Were it not for you I’d probably be a victim of rape, a young mother, HIV positive and the talk of campus back then. Or worse, even dead. And if the news were to land on my parents’ ears, they would totally blame me for being reckless.
But you seemed to be at the right place at the right time while for me I was at the wrong place at the wrong time. You saved my life and though it might not seem like you did much, you actually did. There were no fists thrown, no jaws broken, no black eyes, no gun shots, though that would have been fascinating, I mean, at least I would get a first-hand experience away from the usual crap I see in movies.
All you did was hold me and the attacker retreated. And in your arms I was safe, at peace. And the storm was all calm as though you had the powers Jesus had.
Forgive my uncertainty for I am not sure if the incident was a mere figment of my imagination or it really did happen.
But since you are real and the image of you that night still ingrained in my forgetful mind, I am sure as death that it did happen. Under the moon, so tangibly close as a cold shining wheel in the sky, you became my knight in shining armor and rose to the occasion. Historical is hysterical for many of us and this does bring tears to my eyes. Though that should not be the case at all because something so overwhelmingly awe inspiring came out of it.
Love. Love in the form of a tall, coal black haired man, with the eyes of your late mother, may she rest in eternal peace. You were all casually dressed, for the weekend, in a light blue shirt and the brown khaki pants which are now my favorite. With a deep voice, one that does thing to my inner ghosts and my head on your chest and your masculine arms around me, firm and with the assurance of safety, there and then you became part of my life.
And that was the first step into the rest of my life, living in “utter perfection”, in the days I thought of as my honeymoon, with he who had saved my life though I knew not what lay in store for me. I worshiped and kissed the very floor he walked on just on the thought of how he had so miraculously saved my life. My appreciation for you was overly overt and profuse. I felt as though I owed my life to you and I proffered my worthless self to you to do as you pleased.
What followed was inexplicable and it turned me into a disgruntled bitch. The heaven I had created for us in my mind was all a fallacy and our living arrangement became nothing but a claustrophobic set-up which I could not bear anymore. My alter ego grew tired of my stoical behavior when dealing with you. I submitted in a manner that shocked all who knew me. Silly of me to think that by so doing you’d see how much I was grateful for what you did.
And with the changes I saw in you, my obligation to you started to ebb away. The violence, the name calling and the awkward silences proliferated and replaced the usual surprises of bouquets of flowers and the dinner dates at my favorite joint. You became an enigma. I grew tired of being bludgeoned into lovemaking, or was it just sex? Because to me I saw no love in what you did to me. Or was that your way of accepting my thanks? I know not.
It breaks me to think that I convinced myself that it would end. But when I couldn’t take shit no more I dealt with you, silently in the dead of the night and made no effort to conceal it because I was glad I did it. And your death was a magician’s wand to me, it changed my life. As I sit in this cell, I curse the day you saved my life. Was that the way to accept my indebtedness? My “love” out of duty? And all I did to put your life back on track? My biggest undoing? You changed me. Did you even know how to accept gratitude? Even worse, do you know what gratitude is?