This time it is divorce I'm determined. I've threatened it before, but never carried through. There is always some excuse, some lame look that makes me run back.
Why? Why do I go back to the abuse and the lies? Why do I swallow the perception that she is good for me? She is so attractive that I end up succumbing again. When freshly dressed in white, accompanied by her heady perfume I'm putty in her hands. She is so soft to touch and comforting.
Yet our relationship always leads to abuse. Although my belly is often swollen and sore, there is never enough evidence to bring a clear conviction that she caused it. I feel the pain, but if anyone else notices they don't connect it to abuse by this long term partner of mine.
I can't remember when this relationship began. I know I was only little, maybe only one. I do remember as a child frolicking extravagantly with her. Even then, I felt the abuse in my gut, but didn't connect the two.
She arrived every Wednesday and Saturday, just in time for lunch, always dressed in white with that strong, heady perfume. All other friends were pushed aside at the table as she took pride of place, usually with jam and thick cream. I guess what followed was a gluttony of sorts but we saw it as a celebration and I ignored my mothers dire warnings.
As I grew older, I left home for boarding school and then college. She followed. I distinctly remember spreading Vegemite and jam (yes, together) with her at boarding school. Somehow in those days, the softness and aroma weren't the same. Not being so attractive, I wan't so co-dependant and the abuse was infrequent.
But in the last twenty years, I've seen the facts more clearly leading to times of total separation. You know the story. "Get out of my life! You have nearly destroyed me! Look at me! Fat, bloated, blotchy and depressed. I'm blaming you. Now, get out."
And I remain strong, resolute, determined until one day, with out warning, there she is. She walks in beside the grand kids or turns up at my elbow at a public function, unavoidable, soft, fragrant and so attractive. I justify a short interaction, just for old times sake. But like smoking one cigarette, it is hard to say goodbye and walk away. Soon I find her back in my house and I indulge in long sessions of deep intimacy. We pull out butter, cheese, jam and honey and enjoy each others company.
Then I realise - I've been hoodwinked again. I throw her out! She doesn't resist, just smiles and gives me that knowing look. 'I'll be back.'
These days I've done some snooping. I discover that she has been charged with abuse. Yes, an invisible abuse that results in bloating, discomfort and, in the long term, obesity and other nasty conditions.
So I'm resolute. Here in this public forum I declare: "White bread, I divorce you, I divorce you, I divorce you! Be gone. I will never commune with you again.'
I've done it! Victory! She's gone.
I do hope she takes her relatives with her. Though I will miss Swiss Grain loaf, banana bread and rye wraps. Do you think it is okay to visit her family occasionally?