I wrote my last update at a coffee shop on my way to work. I had another late start due to client cancelations/reschedules. There was a lady sitting on the couch opposite me, and she had her dog with her and was also toting her son, who looked to be about eight years old, and they were playing cards. The dog appeared to be some sort of flat-coated retriever mix, and its tail kept threatening to knock the drinks over on the knee-height table. That’s what I was contending with while writing that post. Fascinating, I know.
Now I’m sitting at home in the comfort of my living room. I got home around 8:00 p.m. The lights were totally out on the house, so I’d assumed that my wife still had not returned home. I was wrong. When I went to open the front door, the dog was there to greet me. Her behavior was a bit odd: she seemed tired and kind of depressed. Normally, when one of us would come home, she would get all hyper and prance around. She’s a Corgi, after all, and they’re very active dogs. This time, she just seemed kind of sedate. I saw this behavior after her first extended visit to Camp Chickenshit. In fact, she’s never really totally normal after visiting that place. It’s like she’s home again, and everything is familiar, yet she needs to readjust, because the pack dynamics have shifted. Dogs do need that sense of pack dynamics, and they need to know who the pack leader is. Normally that would be me. But when she goes to Camp Chickenshit, I think she gets confused. That role would have to fall on my wife. Maybe there’s no trust in the adulterer; why should there be?
Anyway, so what else did I discover when I came home? Well, for starters, my wife had left a note for me on the dining room table. I had left her a note before I went to work, letting her know that I had cooked some lunch and that there were leftovers in the fridge. I also wrote that I had bought potato chips, which she consumes voluminously these days (without gaining weight; I attribute that to the stressfulness of her situation), and that there was also some root beer in the fridge. Not A&W or Hires, but micro-brewed stuff. Craft sodas are all the rage these days, and there are dozens of places around the country that brew root beer. The note also thanked me for the stuff I’d bought and prepared, and also thanked me for having relocated her half-packed boxes into her closet. (I had to: they were an eyesore and taking up far too much space.) She also thanked me for the chocolate I had sneaked into her bag before she left. She also wrote, “Please let me know if there [is] anything I can do for you.” I felt that statement to be rather odd. There is actually something she could do for me: break off the affair and come home to reconcile, but perhaps that would be asking too much. She signed the note, “Best, [her name];” I found this a bit odd as well, as she must have learned that closing salutation from me or someone else.
So there we are.
I guess I just have absolutely no sense for where I stand right now. The affair is going on 4-1/2 months old right now, so I guess that would make it kind of middle-aged. Affairs tend to perish before they hit the one-year mark, and most probably die away months before that, say in the range of 5 to 7 months of total duration or so. Thinking back on all my pre-marriage girlfriend situations, few of them lasted substantially longer than that, and that is likely true of others’ experience as well. Affairs aren’t boyfriend/girlfriend situations, though, since at least one, if not both partners are married. But, with this aforementioned time frame, I guess that would mean that we’re getting fairly close to the affair’s death from natural causes, i.e. the endless lies, deceit and so on. Much as the human body can only sustain a fight against a mighty virus or disease for so long, so too can a human sustain a fight against the ethics and morality of human society for a limited time. Maybe that’s why I get the sense that the affair is being kept on life support. I don’t have any evidence to back this up, though; it’s just a hunch. I don’t really see it stretching on much more than another month or so. After that, the pressures of real life will just become too severe. But, I could be wrong. My wife does appear to have a small network of friends who support and encourage her path of infidelity, and that is a truly amazing thing to consider.
In the meantime, I continue to wait, to work on myself and my fixings, and to continue to build goodwill such that she’ll feel comfortable coming home when that relationship finally self-combusts.