Of course, it wasn’t love at first sight. Love at 50th sight, maybe. And I recall that day when we met clearly even though it was nearly 30 years ago.
Those eyes! Good God. Swimming pool blue. Deep enough to dive into. And in that split second, when you looked at me and I looked at you, the Sold sign was hammered into my soul. I began to live and breathe you.
Sadly, the depth of my love was not reciprocated but, pah! you would come round sooner or later – you had to! For goodness sakes, I would swear allegiance to your ways, causes, differences.
We had fun. I moved in. We married. But years later, I began to realise through the salty and frequent tears that these major life events were at my instigation. I had to have you, I loved you so much.
Our wedding was my triumph! My life’s project. My salvation. My badge of acceptance in your world. You got swept along. I bought the rings, the dress and paid for the honeymoon. Your role was to show up. You nearly didn’t.
I swore and cursed at you for having second thoughts: holy smokes – the embarrassment had you cancelled! I threatened to cut your balls off. But I loved you so much.
When we married, the power really shifted and I became weak. You called the shots and made me live my life as if I was just existing. We did nothing. No outings, no excitement and not much fun. But I loved you so much. My friends and sister came to the house and you ignored them causing offence and an unwillingness on their part to return. You forgot I was a woman, and you ignored me. You clicked your fingers for dinner. You watched me do all the painting, decorating, tiling, housework, cleaning and shopping. And you watched me die inside – in little, incremental steps.
I used to stand under the running shower head and scream and cry under the jets of water. My life wasn’t supposed to be like this! I was not living – just existing!
Yep! You killed me. But I loved you so much.
I asked for a divorce because I really was dying inside. We had been out as a couple only twice in 15 years. I was short of money. But I loved you so much; my boy with swimming pool blue eyes.
I couldn’t go on with life the way it was. After 25 years together, I asked you for a divorce and you acknowledged my plight. You said: “I have been a terrible husband”. Following such an admission of guilt, some people may have reached for the bunting at this stage, but I froze: it meant you knew, dear boy, what you were doing, but continued on your path simply because you could!
I was a child brought up in the care system and you used my insecurities to your advantage. But I loved you so much.
After one miracle child together and years later we are divorced. Towards the end of our marriage – and after I had asked for a divorce – I met someone who – for the first time in decades – was interested in me. ‘How are you?’ ‘How was your day?’ questions I had not heard for many years. My husband assumed this man was after sex but, actually, he was not. We have never ever had intercourse. He is impotent.
Before we divorced, my boy with swimming pool blue eyes looked me at me and said: “I will ruin you”.
Yes, he made me homeless. Yes, I had to live without our child for one year while I sorted out accommodation. Yes, he has all but ‘ruined’ me. But, my boy with swimming pool blue eyes: I love you so much. And I forgive you, and wish you happiness.