I’m sure Husband never imagined that SHE and I would be in the same place at the same time. But it happened soon after I found out about her.
I was invited to a birthday party of a mutual friend. This mutual friend went to the same high school as Husband and HER. This mutual friend’s party was going to be at Husband’s restaurant.
Now back in those days I typically declined invitations to parties. Especially when they were on a Friday or Saturday. I just didn’t want to get dressed and go out when I could stay in with my kids and curl up with a glass of wine and a good book at the end of the week.
But when I got the invite to this particular party and got confirmation that SHE was going to be there, you best believe I made sure I was gonna go.
And as you would expect, Husband was none too pleased that I was going. The morning of the party, I told him that I would be there. He very nonchalantly acted like it didn’t matter to him either way whether I went or not. But he clearly wasn’t happy about me being there. I know this because I when I arrived at the party, he was no where to be found. I didn’t ask about where he was because I had every intention to have a good time without him. Of course I had intended on checking HER out as well but was I going to admit that to anyone but Daisy who went to the party with me? Hell no.
I later discovered that the minute I arrived at the party, Husband holed himself up in the restaurant’s small office. That’s how he decided to deal with his wife and his “friend” being at the same place at the same time. He would just hide so he wouldn’t have to be in the same room as his shitty wife and his awesome friend who helped him through his marital woes. To be safe, he stayed in the office until the minute I left. Such a douchebag move, wouldn’t you say? Then to add insult to injury, I found out that once I was gone and the coast was clear for him to join the party, he apparently had a good ol’ time. Judging from the pictures that our mutual friend posted, Husband was all smiles and seriously looked like the life of the party.
Even though I didn’t see Husband at all while I was there but I did see HER. About 30 minutes before I left, she arrived. I knew who she was from pictures I had seen. Dressed in a skin-tight top, a super short mini-skirt and 3-inch knee-high boots, she looked every much like the slut I made her out to be. I know she knew who I was. I would have even bet that Husband warned her about me being there. I still remember the look on her face. It was a mix between uncertainty and a little bit of cockiness like she owned the place and belonged there.
I wanted so bad to say something to her. To ask her WTF she was doing hanging out with a married man. To pull her by her lackluster, stick-straight hair and tell her to leave Husband alone.
But I didn’t.
Daisy warned me not to. It wouldn’t be the right thing to do, she said. No matter how much every fiber of my being wanted to, Daisy told me it wasn’t the time or place.
So I didn’t.
Instead I took a few more tequila shots, said goodbye to the guest of honor, then left with Daisy.
When Daisy got me home that night I was a hot mess. The effects of the alcohol weighing heavily on me, not to mention the thought that I just left Husband and HER at the same place, I stumbled into my bed wanting nothing more than to cry myself to sleep. Never mind washing my face or changing into my pajamas, I just wanted to check my self out of the conscious world. Luckily, I had Daisy there as well as Penny, who came over the minute Daisy called her for additional support. They watched over me as I babbled nonsense, complained about Husband’s behavior that night then eventually crashing into a deep sleep.
That night was one of the worst nights of my life. In hindsight, I probably shouldn’t have gone to the party. I probably should’ve left well enough alone. But I couldn’t. I wanted HER to see me. I wanted her to know that I was on to her. I wanted her to know that I wasn’t some mousy wife who stayed at home pining for her husband. I wanted her to know that I wasn’t someone you could just mess with.
Did it make me feel better? Not really. The next morning I woke up with a pounding headache and very much hungover. I couldn’t sleep in or stay in bed all morning though. I had 3 kids to take care of and shuttle to their various activities. Unlike Husband, who wasn’t even home and was probably somewhere sleeping like a baby without a care in the world besides what was going to eat for breakfast.
It wasn’t that I was complaining about taking care of my children. I love being their mom and would never change it for the world. But I was pissed about Husband’s behavior. Acting like he was single again and had no responsibilities in this world besides himself.
Husband was practically living two lives. One life with a wife that he didn’t want to be with but at the same time didn’t want to completely let go of either. Spending just enough time with his children then getting the hell outta Dodge when his shitty wife came around. Then there was his other life as a single man, restaurant and club owner marching around town with another woman, someone he claimed was just his friend, as if that would make it ok.
The worse thing about it all is that I let him. I let him because I wanted to save my marriage. Even though I knew exactly what he was doing, I turned a cheek to all of it. I acted like he was just going through some existential crisis and that soon he would come to his senses. All I needed to do was wait.
The problem with waiting though is that I was slowly falling apart inside. Handing over the reigns of our marriage to Husband gave him more power and strength and in turn made me weaker.