As you may have guessed, I’m in Canada so this past weekend was a long weekend to celebrate Thanksgiving.
With the kids as my little helpers (though from their perspective it was slavery), I ensured that the house was as clean as possible, for we would be hosting a Thanksgiving dinner on two of the three days of the long weekend.
“Kids, we’ll be cleaning this whole house. Do you know who here gets to do the least amount of cleaning?” I asked.
“You?” Sam guessed.
“No, mommy. Because, as much as I’ll try to help, she’s going to end up doing the majority of cooking for Thanksgiving so let’s give her a nice, clean kitchen to do the cooking in, and a nice clean house for our guests.”
So, on Saturday we did most of the cleaning and on Sunday, Carol did most of the cooking. Yes, I tried to help, and yes, all I did was get in the way much of the time and find myself kicked out of the kitchen. We got a little irritable with each other at one point but we used our words and smoothed things over.
What Carol didn’t know was that I saw some new pictures of Rick and family posted on Facebook by his mother and I was silently fuming for a while. There was his stupid face, smiling with his family. Rick, the sexual harrasser hanging with the family, smiling along with him. A family he is very likely still destroying. I could see it in his eyes and slightly disheveled appearance. Maybe I imagined that.
One thing I did imagine was pushing Carol out the front door as Thanksgiving dinner was cooking. Get the fuck out of here, you’re not welcome. Family only.
I chose to spend this angry time in the shower until I calmed down.
Later in the afternoon, we enjoyed the company of my mother for Thanksgiving dinner. It was nice and I can tell Carol feels lucky to be able to enjoy these moments as a family in one piece. What could’ve been had I not taken her back… I’m sure these thoughts were with my mother too.
Yesterday, I planned to try to get sexual with Carol since today she is leaving for a night in a hotel with her fellow female managers and a work conference the next morning.
First, I invited her into the shower in the morning. I had not intended to get sexual yet. That was to come later. I just wanted to be with her in the morning and put my arms around her. You know, that wonderful feeling of a naked, wet body in your arms. I got a little too frisky in there though and she responded by stroking me to orgasm.
She didn’t believe me when I told her I did not intend to get freaky in there.
“I was going try to get you off again tonight, before you go,” I said. “I still can.”
That afternoon we had reheated Thanksgiving dinner with Carol’s parents. I imagined the knowledge of the affair just hanging around us all, adding a layer of discomfort to everything. It could’ve just been my imagination because the conversations and laughter continued on as normal.
Again, maybe there was more joy at seeing us together when that was almost lost. As Carol sat between her father and I on the couch, I made a teasing comment which made her father laugh. Carol responded with mock offense at my comment and so I kissed her on the cheek. Her father then kissed her on the other cheek.
It was just a little funny moment in life. Carol’s mother said, “Look at you, surrounded by the men who love you.” And with that, suddenly all I could think of was Carol’s betrayal and her parents right there with us who know what she did.
Sometimes, it feels like everything is tainted.
It became quite warm in the house by the evening time. Carol and I were uncomfortable in the warm, sticky air, so we decided to take a rain check on sexual activities.
As we lay there, she turned to me and looked in the eyes and said, “I love you.” It was not in response to anything. Not during a hug or kiss, not following a tough counselling session, not in response to an ‘I love you’ from me. It was such a genuine and true, completely out of the blue ‘I love you’. It was quite a moment.
Before we fell asleep, Carol talked about a person with Alzheimer’s on a TV show she watched. It runs in her family and Carol has always figured she would end up getting it. She talked about her wishes regarding that. I told her I will take care of her and be there for her until the end.
This is the promise I made to her 12 years ago. In spite of what she’s done, I’m still keeping that promise. It just seems so uncertain that I will be able to keep that promise.
It’s going to take time, testing and healing for me to begin to really feel like this is a relationship that will last.