When I left the courthouse, I was floating on Cloud Nine.
For the first time since this whole mess started, I finally had something to be elated about.
It actually felt like the tightness in my neck muscles (which I affectionately referred to as My noose that has been strangling me since my wedding day) was starting to loosen up a bit. For a brief period of time I was one happy camper.
However, I knew better than to think that Dick wouldn’t try to screw things up somehow. Without a doubt, he was not going to let me enjoy any victories whatsoever.
And just as I suspected, he didn’t disappoint.
When he came home from work in the early afternoon, he was in a foul mood, changed his clothes and stormed out of the house.
A few hours later he returned. I was in Josh’s room which was my new home away from home since I started playing Musical Beds after filing for divorce. Dick barged in holding the checkbook in one hand and an envelope from the bank in the other.
Sensing this was not going to be good, the tension began rising in my body as the noose around my neck resumed its strangling grip.
Oh well, the break was nice while it lasted. To stay positive and keep myself in top fighting form, I had to convince myself that the brief, freeing sensation was Coming Attractions and to just keep my eye on the prize.
However, the reality was, with the way things were playing out, there was no saying how old I would be or what mental, emotional or physical condition I would be in when the “Freedom Bell” would eventually ring and the bonds of matrimony would finally be severed completely.
With the look of sheer loathing in his eyes, Dick stared at me and said, “Here is the cash I am supposed to give you. I want you to count it in front of me to make sure it is all there.”
I counted the money and told him it was the right amount.
Waving the checkbook at me he declared, “Now you know that you are no longer allowed to use this.”
“That is not true at all,” I answered, fully aware of the sudden surge of stress hormones that were flooding my system in anticipation of the battle that was about to be waged.
(This is a perfect example of The Fight of Flight Response…or in our case The Fight and Flight Response) First we fight. Then Dick takes a flight to his holiday getaway.)
“Oh yes,” he continued. “I talked to my attorney three times today and she said that since I am giving you cash, you are no longer permitted to use the checkbook. In addition, this money is to be used for groceries and necessities for the house.”
(Three calls to his attorney!!! What was it that he couldn’t comprehend when he was explained the court order??? Do you have any idea what three calls to his attorney cost???)
I responded with, “That is NOT what the judge said at all. I was in the courtroom and heard him quite clearly. He specifically said that there was not enough money in the checkbook to hold me over for the next several days. The money you were ordered to give me was in addition to what was in the checkbook, not instead of what was there.” I continued, “He never said that I was now responsible for food and other household items.”
This exchange erupted into a full-blown altercation.
When the dust finally settled, Dick took the checkbook, hid it and left for his trip early the next morning.