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            As soon as I saw Tom’s car parked on the street in front of our house something didn’t feel right.  Still, there is nothing that can prepare you for moments like this.  It was strange that he was home before me, but there was never a moment when it clicked, never a moment when I thought gee, I’m going to walk into my home and find my husband standing over his naked ex-fiance with the throw that he and I picked out together wrapped around his waist.  Moments like that aren’t palpable until you actually see them, until you actually stand in that moment as an outsider looking in on a terrible situation that has forever altered the lives of all involved, and those who did nothing more than loves those involved.

            “Look sweetie, your daddy is already home,” I said as I unbuckled my son from his car seat as if nothing was different. 

            As I got to the door I could hear a woman’s voice.  I didn’t recognize it as Emily’s.  I had not seen her since your funeral a little more than a year before.  She was looking for someone.  She was looking for you.  She was screaming, the desperation she felt evident in her cries for you.  You should have been there.  You should have stayed and held onto her.  If it weren’t for your departure my husband would have remained mine.  If you had been holding her I would not have been walking into the most heart wrenching moment of my life.

            I kissed my son on the forehead and set him down in his bedroom.  “You be a good boy and stay in here okay sweetie.”  I’d already lost his attention to one of his toys and I closed his bedroom door behind me as I headed toward the sound of a woman sobbing and my husband’s gentle voice. 

            I heard him say her name, it was a name that had haunted me for so many years.  Since I’d met Tom, the specter of Emily had hung over me, her memory something that I had to fight against if I wanted to keep the man that I loved.  I heard him saying her name over and over again as I got closer to the living room.  I don’t remember what I was thinking as I stumbled over the bathrobe laying on the floor.  I don’t remember bending to pick it up.  I don’t know what I thought it all meant.  I’m not sure that I was thinking at all people.  People are animals, and as my body continued toward the sound of the sobbing woman and the name that I’d not heard in a year, instinct was all that was driving me forward. 

            “Tommy?”  Even as his eyes met mine and I could see the concern on his face, I knew that it was not me he was worried about.  He did not come to me, or do anything that most guilty men would do in such a situation. 

            “Oh God.”  It came out of her as more of a strangled cry, and instead of coming to me, my husband knelt down next to her, the blanket sliding from his hips and any hope that I had of pretending my husband had not had sex with this naked mess on the our living room floor was gone.  I wanted so badly to run at him screaming with the full weight of my hurt.  I wanted to hit him, to kick him, to hurt him physically for the pain that I felt inside.  Instead, I turned and walked away.


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