I had to go to bed. It was dark behind those curtains at my kitchen table because it was late. But I left my laptop cracked open, knowing there would be more to do the minute I woke up.

The emails would come in while I slept — as others, worried about their safety and their finances and their ability to move forward, were kept awake searching for solutions and support.

I’ve had those nights, the wide-awake-with-worry-and-anxiety-even-though-I’m-a-new-kind-of-exhausted nights. They’re both long and short in the way only those nights can be.

For Your Record, the non-profit I launched along with…

*These are final thoughts on a story that left off here last week.

This is what you’ve “always wanted.” That’s what I hear over and over again, from a human who doesn’t deserve the limited brain power it takes for me to process his latest tantrum.

I heard it just this week, right now (in 2020, during our isolation), well after the story that has been publishing each week ended (back in 2017). The moral? It never ends.

This is what you’ve “always wanted.”

I’ve heard those few words quite a bit. …

*This is the final chapter of a story that left off here last week.

I’m divorced. Wow. Those two words. I got to go sign papers yesterday, after an agonizing two weeks of negotiations through email, which included a heaping load of threats and bullshit from him, but in the end I came away with protections I needed legally and a fair custody agreement.

It’s surreal. It’s done. My marriage is over. It took me a whole 10 minutes to sign the papers. Ten minutes. That was it. But it took 10 months to get to this point, which I…

*This is the 13th chapter of a story that left off here last week.

I knew the trip would take my breath away. I knew it. I just didn’t know how, exactly. I knew the waterfalls would do it. I just wasn’t expecting a person to do it, too.

I had no idea, while gripping the edge of a cliff with my toes inside a pair of soggy socks, that two letters would send me over the edge — literally and figuratively.

“Hi,” he said, his face inches from mine.

He walked out to the edge of that cliff, with…

*This is the 12 chapter in a story that ended off here last week

I remembered another nightmare today. I had it a couple nights ago.

I was laying on my stomach. And I don’t know why. Probably because it was a position that’s not easy to get up from. It’s not an offensive position.

And he was sitting in a chair, staring at me. With that glare. Just looking at me, deadpan.

He said something to me about his first wife. A lie. He said some lie about the way she felt or the things she did.

“That’s not…

*This is the 11th chapter of a story that left off here last week.

I woke up today. And showered. And got ready, putting on a pencil skirt and a black, rayon shell. I chose ballet flats and I sent the kids to the neighbor’s house.

I drove to the courthouse. I sat in the courtroom and I watched and listened as his attorney told the prosecutor “he would oppose that.”

I didn’t know what “that” was. I looked right and the advocate sat next to me and told me words that sent a numbness down both of my legs…

This is the tenth chapter of a story that left off here last week.

  • Editor’s note: This was written in real time, chronicling abuse, intimidation and generally nutty behavior from a few years ago. And very little has changed since then — except my strength, my experience and my growth. I thought it was important to note that, in case someone is jumping in midstream.

— -

I’m trying to divorce an actual lunatic. Like a certifiable crazy person who also has control issues. Take it from me, it’s a terrifying combo.

Today he did some crazy-ass shit, and there’s…

This is the ninth chapter in a story that left off here last week.

I had a dream I was pitching. Not in a game, but that I was just throwing a ball and someone was offering commentary on the side. I don’t know who. I do remember having impeccable form. I remember somehow seeing the muscles in my shoulder work as I was coming over the top of the pitch.

All I heard, over and over, was, “Follow through. Follow through.”

And I saw my arm come forward, and my hand open and come over the top of the…

*This is the eighth chapter of a story that left off here last week.

You know how sometimes things that seemed so awful turn into some type of blessing? I’m, like, not religious or anything, but I do kind of believe in the universe handling things.

Without looking at it as a karma thing or a higher power thing, I do think that the day he called the police, and lied about me throwing a beer bottle, was a gift.

It got me out.

If the police had not come that day, I don’t know how that day would have…

Credit: Forbes

*This is the seventh chapter of a story that left off here last week.

So, today was awful. Yesterday was good. Today was horrible. It started with me melting into a puddle of inconsolable messiness in front of my neighbors after learning he was taking the kids to his new girlfriend’s house to watch the football game.

His. New. Girlfriend.

The same lady he carried on a relationship with about a year ago after deciding to strike something up while coaching her kids in baseball. Splendid. …

Lisa Van Loo

She writes. She raises kids. She adventures. She founded For Your Record for DV. She’s on Instagram at @Lisawritesaboutit or at lisawritesaboutit@gmail.com.

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