I read on CNN today that in NY there is another instance of a man who claimed to have a missing wife only to later be revealed that he is the murderer. We seem to get a few of these each year. Each time I look at the TV screen and I think to myself, "You did it, fucker." I realize that it is innocent until proven guilty in this country. For once I'd like to be wrong about these hambones. I'd like to not scowl when I see them crying on national TV begging for public's assistance. I have become so jaded about this scenario that I have implemented an action plan if a situation was to arise in our household.
My husband has been instructed that if he freaks out and loses his shit then he needs to have his complete mental breakdown away from our home. I told him that I would understand and I would not ask questions or hamper his evacuation. We have developed a code phrase if necessary. If he walks up to me and says, "Chrissy, I'd like a pickle and mushroom sandwich." Then I will know it is time to drag out his suitcase. He hates pickles and mushrooms so I figure this is a good sentence in case the children are present. It beats the hell out of, "It is time for me to slaughter all of you with this rusty screwdriver. Then I will go to my mother's house and pretend I was at the mall."
The way I see it, if we have this predetermined phrase and course of action it will be far less traumatic for the kids. I want to make this transition as easy as possible for them. I may even make a nice meal for him before he hits the road in a manic rage. He loves my chicken pot pie so I figure I could pull one of those together in a fair amount of time. I can give him some old magazines and he can cut out the "angry" words and the kids can help him glue them onto his computer monitor while dinner cooks. We will all sit at the table and discuss the days events. I will probably have to bang my glass on the table a few times to take his attention away from the knife. Better yet, no knives! Chicken pot pie really doesn't need knives if you think about it. We will laugh when Max tells us a funny story about what he drew in Art. Carter usually has a great pre-teen drama unfolding that she will share. I'll give her some useful suggestions on how to deal with it. Jamie may start screaming uncontrollably at that point. A quick clearing of the table should remedy that. I will let him take his dessert in the car with him. I will shoo the kids off to the playroom and begin cleaning dishes while he packs.
He may make strange demands, but I have been quite clear with him in prior drills that I will listen but do not have to comply. If he wants to set all purple items he finds in the house on fire, he must take them with him and then burn them . He cannot take the cats with him. He may plead with me that they have been conversing with one another for days in Latin and the cats are the only ones in the house that "get him". I don't care, the cats stay. Before he leaves he will have to sign Carter's museum field trip permission form. It needs both parent's signature nowadays. He may try to sign it in blood, that is fine with me as long as it is his and not ours. We will wave from the front window as he drives off drooling and swearing.
I figure this plan works best for us all. It's a win win situation. We get to live, and he is saved from the embarrassment of fake-weeping on television in an unbecoming sweater.