I shocked myself
But when I wrote this title, I was thinking of something else. For the last few months, I haven't been able to read. Since I learned how, I've been a voracious reader. The librarians recognize me at the little library down the street. It's been a once-a-week thing for most of my adult life. Yet all of a sudden, each time I picked up a book, it seemed boring and I couldn't finish. Hell, I couldn't make it past the first chapter.
Now sure, every once in a while, you accidentally pick up a clunker. These things happen. Either a book everyone raved about doesn't quite do it for you, or an author you've always liked suddenly burns out or tries to write in a new direction and it doesn't work. This was something else. After a few books of this, I just gave up on reading. I didn't know what else to do.
Last week, I decided this is just unacceptable. I refuse to be someone who is not a reader. My plan was to start super duper simple, and work back up to my regular simple books. So I marched myself six blocks to the library, determined to get a John Grisham or Danielle Steel book. Under normal circumstances, both of those authors infuriate me with their predictable plots. All Danielle Steel's main characters are the same - a physically tiny woman who is beautiful and suffers great tragedies and great fortunes. The women are always described as living simple lives, which are actually the lives of the 1%. You know, because they think they'll "only" fly first class for their yearly visit to London or New York or Paris. Where they've been going for so many years that the people who work there know the main character's name. Normally, drives me nuts. Naturally, I figured this simplistic type of plot-line was just what I needed to get back on track.
However, what caught my eye was a Nora Roberts book, and even though I consider those books to be on the same level as Danielle Steel's books, reading a Nora Roberts book didn't make me hate myself quite as much. To be honest, the book was good. I read it in two days. Achievement unlocked.
Two days ago it was time for another trip to the library to trade up. I grabbed a biography by some woman whose father had been a mildly famous writer a few decades ago. According to the adult daughter, the father sexually abused her. The book seems to be about her relationship with her father. Then I read that he raped her when she was seven. That was when I did something that shocked me. I thought, "That's it?"
Um, excuse me? That is a completely unacceptable thought to have about a little girl being raped! What the fuck is wrong with me? Have I read so many articles and blog stories (and seen Lifetime movies) about rape that I've become desensitized to it? Now I have a lot of wacky ideas and thoughts - I'm the girl who giggles when people trip - and normally I'm fine with that. This one though, I'm more than not fine with. Not by a long shot.
I'm not sure where to go with this. For now, I've put that book aside. I'm pretty sure all these articles and talks about rape are meant to "raise awareness" and change the way society views rape. It seems like it hasn't worked the right way for me. All the articles about the thousands and thousands of rape kits untested? The fraternities that make up rape songs? Maybe it's similar to that "If I don't laugh, I'll cry" mentality? Whatever the case, having a "that's it?" reaction to rape is not okay with me, and needs to change. Immediately.