For the hundredth time in 15 years enough was enough, she was leaving. She was not going to take this abuse anymore, she was not going to be unhappy every single day. She was going to make a change. She was determined no matter what.
She packed their bags, she rang her brother, she was never returning to this hell.
For the hundredth time she explained to her family what he was doing, the welt on her face enraged the men in her home, her mother tried to keep everyone calm. She soothed the kids and put them to bed. Her mom said to her things will be different in the morning light. Not this time, she thought, This time I am determined no matter what.
She stayed strong in her determination and she didn’t flinch no matter what his family said. She prayed for guidance and remained silent and steadfast. It was over.
The kids played up, tears, tantrums and she stood firm.
The kids played up, manipulation and guilt and she started to get weak.
Weak in trying to do it on her own but not weak in her determination. It was over.
Her dad vowed to support her, couldn’t believe this is what her life was like over the last 15 years. For the first time she felt like she was understood and her determination grew. She knew she could do it now and it would be easy. She had their support.
She smiled, the scent of freedom near.
He started to beg, he wanted her back. The game is familiar but she knows she is never the winner and she remains determined.
The kids played up and chose their father in the midst of a tantrum and they broke her heart. No matter how many times they took it back and stayed, they hurt her more than he ever did.
Her father told her that her kids need a father, even if it is just in name.
Her mother told her it is her duty to persevere, maybe he will change. She must give him another chance. After all, who wants a divorced woman with 3 children, who will support her, where will she stay.
She looked to her brother who only a couple of weeks ago wiped her tears, he looked away.
Her uncle told her that she must go back to him, she cannot burden her parents at their age and what shame she’d bring on herself and her children, that sometimes men get angry. Try harder, he said, maybe you are doing something to displease him.
She wiped away her tears.
She rang him the next morning asking him if she could come home.
He opened the door, the kids rushed in, ecstatic that they were finally back home, it was all going to be ok.
There was not a tear in sight as she crossed the threshold, but her eyes were dead.