Posted by: Kathy | November 19, 2015

An Evening from Years Ago

Assignment 14 for Writing 101 is to recreate a single day or part of a day. It could be fact or fiction. What I wrote is fact, an encounter 16 years ago with my soon-to-be ex-husband.

I swept up the glass from the smashed wedding picture. I was surrounded by bits of glass and other broken things, but at least he was gone. The door was locked, deadbolt and knob lock in place. I wasn’t letting anyone in my house. I dumped the glass in a trash bag, but then threw away the wedding picture too. There was nothing left. The marriage had ended a long time ago.

Even though I was filled with self-loathing, self-doubt, self-hatred, and every other negative emotion I could put onto myself, I knew I had done the right thing. I said no. I wanted a better life for my son and I was going to get it for him, no matter what it cost me. I said no.

He showed up with flowers. Now he wanted to talk. Now he was willing to go to marriage counseling. My soon-to-be ex-husband expected to move back in, even though I had changed all the locks and already filed for divorce. When he kissed me, the disgust I felt told me I was doing the right thing. When I told him it was too late, I didn’t love him anymore, he went ballistic. It wasn’t anything I hadn’t lived through before, but this time I had a son to protect. He was all that mattered. I never wanted my son to know the life I had endured with his father.

When my soon-to-be ex-husband ran past me and into the house, my only thought was my infant son. When he stormed around the house, grabbing things and breaking them in rage, my only thought was not letting him get to the second floor, where my son was sleeping. When he screamed and raved, calling me every name he could think of, telling me what a waste of life I was, my only thought was creating a happy life for my son.

When he finally got sick of torturing me and left, I called my friends across the street, asking them to keep an eye out in case he returned. They asked why I hadn’t called sooner. They wanted to know why I didn’t call the police. Simple, calling the police in our small neighborhood would reveal all of the problems I had kept secret behind closed doors for so many years. Besides, his MO was not to hit me, his specialty was verbal, mental, and emotional abuse, designed to leave lasting wounds that no one could see. Despite these wounds, I was determined to be a good mother for my son. In time I hoped I would heal.

When I finished cleaning up, double-checking the locks several times, I went upstairs to see my son. The baby monitor told me that he had slept through the entire rampage. I loved to watch him sleep, the peacefulness of it. His name was Matthew, my gift from God.

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Responses

  1. I hope you’re in a better place today without him. Too many women live a whole life putting up with things they should not bear. Only one woman I knew and you’re the second who chose the other way round, it’s the best one I hope. Best wishes! 🙂

    • I’m in a much better place now – thank you. My son gave me the strength and the courage to say no more. I didn’t want him living in the life I had been in for years. He deserved the best I could give him.

  2. Your inner strength grows stronger day by day, keep on writing !

    • Thanks! I don’t think I could ever stop writing. It’s a passion.

  3. Thank you for sharing your story

  4. I also hung on every word. The repetition was powerful; it gripped him to the end. Sorry you had to go through this. No one deserves such abuse. Glad you’re in a better situation.

    • Thanks. He was not a nice individual. Still isn’t, although no one has seen him in a few years. Things are much better now 🙂

      • Very glad about that! I hope you and your son never encounter him again.

  5. eveal all of the problems I had kept secret behind closed doors for so many years. Besides, his MO was not to hit me, his specialty was verbal, mental, and emotional abuse, designed to leave lasting wounds that no one could see

    that’s the hardest part, i think. not being able to talk to anyone because you don’t want to wash your dirty laundry in public or for fear of bringing shame to the family. Am glad you and your children are safe.

    • Thanks. No one knew what went on behind the closed doors of that house. I kept it secret. But I am glad I had the strength to tell him to leave.

  6. So incredibly well written, Kathy!  I was hanging on every word until the end! Thank God you had the strength to get AWAY from him! Love ya, Claudia

    • Thank you my friend. You know the full stories. Love u too.

  7. Kathy, you are a wonderful parent and have two lovely children that God blessed you with. You made the right choice.

    • Thank you.

  8. How funny! Similar tale to mine today. Well done. Best thing I ever did was to leave my husband!! Never easy though x

    • I agree. It was the best thing I had ever done and my son gave me the strength to do it. No, it wasn’t easy, but it was worth it. I wish you the best.

  9. Oh, a great text. Well written & heart touching. You’re an amazing mother just like mine!


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