Dear Diary: Day 1 (fiction from the attic)
I swallow the bile taste of hypocrisy as I suggest marriage counseling. I want us to go to counseling to repair our marriage so I can be the one to leave him. How dare he have an affair. Sometimes I want to scream out “You’re not the only one having an affair!” There are times it threatens to bubble up unbidden, to rip out of my chest. Of course I could not allow such a thing, how would it look in court?
Marriage seemed a lot easier during the wedding. All of this attention to detail, if I was that good at taking care of details I wouldn’t have gotten married in Las Vegas. In retrospect I probably should not have gotten married in the first place, but like they say, you live and learn. Apparently it is true that marriage requires hard work and communication, who knew? When we started having marital problems I quite frankly did not know how to handle them. There was never just one thing I could put my finger on, but often something just didn’t feel right. I won’t say it was entirely his fault and of course it wasn’t all mine. To hear him tell it, it is a problem of my own design that is my sole responsibility to fix. Using his rationale it is definitely something I could change, if I chose to. But do I? Who would I be if I did?
I don’t know how long things were going badly before I noticed. When I did notice a change, I suspected he knew, or was at least suspicious of my extra marital relationships. I waited; never having been one for confessions. I have had affairs in the past, they don’t involve my heart, most things don’t. I was careful not to project my infidelities onto him, that’s a rookie mistake any way. One way to tell a person is having an affair is when they accuse you of having one. I was careful to make realistic, minor adjustments to my routine. I was even able to mimic the feelings I used to have for him. Without the passion, but then again, we never had passion. When I am feeling lonely I long for the way things used to be, then I think who wants that again? I want things to be better than they were before, before when I was the one plotting to leave him.
I realize it is a matter of perspective. If I stop to look at this differently I can cope with it. It really is no bigger or smaller than I am. It does not have a life of its own. I don’t actually lose sleep over it, but it seems as if it should really bug me, and for that reason it does. I guess I care more about perception than I care to admit. Not only what other people think but more specifically what does he think? I mean really, it is almost laughable that he considers himself as still living with me even though he has a girlfriend and spends much of his time with her. He must think I am some sort of fool. Who would go along with such a thing? Honestly. More importantly how long had it been going on before I found out?
I think he realizes that this whole situation does not bother me nearly as much as it should. Perhaps that is why he tries to hurt me. Not physically, but emotionally. He knows better than any one that he is not equipped to engage in emotional battle with me. Yet I suspect malicious intent in some of his comments, where before I suspected none. Every word now appears to be an amateur attempt at sarcasm. I replay conversations, when I have nothing better to do, and I become agitated. It makes me wonder, is an appropriate time to call your husband at his mistress’? And how exactly am I supposed to feel about that whole thing any way?
I don’t worry so much about how I contributed to the sour chord the relationship is on, as I do my inability to feel towards it. I know I should be angry, hurt, bitter, and betrayed. I was, for a while, for as long as I was capable of. How long do you mourn a relationship anyway? I know there are expected responses but I feel as if to give them would give him some sort of satisfaction. My days of satisfying him are over. Does my emotional state over the state of the marriage, reflect my inability to be an emotional, passionate wife? Am I able to change that? Am I willing?
My marriage all but over and there I was with an unplanned pregnancy. Despite the marital turmoil I was elated about the baby for much of the two days of my pregnancy. When I told him I was pregnant he said “Congratulations”. It sounded more like, “You’ve done it now.” In retrospect maybe he was saying, “I hope you and the child’s father will be happy together.” I don’t know. I was alone when I lost the baby, meaning his physical presence lacked emotional attachment. At least that is how it seemed at the time. I’ve never been good with emotion and I know I pushed him away but I should have had to push harder. The marriage would have ended that day. I stayed because he told me how much he hurt and I needed him to hurt.
There are several available options to rid myself of this relationship, the logical one being divorce. Our attempts at reaching a settlement agreement which is beneficial to the both of us are not going well. The implication is that I would get more money by not going through an attorney; as if this is some sort of an automobile accident. I realize he needs to consider me a certain way in order to justify his affair, but that doesn’t mean I have to go along with it. I also realize the potential for this to get ugly, the potential for this to not go as smoothly as one might hope. That potential alone was enough to make me form a contingency plan, my Plan B.