Living Happily Ever After


Sudden Strangers

March 18, 2009.  The first of many nights I allowed a stranger to sleep in my home.

That is exactly the way it felt.

I heard Him sleeping that night, probably the best sleep He’d had since 1994 when His crimes began.  He had lost everything, including His family, He was headed to prison, but He could finally sleep.

Ironic that I couldn’t sleep anymore, isn’t it?

I lay awake all night, crying, in shock, filled with dread and terrified at what lay ahead for my children and I.  And even more frightening than all of that was having Him in the house.  I felt like I didn’t know Him anymore.  At all. It was exactly like opening my home to a stranger off the street and fearing what He might do to my children and I in the middle of the night.

Sudden strangers.

I couldn’t believe how quickly a man I’d known for 21 years, and had been married to for nearly 20 years, suddenly became a stranger to me.

Day three after the nightmare began we were walking up the wooden steps to His shop behind our house.  I stepped on a broken board, my foot slipped through, I caught myself but not before He reached out to steady me.  As He did, His hand accidentally grazed my backside.

I didn’t anticipate how strange His touch had instantly become.  I was amazed at how wrong it seemed and how uncomfortable it made me.  But I didn’t say anything. He apologized for touching me; said He was just trying to steady me.

How strange this man who was once my husband (I thought) apologizes for touching me.

How strange that his touch made ME feel uncomfortable.

Sudden strangers.

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