My Party

The day of my party had finally arrived.  I was about to celebrate my hard-won freedom and I was going to release Fluffy.  I’d known for months that the only real way to deal with Fluffy would be to open the cage door, stand back, and let him roar.  I had two ways I was going to do this.

First, I was going to destroy the rock that had meant so much to Bubba.  He’d had the opportunity to take it with him when he’d picked up his things months ago.  He didn’t take it with him.  Once the divorce was finalized, whatever we had in our possession became ours and the other person didn’t have any rights to it.  That meant that the rock that Bubba considered part of his “family” was mine to do with as I pleased.

When we first moved in to our new home, I had the men who helped me move lay it down in the backyard.  One day Serenity was mad at Bubba about how he was treating her so she went back there and started jumping on it.  She broke it right down the center.  She came in laughing, ever so pleased with herself.  She had been upset that she wouldn’t be able to help me destroy it so she was happy that she got to draw first “blood.”  I’d told her about my plans to destroy it because she questioned why I wasn’t going to try to sell it and why I was moving it when we moved.  I told her I planned to take a sledgehammer to it but didn’t explain the reasons why.

The other thing I planned to do was to take an axe to the headboard that had been on my bed all those years.  That old headboard had been given to us by Bubba’s parents.  To me, that headboard represented so much.  It represented the ick that came from his parents.  His parents just gave it to us, without Bubba having had discussed it with me first.  It was ugly and I didn’t have any say about it being in my bedroom.  It also “witnessed” all those years of rape.  It was never going to be used again.  I tried to sell it in two yard sales but no one would buy it.  I was going to chop it into firewood and have a bonfire!

I spent the day before my party and the day of my party baking and cooking.  Seven women were planning to be here.  I’d washed all the sheets and prepared all the beds in the house.  I’d spent plenty of time cleaning after the children left so my house was very clean and I was ready for guests.  I knew each of my friends would be bringing food too.  By the time people started arriving, I was so excited I could barely contain myself.

When everyone had arrived, we ate and talked and laughed.  It was so much fun to have my house full of people and a couple toddlers running around.  Since leaving Bubba I’ve found that I’m a natural-born hostess.  I love opening my home up to people and welcoming them with food and love.  Being able to have these friends over was a healing step in itself.

We moved out to the backyard once our bellies were full.  I decided to go after the headboard first so that we could start a bonfire.  Thankfully, my father had taught me from a young age how to properly swing an axe.  I found that evening that I have deadly accurate aim.  I guess it’s either in my genes or it is just one of the talents I never knew I had.  I had pictures of Bubba that I wanted to burn but since I found I was so good with the axe, I laid them, one by one, on the headboard and chopped them.  I was so good with that axe that I put down a few pictures of us together and chopped them right down the middle.  I kept the half of the picture that had me in it!  It took me about 45 minutes to reduce that headboard to kindling.

I could feel Fluffy taking tentative steps outside of his cage.  He knew the door was open but he was almost afraid of walking through it because he knew this type of freedom was unheard of.  Slowly, ever so slowly, he started moving closer to the surface.  He became less and less tentative as he got further from his cage.  I could feel him welling up inside me but I knew that he wouldn’t come out fully until I started on the rock.

When I’d finished with the headboard and stacked the pieces out of the way, one of my friends started the fire.  I’d collected sticks during the day so that our fire would last as long as we wanted it to.  With a happy fire dancing in the background, I picked up the sledgehammer.

As I approached the rock, I could feel Fluffy take hold of the sledgehammer.  I don’t remember much of what happened after that.  I remember starting to swing the sledgehammer and feeling great satisfaction as the pieces of rock started shattering off.  I could feel Fluffy becoming stronger and stronger.  I could feel him trying to take control and it started to scare me.

I backed off and offered the sledgehammer to my friends.  They’d been with me through thick and thin and I wanted to give them an opportunity to get a piece of that rock.  Some of them had even been directly hurt by Bubba during the divorce because they had helped me.  I stood back and allowed anyone who wanted a turn to have one.

In that time, I dealt with Fluffy.  I told him that we were ok that he was having his moment and that after a breather, I would give him full reign.  I knew this would be the last time I would feel him restlessly pacing inside me, fighting for a way out.  I knew that once I picked that sledgehammer back up, I would allow Fluffy to roar and I’d either take another step to healing or he’d consume me.  Either way I was done being afraid of Fluffy.

When I again had the sledgehammer in my hands, I gave Fluffy the control he wanted.  This is where it gets fuzzy because Fluffy did, in fact, take complete control.  Later, when it was over, my friends told me I’d been talking to the rock as if it was Bubba.  I remember thinking things like, “How could you do this to me?  How could you do this to our children?  How could you be this much of a selfish bastard that you would try to destroy me?  How could you hurt our babies?” but I didn’t know that I was speaking out loud.  Finally, as the pieces of rock became tinier and tinier, I gave in to the pain.

One of my friends had been using my video camera and at this point, she shut it off.  I broke down and sobbed in such pain that I thought I was going to break apart.  In actuality what was happening was that Fluffy and I were becoming one.  I was accepting all the pain and rage that he represented.  Fluffy and I were merging.  He was reintegrating as a part of me, no longer a separate being but an integral part of who I was.  Everything that I’d ever fed him, he was returning to me and it was the most painful thing I’d ever felt.

Finally, with my friends holding tight to me, the storm passed.  Fluffy’s cage was gone.  I knew I would never need it again.  Fluffy was now a part of me.  Yes, I could still feel him in me, but I could now feel him from both of our perspectives.  No longer did I have to sit and wonder what was going through Fluffy’s head because he and I were the same.  Yes, the big cat still lives in me but I know he is no longer a source of fear.  He comforts me with his presence.  I know we will work together for my good.

After I was done with the rock, we sat around the bonfire and talked and just enjoyed one another’s company.  We laughed, we ate more, and we just had a nice evening.

The next day as people gradually drifted out the door to return to their homes, I was overcome with gratitude for the marvelous people I have in my life.  I know more women were with me in spirit that night and were sad that they couldn’t be there physically.  I have decided to have this party once a year to celebrate my freedom.  I will continue to open my home to my friends and we will continue to be thankful that I’m no longer the abused woman I was before.  I’m a survivor.  I’m free.

And that is worth celebrating!

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7 Comments

  1. Jenny

    Each and every one of your posts is a meaningful read but wow, this one was especially powerful and beautiful!!!!

    • Thank you. My party was a huge turning point for me. Releasing Fluffy needed to happen for so long and I really needed friends with me that night. I don’t know how I would’ve gotten through the pain of reintegrating Fluffy without them to hold on to me. I’ve had some times that I’ve been very angry and it feels totally different to me now. It’s quite amazing.

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