Heavy Battles

It was hours since I last saw my husband Jerry.He was the quiet one in the relationship. He didn’t say much but he had that hidden humor that only certain people would get. I don’t know how I ended up with him but oh well 10years later we were still together. We had an understanding, an MOU of some sort, a silent one. There were boundaries, levels but everything somehow fell into place. We argued like normal couples do. Sometimes we fought and I would throw utensils across the room. I am the feisty one. The one with the tantrums and have a lot of words to say but our understanding for each other made us fit in like a jigsaw puzzle so perfectly.

My husband left the house after a ragging argument about punishing my first born child. I don’t want to bring up entitled undisciplined children into this world, so I spanked him a good one and sent him to sleep in the store after he broke my glass table throwing a tantrum about using the internet. I wasn’t willing to let it slide. Next time the boy will set the house on fire because I didn’t let him use his tablet, Nope! Not in my house… Anyway back to my husband, he thought I was a little over the top with the punishment but I wasn’t budging. The boy had to learn his lesson and he also has to pay for another table somehow.

We didn’t talk for days after that. The days turned into months. I was worried. I have punished my kids thoroughly before but never has my husband taken it so personally. I tried nudging him to talk with bringing general discussions but he didn’t say much afterwards. I began thinking of the worst maybe he is having an affair. At some point I stopped bothering so much and just lived my life.

One day, I meet with Susan, a cousin to my husband. They get along fine, no actually she is among the few people I see my husband laughing with, like really laughing. She said hi and asked what I did to my husband, he stopped showing up for their game night. Clueless of how to respond to that question, I just smiled and shrugged my shoulders like a 10 year old. She patted my back and let out a loud laughter and said “But sidhani you are that type of wife, say hi and tell him to pick up my calls.”

Now this added to my suspicions.If he is not hanging out with Susan and his other friends, he doesn’t talk to me anymore, what else is going on? I tried to nudge him to speak to me but I seem to be irritating him more than helping him.

I called the mum, which honestly is not my cup of tea and told her about the happenings. She said that I am the one making my husband unhappy and that I should let him go. What nonsense is she talking about? I was calling to ask for help not to be accused. Now I was certain, he is having an affair because why would the mother insist on me letting him go.

So for the next 6 months, my house was a completely different environment. Every conversation was filled with one word remarks and answers. During these months, I bought some new sexy lingerie to spice up the bedroom, you know to bring back the magic, I changed my hairstyle and dyed my hair, I even bought him a new phone coz he is a gadget guy but nothing. Nothing seemed to work. He had shut down completely on me.

He smiled and played with the kids but I could tell, he wasn’t really into it. It is like he was merely existing. I prayed everyday, knelt on the floor, sometimes cried in the toilet for hours just asking God to bring my husband back to me. I felt like everyday was a losing battle.

One morning, I was at the office finishing up with my 10am meeting. I got a phone call from my househelp, “Mama T, Baba T ameanguka kwa bedroom na amezirai!” I panicked. Immediately I left the office without saying a word to anyone, got into my car and rushed home. By the time I got there, my househelp had called the neighbors and had rushed my husband to hospital. My kids weren’t home thankfully.

I followed my neighbors to the hospital and got there just when they had checked him in. My neighbor Sarah, came sat next to me and held my hand. She wanted to say something and it looked like it was something hard to say. “I am sorry for everything,” she finally whispered and then sat there in silence.

Tears started streaming down my face. I had a feeling what had happened but I didn’t know what to do with that feeling. I just sat there and weeped in muffles, praying that my husband makes it.

After about one hour, the doctor came to me and called me aside. “Your husband has survived, do you know what happened to him? Was there anything strange with him before today? ” I just stared at the doctor without saying a word. What was I going to tell him? He wasn’t sick but neither was he talking. I don’t know what was wrong, so I just stared.

The doctor didn’t budge, she led me to a counsellor who explained everything that happened medically and gave me a way forward. I thanked him and walked out to go see my husband.

He was still unconscious but he lived. I sat there and stared at him wondering what could have gone wrong. What is happening inside of him. How could I help ease his pain? I was lost, truly lost. I just sat there and didn’t know what to do next.

When he finally opened his eyes, I was so happy to see him again but a wave of fear paraded my brain and my entire body.

What do you tell a person who tried committing suicide but did not die? Like how do you start a conversation with that person? What do you talk about? How do you treat that person?

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