This week I'm on the beach with my babies and I'm having a wonderful vacation. However when I think through all of the words that begin with B...the ones that jump out at me are broken, bruised and brave. This is going to be an honest, raw and emotional post...like you've never seen from me before. I think because I'm in such a great place in my life, I'm ready to talk about my past.
I married young...kinda shotgun style. Although none of our parents were adamant that we get married, it was what we wanted. I told myself that we were already planning on getting married anyway...that getting knocked up just made the wedding bells ring a little louder and faster.
I'm sure if I had the money to pay a therapist, they could tell me why I was so anxious to grow up, get married and have a family of my own. But honestly I can't put my finger on it. I can tell you I was madly heart over reason in love with my husband and I was willing to move heaven and earth to make him happy and walk on as many eggshells as I had to to prove my undying unconditional love for him.
Our whole relationship was tumultuous. He had his own set of demons that I'll never understand, mainly because he NEVER admitted he was at any fault for ANYTHING. His jealousy and trust issues eventually broke me. A love is only as strong as the two people building it and when one is weak and constantly accusing the other of infidelity and continuously putting their family and relationship dead last...it's damned from the start.
Even 7 years into our relationship I still worshiped the ground that man walked on. I was still convinced that eventually he would get it...something would ultimately click and he'd see that he did deserve my love and that he would all the sudden be the husband and father that I begged him to be....that our kids deserved for him to be.
Over the course of our marriage, we'd fight, I'd pack up the kids, leave for a couple days and come back when he cried and pleaded that he would change....
Then there was the time he came home drunk, accusing me of sleeping with every guy that signed my senior yearbook...even though he knew every single one of them and even considered them friends. I threw away my yearbook...to try to prove to him how off base he was. The brutal, hateful words just kept cutting me like daggers...until he'd drawn enough blood and I tried to leave...again. This time he refused to let me take the kids with me. He told me I was welcome to take my whore ass to hell for all he cared, but the girls were staying with him. At the time they were 3 1/2 and 7 months old. He was smoking crack if he thought I was gonna leave my babies with him. I called the police...they came and calmed him down and told me I couldn't leave with the kids if he didn't want me to. It didn't matter that he was drunker than a skunk...but he finally agreed to let me take them.
Again, two days later...I came home, once more to promises that it would never happen again and that he was so sorry and blah, blah, blah. Things were always great for a couple weeks after I'd leave.
I never knew what was gonna set him off. If I wore makeup, I was accused of trying to impress someone. If I worked out, I was cheating on him. If I went into work a few minutes early, I was screwing my boss (GAG). If I didn't answer the phone when he called, I was obviously on the other line with my boyfriend. If I answered the phone out of breath (whether because I was chasing our kids or running to grab the phone), he apologized for interrupting my lunch f**k. If it took me longer than an hour to grocery shop (which took at least 10-15 minutes to get to), my phone was blowing up and he was demanding to speak to whoever I had met up with...I could go on, but I'm sure you get the picture.
The next time I decided I needed to leave, I knew I didn't want a repeat of the last time. So I waited until he was in the shower and grabbed enough clothes, diapers and bottles for the night and ran to load the girls in the car and just after I finished buckling B into her car seat and shut the door...a truck hit me. I landed flat on my back and literally saw stars. He knocked me out cold! When I came to, he was a blubbering mess...apologizing for hitting me, that if I hadn't tried to sneak off, it never would've happened. He successfully made me feel like it was MY fault. I ended up not leaving that time....
I became that cliche of the battered wife. I walked around with full makeup on and sunglasses until my bruises faded. We made sure we had our stories straight for when somebody would ultimately ask what happened...and me being the graceful disaster that I am, I think people actually believed me.
That was the beginning of the end for us. I don't remember how many more times I left him, before I left for good. But that's when I started realizing things were never gonna change and that it wasn't what I wanted my kids growing up around. There were times he threatened to kill himself...and honestly there were times at their lowest that I wished he would...so I wouldn't have to find the balls to leave him.
It's oddly funny that the night I decided I was done, we weren't even fighting. I was just done. I was too broken to fight for our love anymore. I had to find the strength, courage and bravery to fight for the well being of my children. I knew I had to put them first...and my unconditional love for them trumped my broken love for him.
He's moved on to an even
more volatile relationship and I've built walls so high and so thick that nobody's been able to hurt me like that again. He has no idea how broken and bruised I was on the inside...because on the outside I put on my brave face and did everything in my power to keep my kids from continuing that cycle. Only time will tell if I've been successful.
Now I'm so much stronger than I was all those years ago. I'm brave about so many things...but deep down I'm still trembling in my boots. Brave and fearless are not synonymous. I hope that one day I'm able to overcome my fears and be able to put myself out there to find love again. But for now I'm content putting my kids first and living my life for us...not having every breath questioned.
This was the hardest post I've ever written. It opened some old wounds that I thought were all healed with nothing left but scars to show for them. I hope you've read this without judgement and feel a little closer to me, as I do to all of my readers after writing this. Please take a minte to click on the banner below to cast your vote for me. Thank you again for reading.