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thursday 12.28.2000
crystal day

on the 31st (yes, new year's eve) my beloved saxy and i celebrate our 3rd anniversary. astonishing. as of this summer i never expected us to be celebrating it. by this fall i "knew" we wouldn't be celebrating this anniversary or any other for that matter. the papers were filed, it was over. i loved him but couldn't handle the screaming fights that were happening almost daily, the abuse he seemed unaware of, the feeling that he wasn't a part of the family and he didn't want my kids around. it had become less a marriage and more of him living here making the rest of us walk on egg shells. the atmosphere was depressing, the relationship had lost its joy and my children were miserable. so i took the steps to relieve our pain, even though it hurt me very much to do so. with all the chances that he had blown previously, i never imagined us getting back together.

but here we are.

it hurt so much to be away from him. yes, i did what i had to do. i did everything i could to move on, even reconnected with an old boyfriend who is now one of my best friends, who has always been one of my best friends. but i couldn't ignore the pain in my heart . . . or his. when he first begged to come back, promising that things would be different, i did as pharaoh and hardened my heart. too many broken promises already, my trust was destroyed beyond belief. i knew that a marriage without trust isn't a marriage and is doomed to failure. never before has anyone ever regained my trust in them once they have shattered it. so i wouldn't listen, i would point out how many other chances he had destroyed or not taken advantage of. i just couldn't go there again. my kids would never trust me again, and the risk to us emotionally was too great. so day after day i told him no. we can be friends, i want to be friends as much as we can be, but i did not want him back in this house. there was too much hurt to overcome, that was being overcome. the risk was too great.

what changed? i honestly have no idea. something in me mourned the death of our marriage. something in me needed him and him alone. so, the day before i was to schedule the court appearance, i gave in to what we both were feeling. i think i surprised the both of us. i know i surprised him. i explained it all to the kids before i talked to him and made this promise: if things look to be going down the same road as before, if he starts being the same as before, it will be over and that will be it. no more chances, just this last one. if he blows this, its over. i admit they were reluctant to accept, they were not happy about another try. he had hurt them so bad. but they agreed to give him a shot. one last time.

and here we are.

i never expected a marriage to be all wonderful things. i lost those romantic notions of marriage always being happily ever after in my first marriage. and people are people, where there are two together there is bound to be disagreement. this is life. but i knew the everyday fighting was a problem. the constant feeling of needing to defend myself and my children from another emotionally was wrong. and i feared these things would come back. if not right away, then in a few weeks. never before had any "changes" in how he treated us ever lasted more than a week or two, six if i were lucky. so i still did not expect us to be celebrating our anniversary. i was giving him a chance, but the trust was still gone and i expected him to be gone by the holidays, if not sooner. abusers never change, or rarely if ever. i was not sure saxy would be able to rise above the habits of behavior and attitudes garnered over the last two years. as much as i love him, i still didn't see a future for us.

he has surprised us all. oh there are days when he is cranky, days when i "see" things slipping if just a little and i worry that the cycle is beginning again. but it doesn't last long and usually all it takes is a nudge to get him to correct himself. other days i can freely admit it is my own brand of paranoia and protectiveness rearing their ugly heads, it is me being over sensitive rather than him falling back into old habits. the stress of being jobless, impending surgery, having two pmsing females in the house (one a teenager), and numerous other things has got to have him ready to just explode, yet he keeps himself on track and doesn't take it out on us. we may have disagreements, but we no longer have screaming hysterical fights. he still isn't completely comfortable with the kids, but he is doing better. he leaves the serious stuff to me, backs me when i need it, and gives me a break when i need it. he even plays with them occasionally. not as much as they would like, but more than he did. and they are still smiling.

no marriage is perfect. i don't expect it to be. i am not sure i even would WANT it to be. how could we grow as a couple if everything were perfect? regardless, our marriage is better. WE are better. and i am very glad i gave him another chance. i love you saxy. welcome home.

may we continue to be here for the rest of our lives.

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