A few years earlier in my life I decided rather foolishly to move out. On the way out the door I attempted to remove the house key from my key ring and return it to my father. He handed it back to me and told me no matter what, I could always come home.
So, I was pregnant, unhappy, and scared. For those of you who have lived on small military bases you are probably familiar with a little thing called gossip. This base excelled at gossip and it wasn’t long after I found out I was pregnant that everyone I met told me a horror story about some lady who just had a baby. It went a little something like this;
Person I hardly knew: Hi UnHappy Housewife, I heard you were pregnant.
Me: Um, yes.
Person I hardly knew: Did you hear about Phil’s wife?
Me: Um, no…
Person I hardly knew: Well she was pregnant too, the doctors let her go four weeks overdue, then when she finally went into labor she got stuck in traffic on the two hour drive to the hospital. When she got to the hospital they told her there was no one there to give her an epidural. She was in labor for 56 hours at the hospital and finally had a c-section, the baby weighed 12 pounds.
After hearing story after story I became petrified to have a baby. Between pregnancy fears and fighting with dh, I was overtaken with depression. I would spend hours on the computer (this was before internet) playing solitaire. When dh would return from work the fighting would begin and only end when he left for his next shift. I felt trapped. I had no friends, my family was an ocean away, I had no where to turn.
Because of the stress, I was losing weight, my doctor didn’t seem concerned. He told me it was normal to lose weight at the beginning of a pregnancy.
I remember sitting in the corner calling my parents, crying hysterically. I begged for them to rescue me. I was miserable, they doctor’s didn’t care about me or the baby, and my marriage to dh was a huge mistake. I wanted to go home. But my parents would remind me I was already home. I had made choices and now I needed to live with them. While I sobbed on the phone, they would calmly remind me that I needed to work things out.
Finally in the heat of an argument with dh I locked myself in the spare room and dialed my parents’ number. I was so hysterical my dad couldn’t understand a word I was saying. I was begging and pleading to move back. My dad started to explain to me why I needed to stay. In my complete hysteria I started screaming over and over, “The key! The key! You told me I could always come home! I still have the key!”
I am sure my parents agonized over their decision. I know they were worried about me and the baby, but they also believed that marriage was a commitment for life. They didn’t want me to run away from my problems, but they didn’t want my situation to get any worse. Finally after much debate and with the agreement of dh we decided it would be best for me to return to the states to have the baby.
108 days after I arrived I boarded a plane to Miami. I was going home, with no intention of ever returning.
Writer’s note: This is the story of how I became The Happy Housewife. I am writing as I have time and try to publish a new chapter every few weeks. If you don’t want to miss the next installment you can subscribe to my blog.