Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Defense Mechanisms

I recently read an excellent/touching blog post by Ericka Kendall of Black Girls Guide to Weight Loss about how women are taught to deal and adjust to men in this world. She details some of her own experiences in being inappropriately approached by men and at one point assaulted.

What really struck me from her post was how universal our "training" is: Women/girls are told what to do/not to do in order to keep themselves safe, while men are not necessarily coached on how to respect/protect their women/girls.

At the end of her post Erika decides she will most likely seek counseling and take up a strength building sport like kick-boxing in order to better protect herself. I sat at the screen nodding my head in agreement. Sure, Zumba is fun, but it won't help me deflect an attack.

Fast forward to last night when I realized 3 minutes to 8:00 that we needed peanut butter and milk for the next day. With the grocery store already closed I just speed down the street to the Dollar Store. As the last customer in, the clerk promptly locked the door after I entered.

A male came to the door after I was rung up my I fiddled on my phone waiting for the clerk to let me and two other patrons out. He stood outside for a while and then walked away. When I finally get let out the lot is empty except for a police car and three others.

I hear someone call out to me. I turn. Nothing. I hear something again and look toward the police car. Nothing. I hop into my car and drive away only to be followed out the lot closely by another car. I turn on the block before mine. The car turns too. I turn to my block. The car turns too.

Feeling my skin goose up I turn down my alley and so does my follower. So I keep driving not pausing at my unopened garage. The car comes to. I get back to the street and dart back onto the main intersection where thankfully traffic is heavy. The pursuer stays stuck at the stop sign and I circle around again.

To say that freaked me the f*ck out would be an understatement! I mean who was following me? And why? And had they noticed me before? Should I stop walking the dog alone? So any things running through my head.

But no answers.

So breath more easily when my husband gets home and determine in my mind to start researching kick-boxing classes too.