Over the next few months at my new job I developed some great friendships. I’m still good friends with two people to this day. Well one passed away a few months ago, but she’d been a true friend until the end.
It was the middle of July 2001 and the company was having a party at the local bar. They offered food, beverages and a band. I wanted to go. The ex didn’t like the idea, but he agreed as long as I promised to be home at 10pm. I figured no problem.
I arrived home at 10:15 that night and he came running outside as I exited the car screaming and yelling about me being late. Two of his friends were sitting in their car waiting for me to come home so they could all go out.
As I always did I apologized profusely and prayed it would end quickly. Lucky for me it did. He wanted to go out with his friends more than he wanted to fight with me.
The next day was totally different. The arguing started almost immediately when he woke. I remember fearing for my life that day. Something about the look in his eyes told me this argument was different. Maybe because I was changing. I wasn’t being the obedient wife…I was spending more time with friends and wanting to go out more. It could’ve been fear in his eyes that I was slipping away. Either way I was deathly afraid.
We lived on the second floor of a two-story house. At the top of the stairs we had a large landing and we kept our shoes there because we didn’t wear them in the house. I maneuvered my way closer to the front door. Like I said I was afraid for my life.
The kids were in the house, but he wasn’t focusing on them. It was me he wanted blood from. Somehow I managed to get to the front door and open it. I ran down the stairs. He was throwing shoes at me and telling me I was going to pay. I ran out into the street.
My oldest was looking out the window and I asked him to bring me some shoes. He did. I told him to stay with me. The chances of the ex hurting the girls was slim. I wasn’t worried about them at the time. My son was a totally different situation.
We walked around for a bit until I could think straight. We went to the local gas station and I called home. I told the ex I wanted my pocketbook and car keys. He laughed and told me there was no way. I in turn told him I’d call the police and bring them home with me and get the car.
He agreed. He had the girls bring them down to me. I ushered the three kids into the car and I drove away. I knew in that moment I’d never go back to him again. I didn’t have more than $700 in the secret savings account, but I had a good job, a car and my children…nothing else mattered.
Leaving was the easy part…getting my apartment back wouldn’t be so easy.