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Denial, Family Turmoil

By Toni Parker

 

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Matthew 13:22, "He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful."

            I was a real stunner, knew I could have anything my heart desired, but I wanted Bob. My family life, the house and all its trimmings, surely my life was complete and happy.

            All was to change from the day I met Deloris, my real estate agent. Her face looked like it had just finished a total overhaul at the surgeon office. I could take my eyes off her. What she wore clung to her like a second skin, each fold of red leather. Hugging all her vital parts.

            I was totally magnetised by Deloris. Her flair  was second, only the aura of her flashy red car. Deloris was someone I could relate to! She must of been in the movie business, I wondered.

            I have seen lovely clothing, but on Deloris nothing could of been more gorgeous than what she wore. I wished with every inkling of my body to learn to dress with that style and elegance.

            It was after this meeting with Deloris things began to change. At first I could not put my finger on.

            The sight of Deloris lingered in my mind long after she had gone. I knew I had to come down to earth for Bob’s sake, I thought. I knew though he would never understand how I felt.

That evening------

“Bob can we chat?” She asked half heartedly.

Bob didn’t answer me, why couldn’t this man feel, my aggravation stirring inside of me when he ignores me? Bob listens to voices on the TV more than me, why? Has he no idea how difficult the move has been to me? Husband? yes. Bob has been a good husband, but now I need a friend who will listen to me. I need help adjusting to new places, no family, ohh the loneliness. She moaned inwardly.

            Deloris, the classy lady, the real estate agent, she talked like she really wanted to get to  know me. Could it be she cared what was going on? I wonder if she could help me find some friends in this town. She was great finding our house and making the final decision about our moving here.”  I wondered, I made a mental note to call her in the morning to see if we could arrange a lunch somehow.

            Excitedly I ran to my husband giving him a quick peck on the cheek I am going to bed now, for the first time since the move I felt like this just may work out.  I awoke getting the kids hurriedly dressed for school. As soon as the house was quiet I tackled ringing Deloris, I had never in my entire life done something so bold. the nervousness could be felt in my stubborn fingers as I tried blunderingly to dial the number on the key pad.

“Hello,... Deloris?” I stammered

“yes, may I help you?” came the most efficient reply.

“ Deloris, its Jessy.. Jessy Rolands, You said if I needed any help not to hesitate in contacting you.. Well I am.” I spoke a million miles per hour before I lost my nerve.

“Yes Jess, How are you? And what can I do for you?”

“ I was wondering if your free to catch up with me for lunch.” I replied hesitantly

“Hmm, Yes I would like that, how about I pick you up around 11.30 this morning I have a meeting at 12.00 but I would love to do that if that is convenient for you”

“ Yes that would be just fine.” I hung up I felt unconquerable inside was just jumping with anticipation.

            The morning dragged on and on. I think I changed around seven times, before giving up. She arrived out the front on perfect schedule, hooting her horn. With all my inner confidence I could muster I headed to the door. She took me to this most classy little coffee shoppe on the east street of town they made a mean coffee Deloris told me.

The meeting went off without a hitch like we were two long lost sister reunion, it was fabulous but time quickly escaped us.

“Jess I really d have to scoot but promise me we will do this again it has been so nice just to get together with no business, I really don’t do this often enough Thank you for enlightening me on what I am missing.” Deloris said as they headed to her car. “ I will call you tomorrow.” Deloris as she sped off, her tail lights becoming the only view left of her as she drove off down the road. I felt great.

            I headed to the door the sudden realisation hit me Bob was due home early today, it totally slipped my mind. I let myself in. Bob was unaware of my return. I called out “Hi Honey, I am home. Deloris spent a little time with me. I’d like to get to know her better, maybe we could all be friends.” I said as I pranced ever so little in front of the television to catch my husband attention, my heart was racing with anticipation soon dashed when I noticed that Bob was leaning further around the chair to see what was happening on the idiot box. The thought of someone as glamorous as Deloris entering my house, look at it. Look at him, my husband of ten years, slouched on the couch, empty potato chip packets, strewn all over the floor where he sits, and overflowing ashtray, empty tinnies lined up along his chair. Lets me know that he absorbed at least two hours of the footy. I wanted some glamour in our lives. Just how glamorous can a slob be with a two day old beard, a rumpled singlet which doesn’t even conceal his quickly growing stomach, and his bare feet.

            “I’m going to change. There is a TV dinner in the oven, you can just turn it on when your TV program..” What’s the use, he isn’t listening. I am to shower and just let the hot water bathe away my loneliness. Depression was grabbing at me again. Oh please God don’t let those feelings of worthless again! As I shower I mentally search my wardrobe for something to wear as flashy as Deloris, nothing in the whole wardrobe has anything to the even remoteness to hers.. I get out my red blouse which once what seems like a long time ago was bob favourite outfit, as I pull on the cotton blouse, my mind picturing it as red plush velvet, the softness the sheen of it sends goose bumps the entire part of my body, Placing my  black linen skirt, hitching it up in front of the mirror to resemble a black leather mini skirt. The mental picture I see, I like what I see, a person bursting with confidence, a person who married life is full to overflowing. This vision is the beginning of the new me Tomorrow I am taking Deloris shopping and this whole wardrobe can just go to the dump. I thought rebelliously against bob. He gets his beer and his cigarettes, I am entitled to something to, I protested within my mind.

            I began to change from a devoted mother and wife, a home career to a woman who’s children spent most of their time billeted out in day cares. my days were once spent with my three children but now my day evolved around catching up with Deloris and her associates who were all renown for their gossip mongers. It was like there ticket to snobbery by belittling those less fortunate then ourselves. They always had someone having affair or some hot gossip. This lifestyle did concern me through but I took consolation in the fact that they took more interest in me than bob did. I was cruising with the high flyers.

            While my home life I once adored was crumbling around me. My house upkeep was getting further behind me. My children seeing even less of me then in their entire lives. Things between Bob and I were really beginning to come to a head. We were on barely talking terms, but to my friends it was like playing charades. Everything at home had to be peachy.

            In their eyes I have the most considerate, understanding husband with these so called friends.

Bob made it quite apparent that he did not like these women.

“Jess, you should try to find yourself a better set of friends..” Bob quipped over the folded side of the paper as he saw me arrive home.

“Why, its the first time you have even noticed me since we moved here!” I snapped back at him.

“What are you that blind, just look open your eyes, look at them running around like millionaires, when all they really are over inflated good for nothing gossiping tarts, who have nothing better to do with their time than stir up trouble..” Bob spoke in his normal matter of fact way and nothing he could do irritated me more. This way aggravated me like running your finger nails down the black board, it cut through me like any one gesture he could ever make.

            “Wwweell, Excuuuse Me, Mr Perfect!!’” I retorted as I ran into my bedroom.

            This scene was becoming a normal scene in our house hold, constant bickering and squabbling and we both knew that we were too strong headed to accept fault, so each of our faults we left smouldering until next time we saw each other would cause the combustion to explode at each other again.

            One chilly June morning, my high flyer life was really going to impact me the damage I had caused. It was all about to crashing down to earth, when I saw my little boy, his blonde curly hair sitting down over his shoulders, I was stunned just to realise how much he had grown up. Here was my little boy sitting in the middle of the steps. He looked like he had the whole world on his shoulders, as he grasped his football that his daddy had given him before the move, tightly grasped under one arm, his second one firmly holding his head.

“James?” I asked as he shuffled over the stairs like making room for me to fit through.

“What’s the matter?”

“Nothing” He mumbled.

“Really?” I replied as I took up residency beside him on the steps.

“Its my fault so I deserve it.”

“What is darling? can you please tell me so I may be able to help!” I pleaded with him

“Okay if you do not get mad,” looking down at his feet so as not to get into trouble. “Have I been naughty, mummy is that why you do not love me anymore?”

“sweetie, I do love you” I gasped astounded, my heart felt like a searing stake had just sank right through to its core. my throat was husky, “whatever made you think that?”

“You and daddy are always fighting, your never here, I remember when you use to play ball with me and Susie, but not once have you ever played with Jaise.” He said trailing off as he pointed over to his little sister who was playing on the floor with her blocks. My head was spinning, inside was doing somersaults. Guilt overwhelmed every inkling of my fibre within my body. My mind was screaming in pain at the realisation of damage I had done hit home. Oh what have I done to my babies and my husband. Ohh!! She cried inwardly.

            The phone rang interrupted my thought patterns.. like in auto-pilot. I answered the telephone I yelled at the kids to get ready for school. “this afternoon we will go to the park and play,” I called as I playfully hit the ball under James arms. I answered the phone to hear Deloris trying to set up another date to meet shortly for brunch. For the first time I turned Deloris down, I had a pressing engagement that I just could not get out of. Hmmm! Not the truth but I knew Deloris not having children herself would never understand, the plan I was implementing in my mind had to take precedent in my life. I had to curtail James thinking right now, I had to show him how much I loved each member in my family. This also included Bob. even though my marriage had eroded to near nothing. I knew deep in my heart that a lot of the friction was my fault as bob’s. I wanted thing back to like the marriage we once had before we arrived here. I do miss the intimacy, the companionship that had rendered to non existent, which in the first place wanted me to be friends with Deloris, as well to share in her finesse. I dropped the school age children off at school promising I will pick them up after school.

            “We are going to do something special.” the plans were running around my head like a thrashing machine. The adrenalins of it all nearly mad me giddy to my stomach, as I planned with anticipation of this afternoon. I really had forgotten the thrill of doing things for my kids felt like. Sadly, the feeling of guilt began to creep back in.

            As I drove to the nearest sporting supply shop, trying to hold my two year old, Jaise’s  hand, as he lent back with full brakes screaming and kicking. Rebelliously, he did not want to go shopping with me. He wanted to go to day care and play with his friends that play with him. His words were like cutting straight through my heart, like cutting from the front to back. Who could blame him though he was only a baby when we arrived here. Relentlessly I gave in and took him to day care. I thought on how can I repair the damage I had made, The relationship I destroyed while I gallivanted around with my so called friends, that I lied to about everything they were not the people you could share your intimate secrets with, who in retrospect Bob was right they were airheads with large ambition, which would too come unraveled.

            When they too had children, the faded dream turns into wiping runny noses, all their sporty cars and position held in employment, really has little to do with raising children, there is no seniority in that job.

            We all start out in the same spot, sometimes we loose vision of what we hold near and dear to my heart. everything I was feeling inside now was the first time in three years what Bob had been trying to get through to me, but I was just to involved to see the mistakes I was making now it is time to turn back the clock.