Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Part Three...walking on egg shells

Often what we fear the most can leave us feeling as if we are walking on egg shells. It can create an insecurity within ourselves, the fear of something or someone that gives us the mental frame of walking on egg shells.

As we take our steps we can see the ground below covered in already broken egg shells. We carefully take our steps as to not break anymore. The weight of our legs can suddenly seem as if we are lugging around five hundred pound legs with each step that we take. Often we even tend to hold our breath as our toes take contact with the ground. We try to maneuver our steps to not break anything that is now shattered.

We can have beads of perspiration forming on our upper lip or trickling down from our forehead, our breathing can become rapid as you try to gain control. Yet, there is no control, the weight of your legs now seemingly is impossible and yet, we continue to crack the eggshells beneath our feet. With each sound of the shells cracking, it is now the fear of how not to break them any longer.

Living With the Secret....

Each time I looked at my reflection in the mirror there was always a new mark, a new bruise, but what was bigger than the marks and the bruising was now the hallowed out form of a body looking back at me. The reflection of myself was lifeless, the smile no longer existed. My green eyes had now changed to blood shot swollen eyes. Each move or step I took I would cringe in pain.

No matter what I did how I tried to treat Rick the way he demanded I seemed to fail. There was no sense of direction for me any longer. All I ever heard was his barking roaring voice in the back of my head....

"You EVER try to leave, it will be the last of you, do you hear me bitch, the last of you. Not even your parents will ever find you."

I was learning very rapidly that I had now become Rick's welcome mat. I felt like with each step he took from the outside world he would come home and take it out on me. His drinking had now become his total comfort from his bad days while working at the hotel. When someone got a job promotion from behind the line of the kitchen he would turn from anger to rage.

His barking demands is what kept him from getting that job promotion and I tried telling him that in a gentle loving way. I was shocked at myself each time I uttered the words "I love you" I didn't mean it but if I didn't say it the price to pay for that was far worse so I had learned to say I love you on Que. I learned to say it with a smile, I learned to lean in and kiss him when I told him. I learned when to stay away and with each learning step it was just another chip being taken from my mind, my voice, my body. Yes, I was being chipped, molded, and formed similar to a sculptor chipping away at what they longed to design.

The crazy thing is when we were out in public he was this doting loving man that women would watch with envy wishing their husbands or boyfriends would treat them the say way. He would surprise me with flowers while eating out, shower me with gifts while shopping. He would hold my hand followed by a gentle kiss on the lips. He never once ever told me that he loved though. That was the one sentence he never spoke.

Rick was beginning to lay down some serious rules for me to follow and if I did not follow them, well there would be another mark on my body.

1. On my days off I am to stay home, I am not to go any where unless I was with him
2. On the days I worked, I was to go to work and when my shift ended, I had to come right home
3. The friends I had was his choice, not mine
4. I was never allowed to talk to anyone about our personal life
5. If I wanted to talk to my parents he had to be in the room, I was not permitted to call my mom and dad when he was gone for fear I would say something to them
6. I was not allowed any money, he was in control of all the money. 
7. When I got my paycheck I was to turn it over to him
8. His clothes and socks, shoes, underwear, T-shirts all had to be folded a certain way. If they were not folded a certain way, he would tear everything apart yelling and belittling me calling me a retard raising his hand to my face as if he was going to strike growling and snarling for me do it again. 
9. The grocery shopping was done with him. If I wanted something I had to ask as if I was a four year old child. 
10. The worst of it all, the absolute worst of everything was I had to submit myself sexually even if I didn't want. He would force himself on to me telling me to utter words that would shame any woman. 

Rick had become really good at leaving marks on me. He made sure they were never noticeable to another person. If someone looked at me they would never know I was in a domestic violence relationship. No, these marks were on my arms which I covered with a long sleeve shirt or sweater no matter what the temperature was. I learned to wear turtle neck sweaters and of course, I no longer wore my skirts or dresses.

Over time Rick was always allowed to go out and do what he wanted and when he wanted. I had to stay home locked in the house and when he came home I was not permitted to ask where he was, if he was cheating me because if I dared to ask him anything it would be hell to pay for.

Once while Rick and myself were visiting my parents, my dad went from the kitchen to his bedroom with my mom following quickly behind him. Shortly after they left the room I heard my dad coming from their bedroom then calling me to their room asking to talk to me privately. I remember so clearly as if it were happening right now, right this very second as I share my story. Rick stood up and bolted across the room to me and got my face grabbing my head forcefully breathing his rotten breath down my face demanding that I not say a word to my parents about "us" of course I agreed not to say a word.

"Is there something you want to share with your mom and myself about you and Rick?"

There was this huge voice in my head screaming at me "Tell them, this is your ticket out, tell them dammit, what are you waiting for, they want to help you." 

I could feel my stomach quivering with fear, I felt as if I wanted to vomit, I could feel the sour feeling one gets in the back of their cheeks right before they get sick. I could feel my hands shaking. I must of looked like a deer caught in the headlights of car right before contact of both the deer and the car.

"I'm not sure what you mean mom and dad, what do you want me to tell you, everything is fine."

I remember my mom suddenly bolting up from the bed but my dad stopped her. I could see the fear in her eyes, I could see that she knew the truth, I could see that she was able to look right through me as if she could see the marks, she could see the bruising.

"If you ever need help, we are here to help you, we love you, and never be afraid to tell us if something is going on." my dad told me. He got up to hug me and I winced in pain from the bruising from either the current marks or the past marks that had begun to finally heal.  I had to fight back the tears, I had to fight back the guilt of lying to them. I had to fight the fight as if I never fought for something so hard.

"Thanks, but everything is great, everything is wonderful, I am the happiest I have ever been."

As I left my parents room Rick was standing next to the front door with his keys in hand then telling my parents we had to leave. I turned to tell my parents good bye and I could see the fear and concern in both my parents eyes and facial expressions. My mom especially, it was if she wanted to lunge out and grab me and hold me so tightly. She just sighed so deeply waved good bye.

Once in the car Rick drove off quickly then pulling into a dead end street where the back of his hand made contact with my face leaving me shocked and in pain. I hunched over crying asking why he did that.

"What did you say to your parents, what did you say you dumb bitch, you worthless bitch?"
"Nothing," I sobbed, "I told them we were happy, I told them everything was great." I sat there clenching my face while drool began to drip from my mouth as I clutched my face.

Rick grabbed the back of my hair pulling forcefully back then leaning in whispering to me,

"Good thing you did that, I mean I would hate to have you make me look bad in front of your fat ugly daddy dear, a dad that is a prosecuting deputy district attorney. Which by the way, he doesn't remember me. Good thing for you, that he doesn't, because I remember him."