Normally here at Chi-town Mommy Mayhem we write about things that are humorous and light hearted. As you know, I write from the point of view of a single parent to a rambunctious toddler. However, I need to be more specific about why I'm a single mom. My relationship with my daughters' father didn't end as a result of irreconcilable differences, infidelity, etc. It ended tragically.
My ex has a drinking problem. It started off with just a few beers after work and then it grew and grew and grew. He was drunk everyday and it got worse after our daughter was born. Six days after we got married, and my daughter was 7 and a half weeks old, he came home severely intoxicated and picked up my daughter, stumbling.
I turned crazy mother bear on him.
I grabbed for my daughter an it became a game for him. When I finally got her away from him, I slapped him on the side of his head. I know, that was stupid. But I was pissed and he was being a drunk, immature, irresponsible fool.
I strapped her in her swing and that's when he started throwing large glass candles. He smashed a side table. I was screaming at him to "get out". He had a menacing look on his face and yelled, "the only way I am leaving is in handcuffs!" I reached for my cell that was on the counter but he ripped it out of my hand and smashed it on the floor. He then turned his anger to me.
Every time I stood up he would throw me to the ground. He grabbed my throat and shoved me against a door. I had a second cell for work but it was in my pocket. I couldn't quite get to it because I was defending myself or standing in front of my daughter's swing when he was smashing things so she wouldn't get hit with debris. Finally, I was able to get enough distance between us and I called 911. I told the dispatcher that my husband was attacking me and I needed help. The cops swarmed my house. He took off into the woods behind the house.
I could hear the officers yelling for him to come out on his own. If they had to go in after him they would add more charges. He did come out of the woods and he went to jail. The police wanted me to go to the hospital via ambulance. I refused because I couldn't think straight. I didn't know what to do about my daughter if I was to leave in an ambulance. I also wasn't feeling any pain and I partially couldn't believe why the police wanted me to go to the hospital. The police took pictures of the house and of me. During this whole ordeal my daughter never woke up.
The very next morning I called my sister hysterical and told her she had to come. She lives in a Chicago suburb and I live in Peoria. She managed to get to my house with one of my other sisters in record time. When they got to my house they started tearing up at my appearance. I realized then, I looked like a hot mess. My other sister who is also a nurse asked me to go to the hospital. But I still wasn't feeling any physical pain. I was in dire emotional pain. I had packed up a bunch of stuff for my daughter. My only mission was "I just wanted my daughter safe and I wanted my sister to take her to her house". So, my sisters left with my little baby. I bawled my eyes out.
I was afraid and humiliated I couldn't believe what had happened in the last few hours. Then a switch flipped in me. I got pissed. I mean crazy, Chicago, south side Irish, pissed off. No man ever puts his hands on me and gets away with it. This was the very first time he hit me and it would be the last time.
I called a client, who is a lawyer and told him I needed help. I gave him a brief version of the events. He was quiet and told me he would call me back. He called back 5 minutes later with an appointment with another lawyer that afternoon. I had divorce papers drawn up. I called an old friend and he came over and changed all the locks and reinforced my doors. I talked to the State's Attorney and confirmed I wanted to press charges. I was directed to the Women's Center for Counseling and I was matched up with an awesome counselor.
A couple days later the physical pain set in. Ugh!
He did try to sweet talk his way back into the house. He begged me not to press charges and not to file for divorce. I already had all his crap packed up and told him to come get it. He continued to drink in excess and he started making threatening statements. That's when I filed an Order of Protection and it was granted.
It took almost 9 months before he was convicted of domestic battery. He also violated the Order of Protection three times and was subsequently convicted each time. I contacted DCFS and they investigated our little family. They stated he needed alcohol counseling and rehabilitation along with parenting training. He refused to participate in their program. They wanted me to seek additional counseling which I did.
In September of 2012 the courts declared him unfit. I resumed full legal custody of my darling angel.
He had a brief come to Jesus moment and was sober for 5 months from October 2012 until this February.
I can not help who fathered my child. I can not control his behavior or the decisions he makes. I can not help that his addiction to alcohol is so strong it has ruined his life. His addiction is sad and he will miss out on a lot of things.
My darling angel is an ornery, stubborn, strong willed, smart, funny and happy toddler. I decided not to take it and neither should any of you. I ask, actually beg, that if any of our readers is in an abusive relationship to please get help. I know that taking that initial step is the hardest one. Your life matters. Your children depend on you. You deserve a life that is violence free and safe. Living with abuse is not the answer. Talk to a friend. Seek counseling. Call the police. Press charges. Take what is yours back...YOU!
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