Monday, 27 August 2012
sad eyes tell a story, even if you don't know it...
I was married the first time to my first love. I was 21 just and he was 20 and we had to ask permission from his parents to marry.. I left out telling mine until the deed was done, as I am sure that they would have tried to make me wait and take time to make such a momentous decision. I was three months pregnant and eager to be a wife and mother. I did have a good job, but was waylaid by the idea of marriage and babies.
Looking back, my husband was doing what he thought, was the right thing to do when you get a girl pregnant., but although I am sure I think he felt he loved me, the responsibility is only now seen by me after all these years. It might have been ok, if I had not gone on to have another four children within a 12 year span, putting the onus of finding money to pay rent or mortgage or food and all the other necessities of life with a family onto his shoulders. He was already of a nervous nature if only I had realised, and whilst I will never regret having and keeping my darlings, the pressure on him was enormous and I was completely oblivious to it. I thought that my day to day running of the house and trying to make end meet was enough to worry about.
Being parents at such a young age, I thought was advantageous as I've said in another post, I thought we could still be young and going out when the kids were older, but of course it never worked out like that. He found that using alcohol as a sort of escape was an easy choice and whilst we always seemed to manage to have just enough to feed and clothe them there were never planned holidays or much going out and socialising and I guess the extra money was going on the drink. Unfortunately as the years went, the booze intake got bigger and bigger the more successful he became, and eventually was the reason for our split as we could not go on hurting each other.
All the years I was with him I told no one of my difficulties ,and his drinking was never discussed although my parents had an idea that it was getting out of hand. I carried on and smiled away the pain, and just tried to make it alright for the kids... Of course I fooled not a single one of my children, they all knew what was going on, and still I made a stab at trying to keep the family together, because like many others, when he was sober and alert, he was the best person you would ever want to know.
But gradually as the years went it got too hard, it was now every night that we would have to put up with his rants and outrages and even though the children would be all in bed, of course they could hear him going on downstairs. To this day they all flinch at loud voices and I know that is a relic of those ugly times.
I have always been a positive person, and the best way I could cope was to focus on the kids and make sure they all got on ok.. Once we were called to one of the children's school to discuss behaviour and attitude, and we were asked outright if all was well at home, what else could be worrying this child.. So, what do you think was our first reaction? Of course we said no... nothing we could think of that would bother the child so much that behaviour was questionable... what an outright lie, but this was what happened, you covered up, you dealt with it in silence.!
My husband's own home life was awful, with him being picked out by his father when he came home from the pub, to be stood in a corner and ranted and shouted at for all hours, even when he had school to go to the next day.[ His mother had reasoned, better one child took the brunt, rather that the other three..] so I had a lot of sympathy with him, but as it was replayed in our home, the structure of the drinking and the shouting and the going over and over of matters that he thought were important, became more and more harder to bear. In the end I put down unreasonable behaviour, as a divorce matter, but he wanted that changed to Adultery,, when I knew he had never strayed, but felt that it sounded better on the form..
Ah well, a long time ago now, but all that angst and hurt and destroyed love, left its mark in my eyes and now I see that as I get older I cannot keep a lid on it and my eyes are telling the world that I knew other times that were not the happiest.. I don't know how you get the sparkle back, because when you stamp on anything, that thing dies, and I think that inside my soul I did die a little bit... not enough to kill me, but enough to effect me and the life choices I have made since.
When you decide the second time around, if you do get the chance, I think you might go to choose just the opposite of what you have known.. I chose my present husband because he didn't drink much, was solid, dependable and reliable. However, I think I must be harder to please, because all the above good points over a long period of time develop into little quirks, like not liking travel or visiting places or people, or socialising much except with his own circle of friends, not being adventurous, not liking driving out for the pleasure of being in another place for a few hours.... these little quirks I have to live with and adapt as well as I can, but its been hard, and not the easiest of road... however, I must not get on the boring grumbling tract that would be so easy.
So I do a lot of what I want to do, but do not expect him to be accompanying me every time.. solitary it might be at times, but at least I do get out from the house. I wish I could have told my younger self to listen to my parents, to take time to make big decisions, but then I wouldn't have my wonderful kids, and I would have missed so much joy that I have still when we are all together.... and my first husband, gave up the drink for a long while after I left, and gets together with me and John when we all have family get togethers like weddings..
He will always be my first love, but the hurt was too deep for it ever now to be anything but a distant memory.