Three is a crowd: Oh David, karma is indeed a b*tch

(Continued from last issue)

David and Diane have been married for years; then there is Julie, the young secretary whose axis collides with the couple’s in ways none of them saw coming.


After David left, I took a few minutes to pull myself together before calling Kenneth because I did not want him to hear how shaken I was by the meeting.

A part of me felt that if he believed I had everything under control as far as David was concerned, he would be more confident about our relationship. Not that he seemed like the kind that scared easily, but I did not want our still budding relationship to be tainted by the toxicity of my relationship with David.

When I finally did call him, I forced myself to sound relaxed and self-assured.
“Hi, I’m done here; are you still at the hospital?”
“Yes, but only because I was waiting for your call; are you alright?”

“Yeah, I’m fine.”
“What did he want?” he asked suspiciously, as though he was not totally buying my unaffected act.
“Nothing really; I think he just wanted to see Junior and make sure he was okay.”

“Junior is with his mum, of course he’s okay! What did he think; that you weren’t taking care of your own son?” he scoffed. “I don’t know; maybe he just missed him,” I answered, my tone offhand and disinterested.

“Then maybe he should have thought of that before he questioned his paternity,” he retorted.
“True, but it doesn’t matter; he’s seen him and knows he’s alright now, so we’re all good now and I’m ready to leave. If you’re done with work, we can meet at that petrol station at the corner,” I answered casually.

“No need for you to walk there; I can come pick you up at the apartment.”
“I know, but the traffic is heavy and I can get to the petrol station faster than you can get to the apartment; so, it’s better we just meet there so you don’t have to branch off the main road and get stuck in the side road traffic,” I reasoned.

Thankfully, he did not question my logic.
“Alright; I’m setting off now; so, I should be there soon.”
“See you then,” I answered and quickly hung up, exhausted by the effort of my acting and scared I could not keep it up for much longer.


I didn’t realize how affected I was by Julie and her new attitude until I left the apartment, drove to the nearest bar, sat at the counter and proceeded to have drink after drink after drink.

By the time I got up to drive home, I was more than a little tipsy and definitely in no state to get behind a wheel, but the truth was I just did not care.

My sweet, innocent, pliant Julie had turned into someone I barely recognized and while it was easy enough to blame that bloody doctor for
the change in her, I knew that ultimately, I only had myself to blame; not only had I somehow lost control of her, but in all likelihood, I was the one that had driven her into his arms.

For that, I blamed Diane, not only because I was not too good at apportioning blame to solely myself, but also because I felt like she had in her usual underhand way coerced me into having that stupid DNA test done.

Nonetheless, after all our years of marriage, I suppose I should have known better and been more suspicious of her hints that a DNA test was a smart thing to do, as it had turned out to be the final straw that broke the proverbial camel’s back.

If it weren’t for that pointless test, I was sure I could have gotten Julie back, but by having it done, I had struck at the very heart of her – our son – and I was not too sure how to come back from that.


After David went to bed, I remained in the living room for another hour or so, until I was certain he was asleep, or to be more precise, blacked out.

Alone I tried to make sense of the state he had returned in, and more importantly why he had seemed to be so angry at me. Alcohol could only explain why he had been so expressive of his feelings, but it did not explain their source.

For the life of me, I could not even begin to guess what I had done wrong; I had struggled so hard to be the perfect wife of late, arranging for his favourite meals to be cooked and served on time, ensuring the house was clean and tidy when he got home, controlling the kids and keeping them in line; I had done it all, and it certainly hadn’t been easy, for the ‘perfect wife’ role was not one that came naturally to me, and yet somehow it had not been enough. Why? Where had I failed?

No answer came to me, and eventually exhausted by the effort of trying to figure it out, I headed upstairs. I found David sprawled out across the bed, still fully dressed, snoring in the unnatural way only drunk, blacked-out men snored, and disgusted, I went into our bathroom, showered, changed into a nightdress and then headed to the guest bedroom.

Even though I was tired, I lay tossing and turning restlessly for most of the night, and when I finally did fall asleep, I had nightmares of David yelling at me, calling me a litany of abuses and then storming out.

In my nightmare, I tried to run after him, calling out to him to come back, but he either did not hear me, or if he did, he chose to ignore me; he never even turned around, and I woke up in a cold sweat, my hands stretched out to the empty, unoccupied side of the bed.

Source: The Observer

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