Unraveling – Part 72

by Elizabeth

“When I was at my mother’s,” she began sitting on the bed in John’s dress shirt, hair still ruffled from sex and sleep, “she gave me this;” Libby held up a key she’d removed from her wallet.

He looked at her quizzically, “And just what does this key open, my love?” 

“The door to a charming apartment on the Upper East Side, it was my parents’ pied-à-terre, now it’s mine.”

John smiled, “I think I like your mother,” he said as he kissed her. 

“She changed her will, she wants me to leave Paul; no pressure you understand, she just wants to see me happy.” 

“Would that make you happy?  I hadn’t realized until just minute, but you’re considering dissolving your marriage, why?”

She thought for a moment, then answered

“Until just this minute I hadn’t realized that either, John; I don’t think I can answer ‘why’ right now.  As for whether or not ending my marriage would make me happy, that is also unknown to me in this moment.  The idea of freedom is so compelling, but would I be truly free?” 

“Libby,” John spoke with tenderness and concern, “You are dealing with a great deal right now; your sexual awakening, our affair, Paul’s depression, your mother’s illness – this isn’t the time to make critical, life altering decisions you may come to regret.” 

He was right, she knew he was right, but her life had become so complicated all she could think of was resolution in the fastest way possible. 

“Never forget” John continued, “that you love him.  That love may not be passionate, or defined by the term, In Love, but it is real and meaningful and valuable to you.  Until you can walk away and feel nothing, you aren’t ready to leave.”

“That love, John, as real as it is, on his part, is for a girl, as you so aptly pointed out, who does not exist … she never did.  Remaining married to me keeps him from knowing love, passionate love, that can be returned!”  She was crying now, but her voice was strong and clear.  “I am no more the right woman for Paul than he is the right man for me.”

“He doesn’t know that yet,” John calmly replied, “He still believes this, our affair, is a phase you’re going through … that any day now you’ll come to your senses and realize how wrong, and sick, you’ve been.  He needs time, Libby.  You’ve lived with the secret of your true sexuality your entire life, but it’s all very new to Paul.  The woman he has idolized since high school is not who he knew her to be, that isn’t something he can process immediately.” 

She laid down on the bed next to John

“I don’t expect easy answers, but right now it seems as though there are no answers at all.” 

“Answers are found in time, Libby.  And we have all the time in the world.”