Like a machine I moved through my morning routine trying not to let the pain show. If I didn't think about the obvious absence of him it wouldn't be so bad. Waking the kids wasn't cheerful for me even though I smiled at their sleepy faces. They didn't ask where he was and it made the start of the day a bit easier.
My niece had spent the night and I needed to keep three children busy while making them breakfast. It was a quiet breakfast with the sound of cartoons in the background. I had previously planned to take them out for the day and tried to stay focused on getting out of the house. If I kept myself busy with them and left the emptiness, I might have been able to hold it together.
I didn't plan on my husband walking away from our marriage. Who does?
Sadly, my sister in law showed up early that morning to pick up her daughter. I was sad for my daughter who was looking forward to spending the afternoon with her. To not upset her anymore, I still kept the plans to take the kids out. I needed to get out of the house. Staying there would only keep reminding me that my husband was gone.
He wasn't talking to me, he wasn't answering his phone and I wasn't quite sure where we stood.
After a few phone calls from concerned family and friends, I loaded the kids in the van to go out. We met up with my best friend and her daughters and spent the morning playing at a Family Fun Fair. Afterwords we went out to lunch. My friend was being very supportive and let me choose where to go. I picked a restaurant I had never been at before in hopes to keep my mind off the situation at hand.
It wasn't easy with a 3 year old and a 6 year old. They were fighting over toys and who was going to sit next to mommy. The daily thing that wouldn't normally bother me too much. My patience was thin and I tried blocking it out. This wasn't fair. I was left to take care of our children and had no escape. I managed lunch the best that I could and didn't care if either of them finished their meal or not. I couldn't stop dwelling on the fact that the day was half over and still no phone call from my husband.
My friend wanted to go to Target and I agreed to go to avoid going back home alone. The grocery shopping was not much fun. I had to get some items we were out of but I had no idea if I should buy certain things or not. Why should I buy items that only he uses if he's not coming back? Why did everything have to make me think about the problem at hand? Why couldn't I just block it out?? I was so weak mentally at this point, I even let the kids convince me to buy them chocolate morsels and open them while leaving the store.
It was going on five o'clock at this point and I knew that letting them eat chocolate was a big mistake. On the way home Little E fell asleep which was not a good idea but considering how drained I was feeling it didn't matter. After getting home and putting him to bed for a late nap, I sat down and felt all alone. The fear of the unknown was creeping in on me.
By 6:30 I couldn't even think of what I was going to cook. Thank God for great friends because my best friend bought and delivered a pizza for us for dinner. I was failing as a strong mother and woman at this point and letting depression take over. Something that my medication couldn't even keep from happening.
I couldn't take it much more and texted my husband's stepmother to see if she had heard if he was coming home. Waiting for the cell phone to ding it's familiar chime for a text I jumped when it did. I was washing the dishes and couldn't get my gloves off fast enough to see what it said.
It was him.
He was telling me that he would not be coming home again this evening and that I needed to stop calling and bothering everyone else about his whereabouts. Really? He left me and now he was calling the shots? I guess at that point what choice did I have. I wanted him to come home to discuss what the hell was going on so I had to comply. If I turned irate and went all kinds of crazy then he was definitely not coming home.
After several minutes of text he was gone again. I was crushed. I called my best friend in sobbing tears and tried to speak to her. She couldn't understand my uncontrollable weeping and said "I'll be right there." I continued to bawl my eyes out, something I didn't want to do in front of the kids. But the pain was too unbearable anymore and I felt like I was hitting rock bottom.
My other best friend showed up unknowing the state I was in. She was stopping by to check in on me and found me weeping. By the time she had me sitting back down my other best friend had showed up. They tried their best to calm me down and helped take care of my kids for me. I am forever grateful to them for being there for me. I hope I never have to be there for them under the same circumstances but I will be in a heartbeat if the situation arises.
After a few glasses of wine, to calm my nerves, and a few hours of talking my friends went home to their families. I was alone again in a quiet house. I went through my normal routine of closing the house up and settling in bed for the evening. It was going to be a long night. Exhausted from the mental anguish, I passed out watching tv. The television, my personal pacifier.
I woke up, wishing it was all a bad dream, another nightmare but I rolled over and saw the empty spot next to me. The pillow was cold and the comforter on that side untouched. I survived another evening and a full day without knowing where my life stood. Could I do it again?
This post was inspired by Mama Kat's writer's workshop writing prompts from last week's choices. I am also submitting this as my Pour Your Heart with Shell at Thing's I Can't Say.