Wednesday, June 20, 2018

WEP: Unraveled Yarn



It's time for more Write . . . Edit . . . Publish!  Thanks to Yolanda Renee, Denise Covey, Olga Godim, and Nilanjana Bose for making this possible.

The theme for this month is Unraveled Yarn.  There were a lot of possibilities with this one, and I expect there will be a lot of fascinating entries as always.  Here's mine, and I hope you enjoy it!

A Life Unraveled

My life has unraveled around me, and it’s your fault.  I can see the threads that once wove together the tapestry of me, but they don’t make sense anymore.  A favorite book that is collecting dust on a shelf.  The faded pink canvas shoes that I wore for at least a year too long.  The afghan I once started knitting to remind me of my grandmother, only a quarter done and tucked away under the bed to rot.  I can’t for the life of me pick up those loose threads and recreate my former self.
Why?  Why did you reach into my heart and dig your hooks into it when you didn’t want me to lay a similar claim on you?  Why did you erupt with jealousy, the flames practically dancing in your eyes, when anyone else paid me the least little bit of attention?  Why did I allow myself to believe that meant you loved me, and why did I not question how upset you got when I expressed concern that you were still spending time with other girls?
I feel dumb now.  Everyone I know, friends and family alike, tried to warn me. 
“He’ll change who you are,” my sister Leah said.
“You walk on eggshells around him.  Fear doesn’t equal love,” my mom told me.
“I’m tempted to kill him myself,” Dad mumbled when he thought no one was listening.
I should have listened to them.  You knew that, didn’t you?  You knew exactly what you were doing to me.  You convinced me that I didn’t need to go back to school, and you persuaded me to say no to my friends every time they wanted to have a night out.  Your reasons made a warped kind of sense at the time.  “We can’t afford for you to spend the money right now.”  “You’re supposed to want to spend time with me.”  “Your friends just want to stare at guys, and I don’t feel comfortable with you being a part of that.”  “You can’t trust other men, okay?  Who knows what they might do to you if you put yourself out there?”
I lost track of my old life.  Bit by bit, pieces of that existence fell away.  Days turned to years, and I couldn’t remember the last time I’d seen or spoken to either of my parents.  My friends stopped trying to reach out to me.  And I found some relief in that at times.  It was hard coming up with excuses for the bruises my clothes wouldn’t cover.
Were there times I considered leaving you?  Sure there were.  Little snippets of the kinds of fantasies I had as a little girl would infest my brain from time to time.  Perhaps the details were different.  Instead of dreaming of being a princess living in a castle, I envisioned living in a nice home without having to worry about setting off someone else’s vile temper.  I reminded myself that I once wanted to travel the world and take photos.  I longed to try food from every country.  I toyed with the idea of writing a book or taking up painting or trying my hand at rock climbing.  My life could have been anything, but instead I let myself wither here with you.
I wish I could pick myself back up and try again.  I’d make different choices.  I’d try to put myself first.  I’d reweave myself to create something new and bold.  Beautiful.  If only I could.
But for the life of me I can’t do any of it, because I have no life.  In the most literal sense, my life is over.  It ended the night you took a baseball bat to my head during a heated argument.  You should be in prison, but my bones are buried in a shallow grave that has yet to be discovered.  So here you are, still living in the house we shared together, and no one has noticed anything changed.  Why should they when I never set foot outside the house?  When I never called anyone anymore?
It’s cruel, really.  I haunt this place, and it haunts me in return.  In life I could not escape it, and in death it is much the same.  I get to see how little you miss me.  My absence means nothing to you, and I wish I tear your flesh away from your bones.  I wish I could unwind you and leave you in ruin the way you did to me.  But I can’t.  All I can do is linger and recall all that came apart within these walls.
It’s all your fault, and you don’t care.

Word Count: 775
FCA

And that's it!  Be sure to visit the other participants and leave them some wonderful comments.


18 comments:

  1. Heartrending. Emotional abuse is an isolator which makes further abuse more likely. And safer for the abuser.
    I do hope her ghotst grows teeth. Sharp ones.

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  2. Ditto on EC's wish! Wow, another one who allowed herself to disappear, literally!
    The perfect entry for the WEP Unraveled Yarn Challenge!

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  3. This is a heavy story and it is so sad. She lost the most priceless thing that she can never replace and that is herself. But there is always a second, third, or fourth chance. Let's hope she discovers the strength to stand up and walk out.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G

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  5. Hopefully her ghost is able to burn down the house with him in it. Awful how it buries many so far that they lose themselves and then sometimes end up in a shallow grave.

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  6. Hi L.g. i'm in a public place and your story made me cry. How powerful! How poignant! How all-too-common! Leaving an abuser seems simple to those who've never lived with an abuser, but from the stories you hear, leaving is never the end of it. The abuser hounds you, finds you, and in the worst-case scenario kills you. Then women are tied to their children and worry how they can support them alone. The women's shelters are full. Where do they go? Live in their car? Live under a bridge. Face further abuse? Our society has a loooong way to go to understand an abused woman (and yeah maybe there's a man or two in there, but the majority are women!). I could say more but time to go and have another little cry. Domestic violence is one of my 'things'.

    Thanks L.G. Wonderful to bring such a story to the forefront. Unraveling it is,,,

    Denise

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  7. This is heart-breaking! Too many women out there who have suffered as this one has. Abuse is isolating and terrifying. I hope she can find some way to peace after death if not in life...can the tapestry be rewoven in afterlife? I hope it can.

    Brilliant take on the prompt!

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  8. Death should have released her from all the abuse. How cruel to be tied to it forever. Well written LG.

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  9. It is all so true.
    I've seen it over and over.
    Yet I know it took two.
    One to do it and the other to let them.
    I've told my granddaughter
    if you leave I'll back you.
    It all comes down to.

    If You.

    I was going to say
    good story but it's not
    a story it's true.

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  10. A friend contacted me through email about my comment above. She said it might be construed as an insult by women who suffered from abuse. I didn't mean to offend anyone, so I apologize if I did. Please, consider my words retracted.

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  11. I call people like that manipulators, and I knew someone like that when I was younger. He called it mind games, and loved getting the better of others. He called that winning. I finally removed myself from that situation. Some people stay too long, because when your self-esteem is broken, you no longer have faith in yourself to change the situation. Excellent post about dealing with abuse, when lives become unraveled.

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  12. A sobering read, LG. Hindsight from the shallow grave. So sad but true not just of DV, but life in general.

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  13. A haunting tale of unfulfilled revenge. Well done

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  14. Hi LG - appallingly common ... and amazing how these people can hide their victims away, til they are unknown - not there ... as the perpetrator is in control. So well written - and so true in places around the world. I hope he suffers in some small way ... who can rest after doing that: not good - well done - Hilary

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  15. We can only hope their is some kind of justice that will be found for people in these kind of situations. I hope she will be able to haunt him.

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  16. Stopping by to congratulate you on your WEP award. And I still hope (with all of my heart) that the ghost has teeth.

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