I cannot give all the detail leading up to this particular event, however wanted to share what I could recall. The event is perfectly clear in my mind. Maybe, by the time this particular event happened, I had already began to ignore or tune out the incessant rambling that ensued after a day of online hockey and R & R Canadian Whiskey. (No, Dave was not a hockey player.)
Dave played online hockey with a group of guys in team mode. They were all very into their gaming. I have nothing against gaming, Joe plays a good amount of ESO (not as pretty of a landscape to watch as Skyrim 🤷🏻♀️) weekly and my first husband had every Madden the day it released. It is not a daily planned happening for either Joe or my first husband, but it was scheduled to the minute for Dave. Again, I have no issue with gaming. I do have issue with being told that I caused someone to “miss a goal” by walking through my living room. I think I’ll touch on the idiocy of the hockey gaming before the event recount.
Hockey equaled life for Dave. As a teenager in Canada, he played recreationally as a goalie. He also liked to watch a lot of hockey. I can now follow near every sport with full understanding of the rules. (Never a goal of mine, but I can’t change the past.) When playing hockey online, in team player mode, it’s best for one to have a headset as to communicate with other players. With communication, they are able to coordinate a stronger offense and defense. Either way, they want to talk to each other.
My PS3, untouched since the day Dave moved out.
Having already been conditioned through the years of his perceived “reign” in my home, I would buy Dave pretty much whatever he wanted, within reason. As to not have an argument that day. One day, I purchased a BlueTooth headset for Dave at WalMart while on my way home from work (while he had been home playing video games all day). It wasn’t long before they figured out they could get about four hours of life from the headsets before having to charge them for two hours. Hockey with the boys became a twice daily (three times if no DJ/KJ gig that night) thing. It’s sad that I could still tell you what at least two of their names were, what they did and where they lived 🙄. Dave set alarms on his phone to remind him of game time. We could be at dinner and his phone would be blown up with texts from “the boys” telling Dave to “chop chop” (Gary’s words). These were Dave’s friends, his playmates, if you will.
An example of the importance of this video game: We went out to eat for Dave’s birthday (I don’t remember what we actually did, let’s just go with that). When we arrived home, I decided to be a little ‘cheeky’ and put on a red bodice thingy I have. Went full out with the thigh highs (really nice thigh-high compression stockings, shhh), heels, you get the picture. Dave had gone out back to smoke, so I texted him to come inside. Of course the reply shocked me or I wouldn’t be painting this picture for you.
“Your timing couldn’t be worse, I just told Sparty that I was gonna be on in five.”
I was a little surprised by his reply. “Your timing couldn’t be worse, I just told Sparty that I was gonna be on in five”. Dave came inside and played hockey with his friends. Each game lasted about 30 minutes, and they lost their first game. I am not sure what “issue” set Dave off on this particular night, however he was escalating. As I’ve said before, I had started to not listen to his tirades, and I simply don’t recall what this particular fit was about.
“Give me your rings before I cut off your fucking fingers.”
Dave’s rage somehow became focused on my wedding rings. I went out back to smoke (I smoked cigarettes at this time) and to not escalate tonight’s event. I think this same night is when he knocked my phone out of my hands (which broke it) and spat in my face. Yes, in my face. Anyways, he comes through the back door with a knife in his hand, insisting I give him my rings. “Give me your rings before I cut off your fucking fingers,” Dave demanded. I had already processed the fact that being his wife did not preclude me from his wrath. I handed him my rings.
He threw them into the backyard! My wedding ring set, which I was forced to buy myself. (I really hope someone reads this and gains the courage to leave an abusive relationship.) I was, of course, upset and crying. “Get on all fours and bark like the bitch you are,” Dave growled. I pleaded with him once, then simply decided to be his victim, like I had so many times before.
The once serene appearance of my back yard.
I walked out into our back yard. (I use our loosely there. I purchased the house previously, but Dave had harangued me into placing him on the deed.) I got on my hands and knees and forced whatever barking sound I could muster through my sobs. Who does this to another human? Who does this to the partner they claim to love? It is difficult to swallow this concept, and I’m sobbing as I type this. It will pass, Dave holds zero power over me. Absolutely zero power. The lack of humanity is what brings me to the extreme reaction of sobbing, and this is something I still work on in therapy.
I barked for my $5,000 wedding ring set. I knew he threw them for real, this is the only way I would find them. Dave eventually settled down and helped me look for my rings. He was perfectly calm; I suppose he was satiated by my bark? The yard isn’t huge or tiny and it does have grass. After about an hour of searching, he found my rings, both within inches of each other.
I replaced my iPhone the next day and went on like nothing happened. It was the easiest way to keep life calm and thus allowing me to face a lower threat of harm at his hands. My wedding ring set is currently on display for sale at a local jeweler in downtown Fort Myers. This was not a night of noteable significance. This was the norm.