Edited by Angel Love. Thanks as always
Consider: In most major events, it is the little things that can make or break them. In 1986, the Challenger space shuttle was lost due to a cheap O ring that probably cost less than a few dollars. Because of that, seven lives and hundreds of millions of dollars were lost.
Consider: It is often mentioned that a blood clot, sometimes so small that it takes a microscope to see it, can kill someone. Blood flow to a critical part of the brain is blocked and a life is lost due to a microscopic chunk of sticky cells.
Consider: A small patch of black ice on an otherwise dry road can cause the car to go out of control and crash. The wheel twists, control is lost on a sharp curve and death can result.
The list goes on and on. Some small thing, often not even visible, can destroy a major undertaking. But consider: Can we call a marriage a major undertaking?
I do. I consider my marriage a major undertaking. I've been married for a little over eight years to a beautiful woman named April. We have two wonderful boys, Chris and Charles. Chris is my namesake, Chris jr. Charles is named after my father. We live in a nice home, one with room enough for a growing family. I'm not a college graduate, but I have a good job as a master mechanic. My talents and skills have made us a good living. I work long hours but the money makes it worth it. I've always considered my marriage the high point of my life. I worked hard to provide for my family. I considered it a major undertaking and I took it seriously.
What broke my marriage was a small thing. In my case, it was a small blood vessel in my brain that was too close to another vessel and sometimes, when conditions were just right, the vessel would expand and touch the other. The result was a migraine headache. I had one on that fateful day. Mine was classic in its symptoms: light was painful, sounds were magnified and smells were horrible. It came on me suddenly and without warning. Just a blinding pain that took me by surprise. I knew what it was immediately. The problem was that I didn't have my Imitrex inhaler with me so I had no way to stop or mitigate the pain. The pills I carried weren't as effective as the inhaler and it would take time to reduce the pain to a manageable level. Time I couldn't work anyway.
I staggered in to see my boss and gave him the bad news. He was panicked at my distress and called his secretary in. "Take him home. Hell, it's almost quitting time so he doesn't have to worry about hours. Just punch him out and give me his card. And don't let him drive for God's sake. Go, now!" Penny helped me stand up and she and my boss led me carefully out the door and down the hall to the exit. Penny led me outside, helped me lean back against the wall while she went for her car. I couldn't stand the light so I kept my eyes closed and my hands to my temples, pressing as hard as I could to help block the pain.
Once in the car, I leaned back against the seat and tried to block everything out. The pain was intense and getting worse. I was almost blind, the light causing me to squeeze my eyes tightly closed. The sounds were now just a deep booming in my head and the smell was disgusting causing my stomach to rebel. Since Penny knew where I lived, I didn't have to say or do anything while she drove. It seemed to take forever, but eventually, she stopped the car, went around and opened my door and pulled me out. I went, following where she led. It was all I could do.
Penny got me inside, helped me to the kitchen where I told her to open the refrigerator and get the injector out. She found it, put it in my hand and held me up while I placed it in my nose and pushed the plunger. I inhaled at the same time, taking the aerosol into my lungs and quickly into my bloodstream. I had her guide me into the family room off the kitchen and help me to lay down on the couch. I asked her to close all the blinds and turn off any lights. She did so, waited a few minutes until I told her that I felt the relief beginning already and she left. I thanked her for getting me home and welcomed the silence when she was gone.
I must have fallen asleep quickly once the pain started to fade because I woke up sometime later to voices. It was very dark in the room so I knew it was later in the day. As I remembered where I was, I noticed immediately that the pain was gone. I felt like I had taken a beating around my neck and shoulders, but that was just the residue of the migraine. I sat slowly up and waited a heartbeat or two to be sure the pain was not just lurking, waiting to get me. It was gone. Thank God!
I sat there in the dark, recognizing the voice of my wife April and her friend Robin from next door. I guess they didn't know I was there since it was dark and the lights were still out. Maybe April just let me sleep, suspecting I might have come home early? But no, my car wasn't in the drive. She probably didn't even suspect I was here. Maybe I would just surprise both of them. I stood, ready to tip toe over to the doorway and then pop out when I began to pay attention to their words.
"Come on April, how was it? Was it as good as before? Give me the details girl."
"It was fantastic. I felt like I was in heaven. He was even better this time than he was before. I swear, I must have climaxed three times before he came. God, it was almost mind blowing. It was the best sex I've ever had."
"Even better than Chris? Better than your husband?"
"Hell yes. I love Chris to death but he's never made me feel like that. Never. Of course, I never let him do those things to me either. He'd think I was a real slut if I did."
"But Carl must think you're a slut then."
"Of course, but I'm his slut. And I love it. God, I can't wait until the next time."
"Aren't you afraid of Chris finding out? What would he do? Have you thought about that? You're risking a lot you know."
"Chris will never find out. And even if he did, so what? He won't do anything about it. He's a sweetheart and he would forgive me. He would never divorce me and take a chance on losing his kids. He loves those kids and he knows I would take them away from him in a heartbeat. All I'd need would be a cutthroat lawyer and he'd be toast!"
"This doesn't sound like you April. I've never heard you talk that way about Chris. How could you say you love him when you talk that way? You scare me girl. I think you're making a huge mistake. I really do."
"I love Chris. I really do, but I don't want to stop what I have with Carl either. I want both. I want the sex I get with Carl and the love I get with Chris. I need both and I won't give it up."
I had heard enough. My migraine was gone but the pain in my heart was worse by far. The pain was so intense that my stomach tightened and my breath left me gasping. I heard a ringing in my ears and my blood was pounding in my head. I was afraid I was going to have a heart attack and held on to the jam of the doorway until I could feel my body begin to return to some degree of normal. I still hadn't let them know I was there, but as my control returned, the anger inside me grew in intensity until I felt ready to explode. I straightened up, raised my head and walked into the kitchen light.
There was a sudden silence when Robin saw me first. She looked up, stopped talking while her eyes widened and her mouth opened into a shocked 'O'. Her hand flew to her mouth and she let out a soft, "Oh my God!"
April turned to see what she was looking at and saw me standing there. Her face went from satisfied, to surprise, to fear and then to anger. All in a flash. She pushed back her chair and stood, turning to face me. "How much did you hear? Why in the hell were you lurking in there and spying on me?"
I just looked at her without speaking. My eyes shifted to Robin, who immediately rose and said, "I have to go. Pete and I will keep the boys unless you come over to get them. I'll call you later." With that she almost ran out the side door. I watched her go without a word.
Once she was gone, I looked back at April, considering that this was the woman I had loved without question for the last eight years of my life. Eight years that were the happiest I had ever known. I had expected that we would be together for the rest of our days, but now that expectation was shattered. There would be no forever for us. No growing old together. April had killed that tonight.
"Where are the boys? What did you do with them while you fucked your lover? Did you take care of them or was it too much fun just to have another man fucking you that you let them alone?" I was now calm and cold. The pain was still there, deep cutting pain. It was going to be a long time before that pain lessened. There would be days and days of pain so intense that it was going to tax all I had.
April had a look of anger on her face that turned her beauty into an ugly mask. Maybe the mask was the real April. Maybe this was the April I had never seen but who had been inside all along. She lashed back. "The boys are with Pete. Robin and I were out shopping and Pete was sitting for me. I wasn't with anyone else, just Robin."
With this announcement, she felt she had scored a point. The look of anger changed into a look of satisfaction. She finally realized that I had been home all along and asked, "What are you doing home? Where is your car and why were you sitting there in the dark? Were you spying on me? Trying to catch me in something?"
.... There is more of this story ...