Yesterday wasn’t exactly one of those “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade” days. Actually, it was more like “when life gives you lemonade, go ahead and enjoy it.” Allow me to run with this metaphor.
I don’t particularly like lemonade that much, but if someone gives it to me, I’ll probably drink it. I can occasionally find it enjoyable. It’s tart, a bit sweet, and it certainly can wake up my palate. There is a tinge of unpleasantness to it for me that underlies the whole experience, but I do find well-made lemonade a bit more than tolerable. In fact, I remember having a lemonade filled with some lemon granita at Ferrara on a hot day in New York City a couple of years ago, and it was extremely refreshing.
Yesterday was sort of a refreshing change from the usual. My wife typically comes into town on Wednesday and leaves on Thursday. She has a rehearsal on Wednesday night, and does a bit of teaching on Wednesday evening and Thursday afternoon. Then she packs back off to adulterysville for the rest of the week. When she is in town, I get to see her, usually just once, and she actually does answer her phone.
She contacted me on Tuesday evening, as per usual by text, saying she wanted to see me on Wednesday morning so that she could drop off the dog. She had mentioned last week that she also wanted out of our cell phone contract and intended to discuss that with me on Wednesday morning as well. Wednesday was a very busy day for me, though, and I had to be in to work fairly early. I called to let her know — of course she did not answer — and I did later get a text saying that she didn’t realize I wouldn’t be available, and so she’d drop the dog off sometime during the day.
Realizing this to be the case, I staged a gift for her by placing it in a bag on the knob of the front door. On Tuesday, I’d stopped by a shop selling letterpress cards and other goodies, and picked up a Mothers Day card, as well as somethings for my wife: a gift tag that said “TO:” and “FROM:” in very big, antique lettering, a paper garland disc with the first letter of her name on it (very nice design), plus a wood typesetting piece that also had her first initial on it. I placed this all in a small gift box, stamping her initial with the typesetting piece onto the to/from tag; that went into the box, and the garland letter was placed on the front of the box, held in place by some gold elastic cord. Details, details. Then I left the house. She texted me as I was going in to work, and I called back to discuss logistics. She later texted me again to thank me for the gift, saying she loved everything, and that the wrapping was beautiful. That night she texted me one more time to make arrangements to see me the following morning.
I know this sounds odd, but she actually set up the meeting. Usually I have to do this. It’s my weekly “date night,” or as close to it as I can get, and last week’s was kind of disastrous. Well, not an outright disaster, but it ended on a sour note. And, as I later discovered, my suspicions were right: after she got out of the car, she went to the courthouse to do something with her marriage dissolution paperwork. Actually, I don’t know if she filed, or if she went there for forms, or to ask about things, or what. I don’t see any evidence that she has filed yet (the state has an online tracking system for open cases) but that doesn’t mean it has or hasn’t happened.
But I digress. She wanted to meet, and I arranged to pick her up just after 9:00 a.m. She had another appointment with the so-called “energy worker,” and suggested that I drive her over to that town and we could have coffee. I gladly agreed. Just before I arrived to pick her up, she texted me to ask if I was still at home: she needed a “cute” envelope in which she could put the payment check for the session she was going to have. I was right around the corner from picking her up, though.
She came out just as I pulled up. She looked tired. Very tired. This seems always to be the case. She definitely did not seem terribly happy. She got in the car and we chatted on the way to the coffee shop. She asked how my parents were doing, and I filled her in. I asked how her parents were, and she told me that she didn’t know, as she hadn’t spoken to them. Now, last week she told me she hadn’t spoken to her parents for about a month. This tells me that they still don’t know that she has moved in with the adulterer. This also does not bode well for the point in time when she actually does tell them.
We arrived at the coffee shop and sat in the corner. She paid for the coffee and the donuts. (This place is actually a well known donut shop.) We actually had a pretty nice time. Her body language was a bit closed and defensive, but fundamentally her energy toward me was open, and mine toward her was totally uninhibited. It seems like with her I’m always waiting for the other shoe to drop these days, expecting her to tell me that she’s moved in with the adulterer, that I’ll get served papers, or something else unpleasant. But that hasn’t happened yet and it didn’t happen yesterday, either. What she did do was to ask me a favor. She had written a couple of testimonials for the energy worker in Japanese that this woman was going to use on her website. She had translated them (very well — she said she did these on her own, but I suspect the adulterer helped her a bit with them as the grammar was uncharacteristially nearly perfect) and wanted me to look them over and edit them. I said I’d be happy to do so, but would need a day or two to get around to them.
After a bit, the realization that she did not yet have that cute envelope she needed led us to drive over to a paper shop so she could purchase one. At one point she was browsing the rubber stamps, and told me that she was really getting in to them. (Somehow I knew this, and that’s why my gift went over so big.) She ended up buying a whole bunch of stuff, and got overcharged. It took a while to rectify things, and by the time the accounts had been settled she had missed her bus. I had earlier offered to just drive her there but she had declined; now she pretty much had to accept my offer.
So off we went. I drove her right to that woman’s door. This is a good thing. She brought my energy, the positive energy I had created, with her into whatever session she had. She also brought the knowledge that her husband — the very person she is trying to separate from — to that session. And she also brought to that session the expectation that I would be editing her testimonials. This is significant, because I am all but certain that she has been using these sessions as a means to further consolidate her position, i.e. that adultery is not wrong (actually, in her mind it’s not even adultery), and that all will be just fine if she were only to exit the marriage. Then here I am interfering with all that by bringing her right to the door of that very session in which this stuff would likely get discussed.
She later texted me to thank me for my time and to tell me that she really had appreciated it. This is not the behavior of a woman who wants to leave her marriage.
So where do things stand? I really don’t know. I think she is very conflicted and unsure. I sense that her path is crumbling in a way, and that she’s trying to keep it all together. I know that, on Wednesday morning, she hung out with a friend who has actively encouraged her adultery and separation — in fact, this was the friend in whose house she lived for three months. I also know that she spent Wednesday evening talking about her situation with the acquaintance in whose house she slept — the woman whose husband left her, and who is currently seeking divorce. It kind of feels to me like she’s trying to get her ducks in a row, but as soon as she starts to line them up they fall out of place again.
My sense is that we are nearing the end of this ordeal. In fact, we could be very near its end. There still could be all sorts of unpleasant surprises and nastiness before it does end, but the bottom line is that no matter what she tries from here on out, it will absolutely fail. She is on a path to nowhere, and she will eventually see the brick wall that she has been racing toward for the past 6-1/2 months.