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Oh, the drama!

August 14, 2008

TNT only thinks they know drama. Since my blog stats show I have the most views on the posts regarding the sordid tales of my past, I figured what the heck.  Let them eat cake!

The damage was done.  But as the marriage was falling apart, things were coming together for me.  A couple of months prior, after only having been married a year and a half, I realized that there was someone else.  I didn’t have to work very hard to figure it out.  First, there were little things, like his actually caring about his appearance.  One day I noticed he was wearing a gold hoop in each ear, something he hadn’t done for quite some time.  “Are you a pirate now?” I asked lightly, jokingly.  “It looks good,” he shrugged.  Then he added thoughtfully, “Sexy.”  I raised an eyebrow.  “Someone tell you that?”  He didn’t answer.  He didn’t have to.

He became strangely protective of the cell phone he was given for work.  It never used to ring after hours, but suddenly his job as a courier became very demanding.  His tasks were apparently top secret too, as he would speak in muted tones.  He’d even take the phone with him into the bathroom.  Not even the master bath, he’d head to the guest bath.  One day I walked out of the bedroom as he was talking.  Sweetly.  Softly.  “No, not tonight,” he said.  “Yeah.  Maybe.  I sure hope so.”  He hung up and turned around, and he might as well have had CHEATING SCUMBAG written on his forehead.  “That was Jeff,” he said.  “We’re going to play basketball tomorrow night.”  Unable to hold my tongue, I snapped, “You sure talk sweet to Jeff.  You sure you’re just going to play basketball?”

A private investigator confirmed he didn’t go play basketball.  Instead, he was at another co-worker’s home with The Girl. This other co-worker was facilitating their budding romance.  The investigator also enlightened me to the fact that one of the video stores I’d seen frequently on bank statements was actually the kind with flashing neon XXX signs in the covered windows. 

As I said once before, he was confronted.  He admitted only to dating The Girl.  He agreed to counseling.  At counseling, he said he didn’t love me.  He almost passed a brick when I said I wanted to work through it.  He continued to see her, though, and continued to expect me to believe that Jeff was actually Jeff.  The pastor we were seeing told him to grow some balls (the pastor’s words) and tell me if it was over.  I didn’t feel right about leaving.  Not yet.

Not until the day I was doing laundry and pulled out one of her shirts.  Oh, I wish I was kidding.  I was taking laundry he’d done out of the dryer so I could do mine, and out came a Super Bowl XXXV t-shirt.  Size Small.  He seemed to rush to the garage and came to the doorway as I stood holding the shirt out in front of me.  “That’s yours,” he said.  “I don’t think so,” I replied and tossed it to him.  “Finish your laundry.”  That was when I knew it was time.  I left the room and waited for him to finish.  I loaded the dryer and gathered my thoughts.  I went into the guest room, where he’d taken up residence, and told him that it was clear he didn’t want to make an effort, no matter what he said.  I would ask my employers (attorneys) for help with starting the divorce.

It was easy for him, wasn’t it?  All he had to do was whatever the heck he wanted, and I was going to clean up the mess.  It’d been that way for a while.

But for some reason, he didn’t take the neatly wrapped package of a simplified divorce.  He went home for a weekend without me and was pressed as to where I was.  Asked repeatedly if everything was okay.  He flatly told me that he wanted things to be the way they were — ever so unconvincingly.  He knew it was time to go.

The weekend that he was supposed to leave, my sister (my hero) moved in.  She handed me her rent in cash, did a couple of household repairs, and introduced me to the cat she was babysitting.  She knew the cat might become hers for good, and she also knew that my cat was leaving with the soon-to-be-ex.

He walked in as she was arranging her things.  To put it mildly, they were never fond of one another.  My sister knew from Day One that he was bad news.  (She has a gift.) 

“Why does she have a cat?” he demanded.

“Because you’re taking Val,” I answered.  Duh.

“So that’s it?  You’re just giving up?  It’s over?”  Hadn’t we already been through this?

“You’re the one that had the affair.”

“We never had sex!” he insisted.  Having done some simple detective work, I’d discovered some evidence.  I smoothly walked out to his Jeep and grabbed the box of Trojans that were on his floorboard.  I brought the box in from the garage and held it up.  “Count them,” he said defiantly.

I reached my hand into the already open box and pulled out a wrapper.  An open, empty wrapper.  (Okay, seriously, who puts the empty wrapper back in the box??)

He went ballistic.  For some reason, the object of all of his anger became my sister, or her cat.  He plowed through me, pushing me through the closed bedroom door, and charged in their direction.  Somehow he was removed from the room, and my sister and I locked ourselves in the bedroom.  “Call the police,” she demanded.  We did, and the dispatcher kept us on the line while we heard things crashing in the rest of the house.  The front door opened and shut, and we explained to the dispatcher that he would be easy to find — he was storming around the neighborhood wearing only boxers and socks.  Then there was a knock at the door, and I guess I thought it would be the police.  Nope.  Him.  To this day, I can’t tell you what I was thinking, but I let him back in.  If my sister is reading this and replaying the night in her mind, I know she’s still baffled as well.

I rushed back into the master bedroom and locked the door again.  There was more noise from the living room and kitchen, then shouts.  More crashes.  The dispatcher told my sister we were going to need to get out of the house and go to where a police car was waiting.  Down the street.  (Can anyone explain that to me?)  We readied ourselves.  The front door was just beyond the bedroom door.  We left the phone on the dresser, with the dispatcher still on the line, and slowly opened the door.  We jumped to the front door and opened it.  He saw us and shouted, “What the —-?!”  “RUN!” my sister yelled.  I tore out the door with her following close behind.  I looked up and she was ahead of me.  It was like the opening scene of “Baywatch” set to the theme from “Cops” as we bolted down the street to the awaiting patrol car.

We made it to the police car and they instructed us to sit in the back.  On the glass partition there was a cartoon of a convict in black and white striped clothes, complete with a mask and matching beanie.  “Is he still in the house?” one officer asked.  We looked down the street to the house and saw that the garage door was lifting.  “He’s leaving!” another officer said.  In the blink of an eye, red and blue lights were flashing all around us — I hadn’t realized how many police vehicles were there.  We watched as two cars went in separate directions, and the low speed chase ended almost as quickly as it began.  He was blocked in.  Then he was arrested.

At some point I’d been given a phone.  I called my mom and soon she and my dad were with my sister and I back in the house as we wrote down our statements.  They told us they’d brought him in on assault and battery charges (going after my sister, shoving me through the door), as well as an outstanding warrant for a theft at his last place of employment.  He was going to be held on suicide watch. 

He pretended to get arrested when he proposed.  Foreshadowing much?

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. soundsliketomatoes permalink
    August 14, 2008 9:27 am

    What’s this about pretending to get arrested when he proposed?? Did I know this?

  2. Julie permalink
    August 14, 2008 11:50 am

    Oh Vanessa… that made me cry. I’m sorry you went through those sorts of things. I hope for much better things to continue in your life…

  3. itsjustmythang permalink
    August 14, 2008 3:26 pm

    I am wondering to myself of course, Why is it that we ignore tell tale signs and see them soo clearly afterwards? We are infected with naivety and then brutally innoculated with tragedy.

    The whole dark stories thing is true. Most people like tragic news verses cheery. We as a human race are very morbid beings I tell you. I also appreciate the bad turning to good and the significance it has. I too am sorry you had to experience such betrayal and violence but know you are stronger and more empathetic toward others because of it.

  4. Lori F. permalink
    August 14, 2008 5:03 pm

    I never knew this about you, it just makes me admire you more for how strong of a person you truely are!

  5. August 14, 2008 10:51 pm

    reading this made me sad. but i know what happens in life, happens for a reason. i *know*.

  6. April permalink
    August 15, 2008 5:04 am

    “He pretended to get arrested when he proposed.” Next blog, please!

    Wow, you sure have been through some very tough times. Your strength will undoubtedly be passed onto your girls, who I hope will never go through something like this!

  7. Katrina Marie permalink
    August 15, 2008 12:09 pm

    I’m your hero? Aww… ::insert Enrique Iglesias music here::

    I love how everyone feels so bad for you. Yeah, yeah, I know he cheated, you were betrayed, blah blah blah. HE TRIED TO KILL ME. Where’s the sympathy for me? (Totally joking about that, you know it. I’d still like to see him strung up by the toenails for what he did to you.) 😀

    And I can’t help but giggle every time I think about us running down that street. I still don’t know how I got past you, because I am NOT a fast runner at all. Apparently fearing for my life is good for my land speed. I also remember shoving you HARD when I could literally FEEL him behind me at the front door. That still gives me shivers.

    I think I need to write a guest blog about him stalking me after that. (Remember when he showed up outside my bedroom window? Seeing those footprints the next day gave me the heebie jeebies.)

    Man, you know how to pick ’em. First him, then the next guy… I’m so glad you finally accepted that I have a gift and married your current (and last) husband. I’m still ticked that he beat me to the punch and asked you out before I had the chance to set you two up. I still claim credit for that pairing though! 😀

    Oh, and yes, I am still – to this day – baffled as to why you let him back inside. You in stressful situations = not so bright. You are one of the smartest women I know, but when you get stressed out, your common sense takes a vacation. Like, uh, the time you drove over the curb because you were mad at me. “I’M GOING TO KEEP GOING.” Yes, yes. You do that – on the two flat tires and the bent frame. GENIUS! 😀

  8. August 16, 2008 8:52 am

    Wow, what a story! And I’m soooo glad to see how God brought you through and blessed you with Chris and the girls 🙂 Funny how He does that, eh?

  9. April permalink
    August 17, 2008 8:33 pm

    Wow V, your sister is just as funny as you are! 🙂

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