Wide Open is a memoir about faith and loss of faith, about sexual assault and about the astounding human capacity to heal. I was sexually assaulted by a series of men when I was between the ages of eighteen and twenty five. My story is a raw and emotional account of how I became so vulnerable to assault, of the depths to which I fell, and of my excruciating recovery from my resulting post-traumatic stress disorder.
Wide Open begins with the start of a promising relationship. As I fall in love, I am forced to confront my past: a fundamentalist Christian upbringing, family secrets, and a sexual assault so devastating that it left me showering in my sleep, trying in vain to wash the darkness away.
When my partner leaves, I throw myself completely into my recovery and detail my healing process in near real-time, sharing my physical experiences as my body convulses and my muscles release the trauma they stored for fifteen years.
Wide Open is a peace offering to the past and present versions of myself as I develop greater self awareness and learn to treat myself with kindness.
Wide Open is the roadmap to recovery I sought and was unable to find when I was at the depths of my illness.
I read story after story of those who endured unimaginable hardship and triumphed over their darkness. But I didn't see the stitches that sewed them back together. Because I didn't see their rise from madness, I didn't know if I too could get better.
My story brings the reader through my complete recovery process in order to offer survivors hope -- maybe even proof -- that they too can heal.