Along with Mike, I liked Peter’s former friend Randy, and wondered if he liked me. As for Phil–I didn’t like him all that much. I hated him, in fact. It would take a lot for him to get me back, if he were to try.
I couldn’t wait to go home for Thanksgiving Break and get away from all this, all these problems.
I had the same comfort as during the Peter-situation long ago–that “all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28, NKJV).
On the 18th, Dad was to pick me up to take me home. He wasn’t supposed to arrive until about 6pm, so I asked Mike to study with me for Intro to Christianity. Can you believe we had a test on the 28th, the first day of class after Thanksgiving Break?
When Mike showed up, he brought a high school friend, Brent. He was all excited because he finally had a male friend again, not just us girls. (I guess Phil no longer counted as his friend, after the way Phil treated me.)
I think Dad arrived more than ten minutes after Mike did. Mike cried, “Hello, Nyssa’s dad!” He amused my dad with his usual silliness.
Catherine later said that everyone in the world was destined to meet Mike, since he seemed to know everybody we ran into out and about.
I hoped to finally type up much of my novel/Senior Writing Project on the computer while at home for Thanksgiving. I planned to do some major typing then and over Christmas.
I couldn’t get enough chapters to Counselor Dude because I forgot my Jerisland discs (3 1/2 discs, which the young people call old-fashioned, but we called newfangled). I couldn’t type up the files for the first few weeks. I was also still writing the novel.
Counselor Dude understood; he said we’d get the project done a little late, especially since he still would have to read it and it was big, but I would get a grade.
Writing the last chapters during the fall semester was burdensome and melancholy at times, but at the same time, a way to get away from the Phil-situation. I could escape to the island.
While reading shelves with Sharon, not only did I find some interesting books on marriage and Egyptian hieroglyphics, but also Darwin’s book on coral atolls. This was the book referenced by Collier’s Encyclopedia in the article “Atoll,” which I mentioned in the February 1994 chapter.
I also used my Botany books to find the identities of the trees and plants, which the article only called by their scientific names, and which were in no other books I could find.
And now, as of 2007, I can just plug any of these names in Google and find out what they are! I love the Internet!
Benny was now brought home and put in my younger brother’s old room, where he eventually became my niece’s toy. For several years, looking at this stuffed rabbit made me sad, even after moving on, and even though Peter’s presents no longer bothered me. That’s how bad an impression Phil made on me.
Some songs from the time: “Vaseline” by Stone Temple Pilots; “Verse Chorus Verse” by Nirvana; “Love is Deeper Than Touch,” a Christian song from the summer by Andy Landis; “Over You” by David Meece; Gary Chapman’s “Heal Me,” which I could identify with. (Check out these lyrics. And that was long before the well-publicized divorce from Amy Grant!)
On the 20th, I spent many fun hours with my high school friend Becky. It was good to enjoy myself and get away from the problems at school. She’d had guy problems lately, and said I was better company than a guy.
Over Break I read Clotel: Or The President’s Daughter by William Wells Brown, the first novel written by an African-American black person, for American Lit. The cover said it was “written and published by an escaped slave in 1853.” Clotel was part black, the child of Thomas Jefferson.
She had a spiritual marriage with a white man. This was the only way she could marry a white man, or marry anyone for that matter, since even slave marriages weren’t legally recognized.
The novelist considered her spiritual marriage a true marriage, and when the man left her to marry a rich white woman, he called him an adulterer.
I looked at this and saw my own situation: deserted by a man who said he was my husband.
I also considered Phil to be an adulterer if he ever slept with or married another. This has since changed, of course, though I still consider him my first husband.
Thursday, November 24, Thanksgiving. I was so looking forward to Thanksgiving week, to being home and away from all the crap going on at school. But since I got home, I kept remembering Phil being there, living with my parents and me. This saddened me.
I kept wondering if I was pregnant, looking in Dad’s CD-Rom encyclopedia for definitions of “common-law marriage,” how I could tell if I was pregnant and what the baby would look like now if I was pregnant, reading medical journals, and wondering if it would harm the baby to sit in front of the computer too much. This all saddened me.
And on Thanksgiving I saw my brother and his wife–still together, of course, having gotten married that summer while Phil and I were engaged. Even seeing their happiness while I was so sad, saddened me. I wondered if I’d ever be in their place.
This sucked. Now I just wanted to go back to school, and was glad I soon would.
My period started on day fifty-three!!! of my cycle, the latest I’d been in the past calendar year. My usual cycle was about thirty-five days long, so you can see why this made me so anxious. It turned out to be a normal, five-day period.
No, I didn’t try to get pregnant. I would never have done such a thing just to keep Phil in my life. And I’d had a period since the last time I was with him.
But you can imagine that skipping a period makes you anxious, makes you wonder if you had twin eggs and only one came out as a period, makes you wonder if it’s possible to have a period while pregnant. And, well, it has been known to happen, especially in the first trimester….
And, well, fraternal twins with different fathers also happen for real. And I heard twins were in my family, and knew nothing about hormonal imbalances.
So it was within the realm of possibility for me to have had two eggs, one which was fertilized, the other not. Or for me to still have a period while pregnant. My fear was justified.
On the 21st, I wrote in my diary:
I think I might be pregnant…this is the 15th day–two weeks–since my period was supposed to start.
And, according to Becky, it is possible to have at least one more period while you’re pregnant, and she knows people who’ve had several.
It’s usually due to birth control pills, but her mom had gone off the Pill and still had several periods before she knew she was five months pregnant with Becky.
Pregnant with the child of the husband who deserted me. What am I supposed to do now, if I am? I don’t want to miscarry–I hope I don’t. Unwanted pregnancy or not, a miscarriage is so sad. And I certainly wouldn’t abort it.
On the 25th, I wrote:
My period finally started about ten minutes ago. I did a bunch of research into the subject this week [ online and on the computer ], trying to see if pregnancy was possible or not, and could only come to the conclusion that maybe I was, maybe I wasn’t.
If I was, it was a twin; if I wasn’t, psychological stress pushed off ovulation. [ I didn’t yet know about the hormonal imbalance which actually has caused me many period problems over the years. ]
On Sunday, November 27, my parents and I returned to Roanoke. On my way out the door, I stopped at the top of the basement stairs and looked down to my little kitty Hazel, who sat and stared at me from the foot of the stairs.
(We now used the door there as a main door instead of the back door, because my parents put a new carpet in the family room and didn’t want it to get dirty.)
I felt I’d never see her again. Was I going to die from sadness or in a car crash that day?
Back at school, I mentioned the feeling to Sharon; she said maybe Hazel was going to die. As it turned out, Hazel and I both lived to see each other on Christmas Break, but after that, I never saw her again.
She died of an undetermined illness which made her bald and skinny, possibly diabetes. (She did love those Twinkies, after all.)
Who did my parents and I see at Marc’s Restaurant in S–? Persephone and her parents! (They also would have been returning from Indiana.) The wait staff seated us just a table or two apart. Persephone and I looked at each other and laughed.
So now my parents knew what she looked like. At least she was just with her parents, and not with Phil. However, the sight of her reminded me of the pain I was going back to. By the way, this Marc’s soon became Annie’s Restaurant. I don’t know what it is now.
Cast of Characters (Work in Progress)
Table of Contents
December 1991: Ride the Greyhound
January 1992: Dealing with a Breakup with Probable NVLD
March 1992: Shawn: Just Friends or Dating?
April 1992: Pledging, Prayer Group–and Peter’s Smear Campaign
October 1992–Shawn’s Exasperating Ambivalence:
Summer 1993: Music, Storm and Prophetic Dreams
June 1994–Bits of Abuse Here and There:
July & August 1994: