Two Lives

I decided to make the best of this situation.  We moved near the end of the school year and I spent part of the week commuting Silly Son to his last weeks of school.

Then I began to look around and try to get into the community.  I did not want it to be like it was in Hawai’i.  I started a mom’s group based on my interests in attachment parenting.  I found a couple of playgroups and tried them out, I started to go to Weight Watchers and I began to explore the streets I ran my errands on.  I amped up my little at home business of sewing and crafting.

I did the mom thing like I never had before.  I juggled appointments, tried to keep our home nice, attempted to socialize even out of my comfort zone.  All the while, MrJJ began to come home later and later, blaming new traffic patterns.  I knew for sure we had a problem when I tried to kiss him and he turned his face.  I couldn’t say anything that night, but I confronted him the next day.  In a series of emails he said that it was obvious I didn’t love him any more and wanted a divorce.  He kept pushing it.  I begged for marriage counseling instead.  He kept dragging his feet.  Desperate, I ordered some sex toys.  We had never used anything beyond bodypaint.  I wanted to be what he needed and if that was it, I was going to be that.

By the time that non-descript box came in the mail, MrJJ had pushed me away so thoroughly that I just hid the box and its contents in my sewing room.

By early November I realized I was pregnant.  There was a faint positive on the test, I hadn’t been charting but I knew the signs and knew the last time we had sex we had cut it too close to ovulation.  I was torn.  I had wanted a third, I had a third.  Now though, I was looking at being a single mom to two and one on the way.  I began making plans to free myself.  To go back to our old college town where I had a church and support.  In the meantime I sought out a church nearby.

I’m not even sure I can define the misery I felt during September ’06 and the end of the year.  I would crawl into the bathroom in the middle of the night, shutting the two doors between myself and my sleeping family.  I would howl silently, beating myself on the breastbone for maximum pain, minimum bruising.  Not that MrJJ would have noticed anyway.  He had all but completely checked out from the entire family.

One day, when I was maybe seven weeks along, I began cramping.  My period started and it was awful.  The same tissues were present as the time I lost an early pregnancy right before I conceived Sweet Daughter  I had no reason to hide this secret anymore.  I had kept it to myself, I didn’t want MrJJ to feel trapped in a marriage that he didn’t want due to a baby being on the way.  I told him, that night- days later- I can’t remember.  He was sad for me, said I could have told him, he would have understood.  It was a turning point of sorts.  I had seen glimpses of my husband in the weeks prior.  This was new.  He took an interest in us. I still felt isolated.  I lost my baby.  Not ours, mine.

One night soon after that I was in the bathroom again.  The pain was so palpable that I couldn’t believe my family couldn’t feel it.  My body shook with sobs, cried into my bitten lips.  My hands were trying to beat the pain out of my chest.  I cried out for help.  What I was given was the revelation of small demon-like creatures.  They had pointed ears and faces.  Their hands were like claws.  They had razor sharp teeth and they were tugging at me.  Trying to pull me to that brink of suicide that I had been to before.  Then, a thought in my head.  “Moment by Moment”.  I realized, moment by moment I could live through anything.  I bought a posey ring to remind me.  Divorced or married, I needed to adjust my life to moment by moment.  If not for myself, for my kids.  I thought I had found a church, but they were unwilling to provide the help our first church had.  So, I contacted my old pastor and his wife.  They prayed over me and reminded me, prayers are our moment to moment in this life.

I cooked my first from scratch Thanksgiving dinner.  Always until then we had gone to the in-laws or a friends.  I did cook a dinner in Hawai’i, but part of it was take-out from a local restaurant. Sweet Daughter had just had oral surgery the day before and MrJJ missed it due to training to prepare to go to Iraq. I pulled out all the stops and made sure I had his favorites.  He was kind, complimentary and loving.  I did fall apart a little when I was cooking all morning and nobody spoke to me, then again during clean up.  There was a blip that day.  Creep, the pseudo-sexual encounter guy had found my (other) blog.  From that, he found my MySpace page.  I had a tracker on the blog and could see he searched for his old username.  As if I would mention him in a blog about my life ten years later.  I didn’t even like to remember him.

He sent a fishing message through MySpace.  He didn’t sign his name and I only knew it was him due to the blog tracker.  I told MrJJ and deleted the message, blocking him.  MrJJ got very angry and kept insisting there was more between Creep and myself if he looked me up after all this time.  I was so deep in denial I honestly kept insisting there wasn’t.  All I remembered after nearly a decade was the disgusting way he kissed, a feeling of intense shame and relief when MrJJ knocked on my door.

The next weekend we went to get our Christmas tree.  It was one of two happy family outings between September and December.  The other was a trip to a local pumpkin farm and corn maze.  On both outings I felt my husband might actually love me.  I tried not to give myself false hope.  In the store, he put his hand on the small of my back to guide me through the crowds.  I put more into that protective gesture than maybe I should have.  When we got home, he was happy and loving and insisted on taking so many pictures of me.

I felt, things were looking up.  We had a chance.

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