Wednesday, January 3, 2007

24 hours

Tomorrow, at 9:00AM local time, is my court date for the girls modification.
My freedom is within reach.

What a bundle of emotions that stirs up. Hard to believe I will have it all tomorrow. 24 hours from right now.

If you look back through the archives of this blog, you can see the hell The Slug put me through since our divorce. When I went to my lawyer for our first meeting, I had gone back through all of my notebook journals and wrote out everything that he had done to make my life hell, and why I thought it was in the girls' best interest for me to have sole custody of them. It was 6 pages typed, single spaced. And that was just the past year. I could have gone back and listed everything he had done since the divorce, or even further and listed all he'd done while we were married too. And I would have, if it had become necessary. I just thought that 5 restraining orders in 2 years, and the fact that he couldn't keep a job or pay child support on time spoke for themselves.

The sad thing about the whole situation was my acceptance of it. He had stripped me of my self esteem (not that I had that much when we met) and my worth. He was abusive, mentally, emotionally, physically. And I stayed. Even after I left (ok, after I was thrown out) he stalked me, he harrassed me, he threatened me. His behavior cost me several jobs, and several relationships (although I think he may have been doing me a favor then). I just came to accept that he was always going to be a pain in the ass, and was always going to be a problem I would have to deal with. I would just have to accept it. I didn't realize how damaging his behavior was to my health, and my life. I just accepted it as a fact of my life.

Until this summer. Batman's Aunt passed away in October. He asked me to attend the visitation and funeral with him. (I was family, almost, at that point). I had asked The Slug if he could keep the girls for me one more night, so that I could attend both. He grudgingly agreed, so I went.

The day of the funeral, at 2:30, I get a voice mail message from The Slug saying "I'm not picking up the girls tonight. So you better get your ass home and get them. You don't need to be down there with your boyfriend any longer. You need to get your ass home to your kids." To make a long story, short, he said if I didn't get home he would have me charged with abandonment. Whether he could or not doesn't matter. I couldn't risk it, I couldn't risk the girls. I left. Made arrangements for the girls to be picked up, and I would get them as soon as I got into town. Apparently The Slug didn't want anyone picking up the girls but me (as if he had a choice) so he found them, and took them.

I had to get the police involved to get them back. Obviously he could have taken them that night (he did) and he just showed his ass to prove to me, to B, and to himself that he could still make me jump through hoops. He proved he could still control me, he could still call the shots in my life. He still had too much power.

Batman couldn't deal with the drama. It was too much. I was headed for another break down. If I let things continue I would be in the hospital again. The girls were being used as pawns. It was ugly. Batman said "You need to change this. You need to get away from him. You need to get him out of your life, and the girls' life. This is not healthy for any of you."

He was right. I couldn't make a life with anyone as long as The Slug had this kind of power over my life. I wasn't free to give myself to anyone else. I wasn't free to share my life with someone, because I didn't have my life. The Slug still controlled my life. I wasn't free of my past, no matter what the court papers said, the reality of my life was vastly different.

Tomorrow, at 9:00, the judge will rule on our modification. I will be granted sole custody of the girls. I will be granted the freedom to move, to relocate, away from The Slug, closer to Batman, as soon as the girls are out of school. I will have been given the greatest gift, I will have my life, and my girls' life. We will be free. No longer will he control me, no longer will he haunt me, no longer will he threaten me. No longer will he defy me, no longer will I have to fight with him over the simplest decisions. I will be free. I will be my own person. I will own my life. The girls will be mine.

Tomorrow. What a beautiful day.

Freedom. What a wonderful word.


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