“I AM DONE! THROUGH!!! YOU WILL NOT CONTINUE TO MAKE MY LIFE MISERABLE!”
“MISERABLE? YOU ARE NEVER THERE FOR ME. THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT!”
“HOW IS THIS MY FAULT? DID I TELL YOU TO GO HAVE AFFAIRS? HOW CAN THIS BE MY FAULT? YOU ARE JUST A DOG!”
“AND YOU’RE JUST EVIL!”
Devon enters the room.
“STOP IT! JUST STOP ALL OF THIS FIGHTING. DAD YOU ARE CHEATING ON MOM AND YOU KNOW IT. I FOUND ONE OF THOSE WOMEN ON THE COMPUTER. WHY? WHY DAD? MOM HAS ALWAYS BEEN THERE FOR YOU! I DON’T . . .”
I place my hand on Devon’s shoulder. Crying. Trembling.
“Calm down son. I am sorry that we woke you. I am sorry for a lot of things. Go back to bed. We all need to just stop and get some rest.”
“Mom, how do you expect me to sleep? All this yelling. Everybody mad at each other. I just don’t get it.”
Allen reaches for Devon. Devon draws back.
“Devon, your mom and I are just having some problems. They have nothing to do with you.”
Allen looks at me for support in his lie. NEVER!
“Devon, just go to your room, alright? I’ll be in shortly to pray with you. Go now. I’ll be in.”
Devon closes his room door. I turn. Allen sits in his chair. Clicks on the television.
“I want a divorce Allen. I am not kidding. I told you that I was trying to wait until Devon graduated from high school but I can’t tolerate your disrespect any longer. I took you back after you cheated the first time and your night job called me looking for you. Can imagine how humiliated I was when my brother located you with your ex-high school sweetheart? He wanted to shoot you but I told him not to. Oh, not for your sake, but for his. Then like a fool I thought that if we prayed and went to church and had marriage counseling you would learn what being faithful meant. I will admit this. . . I WAS WRONG. You cheated two or more times after that. You don’t know what being faithful means.”
“Lisa, I don’t want to hear anymore.”
“I don’t care what you want Allen. You haven’t cared about us for years. You are going to hear me out. Whether you listen or not is up to you. Ever since Devon was born you have been jealous. Instead of celebrating your son with me, you got mad when I could not give you the attention I did before he came into our lives. Yes, I dedicated my life to our son and I don’t regret it for one minute. You have a son. A wonderful son that you don’t deserve to be the father of. I want you out of here. You can go sleep with whatever and whoever you want to. JUST GET OUT!!!”
Allen showing no emotion clicked the television off. Sat up on his chair and spoke.
“I love my son. I used to love you. You chose our son over me. You gave me nothing. I disappeared when Devon was born. I got sick of waiting in line for you to show me a little affection here and there. There are plenty of women at my job who give me gifts and I give them attention. If I cheated, it was not my fault alone. You say I have problems. You are my biggest problem. But let me tell you this. I am not going anywhere. I have every right to stay here. Now. . . I am going to bed. I don’t care what you do.”
Standing over Devon as he slept, I could feel my cheeks burning with pain and anger. Tears streaming down, I begin to pray over my son.
“God, help me to take care of this precious gift that you gave us? Give me the strength to be what he needs? Help him to grow up to be the wonderful young man you have planned for him to become? Bless him and keep him? Surround him with your protecting angels? And Lord, please show me what to do next? In Jesus’ name. Amen.”
I kiss Devon’s forehead. He stirs.
“Don’t worry son. Everything will be alright. Trust your mother. Goodnight.”
To be continued. . .