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Mar 2019
I took myself from from city to city
To pursue my dreams as tall as skyscrapers
But with more freedom comes more precaution
And all the safety nets set around couldn’t catch me from the fall

Mom told me to not forget about the top lock of my door at night
Dad said to always tell a friend when I’m heading out
I’ve learned not to ride the subway alone after 5 pm
But I needed someone to tell me that I did the right thing

I navigated my nights through pavements and grids
I found myself in the Upper East side, the streets shifting beneath my feet
Bacardi dictating each of my steps, but making no difference when I danced
I was always told to never trust a back alley, but no one warned me about a dance floor

I stumble my way onto the street, change scattered all over 72nd
I count the pennies like I count sheep, usually I’m out by 30
Hailing a cab, with him right beside me
My head rests on his shoulder along with the thought of good intentions

His apartment had a remarkable view of the skyline, but I can’t look at it the same
The Empire State reminds me of bruises on my thighs and muffled screams
My night faded in and out from flickering kitchen lights and cold linoleum flooring
But the next morning clarity hit
Veiled with excuses
Confusion
Regret
Shame
They say the NYPD are the finest in the world
But I sit in this cold, stale building reflecting on the night before
My mascara still smeared and a rip in my tights

“Is this what you were wearing?”
“How much exactly did you have to drink”
“You agreed to go to his apartment though”
“How often do you go home with strangers?”

My throat is tight
Everything I say is taken and twisted
Eyes glaring at me with low-brows
And the smell of burnt coffee
Trust draining out my body as color drains from my face
I’m ripping through the safety nets, one by one

Unable to take their judgemental gaze, I look up at the ceiling
Answering questions
I think to myself, “Was this moment in a cold police station even worth the fight?”
Was this cry for help from one terrible night worth the trauma they’ve caused from doubt
It’s unbelievable that I would have to rationalize which event was worse

I just needed someone to tell me I did the right thing.

I can’t look at them
I still look up and answer questions
That time spent counting each tile on the ceiling until it was over,
when i should have been counting sheep,
hoping I can wake up and this was just a dream,
but I keep counting…

100, 200, 300..
I hope you get the justice you deserve.

Co-written with Dallas @stoopkid .
courtney
Written by
courtney  23/F/san francisco
(23/F/san francisco)   
1.1k
       ---, Fawn and ˏˋstoop kidˊˎ
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