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~~Chapter18~~~ Happy Exhale Anniversary

July was here and along with it came no barbeque, only a glimpse at the fireworks. I took the kids down to a parking lot close to the park, but that’s as close as I was willing to go for fear of being attacked, or and not being able to defend myself, or the kids. We watched the fireworks then went back home. The summer days were very hot, and I was trying, very hard to get that stupid pool open, but try as I might no matter how much work I did that thing just would not clear up shoot! seems to me Harry had put a curse on the thing to prevent it from working for us.
Lil Harry’s birthday came, and as I suspected his dad, was no where to be found. Nor did he get anything from him. I had ordered him a cake, and we had ice cream. and I even managed to come up with $100.00 to give him for a gift, but still it was sad that their father wasn’t even acknowledging they existed.
Also another anniversary, and instead of having something to celebrate; this was another year of wasted time, spent with someone who never gave me, anything but grief anyway. Here it is July 20th 1995 and all I get is some of the same sh*t I got when I married this idiot 10 years, and another divorce to deal with. Harry had been gone for over a month during which time all he was doing was spending his time, and money, on Debra, Ted and Linda. Any of the other user’s, he was hanging around. He was still staying with Laurann and no doubt she was still trying to get him, and Debra back together, as if she was some kind of match maker.
I had been over Laurann’s to talk to Harry, and both times I went I was met with hollow stares, and other gestures that led me to believe that these two faced cowards were doing anything they thought they could to keep Harry’s mind occupied, and off me, and the Kids. I stood in the driveway talking to Harry, and Debra came riding up on a bike, She looked at me, and went on inside where Laurann was waiting with open arms for her.
I said “ Oh as usual I see you back hanging around Debra” Harry said “ she is not my friend nor has been, and she is not here to see me” I said “yea right” turned and walked off. When I got home I sat there feeling like this man is just not worth the stress, and I got up and tried to find something to busy myself with.
I had been doing fine then all of a sudden I realized that here it was our anniversary and the idiot didn’t have the compassion to even send me, a card BUT had the nerve to ask about getting his clothes again. I was sick of telling him to give me back my money, pay his support, and I was sick of babysitting his clothes.
It was around 6pm when I decided that I had, had enough of his lie’s and mess he had claimed he was coming again to bring some money but he never showed. I said well if he is not gonna spend his money here I’m gonna make sure he has to spend some of it replacing what he left here when he left here.
I got a pair of scissors, and I sat down to the task of piece by piece cutting up his clothes. The more I cut the more I recalled back in June 96 when he had cut all my clothes. Here I was about to give birth, and he destroyed my very life. As I cut his clothes I wondered if he would have the same feeling of shock, and disbelief, as I did when he see’s his stuff cut up! I also wondered how would he see his clothes. Still I sat for two hours cutting away, socks, draws, pants, shirts, suits, shoes and anything else, I thought he valued til finally I had cut a big hole in my heart, and the frustration of all the years of being with this abusive loser, and abuser was seeping out.
Every now and then the kids would look in the room as if to say “ Momma why are you cutting up daddy’s stuff” but not willing to risk the verbal attack they might get they said nothing. I read their minds and apart of me felt sorry; for them. I was sorry, for all they had gone through and even sorry, they had to be born into this mixed up thing called a marriage.
Shit here it is my wedding anniversary would be 10 years well actually nine and no doubt my husband is spending it with someone else just as he did in 85, when supposedly he was bike riding through the park all evening with his son Stefon. Well I finally had got done cutting all I was gone cut for the day, and decided now it was time for me to celebrate.
I celebrated by grabbing some huge garbage bags, and neatly placing the clothes inside, and taking each bag, one by one, to the curb hoping in the back ,of my mind that Harry would come pass and wonder why I had trash bags outside, on Thursday when trash didn’t run until Tuesday.
I sat in the window for a good while into the wee hours of the morning but no Harry. Finally I decided to go to bed hoping he made his way over. When I got up the next morning I was pleasantly surprised to see bags tore open, and pieces of what use to be garments strolled across the lawn, in fact his shoe was on the front porch. I laughed as I thought
“ no better for your ass” now instead of wondering who to spend the money on this week you will have to decide what you need to buy with this paycheck since you still weren’t paying child support anyway. Here it was over a month since he had been gone and he hadn’t given us anything.
I got my clothes on, and went outside to gather up the pieces of clothing in the yard. I laughed to myself, as I thought I bet he freaked out when he saw it was his stuff, and I thought about if he thought back to when he did it to me? Because I never forgot! For the first time in a good while I actually felt revenge, and I must admit it felt pretty dayum good. I finally had put all the pieces of material back in garbage bags and came inside. I hadn’t tied the bags up thinking shoot it a few days til trash day, and no doubt Harry will come and just stroll through thinking it just might find something in the yard. I figured if I tie the bags up again, Harry just might come back again so I decided to just leave the bag’s sitting open.
It was kinna because people would drive up stop get out and ask if they could look in the bags to see if there was anything they could use? I felt kind of stupid telling them no! Because had I been thinking clearly I could have did like I did in the first place, and instead of giving some of the clothes to the goodwill, I could have just gave them all, but then I thought I wouldn’t have gotten the satisfaction of knowing he now knows, how it feels to have someone destroy your belongings. So I held fast to the thought that even though it was wrong, I had done the right thing by me. And after all I was paying him back; the same way he had paid me for marrying his sorry ass in the first place!
Harry never did call or say anything about what I had done to his clothes but I knew he was hurt. So what would there be to say? As the days went by I began feeling guilty, but I tried very hard to continually remind myself I had done the right thing, and he was long overdue for some grief. I was still trying my best to clean the pool and being the pool was not clearing up I somehow felt it was because I had done something wrong that now I was being punished still I worked day and night trying anything to get this pool opened determined that I would prove to myself that I could do anything and I didn’t need a man to help me.
Saturday was hot and the kids decided even though the pool was cloudy they were gonna get in and cool off. I had called the pool place and they assured me that the pool had enough chemicals to be safe and also that it was a good idea to let the kids get in and stir stuff up. While they swam I busied myself doing housework and listening to songs that only reminded me that this man was still on my mind. I was lonely bored, and broke, but yet I felt that I needed to prove him wrong when it came to my survival so, I just kept on going and going and going til I finally was too exhausted to do anything else but SLEEP!
I had some hair to do today and eventhough it was sunday I was glad I had something else to do other than work on that pool or try to push that big lawnmower around. Gloria had came over after church and while I was giving her a relaxer we talked about what it was I was going to do, and she told me that, if I needed anything she was there for me,
“ besides” she said “even though I haven’t known you that long, I am tired of you having to go through all these changes with this man”. Gloria was right I had only known her for 2 years she was the only person since Irene that would buy me nice stuff just because. Gloria was the kind of friend that if she had you had, and I was glad to have her in my corner. She would make a point of calling me everyday, to see how I was doing or if I needed anything, and up until she met Al she was there anytime day or night.
One day Gloria and I got into a conversation about her ex husband who was also abusive, she told me about a time when she had to fight him to get him away from her son. Gloria didn’t appear to be the fighting kind of person to me, but after she told me about her challenges with her EX I knew I was not alone in my quest for support. Gloria was for the most part a quiet kind of person, and although I could make her laugh she never really talked a whole lot about herself, or her life. After talking with Gloria I decided that just maybe it was time for me to think about filing for divorce and maybe this time I could get through this without going back. I got on the phone and called Barbara Klimeski a female lawyer known for supporting abused women. I made an appointment to see Ms. Klimiseki and I felt very good about the possibilities but not good about how much this was gonna cost me again.
My appointment was set for August 16th and I knew that if I had not heard something from the Friend Of The Court by then, I was gonna do whatever I had to do, to get a child support order, and get it enforced before school started.
As the days continued to drag by my anticipation was starting to build and build. I hadn’t talked to Harry and knew it would just be a matter of time before I saw him with someone else, perhaps even Debra or Denise being both of them have been in our relationship besides having kids by Harry for all these years, and it also seemed that anytime he wasn’t with me he was maintaining a friendship, or something, with either or both of them.