After years at an elite level Leigh Jaynes gives her shoes to her daughter and walks away from the sport of wrestling. Mike Mal
Rebuttal: For now. I was married in 2012 to Ben Provisor and had my daughter Evelyn in 2013. I felt complete. Finally a support system where I had really never "felt" like I had one. Whether that was real or not, that was my perception of the life circumstances. After marriage my charming husband became a monster. Punching holes in the wall, staying out all night, flirting with other women with the definite real and valid suspicion of cheating. There was an incident where, super prego, I leaned back in a chair and his hot coffee spill on my head. Knowing it was an accident, I didn't really expect too much besides an "are you ok?" But instead, he told me it was my fault, that I was stupid for what I did and he proceeded to chase me into the bedroom where he trapped me, poked me in my forehead and chest, yelling a few inches from my face.
We were preparing to move and Ben was slotted for a month long wrestling tour of Eastern Europe. That day I called a friend to help him move the heavy stuff from the old apartment, to our new house on Falkirk Avenue Colorado Springs. He was there with a trailer and truck to assist with the heavy lifting. I had a hair appointment that took forever. Ben called me repeatedly while I was at the hair dresser. "What is taking so long?" It was single box braids and I have a ton of hair. Not to mention there was only one braider when usually there are at least to for a style like this. He grew in frustration and impatience. I took a picture to prove where I was...it didn't matter. He threatened that I would be sorry when I got home. I left...then the content calls and threats until now trembling in fear, I drove my white VW Jetti TDI to the new home. I walked though the white plastic gate in the backyard and entered through the back door. Still shaking, I murmured what I could help carry, because the main issue was that I wasn't there to assist in moving. He said there was nothing I could do at this point. That I was worthless. Upset, I walked upstairs to our bedroom, retreated to the bathroom and closed the door. He pounded and demanded for me to open it immediately. He was just going to kick it in and cause damage so I did. He approached me rapidly in the narrow bathroom and feeling threatened I tried to slide past him. My hands were up in the cactus pose that we use in yoga to convey that I wasn't interested in a fight, that I give up. Then it happened, he yelled something to the affect of "so you're going to hit me?" Shocked I was like "WHAT??!!" and he shoved me. I fell over the end table that was not yet placed next to the bed. My landing crushed Evelyn's baby bottle piggy bank and I must have hurt my arm because later there was bruise the size of my entire forearm. "What the fuck is wrong with you?" I shouted. He countered with something about me hitting him first and complete fabrication just for the friend and his son that was still downstairs in our living room, listening to the entire episode. I ran downstairs pleading for them to call the police. They left. Stating that "it looks like you have some things you all need to work out." Really? The next half an hour I tried to fight back but eventually went limp as he smashed my face into the carpet, dragged me by my legs, pulled my hair shouting verbal assaults like:
"You were nothing before you met me."
"I am going to throw you outside like the garbage you are"
"You're a worthless, ugly, fat piece of shit."
to name a few.
There were other incidents like this throughout our three year marriage. Most remarkable was the time he left me on the side of the road and drove off in my car. The time he physically kicked me out of bed. The two car accidents we got into for reckless driving but the one that resulted in a traumatic brain injury, lose of cognitive function. I was on a media tour and my memory was weird. I remember one of my teammates being frustrated with me asking the same question multiple times because strange symptoms of TBI include short term memory recollection. On my return flight, I forgot my bag and my gate. I was lost at an airport that I had been to 1000 times. I called my husband, who refused to pick me up and proceeded to attack me on how "sketchy" it was that I had conveniently miss my flight implying I was up to no good. I was devastated. I caught the next flight 6 hours later from Denver to Colorado Springs...A 1 hour drive or 15 minute flight. After catching a freaking taxi to the house, I arrive to him and Pat Downy, who was living with us, playing video games. He had no hesitation with opening up the heated, intense and destructive accusations of infidelity. The behavior of a guilty person. There were many more days like this...my home was a war zone and I was a prisoner.
Before you think I was a shrinking violet, I was not. I reported him several times. The police were called by me, my mother, his father, his sister, and I submitted statements plus pictures to the Olympic Training Center staff and Human Resource Department. Ben had a knack for returning to his sweet, accomplished charming self to relate to the cops, who were always impressed with an Olympian. They placed me and our daughter Evelyn in a safe house for one month. The Lofts on Kiowa Ave where you needed key card assess to the unit. He was mandated to attend anger management to keep his resident status. He took one class and then walked out on us leaving behind the most effective smear campaign and a trail of tears for his abandoned family. He went on to make the 2016 Olympic Team and was permitted to return to the Olympic Training Center with no consequence. The report and pictures disappeared and the feedback from the department was, "just divorce him." Advice which I followed, December 16, 2016.
Needless to say, I fled with my daughter. We moved to Maine to lick our wounds and find salvation. I failed at everything wrestling that year, but I survived the most hostile, horrific and damaging relationship of my life. I rescued my 2 year old, put her on my back and walked her through the muddy water, up the mountain to high ground where we could see clearly on where to go from there. I did not walk away from wrestling...the community turned its back on me when I needed support the most. I gave my shoes to my daughter to symbolize the shift in focus to her well being. Notice I didn't leave my shoes behind!