Your Cell Phone Is Ringing
Some 10 months after The Great Escape, my husband surprisingly suspended his self-imposed No Contact edict long enough to place a very bizarre call to me from overseas. I found that quite odd.
Hmmmm …. Had New Girlfriend granted him a temporary hall pass and allowed him to call me, or had he put on his big boy pants and taken the tape off his mouth all by himself? … Such intrigue.
Whichever one it was, he pushed the pause button on his vow of silence long enough to call me from his Love Shack Shangrila in a third world country.
Wait—on second thought—perhaps New Woman wasn’t aware that he was calling me—otherwise why would he be using using a prepaid calling card as he stated?
My guess? To keep the call from appearing on the call log on his cell phone. He wouldn’t want Mommy Dearest to learn of it and get the wire hangers out of the closet whip him with them … But then again, maybe he would …. The plot thickens … More intrigue.
His version of why he’d called was that he simply ‘was concerned’ about me. Really? … So suddenly? … After walking out, giving no reason, and then implementing 10 months of No Contact of any kind?… Doubtful.
He said that he was calling to see how I was doing after my recent surgery. In other words that was code for “Are you terminal and going to die yet?’ I am sure he had his fingers crossed.
Several months after he left, I discovered that I had a baseball size lump on my right breast. I’d had it removed and was still not back to work. No doubt someone spilled the tea and told him that the biopsy results weren’t back yet. I truly believe that he was hoping to hear grim news because legally, we were still married. I had a six-digit life guaranteed-issue life insurance policy through my employer.
My take of the call was that Dear Pumpkin was [not-so-transparently] sniffing around to see if he might be in line for a beneficiary payout should things go south for me—as I am sure he was hoping. Fingers crossed, eh?
Why Not Seize The Opportunity & Cut To The Chase
I figured that I wasn’t likely to ever talk to him again. Our divorce was due to be final in just a few days so I asked that he stop insulting my intelligence and simply tell me the truth on a matter. I wanted to know … Who made the initial contact to start the affair? … Was it him? … Or was it her? Until this point, he’d vehemently maintained to everyone that he’d never been unfaithful until after he left. He also insisted that this woman had chased him. [And I have a bridge in Brooklyn for sale.]
Funny how things change with time and distance. He now told a completely different tale. I suppose our upcoming divorce factored into his sudden desire to come clean. And why not? He was now comfortably settled in half-way around the globe. I suspect that this provided him with an added sense of insulation and comfort.
I mean, really? What was I going to do? Reach across the ocean and slap him with a rubber chicken through satellite relay? Summon the spirit of his deceased mother and tattle on him? Nah, he knew he had nothing to lose by being honest with me.
Honesty? … Now there’s some interesting terminology to use when referring to someone having an affair! LOL
Seizing the opportunity and the opening I’d provided, he quickly admitted—just as I suspected—that he had been the initiator. He ‘fessed up, admitting that he had gone online and that he did the research to locate her. Then, based on that research, he made the first contact. Well, duh! Everyone in on the globe knew that! He was the only one who believed that anyone had been buying that cock and bull story in the first place.
Shrug. Well—be that as it may—I proceeded to ask what prompted him to go looking for her in the first place. First Version details were that he supposedly hadn’t seen or spoken to her since high school when she broke his tender teenage heart by dumping him on his head. His response to my question flabbergasted me! Now brace yourself … you’re not going to believe what he told me.
His exact words were: “Well … I just woke up one morning and there she was—standing at the foot of our bed.”
Reality Calling To One-Flew-Over-The-Cuckoo’s-Nest
Me: [banging my phone on the desk] … Hello?! … Do we have a bad connection? … What did you just say?! …
I kid you not! Those words rolled off his tongue in such a serious tone that someone standing nearby might have been tempted to think that I was having a conversation with a sane man—which, obviously—he had now proven that I was not.
- Had he really expected me to believe that his entire motivation for starting an affair and subsequently throwing away decades of marriage to run off with another woman—was motivated by an apparition? A ghost of girlfriends past? Seriously?!
- Was he so far out in LaLa Land that he thought I would buy a crazy notion that an old flame from high school had teleported herself half-way across the country and crash-landed in our bedroom at sunrise? Right … whatever.
- Further, did he honestly believe that she had physically been there? And if he did believe that—then just how sad was that?!
- More importantly—how would anyone believing in such a ridiculous hallucination possibly be germane justifying a man starting an affair and walking out on his family?
Wake Up, Wake Up, Wake Up …
Well, by the time Dear Romeo’s phone call arrived, almost a year had passed since he so callously walked out the door with no explanation. It would be the understatement of the century to say that I’d grieved terribly over this man. But apparently not enough to annihilate my sense of humor, no matter how hidden and repressed it may have been during the ordeal.
The twisted logic of his crazy-train was so bizarre that it woke my humor gene from its long period of hibernation where it had been warmly snoozing—buried deep in the ashes of my smoldering former life. Now abruptly jarred to consciousness by such ridiculous dialogue—it bolted upright, rubbed its eyes, winked at me—and proceeded to poke my sense of imagination in the ribcage.
- “Don’t worry, I’ve got this one!” announced Humor.
- “You in?” Humor asked Imagination.
- “Absolutely!” came Imagination’s quick reply.
- Next, they both paused and quizzically looked at me. “Okay—let’s go with it.” I said as I nodded yes to their unasked question.
Gleefully, Humor and Imagination high-fived each other. They were overjoyed that after such a long dry spell and plunge into such deep depression, that I was finally up to the challenge of joining them for some fun and frivolity. They explained that in order to get the most out of the sensory experience that they were about to create for me, I would have to pretend as if I, too, believed in teleportation. At least for a minute or two. They also explained that I would also need to sign off on some reverse time-travel. Lastly, I would need to be amenable to a few auditory disturbances as well.
Just Roll With It
I nodded my head in agreement, closed my eyes, took a deep breath, and wondered what these two imps were about to unleash on me. Well, I didn’t have to ponder very long. I soon found myself being mentally transported back through the continuum of time. Somewhere along the way, we must’ve tripped over a jagged cloud or flown too close to a mountain top or something, because we skidded to an abrupt halt as we were flying over the decade of the 60’s. I stopped and looked around, wondering what all this was about.
Ever so faintly, I could hear an old TV program playing in the background. I heard a voice speaking. I furrowed my brow, and turned my ear in the direction of the voice—listening intently. Hmmmm …. I recognized the voice as being familiar … yet I couldn’t place it definitively. As sound grew louder, I remembered that I’d heard that voice back when I was in grade school. But whose voice was it?!
Memory Processing …
As I scanned my memory banks to locate the identity of that familiar voice, I wondered how a voice from the 60’s might possibly be relevant to my husband’s imagined apparition. Suddenly, it came to me. Yes! I recognized that iconic voice.
I had a hearty laugh when I realized who the voice was, and how what the voice was saying WAS indeed very relevant to what my soon-to-be ex husband had told me about his said ‘visitor’.
Take a listen: