I’m Leaving You for Me
En Espanol Te dejo por mi
Has there ever been a time in your life where you’ve felt that you’ve lost who you are? Lost everything you’ve built. I mean, the dreams you once had are gone. The person who would stand up for herself exists no more. The mani-pedi self-care days have disappeared. The long bubble baths where Calgon or Goddess Nectar Milk Bath no longer take you away to peace and calm. Books you used to curl up with in your favorite chair and read, no longer bought you joy or hope or peace. Where has it all gone? What have you traded it for?
Absidy Is That You?
I had a conversation with an old friend, Abcde; pronounced Absidy. We met at Panera to catch up as we hadn’t seen each other in five years. I happened to look up from my phone and saw someone approaching the table, but looked down because the woman I saw couldn’t have been Abcde. This woman looked worn out, exhausted. There were dark circles under her eyes. The left one twitched as she sat down at the table. Her once lovely styled hair was pulled back into a severe bun. She was wearing a pink running suit with black gym shoes. “Hey girl,” she said, revealing a chipped front tooth. I looked up again hearing her voice. “Absidy, is that you,” I said rising to hug her. “Mm hmm.” Not wanting to seem mean or wanting to show how taken aback I was at her appearance, I smiled. “It’s good to see you.” As we hugged, she held on a little longer than I’d expected, as if she needed life.
Abcde went on to tell me that she met—I’ll call him Douglas—a man who had sucked the very soul from her life. Then she began to cry. You see, Abcde used to be glamorous. In fact, she’d owned Serenity Spa. She was the one who had given me the hook up on self-care. I handed her a Kleenex which was no help, because the tears rolled down her face like a running faucet. We must have set at the table thirty minutes before she could talk. I waited.
I Trusted Him…
As she talked, she began rocking; back and forth…back and forth. “I know,” she said. “I look a mess. You’re not used to seeing me like this. Frankly, I’m embarrassed and I was not going to come, but…” Her thoughts trailed off and her eye twitched again. I felt so bad for her as she revealed what she’d been through. After obtaining her Doctorate in Business Management she opened her own business. In her third year, she met Douglas who was an up and coming. He was always up and coming into something. He had these grand ideas that when he mentioned them, made perfect sense. He even succeeded at some of them. He used to sing her love ballads and write her poems. At times he’d have an abundance of money other times he’d ask her to “loan” him a ‘few’ dollars. He’d always talk about how good God was to him and that he knew things were going to work out for him. He just had to be patient.
They used to go on vacations to exotic places. They had begun to build a life together, but never managed to get married. “I trusted him,” she said. “That was my mistake.” He had a key to her house and car and would often come over late evenings wanting to prepare dinner and have a few drinks. It would get late and he’d parlay himself into spending many nights. At first, he was comforted just lying beside her and going to sleep. His belongings began to show up in her closet and drawers. He’d even begun to get a few pieces of mail at her house.
A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
One night she said that she’d refused him coming over because she’d began to miss her alone time and the things she used to do for and by herself. He showed up anyway. Said he was concerned that something was wrong. Before she knew it, her head slammed against the corner of her marble center island in the kitchen and she ended up in the hospital with a concussion and a cracked tooth. She had no idea how that came to be. The police noticed that there was blood inside of her eyes and that there were bruises around her neck. She stayed in the hospital for three weeks, unconscious. When she came to, the police told her that they’d gone to her house to investigate and found a young man living there. He said that she had given him permission to house sit while she was in the hospital because she had been in an auto accident. Now being able to talk, Abcde revealed the entire story to the detectives. They gave her a police escort back to her house and told her to change her locks, file for an order of protection, and maybe get a dog. She took their advice.
Douglas wasn’t there when she got there, but had called her two days later complaining that he had been served with a restraining order. She told him to never call her again and hung up on him, then blocked his number. Later that day, she found that he’d wiped out her bank accounts, taken over her business by forging her name on documents, and wrecked her car. She had nothing left. She had to rebuild her life and that was what she was in the midst of beginning when she received my call.
It took years for my friend to heal, but she began to invest time in herself again and eventually she did heal. She even authored a book entitled, I’m Leaving You For Me.
Was there anything differently Abcde could have done ?