I have done this. Only I had a 14 inch cast iron frying pan, and I wasn’t cowering in self defense, I was threatening to bash my ex-husbands head in. Sometimes I laugh at the image of myself at two o’clock in the morning grabbing the frying pan and telling him that if he left the house I would be waiting for him. And I meant it, I would have been, and he KNEW it and made a smart choice to stay in that night. Very soon after I decided to divorce him.
I had allowed myself to turn into a person that I did not like. I did not know how to deal with the pain and anger of living with an alcoholic that lied to me daily, stole from me and my children, and blamed me for his behaviors. I was a very angry woman and that anger was coming out in impatience with my children and futile attempts to get him to change his behavior. I occasionally get a chuckle out of picturing myself wielding a frying pan, but more often than not I am ashamed of myself. I have never hit another human being in my life and I was ready, willing and eager to wallop him.
It’s hard to admit that I had allowed myself to get to that point, but 12 years have passed and I have learned much, number one being that no matter what precipitated the night of the frying pan, that night was a blessing. I stood up for myself. I made it unmistakably clear what I would NOT tolerate any longer. And then I took the first step on a long journey of learning to love and appreciate myself.
That frying pan brought me vision; I saw that nothing was going to change unless I changed it. I overcame the fear of raising three children under five on my own. I overcame financial worry. I gained faith, in God and myself. I just recently totally let go. I accepted and forgave myself for becoming so angry, for being a person that I did not like. The memory will always be there, especially considering I still use that frying pan regularly, but it’s a faded memory when it pops it’s head and now I can laugh with the joy that comes from hindsight and success.
We feel free when we escape – even if it be but from the frying pan to the fire.~Eric Hoffer