I don’t understand why he can’t understand. He put me through hell. I would say I hate him, but it isn’t even that. I feel indifferent. I don’t care if I ever see him again. He drug me away from my family and then treated me like dirt. The only thing he ever gave me that brought me joy was our son, and for that I will always be thankful. Our son is my little ray of sunshine and has given me reasons to smile when I have been in my darkest moments.
I moved back home to get away from him and to be near my family. He moved back to the area about a year later. It makes sense, we are both from here. Only now he stops in at my work because he goes by it every day. He comes in and stands near my desk and talks to me. I am friendly, I smile and accommodate him if he has a question or needs information. I talk about our son, try to find something, anything, to say.
He doesn’t seem to get it. Yes, I have to see him every other weekend for visitation exchange. I have to tolerate his presence, his phone calls when there are things involving our son. But for some reason he comes to me like we are friends and I don’t understand why. I am not his friend. He seems oblivious to the past. I honestly think he has forgotten much of it. I am positive that much of it was forgotten immediately afterwards in the haze of his booze-soaked brain. Yes, he has sobered up, mostly. He hasn’t quit completely but he can no longer afford to drink all night every night because he would be fired very quickly and his entire future and retirement is based around his high paying job. I guess his job was more of a reason to get it under control than his children or I ever were. I am glad that he has done that, because it has allowed his son a chance to get to know his dad. I watch him carefully, let him know that I AM watching and that I will keep watching as long as he is in our son’s life. I wasn’t trying to rob a son of a father or a father of a son. I was trying to protect myself and my children from the hell that they had been subjected to.
I can’t comprehend how he can come to my work and talk as if nothing happened, as if he hadn’t crushed everything in me that made me a strong person. I know I have to play nice, and I know that if I told him to leave his anger would follow and he would probably try to take me back to court. He can afford it. I can’t.
We are not friends anymore. I don’t like him. The sight of his truck makes me cringe. The smell that emanates from his tainted breath when he stands near me makes me gag. The entire inside of my body quivers and shakes and wants to separate from my body and hide under my desk the moment he walks in the front door.
I don’t want to invite him to our family affairs, to Jake’s birthday parties, to events not meant to include him. He can have a birthday party for him and his family if he wants to because our lives are separate now. Yes, we will need to share events as he gets older and there are school programs, events and so on. I understand that. I have raised both of my daughters on my own and know the drill on sharing parenting moments.
It only happens once a week or so, but it is enough. More than enough. Each time I see him pull in I feel a huge weight in my chest, and it is hard to breathe. I become tense, nervous, I feel like I am trapped in a cage and I am ever so thankful that my mother is usually across the hall and my father just down it because if he made one move or said one foul thing he would get balled up into a little ball and thrown out the door…while it was still closed.
The sad part is that he doesn’t even realize he is doing it. It isn’t his quest for power, I think he his just that damn lonely and without friends that I am the closest thing he has. No, this is not about control, but it doesn’t matter… it makes me extremely uncomfortable and even though I am trying so hard to accept that he will, in fact, always be somewhere in my life, I just can’t stop myself from reacting so strongly. In my defense, my body has every right to react that way to him, I just wish I could control it a little more…….
I just want to live my quiet little life and not have it interrupted by his presence unless it is necessary. I don’t need the reminders. I need time to mentally prepare myself when I am going to see him, and unexpected visits do not allow for that. I can get along with him when I have to, for my son’s sake, but I shouldn’t have to be his friend.