she was supposed to love you
you gave her your trust
she broke it with a touch
he was supposed to be your world
you gave him your trust
he drowned it with vodka
he was supposed to be your friend
you gave him your trust
he walked away forever
you are supposed to recover
be able to trust again
but now it’s all broken…
The conversation stopped,
another argument left unfinished.
The air is thick with alcohol
more words would be pointless,
this will not even be a memory.
The night will wipe the slate clean
and I will be left with the mess
once again facing the truth alone
while he stays lost in his bottle.
Today’s daily prompt is shiver… it brings to mind bad times. Times when I would shiver in the midst of a panic attack. When I would be so afraid and mad at the same time during a heavily drunken night with my ex-husband. And crying so much my body would shiver when I lost a couple of good friends.
I live in Iowa, I should think of good winter fun when I see the word shiver, but I don’t. I recall many drives in the winter on the way to work where I could feel the anxiety over having to drive slow for the roads but knowing I could not be late for work, it triggered panic attacks more than once. My wonderful manager told me to drive in to work and show them the panic attack so they would believe me. That in itself is almost maddening enough to make me shiver with anger over the danger they wanted me to put myself and all others on the road into that morning.
Fear and anger gripped me so tightly many nights with my alcoholic husband. I owe some of that to childhood memories of a mom who had a drunken rampage destroying the living room while I lay in bed terrified she would come upstairs and throw things in my room. I would shiver and strain to listen to what my husband was doing downstairs. I would hold my breath while he staggered up the stairs, ready to jump into action if he should try to go into our daughters room. I had to do all I could to cover her eyes to the ugliness that took place while she slept.
I can think of two close friends I lost that left me so deeply saddened I shivered with streaming tears. One “friend” left in such an abrupt manner with no contact I was left shocked for months. To this day I don’t understand how he flipped the switch to off so easily… people tell me he wasn’t a true friend, but that didn’t stop the pain I felt from that loss. My other friend (due to reasons I can’t really explain) had to move back to his home after only 4 months of FINALLY being able to spend time together since we met on the internet 5 years earlier. I still have contact with him at least. I just feel I lost so much when he left. Maybe it is all in my mind, but it still brings tears after more than a year.
I am in the heat of summer and now after all this reflection I feel the need to wrap in a blanket and try to comfort myself until the shivers once again stop…
He actually accused me of cheating. We sat in the car battling tears over a separation I had to have to save my sanity and he said I was having an affair. I did not cheat. I still to this day think he did though.
We were married for twenty years and over half of that time was a struggle with his alcoholism. I worked so hard to keep the image of the happy family in everyone’s eyes. But there were two people I always wondered if he was untrue with. Both he worked with at one time and he just talked about them too much. The stories about work seemed to revolve around them. Even one of them well after she stopped working there.
I know the one woman tried to be friends with me but seemed so fake, like she was trying to cover something up. She always laughed far too much at his stories when we would meet in public. I know she was involved with a married man at one time so it was not out of the ordinary to think she would have been with my then husband.
The second woman I could never really come up with anything other than a feeling, but I know she was the center of his conversations for a long time. He even talked once of letting her stay with us on a night of a snow storm, but said she declined. I was horrified at the thought and glad I did not have to face the possible reality.
I will never know the truth. My ex-husband died far too young from the abuse the alcohol caused his body. Does it really matter? It would not have changed things any. His drinking was the heart of our problems and he seemed unsure that he needed to stop, even after our divorce. So in a way he cheated on me for many years with his mistress alcohol.
The door slammed shut and I was alone.
What was supposed to last fifty years
ended in less than twenty –
with broken hearts,
lots of tears
and empty bottles everywhere.
The vodka won in the end,
tearing our family apart
and taking him away
from this world far too soon.
…I want to write. I want to escape the pain. I want to take today put it on paper and then crumple it up into the trash. But that will not happen. What’s done is done. Death cannot be reversed. What my daughter saw when she went to her Dad’s will be forever in her mind. He laid in bed cold and lifeless. I wish I had been there. I wish I had been there. I wish I had been there. I could have shielded her from that vision that will haunt her forever. I know I still see the image of the funeral home people moving my Mom into the body bag. I wanted to scream. “Watch out for her head. Don’t hurt her.” What would the point be… she was dead. That feeling will always be in the pit of my stomach. And now my daughter too has a vision of death seared behind her eyes.
…I want to write out all the emotions. The pain and sorrow. The confusion and doubt. The anger and frustration. He was only 52. He has a daughter he will never walk down the aisle. Why now? Why did he not seek out help? Why did he live behind closed doors in isolation so no one was left to help him?
…I want to blame myself even though I know it is not my fault. If we were still married would today have been different? If we had separated earlier would it have changed things? If I had been stronger would he have gotten help sooner? Was it my fault that he was all alone and felt so isolated he stopped eating and caring about nothing but another mind numbing drink?
… I loved him… I do love him. We could not make the marriage work. I could not make it work. I could not watch his slow descent into hell drink by drink. I always wanted him to be happy. I always wished the best for him, for many years at my own expense. I still hope he made peace with God or whoever he believed in these days and is in a better place. I hope he found his Dad and Mom, both of whom he missed terribly. I hope he found peace.
… I want to write. I really don’t know what to say. I hurt and am numb all at the same time. I love you Jeb… rest in peace. I will never forget you. I will always treasure the greatest gift you ever gave me – our daughter. I will miss you. I did not hate you. I just had to protect my heart from more pain. Sleep in sweet happiness now. Good night.