I've written 18 pages of 12-point Times Roman text about what happened to me last year. 18 pages.
It goes back to a handful of years before, just to set the stage.
But, I'm torn. Do I want to publish it here or not? I sincerely want people to understand what happened to me. I feel that I need to be able to express what happened and why it came pretty close to destroying me. I was diminished. But now, I am stronger. (Broke, but strong.)
I mention no names. I identify no agencies. If the people in the stories were to actually recognize themselves, I would hope it would be with a measure of genuine shame.
But now that I have written it down, I don't know if I want to post it - split into entries across a week. Was it enough to write it down? Or do I need to hit "Publish Post" and tell you the words. I wanted to scream it from the mountaintops last summer. I wanted the world to know that I was a decent person, but I was still afraid then. I was afraid of our government, and how the petty, vindictive, and foolish actions of a couple of immature people might have had a terrible effect on my entire life in our post-9/11 paranoia.
Especially here in Washington.
18 pages. It's a lot of story. It's a lot of hurt. It's a lot of petty indignities and stupid wrongs that ended with me being the victim of a truly bizarre false accusation.
I have this week to ponder it.
Yes, I am stronger now. I have an amazing job. I don't wake up with fear and anger and sadness every morning. This will be a great decade in my life. However, I am still haunted by last year, and the casual way in which these foul people brushed aside the value of my life.
But I will remain strong.
And, if this exercise has done nothing else, it's shown me that I can write a chapter's worth of story over coffee breaks in a week. If I can do this, I can write a book, dammit.
Off to ponder (and see how far behind schedule the Oscars are running...)