As I cross off the days on the kitchen calendar, eagerly eye my countdown app on my phone, I get more and more down. Not down there where I have been before, I’d be gobbling the tablets down before I got to that point again. But sad, we’re all allowed to be sad. Being of an analytical mind it bothers me that the closer I get to the ROTL date, the sadder I get – why?
As I clumped around the house today, mentally moaning that I’d made the house untidy to such a degree that Mike will walk in and walk back out again, I asked myself why I was in such a bad mood. And it came to me – what if things are not different when he comes home.
I often read comments on Prisoners Families Voices (an excellent site for ad hoc comments on being on the innocent side of crime) from people who argue that the guilty party has put themselves in that situation, so why do we worry ourselves about them, from women for an against standing by their man, it’s a hot potato. Should you wait for the guilty party to come home and expect things to be the same (without the criminal activity I hasten to add)? Your life goes on without them, you can’t just mothball yourself until they come home. In my case, I had to get a job, get earning to pay the bills, get a roof over my head, keep the car running, sort out legal issues that hadn’t been resolved by the deadline of him being inside. I couldn’t just suspend my life – and, of course, why should I.
But it makes you think, you carry on with your life, things may go well for you, you either want your other half to come out and join in your success or you don’t. In my case, I want him home. But I want him home a different person and I realise that is a very dangerous position to be in. I knew when I married that it was not possible to change a person. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to knowing that my husband was doing some strange things way back then. This isn’t something for any snooping lawyers to get excited about, I’m talking about the way he lined up his shoes. I knew that if this bothered me then it wasn’t going to go away after marriage, so I decided it wasn’t enough to end our relationship and we got married.
However, here I am doing the same thing 11 years later, wishing he’ll come home a different person. But this time I may well be lucky. He doesn’t have the job that he was married to, that potentially ruined his and my life, that is gone now, as is the Blackberry, the laptop on holidays, the working at weekends and evenings. All wiped away. Will old habits die hard though? He wants to start up again, his own business, will he carry on in the same manner?
At the end of the day, what am I looking for in a husband. I’m going to punch myself in the face if I’m still looking for the lead romantic man – it’s never going to happen and I wouldn’t appreciate it if it did! I suppose it’s just the company of my husband (bless you Stephanie, in case you are reading this after swearing you wouldn’t any more, love you to pieces, but think how you sometimes miss your husband….) that I want back. His presence in the house. His clean and tidy nature to counter balance my messy one. His sense of humour to soothe away my irritations. Another head to deal with life’s shitty bits that crop up on a weekly basis. Is that what marriage is, a second pair of hands – I suppose it must be, a helpmate. I’ve temporarily lost my helpmate and I’m building him up to be a returning hero/superman/romantic lead when he returns.
Oooh dear, I think I’m building myself up for disappointment.