....July 4th 2011
(5 1/2 months pregnant with baby #3)
I had just gotten home from a weekend away, Myself and my two children had tagged along with my parents to the annual 4th of July shindig located at my older sisters home on Mormon Lake AZ. Me and the children went alone with them because, well we always went alone. It had become a tradition, family and friends flocked to their home every year, we would participate in the local events fishing derbies, petting zoo, rodeo and the annual parade. We would camp out in tents set up around her large grassy yard and enjoy the cool mountain air. We would eat Watermelon, roast marshmallows, bake cookies, and grill the hot dogs. This is how we had spent several years celebrating the 4th of July. Although I had been surrounded by family and friends...I felt alone. It was a feeling I had become accustomed to. I had just put the babies to sleep, snuggled up in their sleeping bags. I snuck out... walked to the edge of the red dirt driveway the only spot I could receive cell service. Their I waited... I had sent my husband several text throughout the day. letting him know we had made it... letting him know the kids were having fun. Letting him know what we were up toven an I , I sent several I miss yous and even an I love you. Just trying to create a conversation.... there were no replies. Maybe I just didn't have enough signal... so further I walked down the road. 4 out of 5 bars sat on top of my screen. surely he must have gotten my text...I waited for awhile... sitting on a large rock next to the road.... waiting... waiting for nothing. Maybe he was busy, busy with what? He was home alone, maybe he was working, no, he was off today. maybe he went to bed early... that was it... that had to be it. So with tears in my eyes I walked back, it had been a long day and my pregnant body needed rest. I kissed my babies goodnight and fell to sleep... 12:03 am my phone let out a little jingle under my pillow... my phone had picked up just enough signal to allow that text to come through.. "glad the kids are alright, had to help ***** with her truck. just heading back home." I felt my heart drop. I didn't reply. I felt sick to my stomach... but why? what was i suddenly worried about? He had talked about her before she was just a "friend".
The next morning I had crawled out of bed. I told my mom, "I know today is 4th of July, but I need to get home." In the pit of my stomach I knew something was up.
It was a 4 hour drive from my sisters home to my parents, another 45 min drive from my parents to my home. I couldn't get there fast enough.. I missed my husband. maybe I just wanted to try to get rid of the feeling of being alone. We arrived home. the kids and I excited to spend the 4th of July at home with their dad. During the drive we had made plans to watch the fireworks as a family, while laying on the trampoline and eating popcorn. I was just as pumped up about it as they were. We were greeted by nothing more than a "your here early" and a hug....a hug just for the kids...my Husband looked upset, not a sad upset. an angry upset. I knew the look all to well. he sat on the couch watching his 4x4 how to show. I unloaded the car and got the kids settled down for dinner. I sat down to talk with him. I tried telling him about our trip. the fun things the kids had done. The crawdad our son had caught at the fishing derby and the cookies our little girl made with her Nina. He just nodded his head. I asked him about how it went with helping ******, he suddenly came to life telling me how he had plans to drive down the next day to fix it for her, how she had just broken up with her boyfriend and needed help moving things into storage as well. I had a rush of uncertainty wash over me. I quickly reminded myself she was just a friend of his. One who had been there since high school. They talked frequently. I had always known that. He then quickly and abruptly changed the topic. With his eyes never leaving the TV screen, he said the words that haunted me for so long afterwards,"I'm not happy, I haven't been for awhile, were always broke, your always at your moms, were better off apart, we don't need to be together. Ive tried and well this isn't going to work" I sat there shocked, as if our Arizona home and just been hit by a Florida hurricane. my world crashed around me. What was he saying? Here we are 4 1/2 years of marriage going on our 3rd kid. What does he mean hes not happy? Its not just my fault were always broke. Why does he care if I'm always at my moms? he spends all his free time at his dads shop...or at least that's where he says hes at. I began to plea with him, I asked for counseling, I promised to change everything he needed me too, I cried and begged for the chance to make this work. I could not allow my children to be brought up in a broken family. I couldn't bring this baby into the world and never allow her to have a family. How could I be 24 years old with three kids and divorced? how could this happen to us. He gave in saying yes we could try. That night I watched the fireworks alone with the kids. When I put the babies to bed and I crawled in bed with them. I cried for them. I prayed for all of us. I begged God to step in and make us whole. There I stayed, all three of us in one full size bed. For weeks This was my routine. For weeks I would spend my days crying out to God to fix the brokenness I was experiencing, everyday I made sure to have dinner done by the time he got home. Kids were bathed and happy to greet him everynight when he would walk through the door. I had a smile on my face even though I was shattered on the inside. I would have his clothes clean, folded and put away, the house spotless the floors cleaned, the fridge full and the yard manicured as best I could as the weeks went on, things only got tougher. The more swollen my belly got the more swollen my feet would be. The further into my pregnancy the harder it would be to push through days. The more he would be gone the less I wanted to push through. It was the routine that kept me going. The drive to be the image of perfection for him. But it was never enough, I couldn't show my brokenness, OUR brokenness. I had to be tough, I had to be silent. I had to honor my husband and keep things quiet. I continued to push on, I continued taking my son to preschool, to soccer practice and soccer games. Graci and I kept on to our "girl time" of baking and doing each others nails. Id read them books and they would help me in the garden. It was for them I had to be strong. It was several weeks before I began to notice how much weight I had been losing due to stress of my situation, and my time spent hidden, locked away in the corner of my daughters pink room sobbing into a pillow, while everyone else would sit at the table eating their dinner...i hadnt noticed how much i had not been eating, or really if i had been eating at all. I had no desie to, no ability to even make myself have an appetite. I one night stood in front of the mirror touching up my tear stained face, trying to mask the devastation and lack of sleep with as much makeup I could spread upon my face... I couldn't see myself. I didn't know who this person was looking back at me. This broken shell of a person that no longer exist was the reflection I was looking at. No wonder he no longer found me attractive. I had gained 50 pounds throughout our marriage, I had aged far beyond my years. I spent more time in pajamas and mom clothes then one ever should, My hair very rarely left a ponytail and the best manicure/ pedicure I had ever had, came from a 2 year old. How could it be any different though. I had no time for myself, I spent every moment taking care of everyone but myself.
Before I knew we were halfway through September. Nothing much had changed. I continued to sleep in a full bed smashed between a 4yr old and a 2 yr old. I still worked away trying to create a perfect life for the family. I still believed I could make him happy. happy enough to want me. I still put on the make up and changed out of my mom clothes right before he would get home. I would drive into town if he decided he wanted a cheeseburger instead of the dinner I would spend 45 min making. Or make a grocery store run if he thought he needed ice cream or a candy bar. I still stayed up sometimes past midnight after he and the kids had gone to bed, cleaning and making him cookies or other treats for his lunch.
I had made the monthly trip 2 hours away to my OB Dr. I awaited results in her office on some recent test they had done. I knew they weren't good. I hadn't been taking care of myself. I had lost far to much weight, I was way to stressed out and I had not near enough sleep. I sat there, just me and my two kids, listening to the doctor deliver the results that were as expected, not good. I had realized more than what she was telling me I had also realized I had done all I could to make him think twice about the decision he had made to be apart. Up until now I had fought it. I now had No hope for our marriage, I cried out to God one last time. I knew I could not fight this anymore, it was doing harm not only to me but to the baby trying to grow inside me and I could see the effects it was having on these two precious children, it was written all over their faces. I had to face what I was running from, what I was hiding from. That night when I got home, I sat down with the man I had not only loved but also taken care of for so long, to have the conversation I should have had much sooner. I poured out my heart. I allowed him his chance to flee. He didn't take it. He said he wanted to make it work. He wanted us to be a family. I was Happy. He had assured me there was nothing going on with him and ******. The previous month they had taken a trip to Tucson together, they had gone out and about and met several times for lunch and other things.... and these were only the occurrences I knew about. he explained to me that they were only friends, he needed a friend, he told me that I had killed his social life and that he needed an outlet... that she was the only one that was left standing by his side. he needed her in his life and that they would always continue to be friends.I felt stuck. How could I allow him to have her in his life in such a way but then again, how could he continue to want me if I told him to send her packing, I became obsessed with finding out the truth. I obsessed over her pictures. At the time I thought she was gorgeous. She had it all. She had him. I was overcome with jealousy. I had to know what she was telling him, what they had talked about, what made him smile every time his phone went off. what made him tilt his phone to the side and what made him put a lock on it. I had to know. It was killing me, I was trying to make things work. I was trying to give him everything. But he was giving his everything to her. all his attention all of his time all of his thoughts all of him. I decided one night I was going to figure it out. I was going to know. I waited til he was asleep and silently snuck around the bed, I reached under his pillow where he kept his phone hidden and I hacked into it... It was all there. Everything I needed to know. I sat in the small bathroom crouched down on the floor reading the the back and forths the was the talks about dirty pictures and sweet little nothings, there he was telling her how gorgeous she was and her telling him what he meant to her. talking about their last time they had been together where things had clearly gotten physical. I scrolled down devastated but also relieved, relieved to finally know the full truth of the situation...then there it was the I love yous...
This is not the end of this story, its only the begining of the end... I have struggled quite a bit with not pressing down the delete button and erasing the entirity of this post. as if not posting it and deleting its contents would delete my story. All that would result from that would simply be an empty page, the memory the reminder of that hurt and the truth will always remain. My goal is not to point fingers, to throw rocks or blame. My goal is simply to tell my story. To release it in a way that maybe someone will find understanding in thier own life.