I haven't been posting very much lately but apparently the need is back! I have been keeping up on everyone through reading but just haven't had the energy??? to put words down.
I have this spinning in my head and really need to get it out.
Years of the dance, he would rage and then the next day apologize. "I am sorry, I was just upset about, fill in the blank" or when you say that word or move that way or look at someone or.....you make me angry.
I would forgive, instantaneously, immediately, no discussion, no changes, nothing different. I would put the abuse in a box and go on as if nothing had happened, like it was an aberration and the nice guy was the real guy, over and over and over. Until, 2010, one night he raged and raged at me, my mother had just died, my son was in trouble with drugs, I was working 48 hours a week, he had just been fired and did nothing all day at home. I would come home, cook, clean and he would not even pretend to help. I was stressed to say the least. Hurting and in need of support but there was none to be had.
The next evening as I walked in the door, he was there, ready to apologize, ready to do the familiar dance.
He started with the moves, the open arms, the "I'm sorry". I didn't dance. I held up my arms, palms up, a push away gesture. "no, no more, do not tell me you are sorry ever again. I do not want to hear the words. Just stop treating me like that, just stop".
It hit me so clearly the other day. That was the moment when everything really spiraled downward. Not that it was good before but that was the moment that I stood my ground as shaky as it was. That was the moment that I ceased to give him the kibbles and that he needed to get away.
It was the moment that if I had been stronger I would have walked. That was the moment that if he were capable of change, introspection, bonding or love, he would have taken steps to stop his abuse.
The abuse never stopped, I just stopped reacting to it. It was like a switch was flipped inside of me. I completely withdrew, I went through the motions of doing the basics but I was gone.
It is such a strange, disconcerting feeling to look back at those 2 years of not feeling. I remember it as almost a conscious choice to stop feeling. I said to myself that night, "he will never make me cry again".
I could have lived like that indefinitely. I am grateful now that I am alive again. I cried yesterday. A friend at work, she could see inside me, even though I thought I was not showing the turmoil. She came up behind me, put her arms around me and said, "I love you". It still brings tears to my eyes. There is kindness in people, the cruelty is not just the way people are.
I just have to keep reminding myself to be grateful. I am grieving still, not for him, not for wanting him back but for the years lost, the honest love that I tried so hard to give, the frightened woman that I was. I grieve for how badly I treated myself.
I am grateful though now. My life has opened up so much. I was so isolated I had forgotten what compassion, kindness, laughter, good people were like. Now I can have that again and I can give it back too.
I am grateful for all of you too. You all have helped me on this path back to life. You have all reminded me of the kindness that is possible.