Just Like Magic

older couple at the beach

I never thought I’d feel like this again,

And yet…Nothing has changed~

For once again it is about your pain.

couple in back seat

You asked me to forgive you and so I did.

For after all I said, we were “just kids.”

sad couple on beach

Forgiveness is such a simple word,

almost like a magical choice,

an eraser that removes the memories,

of all those times you raised your voice.

Or the silence of  a hundred nights,

from the aftermath of a thousand fights.

Just like magic and POUF it’s gone.

A simple act that rights all wrong.

I might have been able to forget but in the end,

You made it all about  you again.

sad man reading

Keri London

2011©

Advertisements

The next Chapters….

For all my loyal readers…. (Reading Girl especially – smile) I am sharing my next few chapters…. I’d love to hear how you feel about the transition from Keri’s journal to the third person telling it again, and your thoughts on it… I really felt that I left you guys hanging and just wanted to share!  Remember read this first:

http://dianereedwiter.wordpress.com/2012/10/22/would-anyone-read-this-chapter-one/

so it makes more sense

xoxo

k

**********************

mom readinglistening to mom reading

By the time she finished reading, the fire had died down to a flicker and two hours, maybe more had passed. Keri closed the book and looked up at Brynne “Oh mama” she cried, “It is all just so sad.” Keri overwhelmed by the moment, got up and walked over to her daughter and hugged her tight as tears filled her eyes. “I shared this with you because I want to spare you some of the pain that I experienced as a young girl, and for you to just always be aware. “NOW I understand why you wanted me to add SLOW TO ANGER to my list that you made me make.” Brynne said with genuine empathy and tears in her own eyes. Keri nodded and held the closed  journal to her chest; she didn’t have any second thoughts. She knew that sharing this with Brynne would be a memory she would carry with her forever. She prayed that this knowledge would be like a little extra tool for her, that most young girls aren’t aware of.

Keri counted the years since those journal days and sighed. Looking into the fire she said, “Time sure flies.”  “Do you know where he is now?” Brynne asked curiously. Keri shook her head. “No, “I’m not even sure if he’s still alive.”  Brynne was filled with questions. “What about Larry?” she asked. Keri realized that she was not going to get off as easy as she thought and cleared her throat to continue. “We ended up dating for a while,” “YOU DID?! Brynne looked surprised and Keri laughed, “Yeah, he even asked me to marry him.” Brynne’s eyes grew wide. “Reeeeally?”  “Yeah, but I don’t even know why I went out with him. I kind of knew it was wrong but I was so hurt just how quickly Jack seemed to move on and well, Larry really was very good-looking.” she chuckled and then continued more seriously, “but then, he knew it and I never loved him, so I said no.” She said it so matter of factly  that it almost seemed as if she was realizing it all for the first time.  “I don’t think that I really ever got over Jack. I just let my hurt turn into anger and have pretty much stayed angry with him all of these years later. I never really let anyone back into my heart for a long time.”  Keri smiled at her daughter. She looked dumbfounded at meeting this side of her mom and wanted to know everything. “I dated for over a year or so and then I met your dad and that was that.”

Waaaaait a minute.” Brynne demanded, motioning for her mom to sit back down, Keri sighed inwardly realizing that Brynne was not going to let her off the hook that fast and had many more questions. So with much filtering, Keri shared what came after Jack and in-between her dad which was a time that entailed a lot of things she did due to her broken heart, things that she was not very proud of. And that was how Keri told her daughter about Jack. It had been time. Tim already knew about him. He knew about Keri’s walls and what happened and that her first relationship was behind a lot of their issues. But he was very patient with her. When they’d first met, it was evident that Keri had been very hurt and did not trust easily. Their marriage had its issues but it was solid for the most part and Tim offered that one trait that Keri deemed so important; he was slow to anger.

“Okay Keri said, lets finish up with the boxes in the attic.” Brynne followed her mom up the stairs as they began sorting and throwing out things. Keri continued to answer her daughter’s questions as they worked together, and made a big dent clearing  everything out that day.

 

attic office emptybook casescomputercomputer2

Keri’s writing studio was finished and she loved it up there. The wood floors were rich and off set the wall to wall built-in bookcases that lined both sides of the room and reminded Keri of her Grandma’s craftsman style house in Seattle.  On one side of the room there was a beautiful little window seat where she could take her laptop and write. The view was most inspiring there. At the front of the house,  they’d built-in  a craftsman style desk and drawers overlooking the little window on the opposite side of the room. It all turned out just the way she’d imagined. Tim worked on it a lot as time allowed, but just like her father,  he traveled a lot for his job and Keri grew impatient over how long it was taking to complete. “I have a book that I need to write, and I really want to start it and finish it up in my study.” She’d pressed and so he hired Brian, a contractor to finish some of the details.

For a while, Brian and Tim worked together with Keri to create the charm she envisioned. Even the stairs that led up to the attic were recreated exactly the way she’d imagined with the brown and white steps she remembered from her grandma’s house . Several months after all of the construction was complete, Tim surprised Keri with a fireplace that she’d seen on-line and thought that he’d forgotten about. One night in bed, when Tim was working on his laptop, Keri urged him to go to that page with the photo of the exact fireplace she’d chosen. She knew it exceeded the budget they’d set aside for the studio but told him that “Someday waaay down the line she’d love to have one just like it.” Never dreaming she’d get it so soon.

Tim  installed  it a year later while she was in LA visiting Brynne for her birthday.  She squealed with delight and hugged her husband’s neck, feeling very spoiled. She loved to turn it on in the mornings with a mug of coffee and write her blog and or work on her book.  Brynne had been away at school for a little over a year and the house just seemed so empty. She wished Tim didn’t have to be away so often but she tried to be a good sport about it and understand and was growing more and more used to being alone. Her studio was her refuge. When she wrote, she didn’t feel so lonely. One day as she took a break from writing, she checked her blog comments and then wandered over to her Face book page and found a message from a name that caused her to choke as she sipped on her coffee. The message was short and generic. Keri set her mug down still sputtering and held her breath as she read;

Hi Keri,                                                                                                  

I’ve been looking for you for a long time. It looks as if you are well. I am glad to see that you are still writing… I wasn’t sure if you’d remember me, but I’ve wanted to find you for a while now. I look forward to your reply,

Jack

 

 

 

 

 

#59 That’s When I Began To Understand You Were Someone In My past That Taught Me Love Doesn’t Last

 crying quote

 

I’ve cried all the tears I’m going to cry,

for a while I thought that I would die.

My pain scared me, it hurt so much.           

I finally knew I’d had enough.

You took everything   I had to give

And then left me broken just like this

holding my heart in my hands

that’s when I  began  to understand

You were going to be someone in my past

that taught me;  forever  doesn’t last.        

And that promises are all just lies…

and  even true love sometimes dies.

Keri London

1977

#57 The Beginning of the End… Happy New Year

 

pie crust2

 

Dear Journal,

We planned our party for the night after New Years Eve.  I told my parents that I had to get ready for the party that we were having the next day and I didn’t want to drive home with all of the drunks and they actually were okay with me staying at Jack’s.  He came and picked me up and brought me over to his place and we stayed up late enough to welcome in the New Year all by ourselves instead of going out to one of the parties we were invited to, cuz Jack wanted it that way. We kissed at midnight and started messing around all the way to bed and welcomed in the new year some more.

young happy couple

 

In the morning, it was overcast and looked as if it might rain.  I got up early and Jack rolled over and said that he was going to take down the Christmas lights. I really didn’t want him to because he’d already taken down the tree the day after Christmas and he knew I wanted it up for the party. So when he mentioned the lights I asked him if he could just wait until after the party because I wanted it to still look at least a little  festive.  But he refused it was as if he wanted to take away any signs of it having been Christmas.  And so our morning didn’t start out too great.

arguing couples

I know that he is still dealing with stuff about his mom this time of year, so I tried to be understanding but I must say that I was not happy that he wouldn’t wait just one day since he knew that it was important to me for our house to look pretty for the party. It was just the wrong day to take on that project! Especially since we talked about our list of things we needed to get done before the party and taking down the Christmas lights was not one of them.  I needed him to help me with so many  other things and I knew that it was going to take all morning to just do that. But you know how stubborn he is, so he got the ladder out and climbed up on the roof and did what he wanted.

Christmas lights ladder2

 I got dressed and started baking. I’d planned on making a few pies and some horderves for the party. Pie crusts are kind of touchy, if you knead them too much, they get tough. If you let them sit too long they get crumbly and you have to start all over again.  I have to admit I was already frustrated but I really did try to snap out of it because I knew that it would not end well if I stayed mad. I never seem to win our fights. I heard Jack swearing on top of the roof and for whatever reason, he needed my help. Though he put them up all by himself. He called me up there twice. The first time I went up and handed him something and tried to be pleasant and willing about it, but just as I was ready to roll the dough out for the second pie,  he called me again.

ROLLING DOUGH

This time I called back and told him to hold on. I was so surprised when he snapped at me and yelled “NOW!”  I didn’t like his tone of voice and had not heard it since that horrible day at the glider port over a year earlier. I wasn’t too happy as I climbed up the ladder and saw him untangling the strings of lights. I  asked him to please hurry so that my dough wouldn’t get ruined and he threw them at me and told me to untangle them.

Christmas lightsAnd before I could object, he lost it. He got mad and told me that he didn’t want to have the dumb party anyway, how it was all my idea and “my party” and that I was “using” him to play house in “his” house. Those words really hurt. Especially the part about it being his house.  After he put the ladder away, and did whatever he did with the string of light I left lying on the walkway,  he came in and saw that I was crying and got even more upset at me. I’d already made one pie crust perfectly before he called me up. But the second time, I left the last one  in a ball and it felt too dried out when I started rolling it.

dough balll

Everything kept crumbling and falling apart. The thing that made me so mad was that Jack started laughing at me and told me that I couldn’t do anything right. I think maybe he was trying to lighten the mood and just joke around because everytime I tried to roll out the dough it just got worse and he may have realized that he’d just gone a little too far.

CINNAMON ROLLING DOUGH

But by that time I’d lost my temper and had stopped crying. Things just got out of hand. Looking back, I wish that ‘dI just let it go. But for the last three years I have let “IT” go and I am just tired. Anyway,  I was still hurt and angry about what he’d said about it being his house, and instead of saying that he was sorry he just kept following me around egging me on, laughing in my face. He followed me right into the living room as I tried to get away, brushing my floured hands on my apron and just kept laughing at me and my “pathetic excuse for pie crust.” THAT is what he said! He kept at it  until he had me cornered in the living room and I hit the wall of the bay window and to my surprise my fist went right through the paper thin wall! Just punched a hole right into it! I didn’t realize how those walls were made back in those days and well it just surpised me. I started laughing hoping that Jack would start laughing too and we would just see how stupid this fight was and fall down on the floor and make up. I was laughing saying that” I really didn’t mean to do that” and he got that look and said; “yeah, I  can really tell.” And then he started getting all of my stuff and throwing it out of the house in a wild rage and telling me that I needed to “call all of my little friends and call off the party” as he started throwing my books and my purse and my sweat jacket and all of Annie’s letters  out into the front yard. The ribbons slipped and they lay there strewn all over the wet grass.

old letters

He was so out of control I thought he was going to hit me but he didn’t. He just picked me up and threw me off of his front porch and into the yard. I was numb. I don’t remember if I was really hurt. I know later that I’d skinned my elbow being thrown like that but I just picked up my purse and jacket and left everything else and ran out of the front gate.

abuse

I didn’t even stop to think. I just ran. Right past Jess and Louise’s and down Pacific Coast Highway and all the way to a phone booth and called Lindsey. She and Larry came and picked me up. They were supposed to come to the party that night. I think they may have called everyone. I don’t even know. I didn’t care. I just let Jack deal with it. I was so mad. I never wanted to see him again. Happy New Year.

 

sad girl in hood b&w

 

 

 

#45 New Year’s Eve

Sorry, I have been away for a while. This has been pretty exhausting to have to go back and remember, almost like walking through all the old doors. Thank you for following and commenting… it is motivating me to finish!

Dear Journal,

fireplace beanbag under Christmast tree

My dad was not too happy when he came down  the next morning and found Jack and I asleep in the living room together. Though he knows I’m at Jack’s a lot now, I know he just doesn’t want us to throw it in his face in his own house. So when I heard him get up, I slipped away and caught him walking out the door on his way to work. He saw that I was still wearing my long dress I’d been wearing the day before and I could tell that at first he looked upset and then confused.  But after I told him what had transpired. He sat down in his suit on the front porch step with me and listened. Then he told me to run up and tell my mom before Jack woke up because he didn’t want her to get upset  in front of Jack. Sometimes my dad just blows me away by being sooo great and understanding!

french toast

The rest of the day I was pretty proud of my parents. My dad was right. I was glad I’d told my mom right away. I guess my dad had mentioned before he went downstairs that he’d thought Jack had stayed over and they both weren’t happy about it. But my mom was just as great about it as my dad and made us french toast and was so sweet to Jack. I kind of think maybe I should have told them more about Jack’s childhood because it seemed to really touch them. My dad even called a couple hours later and told Jack that he’d arranged a few days off for him so he didn’t have to go in that night or the rest of the week until January 2nd!

Jack had been prepared for the worst reaction from my parents I think. I told him last night that I’d explain to them but he’d been worried. Later he told me that he couldn’t believe how wonderful they were and I just couldn’t bring myself to tell him that most parents would have understood. It really has begun to hit me that he has never really ever experienced what normal parents are supposed to be like.

It didn’t take long. Liz has been calling poor Jack none stop. And my mom has even talked to her a few times. I finally put my foot down and told him that he needs to let her think about it a while longer and then we need to figure out a place for her to go get treatment. Not just a hospital with a sitter after the fact but some place to help her really get better.

catfood in cupboard

She keeps calling saying that her cat, Bootsie needs cat food and I told Jack that her cupboard was filled when we’d helped her move in a few weeks earlier,  I lined her cupboards myself and told him that there was absolutely no way she was OUT!  I think that in the past, Jack has never had anyone to help keep him strong. His mom has selfishly called him home from two different schools twice in the middle of semesters and totally messed his education up. I told him ENOUGH and that if he let her yank him around again, I wouldn’t be there to watch it. He has stayed strong so far.

#42 A Change Of Plans

 perinos menu

Dear Journal,

So Jack wandered into the spotless kitchen. And looked concerned when he didn’t find a turkey in the oven or the dining room table set for a holiday meal or anything. Rachel was showing me a mother of pearl necklace that her boyfriend had gotten her when Jack came out and eyed an opened bottle of wine and looked at Rachel who shrugged and told us that it was opened when she got there. Jack’s smile vanished and he looked  worried. I felt so sorry for him. The whole way to her house he talked about his mother’s great cooking.

Finally Liz came floating into the room with a long black velvet skirt and cashmere sweater smelling like cigarettes and chanel #5. She kissed us all on the cheek and poured herself another glass of wine before sitting next to Rachel and said “Lets get this party started.” Poor Jack bless his heart, dutifully began distributing all the gifts in front of the recipents. Rachel and Liz loved their gold crosses and Jack had snuck and bought me one too. We all had to stop and put them on and he helped each one of us with the clasp and then sat smiling as we admired each other’s.

Rachel and Liz loved the Bibles. I’d snuck and gotten one for Jack with his name on it too that he seemed to love. Then I fished out the gift I’d been saving. He thought I’d just gotten him the Bible but I’d also put a digital gold watch he’d eyed at Zales on layaway one of the times we’d been looking for rings. I even had it engraved with “forever K” He was so surprised,  I thought he was going to cry for a minute but he said he loved it and put it on and then made everyone admire it.  Then he began piling presents around me after that. I was so embarrassed. He’d bought me an Elna Sewing machine  and  cross country skiis and his mom bought me a beautiful camel colored coat with a fur collar. And said “You can wear it tonight because I am taking you all to Perinos!”

Wben I heard Rachel say… “Mom I thought that the plan was, that you were cooking?” I was so grateful that she took the lead on that one because I just know Liz would have been on the defense if Jack had asked the same question. But she just lit another cigarette and explained, “Oh no! I want to treat you all to a REAL Christmas Dinner.” And looked at me and said “Keri honey, you wanna hand me that little bottle of merlot sweetie?” I just smiled and poured her some more as Jack looked miserable and Rachel asked, “What time are reservations?” Liz lit another cigarette and told her six thirty. Jack looked at his new watch and said “it’s almost six now.” So we all begain getting up and getting our coats on.  Liz saw Jack’s coat and asked him if he was going to wear THAT and pointed to it as if it were a rag. I saw Jack’s face turn red as he took the keys from his mom’s hand and said “I’ll drive.” As we all walked out the door.

#38

Dear Journal,

We have a break for Thanksgiving. It was nice not to have to drive all the way to Buena Park. I have four days off from everything and I am so looking forward to having it off. Jack got promoted at work and so the new guy is going to work this weekend so Jack has four days off too!  And the cool thing about it all is that we are both getting paid. It seems as if we are never just home. My mom invited Jack for Thanksgiving. She invited his dad too but he is going to his sister’s house. I wanted to invite his dad first but now that I know he has somewhere to go I was kind of wondering about his mom. But I brought her up last week and he was in a bad mood the rest of the day. So when my mom asked me if I’d invited her I just said she probably had someplace to go. Last year she went to her dad’s. Remember the one that I took home in a cab? I am worried. Jack told me that a lot of her drama happens on the holidays. Poor baby. Every year he hopes it will be different.

teddy boy holding hanging bear

I think I love Jack more because I want to make up for all the horrific things that happened when he was little. The suicide attempts and the fights with knifes and guns. I want to just love him happy. To make it all better for him. One day we lay in bed all day and he told me every bad memory that he could remember about every holiday. He said that they were either really happy or really horrific.  He told me about this old raggedy teddy bear that he loved and how his mom ripped it up and threw it away and called him a “girl” when he cried. She told him, “You don’t need a doll anymore and I will make sure of it.  And then tore out the stuffing with a knife and then shook it at him to stop crying.

All I know is that he has been really happy just being part of my family and I’ve told my parents that I want to make him feel special. My dad is very nice to him but a little more formal than usual. I am not sure if that is because he is dating his daughter or he is his boss. And my mom, well, I know she has seen me sad because of him. I have tried to not let her know too much exactly because I don’t want her to hate him. But she is different with him than with Laurie or my other friends. I am not sure that he notices. He just seems to be so grateful to be a part of our family. Part of any family I suspect.

#35

 

Dear Journal,

We had the make up class at Alesse Marshals, my modeling school. Jack paid for it. He has been so attentive and sweet. He said that he would pay for my portfolio which I have to have to complete the class and go on jobs. I am not sure what I want to do.

portfolio2

 

But I mean who doesn’t want to be a model? At first I signed up because I wanted to do it for me but now it seems as if Jack really wants me to pursue it. He has been complimenting me a lot lately and said it has been well worth the money. I am not sure what that is supposed to mean. So is he saying that I looked bad before? Once when we were having a fight, he told me that he had dragged me from the gutter and that everything that I am now is because of him. Now that is a back handed compliment if I ever heard one. I mean, my braces were eventually going to come off and my skin was eventually going to clear up and my hair was going to eventually grow out from the Sun IN that I’d kind of fried it with the summer before we met.

combing blonde hair

I think that the modeling school idea was good for me because I have gained confidence. But I also have been asked out by a few guys which I never mentioned to Jack because he doesn’t like it when the guys look at me at the gliderport when we go soaring so I am not sure telling him would be a good idea. Of course I just say no thanks and that I have a boyfriend. The crazy thing is that every minute of every waking hour, I am trying to think up things to make Jack happy.

lake arrowhead cabin

 

Last weekend we went up to Lake Arrowhead and rented a cabin. We had such a good time.  Even though it is fall now, it was still warm and early the next morning we rented a little sailboat and went out on the middle of the lake. Jack brought me by a home that a friend named Larry from High School used to own. It was  beautiful. We sailed right up to it’s dock. It sat on a hill of green grass and it’s front yard was the lake! We walked around the little town and bought firewood and made a fire in the fireplace that night. It was so romantic. We bought a little baby jar of peanutbutter and a loaf of bread and ate sandwiches in front of the fire and lay in each others arms.

fireplace feet

 

It’s different now since that day we went soaring. He is so sorry and  I told him that I forgave him but I also told him that if it ever happened again, it would be the last time he’d ever touch me in anyway. It would be over. I told him that in my heart, I believed in forever when I promised him that I would never leave.  But in my head, I knew that our relationship wouldn’t survive another time like that. The other day, I was doing something and I looked in the mirror.  I mean really looked in a way I hadn’t for a long time. And my reflections stared back as if she were someone else, and the look in her eyes was almost challenging, as if she were asking…. “What are you doing, why are you staying?”

in the mirror

 

#34

Dear Journal,

I wore pants for the next three weeks after that weekend even though it was the end of August and reeeally hot. When I got to Jack’s  to drop off his car. I parked it in front of his house and dropped the keys through the mail box slot. I could have sworn I saw someone look through the curtains but  I was so done with everything about him. And then I realized that he had my books and all my other stuff too. I woke up the next day and realized that I’d have to go back  sometime and get my things and especially my books right away because I still had that test on that Monday night. I had my own set of keys so I called in sick on Monday and waited till I knew that Jack would be gone.

When I drove up, his car was no where to be seen. I was hoping to just slip in and out but Jess was outside mowing his lawn. I waved and he smiled and nodded. I decided that I would just get my books and go and come back another time for my other stuff. All the blinds were drawn and it was dark. There were six empty beer cans on the coffee table. My heart stood still. Jack did not drink. Period.  He hated his mom’s drinking and so just didn’t do it. I was so confused. I had to remind myself that I was just going to grab my books and leave and then I realized that I’d left the book I needed in his car. I silently berated myself. I looked around trying to figure out what to take that I’d need right away when Jack walked in the door.

I jumped and grabbed my heart. He obvioulsy figured that I’d come and didn’t seem surprised to see me. I told him I needed my book. He went to the built in dresser and grabbed it. He had brought it in. He’d known that I’d need it. He explained to me that he’d tried to catch me on my way to work that morning and when he hadn’t, he came back home and found my car here. I told him that I called in sick and then he said “I see that.”

His eyes were sad and he looked hollow. He started to say sorry and I held up my hand to stop him and  unbuttoned and unzipped and then slipped my pants down so that he could see my leg. He dropped to his knees and kissed my bruises and cried. I wanted to push him away and run but all I could do was cry too.  He lifted me up and took me to his unmade bed and all the  planned speeches I’d rehearsed seemed to fall from my head. Jack loved me like he’d never had before.

Later I asked about the beer cans and he agreed that it was a stupid thing to do but that it made him just pass out rather than go hunt me down and try to make ammends before I was ready. He told me that he had a fight with his mom and quit Amber Oil and that I’d gotten the brunt of it. She’d said some horrible things to him and didn’t know where to go with it. I told him that I wished that he’d told me about it and that maybe if we’d talked about it that might have helped. But I must say that I never thought that the next time that I wrote in you that it would be telling you that I was still with Jack.

I finished my modeling classes and have been asked out a few times so I know that Jack is not the only boy who would ever like me, like he likes to tell me when we get in our fights. But if I hadn’t thought that we’d be together forever I never would have made love with him. I really was saving myself for the one I was going to marry and I really do want it to be Jack.

huggggg

#33 Bruises

 

Dear Journal,

I don’t want to be writing this right now but I have a feeling that I need to have it written down somewhere so that I can look back and remember just what happened. I am still not sure what I am going to do about all this but for now I am just numb.

Jack has been working for his mom a few days a week and also at the computer operator job that my dad got him at night fulltime, and I have been working at the Speech And Languge Center  in Buena Park during the day and taking some  classes at college for Speech Therapy a few nights a week this Semester  and  and so we have not had a lot of time together. I always want to be with Jack first. And if I have a night off, I will surprise him and bring him dinner so we can spend time together.

This weekend Jack talked me into going Soaring. We hadn’t been for a while  I don’t feel that comfortable  flying Jack’s new plane and I really needed to study but I told him that I would go with him and wait while he went up, but that I needed to study for a test on Monday and didn’t want to fly. He seemed okay with that. But when I told him that I needed to change since I only had shorts on. He said that I looked just  fine in an impatient tone, so I grabbed my books and hopped in the car and we drove to Lake Elsinore. It was a beautiful day. Jack bought an orange Honda Civic with a sunroof when he started driving back and forth  to work at his mom’s company everyday to save  gas which is almost seventy cents a gallon now! I remember when I first started driving it was about half that! I’m so glad I have my little Fiat that gets over thrity miles per gallon.

Anyway, I could tell that he was in that kind of mood. He started rubbing the back of his his neck and  I reached over to massage it and he shrugged me off which hurt my feelings. So I just stared out the window and he turned on the radio. I started watching all the people driving by and saw that a lot of people were happy and talking and laughing and suddenly felt so lonely. I almost wished that I’d stayed home. I’d like to tell you that it got better but it only got much worse.

Jack had gone in with another pilot and  purchased a plane with him a few months earlier. He’d been so excited and I loved seeing him so happy.  It’s orange like his car and much lighter than  the heavy rental gliders the glideport provides. He really is a wonderful pilot and can stay up for two hours or more at a time unlike my twenty two minute record.  Like I said I am not comfortable flying it so I still have to fly the rentals but I am happy that it makes Jack happy and have no problem waiting for him whenever he wants to go. I mean I really don’t mind at all. I always bring an apple and visit my favorite horse “Pal” that stays on the property at the glider port and study and really do enjoy hanging out with him and brushing him.

Jack went into the office to pay for his tow and when he came out he  threw me his car keys so that I could sit in if I wanted to and then asked me to help him  roll his plane out to the chalk line where the tow plane picks up the gliders. I followed him out to where they have the plane stored and began helping unhook it with him. I felt the tension building even  before he picked up the tail and I lifted the wing. That is when he yelled at me that I was picking up or pushing the wing the wrong way. I’m not sure what happened but something in me broke. Maybe it was driving in a dead silent car for almost 2 hours or the way he was jerking around having a tantrum in his own head all day long or the ridiculing tone of voice that he used when he barked at me but I’d had it too. I swung around and just snapped and  asked him why he even wanted me here and said some other things I can’t remember and asked him if I made him so miserable why was he even with me. That did it. He told me to get in the car. No, he pretty much roared it.

I watched as he hooked his plane back up without my help and then braced myself for the ride home.  He backed out of the parking lot and then screeched out of the glider port as I ducked my head trying to avoid  any eye contact since we both knew everyone. I could still felt the apple for Pal in my pocket as he started driving about 85 miles an hour. I told him to let me out. I tried to have absolutely no emotion. He looked at me and  I saw someone else in his eyes as he balled up his fist and brought it down hard on my thigh. I was shocked and gasped as the pain made me nauseous. And then the blows came, over and over and over and over again while driving close to ninety miles an hour. Raging about how he couldn’t catch a break and how he had two jobs and all he wanted was one day of peace on his only day off and was that too much to ask? He’d always been the one to yell. I’d never even raised my voice before. But as I watched his fist land another blow on my already purple leg.  Finally I’d had enough and  screamed STOP! Until I had no more voice.

He pulled over on the side of the freeway and got out of the car and threw me the keys as they landed on passenger floor and without looking at me said; you drive and instead of going to the other side and getting in, just started walking. I just sat there. Numb. I’d yelled so loud I felt as if my throat was bleeding. But it got him to stop.  I sat there in my shorts and halter top and tried to ignore my throbbing leg.  I began coughing and crying and trying to forget what happened.  I’m not sure how long I sat there like that and then finally I limped around to the driver’s side of the car put the key in the igniton and put the car in first and merged into the traffic and stayed in the slow lane all the way home and just drove. I never saw Jack or knew where he might have gone and for the first time…. I didn’t care.

bruises