Tag Archives: Tedium

Say Something in Response

A number of years ago, I was driving in to work on a deserted country road, elevated above agricultural fields about 10 feet below; on each side of the road was a dirt birm that sloped down at a 45-degree angle toward those fields. It was a crisp, November morning, and there was black ice on the road. The sun was just coming up, and I was going about 50 miles per hour. In the middle of the road, I suddenly came upon a bird. It was just standing there, looking at me. I swerved so as not to hit it. Then the car began to fishtail out of control, and I realized I was about to go off the road — at 50 miles per hour.

If you’ve ever been in a similar situation, you’ll know that there is a moment of spaciousness that occurs at such times, when you begin to lose the reference point of the self and things just open up. Time slows down and everything is crystal clear. I was very calm with the realization that I could be in very serious trouble.

I did what one is never supposed to do: I slammed on the brakes. I figured that, if I were going to go down the birm and into the ditch, I might as well do that as slowly as possible. Fortunately, there was nobody else on the highway, and my car exited the road at a 90-degree angle to the pavement on its way to spinning backwards. The car slid down that birm, still going backwards, until it came to rest about halfway down the embankment. Somehow, it did not flip or roll. I then realized that I needed to get out of that car, lest it begin to roll, but the weight of the door at that 45-degree angle I was now sitting at made it hard to open. I thought about exiting the passenger-side door, but realized that, if the car were to roll, it would then roll onto me. I got the driver-side door open, got out, and called a tow truck. That was my response, and I waited for an hour and a half for the tow-truck driver to find me.

Last night, I went to a talk by a Zen roshi, a Western teacher in that East Asian tradition. He was giving a talk about koans, the pithy, often paradoxical statements used in the Zen tradition to disrupt normal, discursive thought. He used the following koan as a springboard :

A student asked Yunmen, “What is the teaching that lasts a lifetime?”
Yunmen said, “Say something in response.”

He then began to talk about mistakes, and the potential that these have to awaken us in our daily lives. The mistake itself is not the problem, but rather our reaction to the mistake: if we can simply embrace the fact that we screwed up, and just genuinely be with that situation, then it all becomes very workable. As a practical example, he gave an anecdote from his life that struck me as very familiar:

One day some years ago, he was driving down a deserted highway at a pretty high rate of speed. He was just enjoying the act of driving, and the fact that he could go along at a pretty good clip, since there was nobody else out there. Then, up ahead, an old man in a big old car (I’m thinking of one of those Buick Skylarks, or something like that approached a stop sign at the side of the highway, which out in this stretch lacked the normal on- and off-ramps. The old man went right through the stop sign and entered the highway at a very low speed, and began to accelerate — slowly. Seeing this car enter the highway, the teacher hit the brakes and tried to swerve, and ended up spinning in circles on that highway. The elderly man in the old car just trundled off, oblivious to what was going on behind him.

When the car stopped spinning, the teacher ended up backwards on that highway, but unharmed. He then put the car in gear, turned it around, and kept driving. That was his response.

We all make mistakes in our lives, some of them bigger than others. I don’t think I’ve ever made a blunder quite as huge and with such life-altering potential as the blunder my wife has made with her adultery. Not only that, it is such an enormous mistake that it has engendered a succession of further mistakes: errors in judgment, improper behaviors, lies, obfuscations, and so on. It truly boggles the mind what can happen when it gets bogged down with ego and its endless need to justify.

So it is that Saturday has arrived, and I have still not seen my dog this week. As I wrote earlier, my wife never delivered the dog on either of the days that she was in town. So I had to say something in response. I’m not going Zen here, or trying to be philosophical, but I did have to say something. I called her, and it quite predictably went straight to voice mail. Then I emailed, with simple question: “Where’s [the dog]?” Her response came back fairly quickly, and in a very offhand manner she said the dog was with her, and that she hoped I was doing well.

Avoidance. That’s exactly what this is. She does not want to see me, speak to me, or deal with me. Not only that, I think that my look into the crystal ball was probably right. That grizzled geezer who visited them last week up there at Camp C-S probably advised her to do exactly what she’s doing: blow him off, don’t give him the dog, make him understand that this is “for real.” If that’s true, and I suspect it is, I can only say one thing in response:

What a jerk.

Well, actually, that’s quite judgmental. It would be much more fair to say, “What a sadly confused human being.”

I did respond to this email, asking her to call me. Predictably, she did not. I gave her an entire day, and emailed again this morning, again asking her to call me, and offered to facilitate that for her if there were (absurdly speaking) some problem with her phone. I’d give it 50/50 odds at best that I get a phone call; more likely than not she will email with some sort of half-baked, blow-me-off-again reply.

The point here is that there needs to be a response to this action. The simple response is how I feel when she does this: I feel violated. My trust has been violated, again. The bigger response incorporates the need for us to talk about the dog. She is a sentient being with emotions and memories. Pets are often adversely affected by marital problems, and my wife’s proposed solution of alternating weeks of “custody” just isn’t working out. She told me that she thought it wasn’t healthy for the dog to be shuttled back and forth between our home and some officially still-undisclosed location, and I agree. But I think it is equally unhealthy for the dog to be housed in one of those two locations without both of us present. It simply isn’t fair to the dog, who doesn’t understand why her “pack,” an association that was imprinted on her very early on, is broken up.

I’m not sure what signs my wife is seeing, but I’m sure she is seeing some. She probably chooses to ignore their significance. The signs I see are clear: when the dog comes home from Camp C-S, she goes to her bed in our marital bedroom, and sleeps for eight hours. This is a very deep sleep, that seems to be occurring as though it were in response to a protracted trauma. I can understand that, as she gets taken to a location that is not her home, and is forced to spend time with a person whose motives she doubtless can sense are impure. Then, the rest of the week that she is here, she will walk around the house at least a few times a day and cry. She’s not crying because she’s hungry or wants to go out. She’s crying because my wife is not there. My wife does not see this and likely will not understand.

At any rate, issues cannot be tabled forever, and this is an issue that does need to be addressed. Of course, the point could be moot if my crystal ball musings are accurate: her parents could call her and clearly object to all the things she has done and continues to do. Were that to happen, the walls could come crashing down in the next few days.

Then I’d have to say something else in response.

Read article for donation information.

I Miss Her Every Day, Part II

This past month has been one of the most difficult periods I’ve had to endure thus far. While it’s true that the period immediately following the revelation of my wife’s affair was utterly shattering, and while I was so unseated by that whole situation and the uncertainty of our future that I could barely eat — I lost nearly 20 pounds as a result — at least during that time I had pretty much constant contact with my wife. Since the beginning of the year, that contact has been dwindling, down to the point where, from about April or so, I was seeing her only once a week.

Since the beginning of last month, however, I have seen my wife zero times per week. I have not seen her for over a month now. Her phone has gone silent — she doesn’t even turn it on — and I’ve had maybe three pieces of communication from her, all in text form, in the past month. It really sucks.

At the same time, she has gone very public with the affair. She has a new blog, and has posted copious photos to the adulterer’s professional Facebook page. The adulterer began to acknowledge that it was my wife — he mentioned her by name — taking those photos. He referred to her as though their relationship were an utterly normal thing, for in his mind he probably thinks it is, or at least he wants to think it is. He has also almost certainly misrepresented the true nature of that relationship, i.e. an immoral, adulterous relationship with a married woman, to just about everyone. Most recently, my wife has posted pictures to that Facebook page in which she appears. At first, these were relatively innocuous-looking photos of her in his garden, taken from above to show that panorama. In the past couple of days, however, close-up pictures of her have surfaced, including pictures of her embracing the adulterer. This latter picture was really quite revolting, for he had a smug look on his face, as if trying to boast of his accomplishment.

Now, let me just state this for the record: I don’t see these photos because I snoop. I have a minimal presence on Facebook that I maintain largely for professional reasons. However, my wife and I have a lot of mutual “friends,” and it seems that whenever one of them “likes” one of these photos it shows up on my newsfeed. At this point, I’m considering deactivating my Facebook account, since none of this information helps me at all.

Honestly, the photos don’t really bother me that much. She is trying very hard right now to normalize and legitimize her affair. This is impossible: by its very nature, that relationship is both abnormal and illegitimate. The only hope adulterers have at this stage of the game, that is, at the stage in which reality starts to descend and the instability of the relationship almost certainly begins to be know, is to out themselves to the world as much as is possible. For every person that they can convince that their affair is normal, the more normal it seems to them. And for every person that says nothing, the more such implicit recognition makes them feel comfortable. But, the relationship is so tenuous and so unstable that it likely would take little more than a few well-placed comments from influential people to truly begin to unseat it.

At this point, I’m just wondering where the heck those people are. My father-in-law should be one such person, but to my knowledge he has just sidestepped the whole issue, seeming to prefer any kind of confrontation with my wife. My mother-in-law also could be one such person, and she in the past has been vocal in her opposition to my wife’s actions; this, however, just led to fights and arguments between them. As a result, I believe she has backed off as well. I shudder to think that my wife has tried to introduce the adulterer to them, but at this point it is not entirely unlikely.

So what’s with all the silence, especially when it’s coupled with this renewed vigor to publicize the affair? Wouldn’t it make sense for her to go all out and tell me all about it, too? You know, something like, “look buddy, this is my new life, like it or lump it.”

Well, she hasn’t done that, and she possibly will not, because she knows how I’ll react. The last time she tried to bring it up, back at the end of November, I slammed that conversation shut. If she tries again, I will slam it shut once more. She desperately needs me more than anyone else to help her clear her conscience, and I simply will not do it. I’ve had some conflicting ideas from my counselor about this, by the way. Some months ago he told me that, if she were to admit that she lives with the adulterer, that I should acknowledge it, lest I look like I have my head buried in the sand. Yet on our most recent session, I asked if it were something he’d try to bring up in session with her, and he suggested that, if she were keeping it secret, that it would be best to leave it that way. This is because it would require her to keep lying about the affair again and again.

There is a very curious dynamic that seems to occur when one spouse checks out and wants to destroy the marriage, yet the other spouse stays committed. The obstinate spouse gets frustrated, desperate, and angry. I even know of such obstinate spouses who did rather rashly file for divorce against their spouses, only for the spouses to reiterate by refusing to participate, instead dragging the situation out as long as possible. It is very hard to be the bad guy, and the obstinate spouse hates having to be the bad guy. The obstinate spouse wants nothing more than for the faithful spouse to pony up and help destroy the marriage.

In my case, this desperation was actually expressed to me. She sent me an email a month ago in which she apologized for losing her temper with me over the phone, but said she was frustrated because I was refusing to recognize that she had “moved on.” Of course I’m refusing to recognize that, because I was never consulted in the process, and I do feel that it is the responsibility of any married person to involve his or her spouse in a decision of such gravity. Since I was not involved, I consider that decision to be wholly illegitimate, and one that I cannot and will not condone.

That’s precisely where her problem lies. I refuse to participate in the destruction of our marriage. Her “new path” is one that progresses from the idea of destroying our marriage, although she claims not to see it that way. Her prevarications include the idea that she still values our past — it is her “treasure” — and that she is not denying that. Hogwash. You don’t get to destroy a marriage and say that you are truly appreciative of it. She is frustrated with me to the point that her only means of dealing with it right now is to pretend like I don’t exist.

Talk about putting your head in the sand.

Actually, the adulterer seems to be doing the same thing. The 800-pound gorilla in the room (or, judging from the pictures I’ve recently seen, in his kitchen) is the fact that he is cohabitating with a married woman. She appears to have no real workable plan for getting herself unmarried, and even if she were to do that, she would remain married for at least a year while any such case would wend its way through the courts. I’m certain that the adulterer would not be prepared to wait that long.

Just as it takes two people to create a marriage, it takes two people to tear it down. When one refuses to do so, and instead begins actively to repair it, it backs the destructive partner into a corner. She needs a team of complicit bystanders to make her feel that she is not backed into that corner, and that her affair is actually normal and just. That’s where she’s at right now. Eventually, she will come to realize that the only way out of that corner is to come right back out into that big, spacious room I’ve created, where she can join me to rebuild our marriage into something better than it has ever been.

Read article for donation information.

It was a weird kind of day

I’m not sure how to explain the kind of day I had today. There wasn’t much that really happened, so there’s not much value in going over the events of the day. Of course I haven’t heard a peep from my wife, who is still playing the childish, fingers-in-her-ears, I’m-gonna-ignore-you-and-hope-you’ll-go-away game with me right now. And of course I still continued to reach out to her.

Instead, what struck me about today was the general oddness of its energy. It’s kind of hard to quantify. I was feeling kind of low for some reason. That happens from time to time. I looked at my wife’s blog, which has been mostly dormant since this crisis erupted 6 months ago, and she posted a picture of a bee on an apple blossom. Okay… Guess I was just looking for any evidence there that things might be starting to get strained, although that would be the last place I’d find that.

What I did have plenty of today was barking. Barking, barking, and barking. Our dog is a herding dog and is typically very vocal, so that shouldn’t be unusual. Yet since my marital crisis began 6 months ago, it now occurs to me that the dog has been unusually silent. She just isn’t barking at all sorts of things as she might do when my wife and I were under the same roof. I attribute that to a sort of doggie depression. Today was different. She was very vocal again, and in some unexpected ways. She’d go into her crate, and then bark. She’d go into the bedroom, lie on the floor, and then bark. She’d come into the living room and bark some more. Sure, there were some dogs outside that she could hear, but nothing out of the ordinary. It just all seemed so random.

Dogs are able to sense things that we do not typically pick up on. One of the first things that crossed my mind was that perhaps there was going to be an earthquake. Dogs will do odd things before an earthquake. As a child, I distinctly remember watching one of our dogs circle around in the back yard in an uncharacteristic way about an hour before an earthquake hit. But there was no earthquake. So, I’m not really sure what it was. Maybe it was just a general energetic sense she had of things not being quite right. But it was odd. It wasn’t brief, either. She behaved that way for a couple of hours.

Perhaps you’re wondering what’s up with the photo I chose to feature with this post. It is a bit incongruous, I admit. There’s nothing to it, really. My parents are headed overseas next month and have asked me for some sightseeing advice. I found this picture of a British Airways 747 flying overhead and was reminded of a visit my wife and I made to London a few years ago. We were only there for a few days, as it was a business trip and I brought her along, and she wanted to shop, shop, shop. I wanted to get her to do some sightseeing, and she seemed only to be interested in the insides of stores. This is part of the give and take of marriage. What ended up happening was that my wife realized in the end that we had one day less in the UK that she thought we’d had, and suddenly realized why I was trying to get her to visit at least a few monuments. Then came the apologies… followed by a compromise: I will take you to sightsee in this particular area and make sure that we can stop by the Laura Ashley shop.

Well, that was then and this is now. I’m here in the comfort of my living room, and she is still holed up at Camp What’s-It-There, some 40 miles from here. Honestly, I never believed she’d actually do it, that she’d move in with the adulterer, but it is totally consistent with her abnormally dysfunctional energy. She has a “new path,” a newfangled “life mission” or whatever, and there’s no way she can be wrong about that. It’s a “life transformation,” according to her. Mmmm-hmmmm. Transforming oneself into a destructive, immoral person is not really something to be bragging about, I think.

“The affair always ends.” That was the advice I got, and have been given over and over and over again. “You just have to wait it out, and let it run its course.” So that’s what I’m doing. I’m waiting and waiting. I’m working on myself and reaching out to her. I’m doing as much as I can and being as right as possible in doing it, over and over. Meanwhile she’s behaving like a drug addict who is dialed in to a source for a constant fix right now. I know she’s going to snap out of it pretty soon, that the goggles are going to come off, and that the affair bubble is going to burst. I’m just getting seriously tired of waiting.

This blog is my therapist

I’ve never done therapy sessions, and kind of find the idea of sitting down and talking things through with a therapist a bit weird. But I seem to have no problem doing something similar — sitting here and typing things down, the kinds of things I might tell at therapist — and I find that not weird at all. Maybe it’s just me that’s weird.

I’m sitting here, it’s Friday night, my wife is somewhere else, I don’t know what she’s doing, and I’m home alone. It’s times like this when I really do miss her. I mean, I miss her every day, but right now I really miss her. She has been my constant companion for over eight years. I just thought of this, even — we started dating a bit over 8 years ago, and it was in April 2004 that I realized that I’d spend the rest of my life with her.

Now that’s weird. I never would have thought back then that 8 years later I’d be facing a crisis with the woman whom at that time I’d decided I would spend the rest of my life with. That thought never crossed my mind. It never occurred to me that she would be unfaithful to me. The guy she dated previous to me had been unfaithful to her, and so maybe I thought she was inoculated against that somehow. Then again, it never occurred to me that marriage would be hard. I remember all sorts of people telling me it would be, but I just had no frame of reference, and kind of thought that maybe they were joking. I remember one guy at a party coming up to congratulate me, saying, “the first 31-1/2 years are the hardest; I should know, I’ve been married 31-1/2 years!”

Looking back on that time, those heady, early days, one thing has not changed for me. I still intend to spend the rest of my life with her. That intention was briefly derailed when I discovered her infidelity, but then it blew over in a day or two. She, on the other hand, is still stuck in the mire of the adulterous situation. It clouds everything she says, does, thinks about, plans, and dreams. I can imaging that it must get tiring, living in such an unreal world — a world beyond problems, beyond daily concerns, beyond the actual trials and tribulations of life. It’s a narcissistic world, where the adulterous partners see exactly what they want to see in each other, and ignore everything else. They avoid all of their insecurities of their own imperfections by making the adulterous partner out to be perfect, and this person does the same for them. The real insecurities that manifest get projected onto others, like the betrayed spouse. You see how it goes?

I know it’s tiring for me. Very, very tiring. This whole mess is so totally unnecessary. And so utterly childish. We are back to the incommunicado game again. That will persist until next week, most likely. I keep hoping for some sort of divine or mundane intervention (or both) that will put this nonsense to a stop.

There is at least one person who could do this, actually: her father. He seems to be hanging back and watching from afar. I’m not sure what to think of this. Perhaps he feels humiliated by his daughter’s behavior. None of the members of my wife’s family have reached out to me, although they have reached out to my parents and to my sister. I’m not sure what to think of that, either.

So here we are. I just did the calculation. It’s day 200. Two hundred days since all of this madness began. Two hundred days is a long time to be living a fantasy life. It’s a very long time to have been suffering the juvenile impetuousness of a wayward spouse. But, that’s my karma, and I just have to take it, for now.

Before I wrap up here, let me just explain the featured photo for this post. There is a tulip festival not too far from here, and we’ve been a couple of times. We didn’t make it last year, but two years ago we did go, and that’s where this picture was taken. My wife loves tulips, and has planted a number of them all over the place. They are all pretty much in full bloom right now. I know she would love them if she saw them, but she just doesn’t come around here these days. I occasionally snap a photo with my cell phone and send it to her.

And now, as I wrap up this post, reminding myself that this blog is my therapist, I hear the words of my marriage coach echoing in my ears: “Her path is crumbling… Over the next couple to three weeks [the adulterer] will tire of her antics and will reject her.” I know he’s right. I know he’s right. I know he’s right.

Getting tired

I think the thing I look forward to most in writing these posts is selecting the pictures that go along with them. These are mostly all pictures that my wife has taken at various times; some have special memories attached to them, some do not.

With that said, I find myself without much to say tonight. I’m just getting tired. This crisis is really starting to wear me down. I was told at the outset that it was going to be a marathon, and that I’d need endurance. I just did not realize how true that was going to be. It’s been over six months that I’ve been at this, you know. That’s a long time. I’d just like for it to be over, all over, that’s all.

My wife texted me tonight to let me know I could have the dog from tomorrow through Thursday of next week. Then she emailed me tonight to make arrangements for the pick-up. Her tone was quite distant. I just find it so annoying. I have no idea how things will turn out tomorrow. I’ll have some sort of surprise for her. That’s standard. Croissants, probably. I’ll be pleasant, positive, and confident. She will probably look tired, worn down, worried, guilty, and have that cloud of grey over her head. She asked me to pick up the dog at the acquaintance’s house, the same place as last week, and then to drop her off downtown. I have no problem with any of this.

I’m just waiting, and waiting, and waiting. Waiting for the affair to end. Waiting, and waiting, and waiting. And it will end, some day in the near future, sometime, somehow. I suspect that the timing will be totally improbable. But who am I to guess? I’m not psychic. I do have a sense, however, of just how troubled her energy is. I think she’s in a lot of turmoil and pain that is just being covered over with this flimsy veneer of “happiness.” That won’t last. The bubble is getting ready to burst, and all it will take is one good argument.

Anyway, not to bore you with my ramblings tonight. Just enjoy the picture.

Feeling low, again

Some days are harder than others. Today was just one of those days, I guess. I was tired, both physically and emotionally, and I think this just brought me down a notch or so.

The trigger, as is often the case, was something external. The grapevine has been fairly silent since my wife left the house, and even more so since she packed out of town, but it does speak in weird ways. Recently, this has been of the flavor of people coming to me to ask me about her, and the things that they ask me about tell me volumes about the lies she is telling herself and others. The one thing I learned today is that my wife doesn’t have a place in town anymore. She’s pretty much at Camp You-Know-What full time, as far as I can determine, and she just couch surfs for a couple of days a week when she needs to be in town for professional reasons. I learned that she will be in town the next couple of days at the home of an acquaintance, the mother of one of her students. This woman is separated from her husband, and is apparently trying to dissolve her marriage. This has been ongoing for quite some time: the parents separated probably a year ago or more, and there was crisis even before that. Their daughter, my wife’s student, is about 10 now, and when that crisis began she was about 8, and reacted by pulling out her hair. This is what marital crises do to kids. Parents really need to just get it together and realize that, no matter how awful they might think their problems are, they probably aren’t solving them because they do not have the wisdom, support, or appropriate guidance. Add those ingredients plus a little perseverance and elbow grease, and they could have the marriage of their dreams, rather than a failure that affects themselves and their kids. It really is, in many ways, the height of responsibility for any married couple, and especially those with kids, not to fully explore all their options to reconcile before proceeding down the path of destruction.

So I was a bit disheartened to learn of my wife’s stay with this woman. She is trying to dissolve her marriage on her own without the recourse of lawyers. I believe her husband is more or less cooperative with this idea, so she will probably be successful. I do suspect that my wife wants to compare notes with her. The last time my wife was at home, she spent quite a bit of time on Facebook sending messages back and forth with this woman. You know when you have a sneaking suspicion that something is up? Well, that’s why I was having that suspicion.

The difference, however, is that I am not cooperative with this aspect of my wife’s agenda. It is nothing more than a manifestation of adultery-induced craziness. She even told me herself that she had never even considered something so radical and destructive prior to last November. Everything an adulterer does — everything — all the bad decisions, the lies, the poor judgments, and so on, it’s all due to the affair, all of it.

I am one to over-analyze things, I’ll be the first to admit that. That’s one of the reasons I’m writing this post. I need to analyze what’s going on. I am still convinced in my counselors judgment that my wife’s path is crumbling before her eyes, and I do think that her movements this week are a sign of this occurring. She probably feels very desperate at this point. Despite everything she has done thus far, I still continue to reach out to her. And despite everything she thinks she feels or doesn’t feel, she still has significant emotions toward me, and those emotions are primarily positive, very positive.

This is a very inconvenient place to be if you’re having an affair. I cannot imagine her adulterous partner feeling terribly comfortable with the knowledge that I am still reaching out to her so regularly. I sometimes wonder if she tells him that I call her every day for no particularly good reason, or if she hides this from him. I wonder if she tells him about the gifts I give her, if she shows them to him, or if she hides those too. It really is a catch-22 situation for her: if she tells him, he’ll get irritated; if she doesn’t tell him, then she is lying by omission. There already are trust issues, so lying won’t help those. There’s also undoubtedly a lot of pressure, so telling him will just exacerbate that. There really is pretty much no way that she can win this situation, but she has not fully realized that yet. Pretty much everything that she might do at this point is going to help to end the affair once and for all.

So where am I at? Sheesh, I have no idea. Yesterday, my counselor was basically telling me that the finish line was really very close. Today I started to think that maybe it’s actually miles away. I know that not to be true, though. We are now at the point where the rose-colored lenses are going to have to come off, and that the fragile walls of the affair bubble will be stretched to their limit. The one thing that I do know is that in pretty much 100% of the reconciliation cases I’ve become acquainted with so far, the breakthrough seems totally implausible just days before it happens. In fact, not even a week or two before such drastic change happens, it can seem like the situation is totally intractable.

That’s where I’m at. I got down today, because I began to feel like my situation was actually becoming somewhat intractable at this point. I still have no sense for where things are going, how long they’ll take to resolve, and feeling like I’m walking in the dark is really pretty frustrating. Yet I do know that I will achieve my goal, I have no doubt about that. I’m just waiting, and waiting, and waiting… The affair is going to end, and that’s all there is to it.

Early weekend

I love early weekends. I hardly ever get them, though. In fact, I haven’t really had a weekend in quite a while. My work schedule is a bit odd, and until recently I would generally be free only on Wednesdays and Sundays. I can’t say that I’ve gotten to take an early weekend for quite a long time — maybe 5 years or so.

My wife got to take an early weekend today, though. She turned up at home sometime around noon. I was a bit surprised to see her here, as she’s been trying to make herself scarce recently. But there she was, in the middle of the day, right there in the living room. I was cooking. Actually, I was making a number of dishes in quantities that would provide leftovers, and had been planning to give her a lunchbox with some of these goodies. She preempted all that, though. I did let her taste one of the dishes, and she approved, but it was pretty clear that she was in sort of a hurry to leave the house. I think she stayed for about 20 minutes or so, total.

The most curious thing was that she asked me if she could take the dog with her today. She said she wanted to hang out with the dog, and I said she could always do that right here in the house, right now. But she wanted to take the dog to her friends’ house, i.e. the place she’s been “living” the past couple of months. I told her that would be fine, and at this point I just thought she wanted to spend the day with the dog, so I asked her if she’d be bringing the dog home later today. She said that she wouldn’t. Hmmmmm. I asked her if she’d be bringing her home tomorrow. Again, no. Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm. She said, “I’ll drop her off… sometime.” I asked when that would be, and she had no details. Then, she went to take the carrier with her as well.

Okay, then I get it. She got clearance for an early weekend with the adulterer. My wife really has very few professional commitments anymore, and her bank account is beginning to show the damage. I’m wondering whether the adulterer is abandoning his professional responsibilities as well. It sure seems like he gets a lot of extended weekends, working Tuesday to Friday, or, as seems to be the case this week, Tuesday to Thursday. One can only hope that this will start to impact his bottom line. I suspect this was a last-minute decision; she had to cancel a client this afternoon, wanting to reschedule for Sunday, but that reschedule didn’t work out. So she was planning on coming back on Sunday this time. I suspect that I won’t see her until Monday or Tuesday.

I don’t know. In a way, I’m of two minds on this. To me, this is both a good and a bad thing. It’s a good thing in the sense that she gets to spend more time with that moral reprobate, thus bringing her ever closer to the inexorable demise of that affair. The more time she spends with that man the less novel that relationship becomes, and the more the problems and personality flaws will come to light. These will bring that relationship down. I don’t have any doubt about this. Look, my wife has already shown that she doesn’t understand how to deal with relationship problems: when things get tough, she points the finger, blames, argues, nags, and gives ultimatums. (I’m not complaining, this is just a statement of fact given for a reason that should become clear.) And when things got tough, she gave up. The adulterer is even more extreme in this regard, I suspect: he has already failed at two marriages and is a serial adulterer to boot, so he simply seems to have no viable relationship skills that would allow him to successfully navigate the difficult waters ahead. Oh yes, there are difficult waters ahead. Let’s not forget that my wife still has to write a dissertation, and that needs to be done in two months. Let’s also not forget that she will need to register for classes so that she can defend, and as of this date she does not have enough money to pay her tuition. These are only the tip of the iceberg.

So that’s the good thing. The bad thing is that I don’t get to see her. The bad thing is that she also takes the dog and leaves me all by myself. I guess I’ve gotten used to it by now, but it is getting old. I’d just like this idiotic charade to run its course and get itself over with so that I can get my life back. It is starting to look more and more like an absurdist play, or maybe even theater of cruelty. It’s just so unreal on some level. I’m here, living on planet Earth, in the real world, and my wife is somewhere in a bubble of fantasy. She even has a few people that have bought into it, too.

Whatever. I think we might be entering the end stage of this game. I sure hope I’m right. The tedium is getting rather tiring.