“You’re angry at yourself, you’re feeling guilty, you’re obviously angry at the perpetrator, you’re angry at the people who let it happen.” – Andrea Saenz
Fiction. Based on a True Relationship.
This journal entry is inspired by true events. Some of the characters, names, businesses, incidents, and certain locations and events have been fictionalized for dramatic purposes. Any similarity to the name, character or history of any person is entirely coincidental and unintentional.
“I’m pregnant,” I say to you. Your eyes show shock but your lips smile. I was so terrified of your reaction. We are both in college, we both have just started our relationship I thought this would somehow ruin it and make you mad but it didn’t. You hug me and twirl me and show me all this affection. I see it before us, our life together with our little baby and I’m ecstatic. I want this, I want you, I want us. So do you.
We get a house, it’s little but it’s ours. We both leave college because we need to work full-time. We both know we’ll need as much money as we can get. I go to the doctor and they tell me my due date is in February and I can’t wait. We can’t wait.
You seem so excited which makes me so excited, calm. I can’t even believe this is my life. Everything feels so good right now and soon it’ll be better. I fall asleep every night between your arms and our smiles couldn’t be bigger. I could do this for the rest of my life.
February comes and our baby girl is here. We are parents and we couldn’t be happier. I see the way you hold her, with so much love. You can’t stop buying stuff for her even though she has everything she needs. We take her home and it’s bliss. Our house is full of love and smiles. We’re a family now. It’s us forever.
I talk to you about marriage yet you scoff. I ask you why it hasn’t crossed your mind and you just shrug and say you’re happy the way things are. I’m happy we’re enough, but wouldn’t it be great to make it official?
Two year have passed by but we’re not the same. We’re working all the time. I want to arrive home and chill but even being home feels like work. You’re never home and I don’t know what you do when you aren’t home. But I always have a feeling that you’re hiding so much from me. I used to ask you how your day was and what’d you do today but you just shouted at me, “Why do you ask so much shit?” So I never ask anymore. To be totally honest, I don’t really care either. I’m alone now. It’s me and it’s you but it’s not us. I have to do everything. You never help anymore. I get that you’re tired but we are a team. We used to be. When I try to talk to you we end up fighting. You shout at me to stop nagging you. That you work for this family. I work, too yet here I am, doing everything at the house so the baby feels at peace.
I find out I’m pregnant again and I tell you. “Again? Are you sure?” is what you ask. You’re angry and mad at me like it was my fault I got pregnant. You start spiraling because you need to make more money. We have to work more. We have to take care of another human like it is a burden. I would never see it as a burden; it is my blessing. How can having a baby be a burden? I’m incredibly grateful for the one we have, having another one will make things so much more harder but so much more full of love.
It gets worse and worse. You start accusing me of sleeping with other people when I know for a fact that you’re the one that has, but I’ve let it go because we have a family and you always come back to us. Our house is filled with screams. Once you used to say we were enough and now I’m what? Just another woman? The person who pleases you at night? The woman who cleans your house and takes care of your child?
You start to scream at me in public and saying vulgar words to belittle me. You make me feel so dirty, like I’m the one who’s in the wrong. I feel numb because no words you say make me feel anything anymore. My family doesn’t even want to invite us anywhere because they know we’ll end up fighting. I don’t want to go anywhere with you because we end up screaming at each other. You leave me at places because ‘you can’t deal with me’. I’m 8 months pregnant and supposed to be on bed rest but I work long hours to arrive and do everything in the house because you’re so drunk you fall asleep in the tub.
I feel a weight everywhere. It’s there when I wake up, when I shower, when I see our little girl, when I feel our baby’s kicks. I feel so much weight on me. Anger, madness, sadness. I’m coping. I’m under water trying to breathe. I feel so much less than you.Why am I less than you? Why do I feel like I need to please you all the time? Why do I make excuses for you? Why do I have to take screams and ignorant words from anybody? What happened to you? What happened to us? What happened to me?
You never hit me, you never once hit our children, you never once left. As much as I wish you did leave, you didn’t. You always came back home. Drunk, high, mad, or happy you always come back home. That is the only reason why I stayed with you for so long but not anymore. I finally left you.
I can breathe again. I feel like I was holding my breath for so long, parts of me died. Truth is, I don’t know who I am now. After you it’s just that, after. I’m finally going to find myself again. I have to reinvent myself, live life as a single mom and work every single waking moment trying to make life better for my two children. But you don’t let me. You used to want nothing to do with me and now you want equal parts in our arrangements to care for our kids. You don’t give, you just want to take. You start telling them things to make me seem the bad parent. They ask me why I don’t let them see you or why I don’t let them talk to you as much and I never know what to say rather than there are rules that need to be followed. Even though we’re not together, you’re the father of my children and I would never bad mouth you, I would never do to you what you did to me even though I’m fuming with rage.
So you see, you may hate me now. You say how I made a life for you that you never wanted and how I ruined it for you but you made mine so full of love. These two gorgeous little people we created are more than enough for me. You made me stronger. You made me what I am today. So fine talk nonsense about me. I will rise from it and show my babies how to be stronger and happier even when life tries to drag one down.