I'm in bed with a fever of 104. I know I'm not sick –- not in the conventional sense. It's my body, fighting itself, breaking down walls and defenses that have taken me months to build. The defragmentation of my heart is in full progress and I stand at the threshold with intent, a document open before me on my computer filled with pieces of Tristan and me. Text messages, status updates, lyrics and other bits of us, bits we sent off into so many cold winter nights.
The day Jesse James' affair with Michelle McGee hit the news, I got a phone call from my father, who was uncharacteristically beside himself about the news. He adores Sandra Bullock, but his beef wasn't with James' audacity to cheat on the award-winning actress with perfect girl-next-door charm – it was with James' complete lack of judgment in choosing a proper mistress and executing a clean extramarital affair.
The other woman. “Home wrecker” if she succeeds, “what did you expect?” if she doesn't. Everyday we are bombarded with stories of these women: former governor Mark Sanford's soulmate, John Edwards' baby momma, and Tiger Woods' menagerie of lovers. While the media will tell us all about these women, it's only ever the scintillating details – the love letters, the text messages, the alleged existence of a sex tape. The fact they are – or once were – party girls, porn stars, strippers.
I’ve received a ton of emails lately asking me to blog about the state of the economy, and how financial stress within marriages today are at a feverish pitch. Even one of the comments I received was, “The economy will get better, but will my marriage still be in tact when it does?” Ouch, sounds serious....more
“Promise me that you won't judge?” Verena asked me over the phone.
“I knew you were sleeping with him!” I exclaimed.
It's a typical week night. I'm at home, alone, eating cold takeout standing at the kitchen counter. Verena, I imagine, is luxuriating a bath, sipping a glass of wine. We'd been talking about the screenplay she's writing when she'd grown quiet.
...I am one of the married people you know. Going on 19 years of marriage, very attractive, professional, financially secure, kind, athletic, two beautiful children. I am easy going, love music (especially live), art, literature, film, good dining and travel. I consider myself successful and secure. I love my wife, but why don't I feel passionate anymore? I have never had any extramarital relationships but has been secretly thinking about it for a long time. I am longing for the excitement of a deep connection - emotional and physical - with a woman of charm and intellect.
I'm late for high tea at the Living Room. I always am nowadays, it seems, and not by choice. Traffic is fine, but the idea that people are waiting gives me a mild degree of angina.
“Do you mind if I smoke?” I ask the cab driver. Hovik, the card reads.
“No problem,” he responds in a thick accent. Well, thank God.
“Would you care for one?” I offer, extending the case toward him.
“I have, thank you,” he says.
I sit back and light my cigarette.
“What you do at hotel?” Hovik asks me.
And suddenly, there it is. Just like that. Mixed in with old magazines and brownie recipes, dental records and department store receipts all destined to be burned.
folded neatly a letter a letter from him
We always suspected
And there I am staring at the needle in my mother's haystack my hand extending toward it ready to seize the opportunity