top of page
Search

Peace Within the Darkness…

(About a 10 min read… but it’s still a sprint!)

I worked long hours… I would always leave early… it gave me time to process life outside of the issues that were dominant in my life… I would get up at about 4:30am and get ready in peace and quiet… my wife was a heavy sleeper, however… I would still tread lightly so I wouldn’t need to engage in morning interaction… she was always a moody morning person…

Most days consisted of me leaving at 5am and not getting home until about 10pm… I had purposefully forced this schedule to avoid interaction…

When we were first married 5 years prior, I would look forward to coming home… married life was mostly fun and having g a friend for life seemed like a daily blessing… but now… with the violence… the disrespect… the emotional damage… now… honestly… I was afraid to come home…

We lived in an old house in Wisconsin… the foundation was cobblestone and leaked a lot causing the basement to be mostly unusable… in the kitchen there was a door in the floor that went downstairs to a VERY primitive and dank cellar… I had been working down there to tuck point and repair the leaks in the walls… we had somewhat of a pantry down there for some canned and dried goods… the space was small… about five by five feet…

There was also an exterior cellar entrance that was locked from the outside with a padlock…

This year was a difficult year… physically and emotionally for us as a couple… we had been married for a few years and had been trying to start a family… however, the doctors informed us that my wife was sterile and couldn’t conceive… She was heart broken…

Dealing with uncontrollable circumstances felt like every day was gloomy… the sky remained grey and life lost its luster… I was always the optimist… forever looking at the opportunity… sometimes having to dig deep to uncover even the smallest silver lining…

One evening I came home early with flowers, a card and a black and silver dress that I had picked out for her for an evening out that I had planned… I wanted to start focusing on us… if we could be have a family… I wanted her to know that SHE was my family and I would take care of her…

I came home at 3pm that day… it was a Friday and I had big plans… I stopped at the gym and took a shower… got dressed up… drove home… walked to the front door and knocked… no answer…

… I knew she was home… so I tried again… and again… I went to the back door… knock knock… my concern started to well up…

At this point I have saved her from attempted suicide two times… I thought “oh no… not again…” and I unlocked the door and went inside…

The lights were off… it was as if no one was home… but there was an uncomfortable stillness in the air… I set the wrapped box and flowers on the kitchen table and began slowly walking through each room in search for my wife… It was a large house, but I couldn’t find her…

I walked back to the kitchen to start calling people… I thought maybe she went out… but that wasn’t like her… then the thought crossed my mind… “check the cellar”…

I swallowed hard… I had already began envisioning past experiences… I slowly opened the cellar door… the creaking hinges echoed through the silent house…

I began slowly stepping down the stairs and said “Vanessa… are you down here?”… I heard a shaky voice respond… “go away”… I pulled the string on the single hanging bulb and the light swayed… she was huddled up in the corner covered in dirt… her eyes were vacant and her cold stare felt evil… she locked eyes with mine… stood up slowly and walked towards me… it felt like something out of a horror movie…

She proceeded to walk past me… eyes still locked… climbed up the mule stairs… slammed the cellar door and locked it behind her… it took me a min to realize what just happened… I was locked in the cellar…

I knocked on the door and called for her to let me out for what seemed like hours… I was so angry… and hurt… i started thinking about how this was probably an accident… I mean who does this kind of thing? Right?!… but as reality started sinking in… I thought about what I had done for her to feel this way about me… to intentionally hurt me like this…

Minutes turned to hours as I could see the sun going down between the seams of the exterior cellar doors… I thought to myself that she would cool off and come open the door… I would just need to be patient… so I was…

I evaluated my situation… I had canned food, jugs of water, a knife, a lighter… and a bucket with a lid… I had been camping… I would be fine… I sat on an old mildewed camping chair and started to talk to God… I sand songs that I knew and tried to keep my spirits up… and then eventually fell asleep…

I had lost track of time and woke up after the sun came up so I was a bit disoriented… the house was silent… I had no idea where Vanessa was… or what she was doing… I tried the door again with high hopes… it was still locked… I started getting angry again… I pounded on the door and caught the side of my hand on a nail that was sticking out… it cut deep…

I cleaned it the best I could and then used my pocket knife to cut off one of the sleeves of my T-shirt to wrap it and stop the bleeding…

Again… I was left to my own thoughts… It seemed like an eternity… as the sun began to go down again… that night I was tormented… a piece of my heart cracked and trust had been shattered…

The next morning was strange… I heard footsteps across the kitchen floor… I yelled “Hey! Unlock the door!”… I could smell her perfume, Elizabeth Arden’s Red Door… she slammed the door and I heard the car start and drive away… I was pissed… I started thinking about what I had to do to remove myself from the situation… I checked all of the hinges on the doors… tried to remove the small basement window but couldn’t fit… then I noticed a sliver of light coming from the space where the hard wood floors and the cellar door met… I grabbed a loose cobblestone and began hitting the flooring from underneath… the boards moved… so I hit them harder until I could get my arm through them… I shoved my arm through the newly made space and was able to reach the slide bolt… and open the door… the room felt bright after a weekend in the dim cellar…

The kitchen was covered in flower petals and small pieces of an unopened card… and airline tickets to the east coast beachfront… she loved the beach…

I went and took a shower… took care of my wounded hand… went downstairs and sat on the couch… about 30 mins later I heard the car pull in… my heart started pumping hard… I was more hurt than angry…

She walked in… put her purse on the kitchen table and came into the living room… I said calmly… “why would you lock someone you love in a cellar for 3 days?”… her eyes went cold again and said “suck it up and be a man.”… she walked past me and walked upstairs… that was the last we talked about it…

As I’ve been rediscovering my life, I’ve grown in compassion, mercy and love… I’ve come to understand why hurt people hurt people… I’ve realized that people can’t change people… we can love and give our lives trying to help people who just don’t want help… love people who don’t want love…

God dealt with the same thing… Israel had a reputation of wanting everything but Him… but they just didn’t want Him…

In my many dark moments I’ve learned valuable life lessons… to love the unlovable, hold boundaries… serve even when it hurts… give when people don’t deserve it and choose to live a life of peace… even when life is chaotic…

Thank you for reading this post… I hope that somehow these little glimpses will find their way into the hearts of those who are in the process of overcoming and strengthen you to be strong of heart and in the Lord…


Thanks for listening...


Michael



2 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Kommentare


bottom of page