During car rides alone, Mom would speak freely letting us know what was on her mind. She told us about plans and ideas she had been conjuring. Vented to us of her feelings and frustrations and checked in with us to see how we had been holding up. More than anything, we would joke and imagine a life without Ian; usually somewhere on a tropical beach. We were reminded of the freedom his imprisonment had brought us during those 4 years. How his absence brought us a kind of happiness that we never had before. How that was the first time we had a glimpse of a different life. Now, we were forced back into his old ways we thought were long in the past.
In all honesty, I wasn’t listening to much during the first few conversations. As much as I wanted to leave, I didn’t believe we were really going through with it. So, I ignored much of it at first believing the hype would eventually die off and we would just continue to deal with Ian like we had our whole life. However, weeks passed and the topic wasn’t dieing off. The hype wasn’t fading. In fact, it became stronger. Mom eventually snatched my full attention when she started telling us about the apartments she had looked at. One of which she was strongly considering.
With oozing excitement, she asked Caleb and I, “Do you guys want to see it? Junior has already seen it. He said he liked it!”
It finally clicked. We’re really doing this? We’re really leaving? Once I began to believe it, the thoughts overwhelmed me. I hadn’t given myself any time to process these hopes, dreams and wishes that were coming into reality. My mind spun as the thought sunk in; Ian would no longer be in our lives. Mom wasn’t just ‘venting’ anymore in casual conversation. She wasn’t wishing, daydreaming, hoping or praying anymore; she deflated all false hopes. Mom started organizing.
She started … planning