I didn’t respond. I wanted to scream, hit him – anything to dispel the raging emotions I was feeling. How could he come back after all this time and ask this of me. Just when I was picking up the pieces of my broken heart, just as I was getting my life back on track. In that moment I considered all the hurtful things I could say to him – to give him a taste of how I felt and what I thought of him and his stupid request. In a flash my mind went over the course of events that had led us to this place- the threshold of divorce; the death of our beautiful baby boy.
The night he left, I remember sitting at the dining table thinking about how much he had changed. About how in the 3 years we’d been married or in the 2 years we’d dated I’d never seen this side of my husband. It’d been 8 months since we lost our son and I still didn’t know what my husband was thinking or how he was feeling; in all that time I’d tried to reach out to him, but he treated me like the enemy, like it was my fault our little boy was gone. I knew I couldn’t stop trying, so I walked up to where he sat on the couch and stroked his head, like I used to do when we first got married.
“Hey baby, how are you doing?”
He looked at me with so much irritation I physically withdrew. This was not my husband; this was not the man I married.
“Nnena, you keep asking me that question like you actually expect to hear anything different from what I’ve been telling you.”
“You say you are fine, but I know….”
“Has it not occurred to you that after everything that’s happened you are the last person I would want to talk to?”
Tears welled up in my eyes
“What can I do? What do you want me to do?”
Turning away from me
“Nothing. The truth is I just can’t do this anymore”
My heart raced
“You can’t do what any more?”
Just like that, in just a few words the love of my life placed the final brick on the wall that he’d been building between us. He wanted a divorce.
It’s been 14 months since that night, now he sits here, telling me he’s had a change of heart and wants me back? He must be having a laugh. Maybe he started weeding when he left, or maybe crack cocaine, or maybe…..
There he goes again. Eyamba is my middle name; he’s the only one that calls me that.
“Don’t call me that. You lost the right to call me Eyamba the day you decided to stop fighting for our marriage.”
I regretted the words the moment they came out of my mouth.
“I’m sorry I didn’t mean to sound so…”
“No, no, no you are right. I gave up that right when I gave up on you- on us. Please give me another chance. That’s all I ask, just 1 more chance.”
I don’t want a divorce, but I also don’t want the constant insecurity that comes with not knowing if he will throw me off the ship again when the next storm comes. I know I have to take all these fears and insecurities to God while my husband’s actions prove that I can trust him to stick around no matter what comes our way.
Extending my hand across the table to shake his over the untouched platter of chicken wings he’d ordered, his audible sigh of relief brought a half smile to my face.
“We’ll see how it goes.”