapper on the alarm clock.
I remember what time it was.
I remember searching his apartment for a bathroom and being violently ill.
I remember finding articles of my clothing scattered.
I remember not knowing where I was.
I remember getting dressed while he was still sleeping.
I remember seeing that he had gone through my purse because my wallet was out, opened, invaded.
Nothing had been stolen.
Everything had been stolen.
I remember him waking up as I zipped my jeans.
I remember him asking why I was crying.
I remember him driving me to my dorm.
I remember the silence.
I remember him putting his hand on my knee when I opened the car door to get out.
I remember wanting to vomit on his hand.
I remember him asking me if I wanted to go to church with him tomorrow.
I remember wanting to vomit on his hand.
I remember thinking “what the fuck?!”
I remember him asking me if I was ok.
I remember saying, “I don’t think so.”
I remember wanting to vomit on his hand that was on my knee.
I remember showering in scalding water.
I remember burning my skin.
I remember using an entire bar of soap until it disintegrated.
I remember using a new, fresh towel when I got out of the shower.
I remember vomiting more and more and more…
Til there was nothing left inside of me.
But it was all already gone.
Nothing was left.
I remember driving myself to the ER.
I remember telling the triage nurse, “I think I was raped.”
I remember her glaring at me and asking, “you think?”
I remember having vials of blood drawn.
I remember the med examiner looking for evidence from my body.
Hairs, finger prints, scratches, skin under my finger nails.
They took what was left of me.
I remember she was frustrated with me because I had already showered and peed.
“Very little evidence here,” she said while I laid with my legs spread open.
I remember being alone.
I remember the exam, the doctor, the cop who sat in the corner.
The rape kit.
I remember the doctor saying, “the abundance of tearing of the tissue is sign of trauma to the area.”
I remember thinking “what the fuck does that mean?”
I remember crying while some stranger combed my pubic hair… for his strays.
I remember pictures were taken of bruises on my inner thighs, my breasts, my arms.
I remember a bruise under my right arm pit from him carrying me over his shoulder.
A bruise on my collar bone.
I remember someone saying, “it’ll be he said/she said…”
I remember asking someone to call my mom.
I remember they left her a voicemail.
Who leaves a fucking voicemail?
I remember leaving the ER and going back to my dorm.
I had to be given clothes to wear home.
They were tossed in the garbage that same day.
I remember hating those clothes.
I remember curling up in a ball on my twin-sized bed and bear-hugging myself until it hurt.
I remember wanting it to hurt.
I remember emailing my boyfriend (now husband) to “CALL ME.”
I remember my dad having to get off a plane he had just boarded after receiving a phone call from my mom, saying what had happened to me.
I remember not speaking for an entire 24 hour period, once my parents arrived.
I remember sitting with my knees curled up to my chest for those 24 hours in the hotel room I stayed in with my parents.
I remember my mom on the phone with my brother.
I remember hearing him ask, “how is she?” and mom answering, “she’s quiet, very quiet.”
I remember being questioned incessantly by the police…
I remember the district attorney was female.
I remember being grateful for that.
But I didn’t know. I didn’t know everything they wanted me to know, to answer.
I remember the police finding the drug in his apartment.
I remember being told by the police officer “he and his roommate are in the next room,” as I gave my written statement… signed my written statement.
I remember wondering if his roommate was there that night.
I remember not remembering.