Monday, October 25, 2010


It's 7:30 in the evening, Steven and I are in our temporary home after a long day of police reports, baggage claims and car breakdowns on 495. I am frazzled and my son is confused, this is not his home and Mommy is not herself. He's been climbing on chairs all evening, and I was beginning to lose my patience and cave under the pressure when he made me laugh by eating a pizza roll. He's never eaten such a thing. When it comes to finger foods, he's always been a chicken nugget kinda guy. He's smearing the remains on the floor and he's due for a bath soon. So is the kitchen floor...tomorrow. Meanwhile a paper towel will have to do.

I never thought I'd be the victim of domestic violence. I never thought I'd be one to hit back. I was a timid child growing up, but the past three years have changed me dramatically. To be abandoned by family when my life was on the line, to be reduced to poverty with no end in sight and to be essentially lied to for the duration of my relationship with my son's father has made me someone that I do not want to be.

Steve is in what was once our home. I miss it somewhat, but I do not miss him. I am scared, where will we lay our head long-term? Steve was served with a protective order today, and he must have resisted arrest or tried to hide, because they booked him, took him to the jail and set him up for court. He wants me to plead on his behalf. I shall ask the judge to make him go to Alcoholics Anonymous and therapy. He's a broken man with a broken past, he put his hands on me and I fought back. I fled out of the bedroom window in the middle of the night, my sleeping son in my arms because the county police had failed me when they ordered me to let the man back in the house. There is no turning back now.

Steve loves his son, there is no doubt. And I do pity him. But he cannot be around my son in the mental state that he's in. Especially when he repeatedly threatened the life of his son's mother. No sir, you may not snap my neck. You may not get near enough to me to do so. Steve wants to see his son over the holidays, sure with supervision. I'm not trying to use my son as a chess pawn, this isn't about money. I want my son to lose that look of fear that's in his eyes every time my voice is raised. There was once a time when he paid me no attention at all. But now his gray/green eyes widen with fear, even though I'm just trying to peel him off the wall as usual. Ever since Saturday, Mommy's raised voice means danger. My son cannot talk but he knows how to hide.

I have no idea how to undo the damage except to keep him close to me. He sleeps by my side at night, and I try to keep his routine as familiar as possible; Mickey Mouse episodes all day, baths each night and books before bed. He sleeps curled up at my side and for the past few nights has not had any night terrors. It's a blessing, given the circumstances.