Domestic Violence is hard to leave when you don't realize your a victim. What if you kept journals for 19 years about the abuse? Not even realizing it was abuse? Would you share it with others? I am. I want you to read, in hope's you can get inside my head to see just why some don't believe they can leave. I want to shed a little light on what actually goes on inside the house, that on the outside, looks like we have it all together! I used to call it - The Leave It To Beaver Syndrome.
Monday, May 31, 2010
How do I feel? Tired, but I try not to show it. Angry, for the things I am going through alone. Excited for the changes and the baby I am about to have. Lonely, this upsets me most, I am lonely. No one is home to hug me, touch me, talk to me. I can’t remember the last time that I have been hugged. Fat, all though I know I’m pregnant it’s the things he did before that he doesn’t do now. ‘Pregnant woman are fat and ugly’ I remember this. Like an errand boy, I do things all day long to please others, but what about me?
Just a few weeks ago my sister called in the middle of the night. I could hear her wheezing in the phone and knew. I knew she was having an asthma attack. I told her in the phone I was on my way and I picked her up and drove her to Kaiser, running a red light when she hit me because she couldn’t breath I pulled up to the ER with her still alive. Sitting with her in the emergency room keeping her calm and watching as they poked and prodded at her with shots and breathing apparatus’ I listened to the doctors and their orders. I was her mini nurse at that moment. They left us alone and I took over. She would stop and try and talk and I would coach her, “Drink, they want you to drink” . We were released several hours later. I drover her home dropped her off and made sure she was tucked in bed and breathing good. When she had her surgery several months back I remember sleeping in the hospital room. But today I don’t find the strength to do that. I keep my focus on what is right and her health is top priority. She is doing better and I slip out of her door. Return across the street to my own apartment and catch the last hour of sleep I can. I never said a word. She is my sister, I will always be there for her. That’s just what sister’s do. Or am I wrong again?
How do I feel? Like I don’t exist, but it is a feeling I can live with. Like I no longer can make my husband happy and again, I can live with it. I thought it was the pain in his tooth, but I’m pretty sure it’s just me or quite possibly the fact that I am pregnant. I try to ask questions trying to get him to talk about the baby. Hoping that if we talked, he would get excited, but that doesn’t work. I’m getting scared. Scared for the changes going on and the money we need. I fear something terrible is going to happen.
How do I feel? In pain quite a bit. But trying not to complain. My legs fall asleep constantly. My fingers tingle when I write or do anything. My stomach hurts from all the chores I have to do. My back is in pain. All day and all night I seem to be constantly tired and never have enough time to do anything in one day. My ribs hurt to bend over, like they are being pried apart. My back is breaking out horribly and I can’t reach it. I feel like I’ve gained fifty pounds and its only been 18 pounds as of 2 weeks ago. I feel neglected, unwanted and like a total bitch.
Well, the bitch part is understandable. I do bitch a lot lately.
My doctor has tried several times to put me on bed rest, but I have persuaded him not to so far. I can’t afford it. How would I pay the bills and take care of the house. He has no idea what he is dealing with her. I am not the patient that has a ton of money and can just drop everything to lay in bed. I would rather be at work then home anyways. It’s less stressful at work.
Friday, July 14th, 1989
I lay on the couch tired and in pain and alone. I am getting used to it. Chrissy is by my side, I am watching Full House and dreaming of having a little girl that looks just like one of the girls on the show. Any one, Stephanie is just so cute! I get up to use the restroom when I feel them. My hands hit the walls and I am near doubled over in pain. Contractions again. I am not worried. I saw the nurse this morning. She told me I was 1 centimeter dilated and I probably still had another week to go.
I return to the couch, my common resting place lately and feel the warm water down my leg. My water broke. Great. Finding it a long shot I call JP’s work anyways. It’s way passed the time for the shop to still be opened but I would give it a try. No answer.
I sit back on the couch and do what I do best. He has my car, my keys, and he is somewhere I have no clue where. He said we didn’t have the money to rent a pager from the hospital for this time, so I have no choices. My only choice is to wait, since I don’t have the money for a taxi, I wait.
Hours click by on the clock and my contractions are closer and closer. I’m still waiting. My items are packed and near the door and I hear the car pull up. He walks in the door and I tell him he needs to take me to the hospital. He looks put out. I give him the look. The one that says it all in one swoop ‘I’m not going to ask you what you were doing or where you were, it’s almost 11:30 in the evening, so get your ass in the car and drive me to the hospital.’ He does just what my look says.
We arrive at the hospital. The world speeds up with nurses and doctors swirling all around me. I am in pain. The contractions coming very often and I want relief. A man comes in and tells me that I am to far along for an epidural. That concludes it, I will have to continue with the pain because my dear loving husband was missing in action for over 5 hours. I have arrived too late. So late in fact that the nurse is worried that my doctor won’t be able to make it in time for the delivery. It appears she doesn’t want to deliver this baby on her own. No worries honey, I have been doing most everything in my life alone. I will be here for this one also. You won’t be alone.
It’s true what they say about wanting to strangle and mangle your husband during child birth. Only in my brain I have legitimate excuses for why he needs to be punished. However, even in my pain, I am just grateful he is still in the room and not outside around the building getting stoned. At least he is here and I am not alone. I am tired of being alone.
It’s 1:55 in the morning and I have this wonderful baby girl laying on my chest. Looking at me as if I am the ’it’ in her world. It hits me in that very moment - I will never be alone again.
The nurses inform me that I was the last one checked in and the first one to deliver. They are joking, I know, when they tell me that for my next one I will have to check in to the hospital a week before my due date. I vow to myself that with this man, there will not be a second one. It hit’s me in that very moment that this small child has very well saved my life.
In the wee hours of the morning, I look down at this baby girl and I am flooded with emotion that everything I did was for her. For today, July 15th, 1989 an angel was born.
Thursday, August 24th, 1989
My precious child sleeps through the night and I am blessed. Chrissy has taken to sleeping under her crib during the night and upon her stirring comes straight out to get me. Some think I am crazy to let a cat in the same room with my newborn. But, I have watched them both and Chrissy seems to have taken on the role of protector more then wanting to harm her. She is my personal baby monitor on paws. Coming to get me before Gabby can make a sound or slightly stir. She is running me ragged having me check on her every few minutes. But I don’t mind.
This is the time I was made for. This very moment, the child in my home, the love I can give. This is what it is all about. Yet, even in this moment I must confess that I am a married parent that considers herself to be single. I knew from the moment I met my husband that I wanted children. I also knew that it probably wouldn’t be an easy road. However, if I had known then, what is true now, I would of divorced him when I found out I was pregnant.
He is rarely home and provides me no help. I have to clean up after him along with taking care of Gabby which tends to bring long days and short nights. It is nothing more then I can handle though. For I do not know how I could have lived without this beautiful happy little girl that is mine.
I hear her coo in her crib and am met with Chrissy in the hall running out to get me. I pat her on the head pick her up (the cat, not the kid) and walk in to see Gabby. She is still sleeping. Tossing slightly and I go over to her dresser where the music box sits. The cat in my arms I pick it up and twist the 2 white doves around several times. When I release it back to the dresser it starts to play. It fills the whole room with pleasure. Sounds of chimes that each tune makes ring through the home. The 2 white dove’s sit perched together as if they’re going to kiss, on top of this small base. I stay in the room petting Chrissy watching Gabby sleep as they go around and around till it slowly comes to an end.
Gabby stops stirring, Chrissy jumps down from my arms and nestles underneath the crib and I, as the music has stopped, return to my list of chores.
I am addicted to the fajitas at Spoon’s restaurant. We finally get a booth and I can hardly wait to place my order. When I see her. A beautiful thin woman about 8 months pregnant carrying a car seat while her husband puts their other child in the high chair placed at the end of the table. I admire how she is moving, how nice she is dressed and hope that when I am showing like that I will be even half that beautiful. “She is beautiful” I blurt out from under my breath.
JP is looking around “Who?” he finally asks me, not seeing the woman that is directly in front of us.
I point to the woman with the child.
“She’s pregnant!” He exclaims.
“I know, she’s beautiful!” I am still in awe of how well put together she looks.
“Pregnant woman are fat and ugly!” he barks out.
I am silenced.
I am 4 months pregnant sitting across from the man that is supposed to adore me and love me and build me up and in 6 short words he has taken everything that is in my body and made me feel unloved, ugly, dirty, wrong, bad, fat, disgusting and hated. My body shrinks into the booth as I try to hide the fact that I am pregnant. I am fat and ugly!
Friday, March 31st, 1989
It’s hard to deal with the realization of how your life has turned out. Everything I thought would make it better just makes it worse. I wonder, sometimes, why things are turning out the way they do. I love my husband, I would be lost without him. I miss the way he used to hold me when we first met. The way we would watch TV together and not just racing. I miss the closeness we once had. It’s been so long ago that I wonder if it was really real or just fake. Am I wanting something back that I never really had? I remember him holding me don’t I? I’m wondering what really makes sense.
I’m thinking drugs are our major problem. If JP loved me and the baby enough I don’t think he would do drugs like he does.
Our biggest problems:
1. Money - He might make more then me but he spends a ton more. I wish he would sit down and pay the bills once in a while. See where all the money goes.
2. Drugs - It’s tearing us apart worse then money. I just want to have 1-2 days a month where drugs are not used.
3. Communication - Could be resolved with the end of #2. I feel our communications skills have decreased considerably in the past 2 years. It has dwindled to nothing, hurting me and possibly hurting JP. It has come to the point where we can’t talk without fighting. Him raising his voice or becoming defensive and me just snapping back.
4. Sneaking around - Where are you lately? It’s not like I follow him but man I would really like to know where he is. He doesn’t come home after work till well after bed time. I rarely see him anymore. I try not to stay at home anymore worrying. I keep myself busy and go to friends houses more. I think I am getting better about this, but then again, I don’t live with me.
I’m so lost.
My body is changing, every day is different. I miss the feeling I used to get when I would be driving around and the men would whistle at me. It didn’t happen often but man when it did, it made me smile. Nothing compares to the feeling of having a baby moving around inside of me.
My sister is over and JP and her are out in the living room watching Pink Floyd again. Someone please tell me what I am missing with this video they have. I just don’t get it. But who am I to say they can’t watch something if they want to. I don’t control them. If I did, JP wouldn’t smoke pot and we would have no more money problems. Everything would be perfect according to Samantha!
I feel another kick. Man you are active tonight. I am laying in the bedroom. No care to expose my unborn child to the Pink Floyd nor the pot that is smoked when they watch this stupid movie. But the kicking is amazing and I am sure JP would want to feel it. He hasn’t been home enough to feel the kicking and movement.
I pry myself off the bed, a feat that get’s a little harder as time progresses. As usual I assess the situation before I go into the living room. Listening to where in the show they are, where would be a good time to interrupt. I stand in the hall, the music deafening from the movie, peering around the corner, looking for what is happening on the screen.
I stand there. My eye’s are lying. My mind is blank. What I am seeing is not what is really going on. My brain is lying to me. This would never happen. My husband is not kissing my sister. My sister is not kissing my husband. His hands are not on her body. I am not shaking.
I blink my eyes over and over trying to will the scenery in front of me to change. It does not. I turn around, return to the bedroom. Lay on the bed, stare out the window into the night sky and watch the stars. I am silent crying, my tears sliding down my cheeks puddling onto my pillow. I am fat. I am ugly. My sister is beautiful who could blame him. I vow never speak of what I didn’t see. It didn’t happen. I am wrong.