Saturday, February 20, 2016

A Simple, Thank You, Will Do

Last Friday morning, two days before Valentine’s Day, I was watching a segment on the Today Show about six couples, all married 50+ years, and all were telling their stories of how they had met and made it through all those years together. The Today Show had created a video of these couples, dressed up to the nines, dancing and smiling and all apparently, still very much in love. 

My mind wandered as it often does, wondering as they danced and smiled, how they managed to make it through the much talked about thick and thin, and all the temptation’s that life throws into our pathways. All of them said they were brought up to believe that if it was broken you didn’t throw it away, you fixed it. And while I understand that concept and belief, there are marriages and circumstances that I believe, demonstrate the desecration of those very same beliefs.

Yesterday my husband and I were getting gas at the Flying J in Midway. Well, my husband was pumping the gas, I was sitting in the truck, flipping through my phone. I had the window down on my side as it was a pleasant enough day to do so, when all of a sudden in the lane next to us, a man began to shout and verbally beat on his wife in such a fashion, that I was stunned and staring.

The man, her husband I presumed, was pumping the gas and I am guessing she was about to go in and pay for it. She was asking him did he want a drink of some sort when he absolutely just unleashed on her a barrage of ugliness and hate so strong, I could feel the worded-blows as they slammed into her stomach, just as if they were being directed right at me.

There were other people all around, and the man right in front of our vehicle at the pump ahead was washing his windshield with the rubber wiper things they have there in buckets – never turning his head or acknowledging what was happening right beside him. But you know, I was doing no better, no different, because I just sat there in silence and continued to watch the sideshow myself.

The couple had to be anywhere from 75-80 years old – and all I could think after the woman walked off and into the store – was how long had he been treating her that way – and why was she still there? 

I don’t think I have ever witnessed anything like that in public before, certainly nothing that intense or full of hate. And while I was, and am still, a little ashamed for doing nothing, I don’t know what in the world I could have / would have done.

I have thought about that woman and that marriage/relationship all weekend; worried about her and what her life must be like in these last days of her life. Surely that’s not the same man she fell in love with – and it breaks my heart to know there must be a reason she has to stay. 

copyright Michelle Mount Mims
Previously published @ The Havana Herald

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