gin

I don't eat at dinner. I think I swiped some fries from someone's plate. I drank two of the sorts of cocktails I always order, those elderflower-heavy gin and cucumber potions you can find for twenty bucks at every chi-chi cocktail bar on the planet. 

Nobody really noticed. Nobody really cared. This was the circle of friends that included the rapist - and he is there, a few seats down from me. A tactical error, doomed from the start. 

Kindness

Dragon Age 2 is a game about kindness.

The world isn't kind to you at all. You lose your home, twice. You lose your family, again and again. You can't make it through with all of your friends alive and on your side. 

BUT I DONT WANT TO WRITE ABOUT KINDNESS RIGHT NOW I WANT TO WRITE ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS SO I'M THROWING MY RELATIONSHIPS PART DOWN HERE SO I DON'T FORGET IT!!!

Dragon Age 2 is a game about relationships. 

Most of yours are bad. 

and more

And there are others. People bring me food, drinks, hand-me-downs. They invite me out. They keep inviting me out. 

Remember, these people haven't known me that long. And they've mostly seen the worst of it. A few weeks of bombastic invincibility and then a crash? Come on. I'm the weird friend, the crying friend, the friend who keeps alluding to something bad without ever saying it outright. I've lost mutual friends, but the ones who never much liked my rapist in the first place - they close ranks around me. 

the floor of the party

One of my friends has a new apartment. It has a fireplace. We have parties there so we can burn shit. At one of these parties I get so overwhelmed that I go into his bedroom and lie down on the floor.

He lies down next to me. We don't touch. 

"I have really bad depression," he says. "The only things that help are weed and taking long runs in nature. Let me know if you ever need some weed or someone to run with in nature." 

I demure, politely. My parents raised me with good manners. 

seat kicker

One of my work friends calls me at my desk. "I was sitting behind him on a flight this week," she says. "I didn't realize until we'd landed. Otherwise I would have kicked the seat the whole time."

"That's nice of you," I say.

"I mean it. I would definitely have kicked his seat [for you][the floor of the party]."  

Friendship

I can't talk about what the months following being raped were like without talking about the unnecessary kindness that my new friends - some of them - offered me.

Listen. There is so much from that time that has vanished from my memory. I'm playing archeologist to piece it back together. I'm reading through old google documents, texts, photos. I've scrolled all the way down on my twitter. I've reached out to friends, like "Remember that time I completely snapped right after graduation? Can you remind me of what that was like?"