After putting China down, Mandy and I got in our girl talk. Before our bodies shut down for the night, we’d speak on the phone and talk about some of everything. I learned Mandy slept with a butcher knife under her pillow.
For her, it provided a feeling of security. For me, it was just one of the many things I knew about Mandy.
While I reminisced about some of the dramas in my life, she’d laugh without stopping or respond with disbelief.
“I have those ‘you hurt me now, I’ll get you back’ moments,” I told her.
I revealed to her was the one day Craig had gone out without me. For those readers not familiar with these driving forces, they happen when anger surfaces and no longer stays suppressed. Talk about wacko—it gives the name a new height and meaning. The scene that followed was unimaginable, but it actually happened. When Craig went out, that was his big mistake. After he left, I went to the closet, took his clothes off the hangers, piled them in the middle of the floor, cut the lights, and stuck a match to them. Then I set in the dark and watched the bonfire.
In an instant, I had a Betty Broderick moment—just like when she set her man’s clothes on fire. Or was it the Angela Bassett scene in Waiting to Exhale? Paying back her man was definitely a moment of rage. Then again, maybe it was a Crystal Mangum moment. She’s the Durham, North Carolina, mother of three who was accused of setting her man’s clothes on fire in a bathtub. In any case, each one of their actions made a clear statement: You hurt me, I’ll hurt you back! So, really, those rising hormones aren’t anything to mess with.
The fire was barely blazing when Craig returned. As he entered the room, our eyes slowly locked. He brushed by me to stomp out the fire. . . . (At this point you may want to open your imagination for what followed—or think what
you’d say if someone torched your clothes.) Craig yelled out, “You, you . . . black b—! What the devil have you done, I
could kick your . . .” When it was over, my actions made the statement: You tortured me; I’ll torture you back.
As it happened, my mindset switched into fight or flight mode. It was the thought of his abandonment . . .
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