Late September, 2008
I woke up around 7 AM. When I opened my eyes, I found myself looking directly into the egg-shaped face of a strange bull terrier. He was laying about ten inches away from me and I felt his hot breath on my face. His pink tongue was sticking out of his mouth.
|“Howdy! Welcome to your nightmare!”|
I started–“Whaaaa..?!”–and drew back.
|“Did you contract HIV last night…? WHO KNOWS!”|
When I got there, I opened my purse and looked for my MetroCard–the plastic/paper card used to pay the fee in order to ride the train.
Gone! Where…? No idea! Maybe Kiwi Bull Terrier used it to chop his coke.
I opened my wallet to take out money to purchase a ticket.
Wallet is devoid of cash. NO MONEY FOR YOU!!!
But I took $80 out of the ATM last night. Where’d it go…? No idea!
I had plenty of change in my coin purse, so I used that buy the first ticket I needed to get back to my apartment.
I felt self-conscious while I was riding the train, and kept my eyes mostly on the floor. I was clearly still dressed from the night before. I was doing the proverbial “walk of shame” back home.
Except that I wasn’t 20 years old anymore, walking fast back to my room at the girls’ dorm. I was a little older than that. This behavior, this situation, was no longer “cute.” I couldn’t chalk it up to some youthful learning experience.
My phone beeped. A text message from my roommate, because I hadn’t come home last night: ARE YOU OKAY?
I wrote back: YES THANK YOU–ON TRAIN NOW. HOME SOON. TY FOR CHECKING.
Except that I was not “okay.” Nowhere near to being “okay.” And things were going to get worse before they got better.
Then: going to the drug store to buy Plan-B, the emergency contraceptive. Just in case. $45 out-of-pocket I don’t really have, since I’d just shelled out $300 for Fall semester textbooks.
Then: making an appointment and going to my local Planned Parenthood at 3 weeks, and then again a little later, to get tested for everything. All of this–while very reasonably priced–was paid out-of-pocket, too.
No pregnancy. No disease. All tests negative. Thank you, Jesus.
To be clear: I have no shame whatsoever about having sex with a man, and I don’t think that there is anything necessarily wrong with “casual” sex. I think sex is a natural biological function. Not strictly necessary, but optimal for human functioning. Since I quit drinking, I haven’t exactly been a nun.
But one should be cognizant of their behavior–especially sex! It is a responsibility, and it holds one accountable to one’s actions. Everyone.
I paid for that night with Kiwi Bull Terrier–in anxiety, humiliation, and money.
It could have been worse. But what sort of shit platitude is that?