For part 10, click here.
When I left off on part 9, I was on my parent's front porch when Jon told me that he was already on his way back to New Jersey to his wife and family. This was around 3:00 in the afternoon on Labor Day, 2001, and I already had a really good buzz on. Most of the rest of the next week is still a blur to me, but here is some of the ridiculousness I either remember, have been told, or have pieced together.
From the front porch, I ranted and raved at Jon on the phone. I told him that I forbade him to go back to his wife, and he better turn his car around right now and come back to me. And then I selfishly ran out in the middle of a family picnic yelling, "will someone please bring J (my 7 year old son) home for me?". My mother asked if all was okay and I told her that Jon had left me to go back to his wife, that was all I told them before abandoning my kid and taking off. I didn't even wait to see if it was convenient for anyone to drive my son home. I couldn't stay a minute longer.
When I got home, revenge was on my mind. Well, revenge and more drinking, of course. I was sending messages from my email to his phone, to his email, I was crazed. I only had dial-up internet access back then, so nobody could even call me if they needed to get through to tell me there was a problem with my son, I just never even thought about it.
I started sending Jon's wife copies of every saved email between he and I. That was my twisted idea of payback for everything that I thought she had put me through. I wanted her to see how much Jon and I loved each other, and I deliberately wanted to hurt her. Apparently, I didn't feel like I had hurt her enough, already. Please don't ask what the fuck I was thinking, because I obviously wasn't thinking clearly.
I don't think I've told before now the ridiculous amount of emails Jon and I had sent to each other, nor the special emphasis we had put on certain things. Anything dealing with Shakespeare, lighthouses, or the Dave Matthews Band had extra-special super-duper secret-handshake meaning between the two of us. We acted like children the way we carried on with silly codes and special importance on what turned out to be basically nothing.
Smart bitch that Lily was, she pretty much scoffed at it all as fool's play. Which is what it was, I just didn't recognize it at the time. I was 30 years old and acting like a love-sick teenager, because no one had ever before been in love as deeply as I was.
Labor Day evening, someone in my family was kind enough to bring my son home to me. Again, it is all a blur for the rest of that week. I was on a serious binge. I didn't go to work, and I'm not sure who brought the boy to school. It might have been me, it might have been my cousin who lived with me. I know for sure that people were picking him up for me, because I was definitely too drunk for that. I don't even remember how I was getting the alcohol, but I'm pretty sure no one was enabling me. I might have been dropping the boy off to school and then hitting up the liquor store on my way home. There was also a store in the area that would occasionally deliver and take a check.
One thing I remember for certain on Labor Day after I got my son to bed was getting off the internet because Jon wasn't responding to me. I called his cell, which he did not pick up, so around 10:30 pm I called the home phone in New Jersey. Their 10 year old daughter picked up. Even I knew that it was a bad idea to ask for her Daddy - I hung up. I will forever wonder what the fuck they were thinking. I found out after that they had caller ID. The daughter knew it was me, and they still let her answer the phone - at 10:30pm on a school night.
On Tuesday, my mother came over to check on me mid-afternoon, before she went to the school to pick up my son for me. I'm extremely proud to say that she found me in bed laying in a pool of my own vomit. Ah, good times. She was kind enough to help me take a shower and change my clothes and my sheets before my son came home to see me in that condition. I've never told her how sorry I am that she saw me in that condition.
My mother was also kind enough to call out from work for me that week. All she told them was that I was in "too much pain" to go to work. God bless her, she didn't give them another shred of explanation.
During that week, I was sending out emails and phone calls like a..., well, like a madwoman. Jon and Lily were trying to respond, but my family was screening my calls for me. My family couldn't be there all the time, though, and when I wasn't on the internet I called them myself.
Lily was trying to be magnanimous as she was the woman who had won at that point, and everyone could see that I had flipped my fucking lid. She kept trying to tell me I had to get up and go to work, I had to be strong for my son. When I look back and think about it, I cringe in horror. Here was a woman who's husband had left her for another woman, trying to help the other woman be strong when he left her, too. I'll never forget thoughtlessly saying to her, "but he promised me he would never leave me...". She reminded me that he had taken vows before their family, friends and God that he would never leave her.
By the time Friday rolled around, I had gotten an appointment with my previous therapist. He agreed to give me a return to work date of the following Monday, but he was not accepting new clients, so I had to find a new therapist asap.
By Friday, I had finally stopped crying and started trying to return to normal. And I started getting angry, which was a good thing. I also started cutting back on the drinking. I smashed the acoustic guitar I had bought for him into smithereens. I gathered up everything Jon had left behind into a couple of garbage bags. I smashed picture frames and threw the glass into the garbage bags. Every rose he had ever given me that I hung to dry got crushed and thrown in next. Then I took every bottle of lotion in the house and squirted them all over the inside of those bags. Want your stuff back now, bastard?
That Sunday was my great-niece's baptism. My head was pounding, I was sweating, I was having heart palpitations and having trouble breathing. I had no idea that drinking as heavily as I had for the past week could cause severe withdrawal when you quit cold-turkey. But I stayed sober that day, and went home to try to normalize both mine and my son's life.
While on-line that night after my son went to bed, Jon texted my email from his cell and asked if he could call me. I was insanely curious about what he could possibly have to say and said yes. He called and almost acted like nothing had happened, "What are you doing?". Um, I'm on the phone with you wondering what the fuck you want. What are you doing? He said he was at the grocery store picking up stuff for his kids lunches for the following week. Then he finally got to the point.
"I think I made a mistake."
I was in no mood to be nice to him. "What you made a mistake by not realizing your kids need lunch for school for the next week until after 10:00 on a Sunday night? Because, really, your mistake may have been thinking that you had any parenting skills."
"No" he responded, "I think I made a mistake going back to Lily".
4 hours ago