After the Storm
After it all, he was asked to leave in a tone that read as more as a suggestion than an enforceable demand.
I hadn’t made any requests of the Officers, as I did not expect much at this point, though, they did briefly note that if I wanted something to be done further I would have to go down to the Detention Center and file for a Protection Order. The information rolled off their tongues the same way I imagined Miranda Rights might- monotone and without thought as the words were only spoken as a check in the box at this point in their career.
As I closed the door behind them I simultaneously closed the door on any hope of things changing. I had watched enough ID channel series to know that a Protection Order was only a piece of paper.
All the emotions I had been holding back spilled out into my hands as I sat in the middle of the apartment floor overwhelmed. My thoughts raced jaggedly through my mind in an incomprehensible chaos. I could barely process what had just happened, and yet, I had to quickly decide what I was going to do next. Eric had been given no time table on how long he should be gone, and I was sure he was just as upset about what had just happened, if not more.
I reached out and grabbed my phone as a means of reaching a friend. Even though he lived states away, Andrew had come in contact with Eric’s breakdowns in the form of threatening calls and rants, so I felt as if it wouldn’t be much of a shock sharing my early morning encounter.
After, what I am sure was a hard to cognize congregation of cried gibberish, he told me I needed to go file the paperwork. I outwardly agreed, but as I hung up I crawled into bed rather than down to the Detention Center. As much as I wanted to hate Eric for what he had done to me throughout our relationship, and even though I knew that if it was anyone else’s significant other I would have less empathy in their regard, I didn’t want him to get in trouble.
I didn’t want to be ‘that girl’ who spoke the condemning words no one wanted to hear or support. I didn’t want to be ‘that girl’ who no one believed. Most of all, I didn’t want to be ‘that girl’ who people whispered about only doing it for attention or, better yet, to feed the unquenchable thirst for drama that all women apparently have in moments such as these.
My phone began to ring. My stomach dropped and spilt across the floor as my mind rushed to the assumption that it was Eric, though, as I glanced down, it was only my mother. I took a few seconds to pull my seams tighter together, and answered the phone as if I was having a typical late-teenage day of lounging about.
“Hey”. It was all I could initially muster, and luckily, it was normal for me to be quite short on the phone with her.
“Your father and I spoke to Andrew”.
My stomach sank further, and my
initial illusion of being ‘okay’ drowned with it.