I’ve always had an odd gait, especially with all the weight I have on me (and being bowlegged doesn’t help). It doesn’t hurt after I walk now! I’ve been doing my dumbbell exercises and using the leg press, abductor and adductor, I feel as though I’m walking better than I ever have before.
It dawned on me one day how I started walking without using much of my hips: it was one of those typical, Hollywood-esque “ah-ha” moments that, to be honest, kind of freaked me out.
When I was 17, I went to a party. I don’t want to delve too much into detail, but I ended up being sexually assaulted. No report was ever filed, as I felt like it was all my fault coupled with my friend telling me she talked to the guy in question and he denied everything; not to mention how upset my father would have been at me for lying to him. Oh, and how I was underage drinking and smoking pot. Note: at that time, my family and I were in a bad place (Mom would pop pills every day and drink).
After that, for years and years, I didn’t talk to anyone about it, save for maybe telling a friend in passing and not wanting to go deep into it. I told myself I was “over it” and went on with my life.
Ha. No I fucking wasn’t. Yet another example of how I always never gave myself time to heal or help myself.
It never occurred to me having those dark, sad thoughts in the back of my mind coupled with how I felt about myself would damage me so much. I became even more defensive and even made sure I didn’t walk a certain way as to “show off my ass” (because a woman walking normally would mean she was a “slut” to me).
I would always catch older men staring at me in places I just didn’t want them to look. I didn’t feel safe. I wanted everyone to leave me alone. I began to shuffle instead of walk. I was so afraid of some random man who had no idea what was going on with me, would look at me.
So yes, I didn’t want a man to stare at me, so I stopped walking the way humans were meant to walk. Now, as I’ve started my 52 Weeks of Allie, I feel so much better and much more calm.
I can walk proud. I deserve this change. No one can take it away now except me. I refuse to do that anymore!