I grew up in Phoenix. Sure, I know a lot of people but the chances of me seeing someone I knew at the grocery store or gas station were slim. To be honest, I like it that way 😛 I didn’t have to worry about someone seeing me with yesterday’s make up and day three of dry shampoo hair.
When I met my now husband, he was stationed in Groton, CT. A small town. A military community at that which makes a small town even smaller. It’s similar to a high school locker room. Ya feel me? For the sake of transparency, here’s more of our story…..
Nathan was caught up in a nasty divorce when we met, it was in process for about a year at that time. He was a single man when we met, living alone for over a year and fighting to put an end to a toxic life he once had. Closing that chapter was proving to be more difficult than he ever anticipated, especially when we wanted our life together to start. It’s funny what a woman will project on to another in an effort to try and correct her wrongs. I became her punching bag.
Small towns talk, and I was center stage. I was butt naked in front of an entire community of navy wives to ridicule. I was referred to as “the other woman” once, harassed, followed, watched, threatened; all by people reporting back to the ghost in his past. I was questioned for things I never did all because she was impersonating me trying to get classified information pertaining to Nathan’s submarine. Hard to believe this was our life for two years, right?
Being the center of attack is even harder when your significant other is consistently gone. I then had to fight and advocate for my sailor while he was out to sea. The semi truck seemed to hit us even harder while he was gone….
The mental, financial and emotional abuse got the best of us, some days. We took our anger & frustrations out on each other. How could we not? We were facing a monster and it was beating us. But, the funny thing about monsters is; they don’t have any power. Well, not really. We took our power back and fought back.
Countless hours in court, thousands of dollars and after World War three; it came to an end. It was finally over. I’d be lying if I said everything was “fixed” once it was done. My name would still come up, did they think I didn’t know what their stares were about? Did they think I didn’t notice the blatantly obvious snickering when I walked by? I noticed, I heard it all but I wasn’t giving up my power again. I went home and bitched about it to my best friends, like a normal person 😛 It’s funny though, more and more truth started to surface about her and the spotlight on Nathan and I started to slowly burn out.
For us, leaving New England was almost cleansing. We were able to move on and start over in another small town but they don’t talk about us now. Packing up our family and pulling away was calming. Calming like it was after a big snow storm; haunting but peaceful. Even the biggest blizzards start with a single snowflake and ours had finally past.
I promised raw, real, and unfiltered. This is part of our journey.
The storms pass and then there is beauty.