It made me giggle.... and I figured everyone would know who I was thinking of. lolol.
Than later this evening I saw this photo >>>>>>>>>>
and I thought I would share it instead.
At first blush I noticed how pretty the girl is... THEN I read the sign. Obviously the language on the sign had my attention right away and I read, then re-read each line to take it all in.
Then I looked back again to notice to myself just how pretty that girl is......
MANY times over the last few months I have thought about how rather silly it is that *my* sign went viral so fast..... that it would actually get picked up local news, then national news and become this rather huge ordeal.....
It was just a sign -a funny sign about a catastrophic event - but nothing more than that. Yet, it seemed to have captivated people..... as I've said before TONS of people have posted funny sh*t on facebook and Whoopi Goldberg didn't call them to be on The View... so why me?
I think, in regards to my sign.... far too many people relate to it. I think people were drawn in by the humor of the sign, even if one might think that humor was misplaced or even inappropriate. Funny is still funny and Lisa Lampanelli makes a killing doing funny things that are not at all appropriate. I just wanted to make a sign to sell my house.... and it did. It also brought with it a trip to New York, a trip to LA and a blog with a consistent monthly following in the THOUSANDS..... which - is humbling. Very. Humbling.
So, when I saw *this* sign, after I noticed her beauty and read it's message.... I was sad to notice the date: 2011.
Somehow I doubt this girl was invited on talk shows or that her sign got a million shares.... and shouldn't it? My sign is funny and what happened to me is sad.... however - being cheated on isn't even in the same TIME ZONE as being raped. I would take being cheated on any day of the week..... I'm fairly certain, between this girl and I - my scars are far easier to heal than hers.
Then I really stopped to look at the girl - and I noticed her sweet dimple. She has a lovely, open smile - even while holding the sign that tells the world than a man entered her life and her body in a way that would scar her for the rest of her life.....
I looked again for the chip on her shoulder against all men.... or even all of mankind for that matter. But I don't see one. I see a girl, appropriately dressed for warm weather, with a warm smile to match - holding a sign that should make the stomach of everyone who reads it hurt.... yet, she still smiles.
I read the sign again... and this time I noticed how much she and I *do* have in common.
First of all... .plenty of people don't want to read my sign either because they can't face their own guilty past and my sign, my story, my broken heart - it all hits far too close to home for them to handle... so they lash out at me with insults or rudeness - as though calling me names empowers them which suggests to me that my sign de-powers them.... a guilty conscience has a way of doing that. (BTW - de-power is not a word, I just made it up. lolololl)
Second, I noticed that she "deserved" it.... how *many* times did I hear *that* one!?!? I deserved my husband leaving me because I'm a _____________insert your insulting reason here__________, and she "deserved" to be raped and left in a parking garage for ____________insert lame reason here_________. I guess as far as things one "deserves" in life - I should be grateful to have gotten off so lucky. I don't say that flippantly - I say that in all seriousness.
Thirdly, I noticed how both she and I are "trash". I'm the kind of "trash" who DIDN'T take care of myself and therefor I *deserved* to have my husband leave me because no man would want to f*ck someone the "size of shamu".... This girl however, SHE is "trash" because she *did* take care of herself, and dared to wear "short shorts" that showed off her 'non-shamu-sized' body.
This country seems to be, from my humble perspective, confused on it's global definition of what "trash" is.
Isn't that interesting.... or am I the only one taking a moment to ponder this. For MONTHS now, I have read and sifted through comments and emails and voice-mails of people (mostly men) who are *sure* that El Capitan is justified in what he's done.... that I deserved this because I "smoke too much" and I need to "lay off the red meat and 40s".... as though my outer shell speaks for the inner me who doted on my family, loved my husband and worked her figurative ass off to make ends meet.
This beautiful girl.... finds herself on the same end of the blame stick though.... for the opposite reason: she *did* take care of herself, she had a nice body, dared to wear shorts to prove it, she had "too much to drink" at a party and for *those* "sins".... a man raped her.
I'm not at all being melodramatic, but the connection between the two signs is rather fascinating to me.... we live in a world where some can say - "too many donuts and your husband has a right to leave you, destroy your world, strip you of your life's dreams and security....." and at the same time - someone else finds it OK to punish, even harass, embarrass and shame someone who was violated because they *had* a nice body and "flirted" too much?
Damned if you do and damned if you don't.
Where is the accountabiltiy anymore? El Capitan it's "responsible" because I'm "trash".... this girls rapist isn't a 'rapist' becuase she's "trash" and had it coming to her.....? That's incredibly troubl
I sat and thought about the sign, the girl.... I looked around at who else is there - and it makes me sad to know that *this* sign, because it might make people uncomfortable - won't get shared as much on social media. It won't get the attention it deserves.... *this* girl won't get the recognition she deserves for putting a face to a heinous crime and not being afraid to stand up and tell the world that she won't be ashamed.
Mostly though I thought about her spirit and her warm smile that come through in the picture and how inspiring that is,,,, how empowering it must have been for her to be there, on that day - holding her sign. I'm grateful we live in a country where she can make her sign, hold it in public and not be stoned to death in the streets... or worse.
I shared her picture on my FB page and saw a few others share it, too. While her story is horrific one, you can see her courage, her beauty and her strength - and I just find that truly amazing.