Reflections on season enders

After the gruesome injury of Gordon Hayward, I found myself in deep reflection. The words from his teammates, words from fellow NBA ballers, and even words from the most hated player, the Black Mamba, sent me into very deep thoughts. Hayward’s season ending injury touched me deeply because: 1) I am a basketball fan and want to see the Celtics do nothing but win. They worked so hard to come to where they are now and winning is important for those who put in the work. 2) His injury reminded me of my life. I have had many season ending injuries and NEEDED to work my way back from them. And when I say injuries, I do not mean of this type. Sure, I’ve had quite a few very painful fractures but nothing compared to this.  My season ending injuries were a little bit more personal. They were setbacks. They were breakups. They were discouragements. They were ending friendships. They were the rebound relationships. They were not getting what I thought I needed, when I thought I needed them. These were things that I planned my life around and they fell short because it just was not my time. They were the letting myself be okay with not being perfect, even though people in my life may view me as such.

Now, the injury was very touching but my God, the inspiration, the deep thoughts, the nightly reflections stems from the recovery process, the mental rehab, the support, the discouragements, the confusion that comes with season ending injuries were the crux of my reflections and continues to be. As I reflect on my season ending injuries and think about how they keep me up at night, bring tears that I shed in the comfort of my solitude,  isolate me from my environment, and create anxious expectations from me, Hayward’s words bring to a place of peace and motivates me to move forward. Season ending injuries are just that. They last for a specific season and with continued motivation, continued rehab, continued work, I improve. Season ending injuries are temporary, in fact, they prepare you for better and greater things ahead.

As I reflect, I see this. I recall a particular season ending injury and how I grew from it. I am a better person after having gone through this. I am better equipped to teach my sons, daughters, nieces, nephews, sisters, brothers how to move from this particular injury. Rehab from this injury not only taught me how to move past it, but also, taught me how to avoid it. One of my above mentioned fractures (see first paragraph) was a thumb fracture. I danced for a long time and when dancing, you learn to fall a specific way. You learn to catch yourself to avoid painful thumps to the ground. You learn to fall gracefully. This particular fracture was as a result of a fall. I did not apply the techniques I learned properly. Moving forward, this fall scared me into submission. I am more conscious of how I will land when I fall and remember to apply the techniques I learned in the past. Application is key. This is what season ending injuries are about. It is not to scare you from doing things again but they teach you how to move on, how to not let it happen again, and how to be stronger and better after. Will they happen again? Yes. I would be lying if I said certain injuries will not occur again. I do not believe in “to win you must lose but losing is a natural part of life.”

I’m using season ending injuries as an example and you might still be thinking, “I’ve never hurt myself before.” You are missing the point. It is not about hurting yourself but it is about the hurdles, the trials, the tribulations, the losses, the deaths, the breakups, that we face in life. Your season might have just lasted a day but there are lessons to be learned even in daily season injuries.

It is hard to prepare ahead for these season injuries, as often they occur so suddenly. But fear not, there is light at the end of the tunnel. I am a living proof that joy does indeed come in the morning. You will find your true purpose, even during your recovery period. But I warn you, take the time to recover. Take the time to heal. Broken people cannot prosper. You will be toxic to your surroundings, including yourself. You cannot move forward you if you find comfort in your pain.

I truly hope you were able to grasp something from this post. I pray that whatever season injury you are currently facing brings a happy and healthy recovery.

How do you deal with season ending injuries?

En tout cas,

Me.

Advertisements

Rape: No uniform and no boundaries

Yesterday evening a plethora of women and men joined in a cathartic moment. They shared what they were wearing when they were sexually assaulted. This conversation started when someone posted an article about a 60 yr old woman being raped in her home. The poster asked the question: “what were you wearing when you were raped?” Some shared information on their 1st, 2nd,  and even 3rd encounter of rape by someone they knew, and was suppose to trust. For some it was their first time sharing,  some wanted to be anonymous, and some quickly shared and deleted after sharing. The point of this sharing moment was not to shame any of the victims or to remind them of those awful moments. The point: rape has no uniform. For some of these women their first assault was at the age of 2. They don’t remember the details, but remembered the violation. It sticks with you forever, and does something to you every now and then. Even if you forgave your attacker it is hard to completely heal from the assault.

Have you had your trust violated by someone you loved, family you trusted, and they took it upon themselves to erase your innocence?  How could you trust the same? I applaud these brave men and women that shared publicly and anonymously because last night they were able to be comforted knowing it was nothing they did, and thousands of us stand with them. I’ll share some of these sans name to respect their privacy.

Also, to the men who were told it was their rites to passage, but deep down they know what it truly was: we acknowledge your struggle, we cry  with you, and we admire your courage. We love you just the same.

To the woman who started this conversation we appreciate you for opening up this platform.

“Age 6, jeans and t-shirt, my brother’s “best friend” forced himself inside of me one day while waiting for my brother to get back home.”

“jeans & t-shirt, my HS bf, my house, my virginity. He justified by telling me “you didn’t say no, you said stop”

“first time 19- long jean skirt and a white blouse with flowers second time 28 sweats w/ a fever of a 102”

“1st 18, jeans, sea green T. 2nd 20, jeans, white sweater, drugged. Bf called me a cheating bitch & dumped me when I told him”

“19 jeans and raincoat, in an elevator. 27 jeans and a purple sweater, roofied. ok RT”

“A tank top and wrap around skirt. Age 5. RT.”

“in my underwear in bed. my now ex-husband said he “needed” it & didn’t take no for answer & after awhile, I stopped fighting.”

“You’re the only person I’ve told. I’m 36, married for 12 years & my OH doesn’t know. I was wearing whatever kids wore in the 80’s.”

“first time, 7 or 8. denim shorts to my knees, polo button up. socks, sneakers. my uncle forced oral. you can tweet.”

“2nd time. Pajamas. Female relative. She was “showing me” what they did on the movies that came on Cinemax.”

“jeans, nbc sports t-shirt, nike running shoes. he was a childhood friend.”

“Navy capri pants, lilac tank top, black cardigan, flip-flops. I was 14, in public. He was my friend. Okay to RT.”

“I was wearing a brown Garanimals-type shirt w/green frogs on it, a brown fringe jacket, Wranglers and B. Brown loafers. 6. OK to RT”

“1st of multiple times by the same family member was at 7…wearing pajamas. 2nd time I was 12…sweatpants and tee…youth pastor”

“12, mother’s friend son, shirt & sweats. Happen twice..told me ill never be pretty enough & it was the only option to take..”

“one-piece bathing suit. I was 17 & a lifeguard. He was a co-worker. It was my 1st job. Ok to RT. thank you for twitter conversation”

“A hoodie and jeans.”

“Jeans, vest top, shirt, and no make up”

“T-shirt and jeans. I was 12. I never spoke of it until my late 20’s. Alway thought it was my fault because I looked nice. (Ok2RT)”

“I don’t even remember what I wore cuz it happened so many times between ages 4-6. Obviously wasn’t wearing anything slutty.”

“I was 4. Pajamas. My brother (11)…My 1st time ever sharing.”

“The first time? I was 8. I had on a sweater and jeans. The 2nd, work clothes: dress pants and a button up blouse”

“Age:13, nothing but a towel wrapped around me. I was just getting out of the shower (Ok to RT)”

“I was wearing a poofy pink Easter Sunday dress. My older cousin did it… It was my 7th birthday.”

“…I got gangraped when I was 19 by some boys I knew in HS. I wasn’t healthy for a year 1/2 after.”

“in my room and forced himself on me. Said I wanted it. Captain of the basketball team at the college near by. (Okay to Rt)”

“Naked and engaging in consensual sex that turned… awry.”

“1. A nightie, 2. a nice blouse and long skirt, and 3. a sweatshirt and jeans.”

“Pajamas. Woke up to assault, I was in grade school (don’t remember exact age). Last time I ever wore a nightgown. Ok to rt”

“23, black dress, sweater. I was in my car, got stuck up at gunpoint.”

“The 1st time I was wearing a pink nightgown, I was 7. The 2nd time I had on jeans and a tshirt @ 22 ok to rt”

“past summer. flower harem pants & long sleeve black linen shirt. my home. RT.”

“Freshman in college by an RA and I had on slacks and I think a button down shirt. (OK to RT)”

“9 years old pink Disney princess pajama set days after my dad died”

“Ages 7-9, usually a nightgown *sigh* Ok 2 RT”

“A dirty Arby’s uniform. 20.”

“1st time: jeans, tank, + a hoodie. Was 14, + was how I lost it. 2nd: jeans and a tee, was 17. 3rd: a dress, 18 at a party. Can RT.”

“1st time I was sleeping in a baggy tshirt & woke up to a stranger inside of me. 5 yr later, the exact same but it was a friend I trusted.”

“My minister threw me down, tore my blue skirt off and penetrated me. 5 minutes later he has leading prayer for the congregation.”

“pink top and blue jeans shorts (first time I remember) 5 years old molested by my stepbrother almost everyday until I was seven”

“3rd time was actually last month when I went to London. I think it was two ppl but I don’t remember. Was too ashamed to say anything.”

“1st rape at 23 blue dress, Betsy Johnson pumps. He held me down and sodimized me. 2nd time my ex wouldn’t take no and forced it in.”

“was 4 when it happened…It’s the only thing I remember of my childhood…Nightmares still come back…I’m 23 now…It was my father. He hates me.”

“I was ten, and in the shower at camp. No clothing on. Camp counselor.”

“my then gf, now wife, was 21. Out w/ her HS friends while I was at work. Jeans & modest top. Woke up after passing out to find her former friend on top of her, having pulled off her pants while she was passed out. You can quote.”

“I had on a salmon colored skirt & top. My grandmother told me that color looked good on me when I left the house. For my date.”

“frilly white dress, white lace tights. he insisted on “helping” me take off said tights; we were at a beach {me: 7, him: 30s-ish}”

“When I was 22, I was brutally raped and beaten by two men. In the hospital for 2 weeks. Jeans, a sweatshirt, and flip flops.”

“Age 18, first ‘real’ job. Business suit/jacket/blouse. Boss. I got away,hit him with chair,complained.He got promoted. OK to RT”

“Molested @ 11 by my ex stepdad. Told my mom. She called me a liar. Never told my dad. Gained 50lbs in mos. to cover the shame.”

“2nd and 3rd time, same dude, break in, same pajamas.. Told me he was falling in love with me as he raped me.”

“Raped by ex-gf @ 17 wearing sweats. Wanted to “make me hate her” (her words) so easier 4 her 2 move on after cheating. Ok to RT”

“On the hood of my car in plain view of my 5 year old sister. She saw everything and is terrified of anyone named ____.”

“4th time was this past September. I’m 24. I had on a church dress and some flip flops. It was outside his apartment complex.”

“I was raped. That’s why I left the Army. Never told anyone publicly (only a select few know about it).”

“I was first attacked at 2 yrs old in my nursery by my mom’s brother. He was trying to force himself into me! I locked my hips.”

“1st time: sundress. 2nd time: tshirt and sweats.”

“Forced himself on me. Removed my panties and I wasn’t aroused and I said no. He didn’t care. Removed my panties…spat on me…and did it.”

“Multiple times when I was little. Probably wearing a nightgown or pjs. & again in high school wearing a graduation dress. RT”

“5 yrs, pink nightgown w/a bow on the neck. My dad had his drunk friends over. I’d made my 3yo sis sleep under the bed that night..”

“office work clothes. collared shirt, cardigan, pencil skirt with tights, flats. you can RT.”

“24. t-shirt & panties. at knifepoint in my own home. I said “no” & almost didn’t live to see today. (ok to RT)”

“On one occasion: Oversize everything. Another: Jeans, shirt. (s’ok to RT)”

“oh yeah and age 2 kinda blurry but rugrats shirt and short set pink sneakers a friend of my mom he had a fish and it was pic day”

“6-10, t-shirt, shorts, pajamas, jeans, dress, didn’t matter. 15 jeans & a t-shirt, 19 sweatpants & t-shirt, 35 a dress. RT at will”

“A navy blue maxi dress from WALMART. I was getting ready for school…To teach. I was 31. 6 am. (Ok to RT.)”

“leggings and a baggy t shirt (ok to rt)”

“I was wearing a tank top, jeans & flip flops. Now I wear loose clothing & a hat when I’m out alone. I don’t want any attention to my body”

“I was wearing jeans and a button up shirt. It’s ok to RT.”

“age 13, pajamas. Age 16, jean skirt and short sleeved shirt. Age 30, ex s/o @ home. Ok to RT.”

1st time, nightgown. I was 5. 2nd&3rd time, jeans and a tee or tank top. 4th time, nothing. It was by my (then) gf, we were in bed. Ages 5, 13, 16, and 22.”

“An old baseball team t-shirt from goodwill and some black pants from NY&CO; my pajamas; a mickey mouse t shirt and jeans. And yes that was 3 separate occasions”

“school uniform….my sorority t-shirt and jeans… A black party dress (can retweet).”

“my school clothes. a jacket, screen print shirt, jeans, and snow boots. Okay to RT”

“I was 12, it was 4 guys. I had on an army green coat and acid washed skinny jeans w/zippers & bows at the ankle. You can RT”

There were so many more stories, but it’s draining.

If you would like to share with us what you were wearing publicly or privately let me know. You are not alone.

xoxoxo

Jae