Oh really, fool? Also known as…why you don’t lie to your wife!
I managed to get a sitter for early Friday morning (like 7…early for my family…we don’t function before 9 most days) and raced downtown…even before rush hour had started. I hadn’t slept the night before. I crawled in to bed around 2:30 or 3:00 or maybe it was 4:00. But I was wide awake by 5, wandering around doing laundry (of course…isn’t that what you do when trying to pretend things are normal), cleaning, panicking…I think I brushed my teeth about 15 times. I don’t know if my dentist would be proud or horrified.
But when A arrived, I was ready to walk out the door. I really hate the area where the hospital is, it’s a huge maze of one way streets, bad parking jobs, and cabs. It’s hard to navigate under the best circumstances, when you’re stressed out, it’s next to impossible. I was in a fog, I remember parking on the Johnny Cash level (because hey, nothing makes parking at a hospital bearable like cutesy floor reminders…) and I remember wandering around the entry level, walking through one entrance and then walking back out because I wasn’t sure I’d actually read where I was going. I had to repeat myself multiple times to the security guard to get my visitor’s tag; I’m not sure if I was the problem or if they were the problem…
When I walked in his room…I don’t even remember. Relief? Fear? Both? We still didn’t know what was going on or what the plans were, or how long he’d be there. I’d brought him pants and some underwear and socks. There were no magazines that he wanted, no books…there was nothing I could DO for him to make any of it better. My job is to make things better. To make people smile who are having a shitty day, to reach out to someone who needs a caring word…and there was nothing I could do. I was lost. I was overwhelmed. I was scared.
And then I got the chance to get mad. The doctor amoeba came in (the group of doctors that seemed to wander about, absorbing and discarding doctors as they went in and out of rooms) and they were talking to ace about the lifestyle changes he was going to have to make. Cut down on the bacon, the fried food, the red meat (apparently they’re all trying to have heart attacks at the fire house), quit smoking…..wait WHAT? Smoking? We had quit smoking, together, years ago. Or at least I thought we had. The head doctor turned to me, somewhat accusatorially and asked “do YOU smoke, too?” My response was no, I don’t…but looking back on it, I should have gotten up and walked out when it was first mentioned. I was SEETHING mad. I’m pretty sure the doctor figured out pretty quickly that I’d just learned something new.
This is pretty much how I felt
And to be honest, I’m not over it yet. I trusted him to be honest with me always, even when it was embarrassing, even when it would cause problems. When he came home from work and I recognized the smell of cigarette smoke, he told me it was guys in the house smoking and I believed him. OF COURSE i believed him, because he’s Ace. Because he’s Ace and everything about him was honesty personified.
When I found out that wasn’t true…I felt like a fool, I felt like I was in a room with a stranger. See, there are three things I will not tolerate in a relationship, 1- abuse of any kind, 2- cheating and 3- LYING. With the first two there are no second chances, with the third…well…there’s going to have to be a complete rebuilding of trust. It probably seemed like a little lie, one that didn’t matter. It was just to cover up something embarrassing (his word, not mine). But if you’re willing to risk destroying trust because you’re embarrassed about a choice you made…you’re threshold for it being okay to lie is pretty fucking low. But I had to put that on hold, that anger. I told him I was angry, it wasn’t a secret. But that was a back burner issue. And I have my magnificent group of girlfriends who let me rant and rave and be pissed and angry and hurt so that I could hold it back when I was with him.
So, why don’t you lie to your wife? Because then you look like a jackass in front of the doctor amoeba and your wife and her friends do things like call you Smokey McLiesALot behind your back to keep your wife from smothering you with a hospital pillow and plot ways to sneak bacon smell everywhere and then blame it on other people. Immature? Yes, cathartic, absofuckingsmurfly.