I feel numb. I supposed I’m used to it now. I’ve grown more and more resilient over the years. Sometimes it surprises me how quickly it’s over.
I wonder if he still gets the same satisfaction.
I wonder if he prefers that I scream or cry.
Somehow the tears don’t come anymore.
I find myself escaping to somewhere far away. Somewhere I can be alone. At the beach, maybe. Lying on the white sand, just near the shore, feeling the waves on my thighs. After a nap, I’d go for a massage, one of those ones where they use oil and gently caress your whole body. Then I might head to a bar by the beach, start off with a Pina Colada. It makes me think of our song.
If you like Pina Coladas, and getting caught in the rain….
My face is sore and I can feel blood rushing to it. My stomach and back are still numb, but in a few seconds I’ll feel it.. the pain.
I lay completely still and silent, breathing slowly. I count from one to whatever number that gets me to the least pain. Today I’m at 1,000.
Soon he will ask for his dinner, and I know better than to still be here when he’s asking for it. On days like this I always cook him a hearty meal. I know he feels a sense of manhood, and red meat always puts him in a good mood.
I’ll call mother after I finish cooking dinner. She’ll be pleased to know that her daughter can hold down a full time job and cook dinner for her husband.
I remember when she first noticed the bruises. Back then he wasn’t as tactful, and would take it out where it shows on my body. She didn’t look alarmed or concerned, or if she was she didn’t show it.
“Does he hit you?” she asked when we were alone.
I didn’t respond.
I can’t say for sure why I stayed silent. Perhaps I was ashamed. Perhaps I thought back to the day I announced we were engaged, how we popped champagne and laughed and ate and danced to our song.
If you’re not into yoga, if you have half a brain…
How I thought I finally made it in life.
“You do get used to it”, she said after a long silence, “It takes time, but eventually it won’t hurt as much”.
We never spoke of it again. She never asked, and I never said a word.
We hug when we meet, a polite, distant hug one would not expect from mothers and daughters.
“Where’s dinner?”, a voice called out.