I remember what happened the night before, when my husband was drinking with his fiancée. They laughed at me when my children were FaceTiming and they saw me sitting on the couch with my sister. That’s so hilarious right? I turned the monitor to the left so that they couldn’t see me. Husband objected to that. I reminded him that he was conferencing with the girls, this wasn’t the time for him to be rubbernecking at me. His response was to say goodbye to the girls so I could be alone all by myself. His words. When he had no attorney. He had signed a waiver of jurisdiction for the case to be heard in my home state. Sometimes I wish I’d decided right then to nail him to the wall the next day.
The relationship I had with this man, “Chris,” was tumultuous. I was in my early twenties and stupid for sticking around with him. He had a temper, and I had low self-esteem. He would start fights over stupid things, like the time he wanted mashed potatoes for dinner. He liked potato flakes, I like mashed potatoes from fresh potatoes. I was willing to prepare both for our meal that evening, but the fact that I wouldn’t eat potato flakes set him off.
This time his need for a fight escalated to beyond insanity. He kept pushing me to my emotional and psychological limits. I could feel I was close to “breaking,” which scared me because I didn’t know what it would be like to lose control of myself. I knew it wouldn’t make the situation better at all. I don’t remember what happened to escalate it to the point that I felt like my grasp on my self-control was slipping, but I remember the “oh sh-“ feeling.
I used to smoke cigarettes back then. We were outside and he was yelling at me, getting in my face in a threatening manner. I was smoking a cigarette when that realization dawned on me that I was losing control. I took my cigarette and burned myself, so I could get the calming effects of the release of endorphins. He stormed up to me and hit me so hard across the face, my glasses flew off my face and landed in the grass, misshapen.
Somehow, I managed to get my hands on a phone and I called his mother and his best friend’s wife, both of whom came over immediately. (Yes, I should have called the cops. I didn’t want the further instability that involving the law would present.) After they arrived, they noticed the smell of gas and I became very emotional in my recounting of the events that recently transpired. After they helped make sure things were defused and safe, they left.
We made the food for the summer camp and we had a few children that had peanut allergies that I prepared their food and they ate separately with me, the others kids had pb&j (seriously it was drama because entitled parents wanted their kids to be allowed to eat pb&j). Being vigilant about cross contamination was huge. At the cafe we had one of those Oasis ice machines you use to smoothies (or daiquiris), nothing on our smoothie menu said it contained nuts or peanuts. Side note at the outside cafe we didn’t have a dish washer/sanitizer so we washed things out and then brought everything inside the club at night to really wash it (all to code btw)